Mon, 07 May 2012 19:37:50 GMT — It is a home rebuilt with love and for Dave and Diana Johnson and their children, all seventeen them, it is overwhelming."It's beyond words, it's beyond what we even expected and we're going to make this a home," Mark Johnson.Fourteen of the Johnsonâ??s children are adopted and for 30 years, the Johnsonâ??s struggled to raise their kids in this modest Tully ranch house. When it started falling apart and needed repairs, the community stepped up to help. Volunteer Kathy Doody says, "We've always looked up to them. They have been an example for other families, Many families have adopted children because of them." For the past three weeks, volunteers worked around the clock rebuilding the house. More than 150 companies donated materials and, as for the manpower, Johnson is a retired Syracuse firefighter and many of his former fellow firefighters worked long hours so the project could get done. "Sometimes we had a firefighter walk in, or a contractor at two or three in the morning just start asking what can I do to help," said Captain Bob Whitehead of the Syracuse Fire Department. For Diana Johnson, the best part is seeing the faces of her children light up when they see their new home. "When my daughter opened her closet and saw a soccer shirt that had been signed for her. She fell to her knees and cried. She came from Africa with nothing; look at all of this. This was overwhelming, just overwhelming," said Diana Johnson. Itâ??s certainly overwhelming for Mark Johnson, who is already thinking how he can ever repay the kindness and love shown to him and his family by so many. "This is beautiful. What Iâ??m trying to think now is, how can we give back to everyone else who has given us so much? You can tell everyone put everything into this," said Johnson. Many of the materials purchased to make this project possible were paid for by the volunteers and fire fighters. If youâ??d donate, click here. You can also follow the project on Facebook.
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