NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A couple whose Breezy Point home was completely destroyed in Superstorm Sandy got the surprise of a lifetime from a group of volunteers.
Led by the Virginia-based “Operation Blessing International,” hundreds of volunteers rebuilt Bert and Jeanne Metz’s home.
The volunteers worked tirelessly to help the Queens couple get back on their feet.
As CBS 2’s Dana Tyler reported, the Metzes were led, eyes closed, to a giant blue tarp for the big reveal.
They burst into tears as their newly renovated home was revealed and much-needed cheers filled their Breezy Point neighborhood, Tyler reported.
“We worked on this house for about three weeks from studs to where it is today so we hope you really like it, we’ve done our best,” a volunteer said.
Jeanne Metz said she was overwhelmed by the effort.
“Unbelievable. My heart is pounding — look at this,” Jeanne Metz said.
The Metzes originally bought the Breezy Point place as a summer home. They put their life savings into it to make it livable year round.
But in August, the contractor died and the house wasn’t done. Then in October, Sandy hit, destroying all of their belongings and they had no flood insurance.
While the couple stayed with friends and family, they had no idea their was house was being gutted and rebuilt from the studs with all new electrical, plumbing, appliances, furniture and decor.
“Oh it’s absolutely beautiful!” Jeanne Metz said through tears as she got a tour of her new home.
The couple’s children and grandchildren were in on the surprise. The couple said they are grateful to the organization for their new home.
Operation Blessing has had volunteers assisting in the clean-up effort across the region since Sandy hit, helping to distribute meals and supplies to thousands of affected residents. Volunteers have also helped restore 400 homes.
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