Taking action and restoring peace for elderly Detroit man dealing with blighted houses

DETROIT (WXYZ) - Angelo Willis found a better life for his family on American Street. 

His block is still vibrant, except for two eyesores he can’t ignore. 

When the 85-year-old looks out his front window, or walks out his front door, he’s greeted with the sight of two vacant houses, weeds waist high. It got so bad, he became afraid to walk out his front door.

His daughter turned to 7 Action News Reporter Ronnie Dahl. 

In March, she tracked down the owner of the houses, which turned out to be the Detroit Land Bank Authority. The house with the busted windows was to be boarded up and the trash picked up. 

It never happened. 

“I was real disappointed.” said Mr. Willis. “Real disappointed.”

7 Action News reached out to the Detroit Land Bank Authority again. 

Wednesday morning, a crew arrived to board up the house. But the weeds and trash remained. 

So, Dahl put a request on social media for volunteers. With their help, the weeds were tackled, trees were cut down and garbage was collected.

Neighborhood camera crusader Jonathan Pommerville told 7 Action News, “His plight is my plight.  That’s what I want to change in the city.”

Kate Young showed up to volunteer because strangers have helped in her neighborhood.

Have a story for Ronnie?  Send her an email at ronnie.dahl@wxyz.com.

If you need help resolving an issue with a Detroit Land Bank Authority house on your block, call 1-844-BUY-DLBA.

You can also find out more information about homes for sale thru the land bank on the website, www.buildingdetroit.org.

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