'Christmas Angel' Installs New Roof for Local Disabled Veteran

One Gadsden County man has already received his Christmas gift.

Jim Hooks says, "Christine's my Christmas angel."

Hooks calls Christine DeLand his angel because her company is putting a brand new roof on Hooks' home for free.

"My home was falling in and it was covered with black mold. I've got spots on the inside in the ceiling where water's come through. I've got damage in the house. I've lost a lot of sleep worrying about my house falling in." He says.

Hooks says the troubles began about eight months ago. He says the company that built his mobile home would not honor his 20-year warranty or help with his molded, collapsing roof.

When he called Able Roofing in May, DeLand, who's the owner, says she was touched by the disabled veteran's plight, and the fact that Hooks' girlfriend's mother was also living in the home under hospice care.

DeLand says, "In my gut, I thought this just can't be. It was bad. He was just a matter of months from his home being completely uninhabitable. I made a promise to him. I wasn't sure how, but, by the end of the year he was going to have a roof."

Hooks says, "I'll never forget her as long as I live."

DeLand says her workers have stripped off almost the entire roof decking, which had mold on the top and bottom because the nails were in wrong.

They will replace the wet insulation, and the shingles are stacked on top of the house ready to go on.

DeLand says, "My mom always taught me that there's a rainbow in every storm. We should be seeing one any minute now."

Deland says she's gotten a lot of community support for the project. She says suppliers have donated materials for free.

She says Hooks' brand new roof should be complete by Wednesday or Thursday if the weather permits.

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