RICE --  A local veteran was surprised with a new roof Tuesday morning. Roof Rescue, a program through Oberg Roofing, awards roofing services to local veterans.

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This year’s winner is Aaron Salzer, whose military experience spans decades. Salzer says the award will help rehabilitate his historic home near Rice.

The house was built in 1912. It was originally built to be a clinic and it never actually opened. It sat empty until the mid-1920s when a farmer bought it, refurbished it, and turned it into a farmstead.

Salzer says everything about a historic home is challenging.

The challenge as a homeowner is literally trying to find anything that fits; in these old houses, everything was built on site as the home was being built. So something as simple as replacing a doorknob is not easy when it's 100 years old. And then everything's been wired, rewired, replumbed, and all that stuff.

 

Caleb Oberg (r) surprises Aaron Salzer (l) with a new roof. Jeff McMahon - WJON
Caleb Oberg (r) surprises Aaron Salzer (l) with a new roof. Jeff McMahon - WJON
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Roof Rescue will award Salzer a completely new roof. Caleb Oberg says the online nomination spoke to Salzer’s character.

I remember part of the story, they said that you were always a person that gives to other people and never has been a recipient. I think that was something that really pulled everybody, is that you're always giving to everybody. You’ve got a big heart and you would obviously graciously appreciate the free roof.

Salzer's home was damaged by spring storms, making the roof a priority. Jeff McMahon - WJON
Salzer's home was damaged by spring storms, making the roof a priority. Jeff McMahon - WJON
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Salzer says the gift of a new roof comes just in time. The storms this spring had damaged his existing roof.

The first storm that came through in May took off a big chunk of shingles. And then a couple of weeks later, we had the hailstorm. It's been a constant battle since then, with insurance companies and trying to get that stuff done.

Oberg explains how anyone can nominate a veteran for the program.

We have the program every year. It's on our website, we're trying to get everybody to go to our website to submit for somebody else or for themselves. So they just fill in the information and say a little bit about why they would be a good fit for our free roof.

For more information on the Roof Rescue program, click here.

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