Lending helping hands

Guest post by Lt. j.g. Chris Breuer, Air Station Traverse City

Photo of Coast Guardsman replacing countertop

Chief Petty Officer James Schulte helps replace a countertop in Poulin's kitchen. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)

Members of Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City, Mich., volunteered Monday and Tuesday at the home of a local 90-year-old World War II veteran and former prisoner of war.

Coast Guardsmen, along with other members of the community, helped with yard work, moving furniture, and general handyman projects at Larry Poulin’s home. By the time the work was done, the veteran’s house was almost completely remodeled.

Larry Cappetto, a filmmaker intent on keeping veterans’ memories alive by sharing their stories, recently visited the air station to talk about the needs of World War II veterans around the country. Just a few days later, members of the air station learned about the dire state of Poulin’s home on a local radio station and joined in the efforts to revive it.

Photo of Coast Guardsmen who volunteered

Coast Guard Airman Joshua Shaffer, Seamen Joshua Lipsey and David Dilbeck and Fireman Eugene Sapelli pose for a group photo after helping remodel Poulin's home. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)

“It made me proud to be an American, being a part of the efforts of the community to show this man that we have not forgotten,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Jenna Johnson, one of the volunteers.

“Being stationed here is not just about the job, but about being a part of the community and helping those in need,” said Cmdr. Scott Langum, Air Station Traverse City’s executive officer. “The generosity of the whole community to help Mr. Poulin was absolutely amazing.”