Green Acres Church Helps Restore Woman's RV Home

A simple request for some nightgowns turns into a woman getting a much-needed place to live. The request came from an East Texas woman battling cancer and a local church responded.  Now church members are doing everything they can to turn her house into a home.

"If it wasn't for Green Acres and Sandra, I don't know what I'd be doing right now," said Retta Lemley, who's having an RV remodeled by members of Green Acres Baptist Church.

A week and a half ago, Lemley had her right kidney removed after doctors told her she had cancer.  "They told me that I had two spots on my kidney," said Lemley.

Lemley has been disabled since 1996.  She has a limited budget.  Before her surgery, Retta called a number of churches in the area asking if they had gowns they could donate to her for her hospital stay.

Sandra Herring, a member of Green Acres Baptist Church, went to see Lemley the night before her surgery.  "In that visit, I learned that she lived here and that she had no running water or facilities in her RV. So, I asked if she minded if we came out to look at it," said Herring.

When Herring saw the 15 foot trailer, and the condition it was in, she was shocked.  "The trailer I had was so small that I had to kind of scoot sideways to get around to it.  And I really didn't have no hanging places," said Lemley.

"As an effort between Green Acres' main campus and Green Acres south campus, we decided to try to look for something different, something a little bigger," said Herring.  Herring said this turned into a bigger project than she first thought.  Eight church members have been putting new floors, painting and cleaning a used, much-larger RV, For Lemley to come home to.

Lemley says she can't wait to do the things most people take for granted.  "Being able to sit in the living room and not laying in the bed watching my TV all the time and having space to walk," said Lemley.

Lemley calls Herring her angel, but Herring says it's the other way around. "I think Retta has been more of a blessing to me than I've been to her and I think she's been a little bit of an angel to let me know just how blessed I am," said Herring.

The group hopes to have the place finished by the end of the week. They say they need someone to install the carpeting and they need a small, and they do stress the word, small recliner.  So, if you'd like to help, give Green Acres Baptist Church a call and leave a message for Sandra Herring.

Oralia Ortega, Reporting.