Volunteers spend Fourth of July cleaning up abandoned Detroit property next to 94-year-old woman

DETROIT (WXYZ) - A group of volunteers spent their Fourth of July morning helping an elderly Detroit woman.

Yesterday, we introduced you to Miss Catherine, a 94-year-old woman living on the city's west side.

Catherine says her pleas for help to get something done with the vacant home next door went unanswered for years. That is, until we shared her story.  First thing this morning, angels appeared to let her know, somebody does care.

They arrived with weed wackers, lawn mowers and generous hearts. 

"When I see her, I see my mother, my grandmother.  That's who she is to me," said off duty Detroit firefighter Michael Hall. He brought his 20-year-old son to help.

They weren't the only ones. Members of the Steadfast Baptist Church also showed up to help.

"I could hear in her voice the distress," said Deacon Ted Orr. "I told my wife, I'm going over there tomorrow to cut the grass." 

And they did. 

As they worked, Catherine watched.  As the waist high grass came down, her faith in others grew.

"I can't find the words.. I'm so happy to see them. The way they worked, they weren't playing around,"  said Catherine.  "I appreciate everything.  Channel 7 was right on the ball, right on the ball.  I love Channel 7."

There is still so much more work to do.  The house is still standing.  It's owned by the Detroit Land Bank Authority.  A spokesperson for Mayor Duggan says right now there are no plans to tear the house down due to funding.

Action News is not using Catherine's last name out of concern for her safety.


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