Veterans and neighbors help military widow in cleanup effort

Local

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – While the project may be big, the heart to give back is even bigger. The community and veterans are raking in crews to help a military widow.

Catalina Waters is over 80 years old and has lived in her Wichita home for more than 25 years.  

Her husband was enlisted in the Army, then the Air Force. Shortly after retiring from service, he passed away. 

Waters was very active and tried to maintain the yard, but then, she broke her leg.

“It just bugged me, seeing that grass grow,” said Waters. “I was active, and suddenly, we are not, that is very difficult to deal with.”

But that’s where a couple of organizations stepped up. 

Team Red, White and Blue, Vet to Vet Support Command, and Neighbors Indeed! came out to fix fences, mow the lawn, and clean up items lying around the yard. 

“There’s a lot of people in Wichita that are willing to give their time on a Saturday morning to help someone out,” said organizer Richard Ruth.

Group organizer Richard Ruth said while there are a lot of groups that do this kind of work, sometimes elderly people can get missed. That’s where he said he tries to fill the gap. 

“It’s about giving her a little experience of piece you to know just to be able to *takes breathe* you know,” said Ruth. 

Waters said seeing these volunteers come out to help her brings hope for the next generation and hopes it inspires more people to care for their neighbors. 

“You help a person that you don’t know and you’re doing a great job of it, that is a special person that the lord sent to us,” said Waters. “‘I’m very proud of them and seeing them here makes me feel really cool, it really does.”

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