Habitat groundbreaking

Lisa Miller, at right, and her children, Trey, with shovel, and Zahira, participate in the ceremonial groundbreaking at the site of their Habitat for Humanity home, currently a vacant lot at 615 E. Bryan St., in Bryan, on Friday. Looking on, from right, are Miller’s mother, Shirley Andrews of West Unity, longtime Habitat volunteer Joe Pilarski and Habitat volunteer Tammy Smith. RON OSBURN/Staff

The site of the newest Habitat for Humanity house at 615 E. Bryan St., is just a vacant lot right now. But by the end of the year, it will be occupied by a new 1,100-square-foot Habitat for Humanity-built house that will be home to Lisa Miller and her two children.

In fact, Zahira, 12, and Trey, 9, were already making friends, running, laughing and playing with several of the kids in the neighborhood during Habitat’s ceremonial groundbreaking at the site on a windblown Friday afternoon.

“I think it’s going to be a good spot. The kids are already happy,” Miller, who now lives on Trevitt Street in Bryan, said with a smile as she was joined by her mother, Shirley Andrews, of West Unity, and about two dozen Habitat officials, volunteers and community partners for the 20-minute groundbreaking.

This is the 33rd Habitat home in the 27 years of Habitat’s existence as a local organization, Executive Director Mary Ann Peters said.

Partner families must have a need, have the ability to make mortgage payments in the range of $450 a month, and pay for property taxes and insurance on the home, among other requirements. They also must contribute at least 250 hours of “sweat equity” in the building process, Peters said.

“This is such a good location. The family is delightful. Lisa and her children are such fun to work with,” Peters said.

Miller thanked those in attendance and said she was glad she helped with last year’s home build, “because it gave us a chance to get to know everyone.”

“I’m happy for her,” Andrews said.

Habitat received the lot through the Williams County Land Bank, which obtained it in lieu of taxes owed. The house will be directly across the street from another Habitat house at 622 E. Bryan St.

Besides Habitat officials and volunteers, Habitat Board President Steve Collins recognized Huntington Bank; Maumee Valley Planning Organization; Pastor Logan Feller of Bryan Alliance Church; new lead building contractor Jacob Leininger, of Ryan Custom Homes; Dan Creighton, an excavator operator from Fayette; and representatives from the Land Bank and the Bryan Area Foundation.

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