BASTROP, Texas (Dec. 8, 2011) - ABC-TV’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” (EMHE) crew and hundreds of volunteers are building a new home this week for a family of Bastrop wildfire victims. Mizzy Zdroj fought the Labor Day blaze as a member of the Heart of Pines Volunteer Fire Department while her home, farm and art studio burned to the ground
Among those erecting a new home for the Zdrojs are a 76-member team of Seton Smithville Regional Hospital employees, who are scheduled to work next Monday, Dec. 12. They are led by Michelle Smith, a nursing administration department assistant whose husband is a supervisor with Bastrop County EMS.
(In addition, Doug Strange, senior project manager with Seton network facilities, has previously built houses for Habitat for Humanity as a leader of teams for Leadership Austin and his previous employer (AMD, the Austin chip designer/manufacturer). He has been selected to be the No. 2 person on this project, working under the Extreme Home Makeover project manager for the entire week.)
Michelle is writing up daily updates for her Seton Smithville colleagues. Below is an edited version of her first update, sent Dec. 8, that recounts the first day’s events from Wednesday, Dec. 7:
Day 1 has come and gone – and what an emotional day for the family, the builder and the volunteers. Lots of happy tears were shed. After the initial door knock yesterday, show host Ty Pennington and his designers began the process of rebuilding the house that Mizzy and her family lost in the fire.
Yesterday, about 20 Seton associates were able to go join the “braveheart” scene for the opening of the show. For those of you who watch the show, it is the scene where Ty, the builders and a large group of volunteers walk up to the house and surprise the family, cheering and screaming all the way down the road.
It was quite chilly and we had to do two takes, but it was worth every minute of it to see the joy and happiness on the family’s faces. I can only imagine when the new home is revealed to the family at the end and the tears that will be shed at that time.
Mizzy and her family were very grateful and expressed a never-ending “thank you” to EMHE and all the volunteers. The father and son team of EFC Custom Homes, Chris and Herman, were equally as humbled to be the chosen builder for this project. Santa and his longhorn escorted all of the people in the braveheart scene. Only in Texas!!!!
The family is going on vacation to New York City for the first part of the coming week and then will fly to the West Coast for the second part of their vacation. Ty will reveal to the family later in the week where they will be going on the West Coast. A beautiful white horse and carriage whisked the family away for their trip.
After the scene was finished several of us stayed over and did some set decorating, which was a blast – very cold but a blast!