The days started with worship service and ended with worship, as well as activities for the youth.
DePlace, 72, went on the trip as a volunteer with Group Mission Trips. As a work site coach, he checked on the crews and made sure everyone was working safely, and there were no problems.
Describing himself as “an advanced handyman,” dePlace volunteers with Faith in Action, and has had experience building ramps for the handicapped. He used to manage a data center, and is familiar with managing people.
DePlace was particularly impressed the young people, saying, “I never heard a smart remark. They were outstandingly delightful.”
The adults were assigned to groups of about five teens, all from different places. Grimes, for example, worked with five teens from Chicago, Tennessee and Georgia, ranging in age from 13 through 17.
“You bond with the kids as you’re painting and working together as a team,” she said.
Grimes was making her second trip; her daughter, Samantha, has gone three times. This year, however, she’s in boot camp with the Marines.
Grimes noted that the residents of the homes being repaired were appreciative and would provide water and refreshments. “It’s a win-win,” she said. “They’re taking care of us and we’re taking care of them.”
Also, passing motorists would honk and give a thumbs-up, she said.
Whitehair was making her first trip, but her daughter has been five times.
“I really think it’s an enriching experience,” she said. “You get close to the kids from different states, and they learn how to form bonds and build people skills.”
DePlace was making his first trip, too, and he recommended it to others, especially those who like youth. He said he would do it again.
Mark the date
Hopper is excited about next year, when Group Mission Trips comes to Danville.