The dedication of the Neosho Area Habitat for Humanity home #14 was unusual as the recipient family, Shannon and Ashlee Sappington and three children, were not able to be attend.

The dedication of the Neosho Area Habitat for Humanity home #14 was unusual as the recipient family, Shannon and Ashlee Sappington and three children, were not able to be attend.
It proved to be a bittersweet day for the Sappington family. The most bitter part was a deep hurt, as Ashlee lost her father on Thursday night. The happy part was that the Habitat home the family had worked on so hard was dedicated.
The Sappingtons asked the Habitat committee to go ahead with the dedication. Their wish was honored and a private Bible and house key will be given to the family when they return from the funeral in Ohio.
The dedication ceremony traditionally is a time when a house is officially presented to a family.
Larry Swift, president of the Neosho Area Habitat for Humanity, was the master of ceremonies.He reminded the group that the ground breaking had been a brief 32 weeks ago. He also went on to explain that much work on the site had been done before the ground breaking. Several large trees, and a mountain of trash had to be cleaned from the lot.
Al Gritten, pastor of the Neosho First Christian Church, gave a prayer of sympathy for the family and asked for blessings at their time of sorrow. He asked for safe travel back to Missouri. He asked that the home be filled with blessings “in every corner.”
Rick Keezer was thanked for being the guiding carpenter for building the home. Mitch Jarvis was complimented for being an unofficial volunteer director. He had people showing up each Saturday to work on the home.
Habitat for Humanity recipients, such as the Sappington family, must work a dedicated number of hours on their own home to qualify for the interest-free loan. This work is called “sweat-equity.” The rest of the labor is furnished by volunteers from the community.
Habitat for Humanity will continue building homes in the Neosho area as two lots located near Scenic Park have been donated by Dallas and Carolyn Kelly.
Habitat homes are built for deserving home owners who do not qualify for conventional loans.
After a brief ceremony, some 40 well wishers toured the new Habitat home. All seemed eager for the Sappington family to be able to move in there to enjoy their home.