Marine veteran Matt and his son Jackson watch the raising of the front wall of their new home in East Hampton. (Photo: Suzee Foster/Habitat for Humanity of Long Island)
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Habitat raises walls of new home for East End veteran

Habitat for Humanity of Long Island raised the walls on a new home for a U.S. Marine veteran and his son in East Hampton this week.

The new home is being built for single dad Matt and his son Jackson, who currently live in a small basement apartment. The new homeowner will fulfill 300 hours of “sweat equity,” helping to build his home and houses for other families in the program.

“I am so grateful for the opportunity to be part of the Habitat family,” said Matt, who for the past 12 years has worked for local newspaper The East Hampton Star. “Raising my son alone has been challenging in a small, crowded apartment. To actually help build our own house will be such a solid foundation for us and partnering with Habitat and being chosen for a house is a life-changing event.”

The construction of the new home on Thomas Avenue is a Habitat Long Island 2022 Veterans Blitz Build sponsored by PSEG Long Island. The build partner is Ben Krupinski Builder who will build the home with help from H.B. Millwork, Ned Steven Gutter Cleaning, Palermo Paving, Quackenbush Cesspools, Window World and other subcontractors in about three weeks.

Veteran supporters from Team Rubicon and Southwire also joined in the wall-raising effort.

“When I heard the new Habitat house would be for a local veteran, I said we’re in. We are proud of Matt’s service to our country and that he is an upstanding member of our community,” said Ray Harden, principal of Ben Krupinski Builder. “Building this house means he can continue to afford to live and work in the Town of East Hampton, where he grew up, and to see his son grow up here too. We appreciate the hard work of all who are working with us and our working alongside the Habitat team to make this happen.”

New homeowners assisted by Habitat go through financial preparation classes and volunteer for community service. They also sign a 30-year mortgage with 2 percent interest, with Habitat for Humanity of Long Island holding a second mortgage.

“We are grateful to each sponsor, supporter and volunteer helping to make this new home a reality,” said Lee Silberman, CEO and executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Long Island. “The Veterans Blitz Build program – which lets us build unique partnerships with builders, sponsors, and volunteer groups – accelerates completion of new-build projects like this one. This will be our 236th home on Long Island. We hope to have the opportunity to partner with other veterans in the future.”

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