TERRE HAUTE, IN - Here's a story that goes to show, the good you put out into the world, despite your circumstances, can be returned.
We first met Ken Burgess back in January when we covered the Point in Time homeless count. He told us that he lives in a house with his significant other, but they had no heat due to a broken furnace.
Moments after the story aired we got a call to our newsroom from Tony Shipman, the owner of Precision Mechanical saying he wanted to help.
A birthday gift for Ken Burgess came a day late, but was a couple of months in the making.
"This is a God send," Burgess said.
Burgess and his significant other have been without heat in their house since October , they had no running water and a hole in their roof.
"When I come home from work, the only thing we do is get bundled up under the blankets."
Ken is a veteran who served loading ships during wartime in Desert Storm. After that he had a brain tumor removed which gave him left side paralysis. He couldn't get down the stairs to fix his furnace in the basement.
"He served our country and in my opinion a veteran shouldn't be living in these conditions in America. It's insane," Tony Shipman, owner of Precision Mechanical said.
Shipman says he was lucky to catch my report that evening in January and hear about Ken's living conditions.
"We try to encourage people to talk to your neighbor, talk to your elderly, talk to your veterans because in that generation they won't ask for help."
Shipman said he would install a new furnace for free and even call up a friend to fix the roof, who also took up the expense of materials.
"I'm donating my time which isn't no issue for me because I can go home, sit down with my wife, enjoy dinner and not worry about anything he's had to deal with," Jason Troxel with Nailed It General Contracting said.
Troxel, who these guys coined "the bearded wonder" managed to update some other small projects at the home to prevent the roof from leaking in any areas.
"It's just a blessing that i'm able to be on this job and help somebody out. When I pulled up this morning I didn't expect him to walk out and have a smile on his face with the situation he's actually in."
Burgess birthday was on the 18th. The work was completed a day later.
"I had no idea it was his birthday. No. I had no idea. Happy birthday," Shipman said.
The first time we met Ken, he was collecting blankets at the Point in Time Count. But, this point in time is one he will gladly embrace.
"It makes me want to cry, i didn't think people cared or anything. I was stuck in a spot, you know, so what they I served. I'm trying with the military to get help and everything and they jumped in before the military could," Ken said.
Shipman also had Burgess' overdue water bill waived after his water and heat services were restored