Saturday, July 11, 2009

Connecticut Gulf War veteran needs help

Susan Campbell

(Hartford, Conn.) From his time as a soldier/mechanic, veteran Carl MacLeod, of East Haven, has encephalopathy, also known as Gulf War Syndrome. He no longer can work at his old job as a plant maintenance manager, and he hasn't been been able to finish work on his fixer-upper in West Haven. His frail parents have moved in with the family, which includes wife Kristy and four of their six children.

The house needs to be accessible -- for his parents and, eventually, for Carl.

Carl still volunteers to help other disabled vets through Disabled American Veterans, and through his work there, the owner of a construction company heard about his plight.

So now Henry Racki, of Rockfall Construction, is stepping in.

"The system had abandoned" the family, said Racki, so he's setting up a renovation project, with a plot plan and master construction plan. He's also securing zoning variances and applying for building permits. It's lke an "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition," says Racki, but there are no television sponsors picking up the tab.

So Racki's looking for church groups, contractors, supply companies, and people who just want to help to donate time, talent, materials, and money to get this family into their home. Racki estimates the entire project will cost $40,000.

If you're interested, contact Racki at 860-790-6291, or at

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