Local News

First lady helps unveil Fayetteville home for homeless vets

Posted July 21, 2011

— A crew working on a boarding house for homeless women veterans got a hand Thursday from a prominent volunteer: first lady Michelle Obama.

Decked out in a sleeveless, Navy-blue top, Army-green capris and green sneakers, the first lady joined the crew of "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" Thursday afternoon to the cheers of a crowd that had been waiting for hours in the nearly 100-degree heat to catch a glimpse.

Obama wanted to visit a greenhouse and playhouse as part of the effort to construct a new home for the women of the Steps N Stages Jubilee House, according to a spokeswoman for the ABC network. The episode is scheduled to air in October.

The effort is being led by Barbara Marshall, a 15-year Navy veteran who runs the project as a shelter for women veterans. Her own home was demolished to make room for the new building.

Chip Smith, owner of Blue Ridge Log Cabins, the primary contractor on the project, said as many as 150 volunteers have worked as late as 2 a.m. some nights to tear down the old house and build the new one.

A crowd of at least several hundred cheered after seeing Obama in the greenhouse Thursday afternoon, a few hours before the finished house was unveiled.

But the heat and excitement may have proved too much in some cases, as a handful of people had fainted by the early afternoon and were being cared for by emergency medical crews.


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  • ProudBlackSingleMother Jul 22, 2011

    Michelle Obama did nothing to help... just the airplane and security bill could have paid for two more houses just like that.

  • ProudBlackSingleMother Jul 22, 2011

    That is awfully sexist to only allow women into this home unless an equivalent facility for men was built nearby.

  • loprestw Jul 22, 2011

    Obama was right, the uneducated and the feeble minded fall to religion.

  • chevybelair57sd Jul 22, 2011

    If she had nothing to do with getting this project going, I resent my tax dollars being spent to bring her here, just like her vacations.

  • dworm84 Jul 22, 2011

    Please people! I can't beleive what your saying. You should be a shame of youself. Not one person complain about him when you received that check. What are you hater? Just because they are black,or the fact that she is helping homeless vets.They did not put us in the current situation the last president did. If you use your common sense you would no that. He can't fix things without support. If God pointed the finger at us every time we did something wrong it would be no us. I pray that God for gives you for what your saying about his children, we are all brother and sister in his eye sight(GOLO). You may talk the talk but can you do better? no that why your there and he is at the white house. grandma77

  • Bill Brasky Jul 22, 2011

    Some of you posters are right, it's costing too much taxpayer money, our first lady should just stay locked in the White House....Oh wait, that cost taxpayer money too.

    Anyone else see how lame this talking point is, when the first lady is just doing her job?

  • sunneyone Jul 22, 2011

    The taxpayers would still have had to pay for the EMHE crew by providing police and other services, whether the first lady was there or not.

  • Sherlock Jul 22, 2011

    The money it cost Fayetteville and other tax payer to have her come her, that could have been use to help the pay the debt. She was here just ot get a phot op and that was it, if she was so up on this she would have been here on day one....

  • Wendellcatlover Jul 22, 2011

    Do we really care what Obama was wearing? Please! This should be a story about a wonderful woman who had her own house bulldozed to help out other vets who happen to be homeless. Who gives a hoot what Michelle Obama was wearing? What, is she some runway model now or something???

  • lariatgirl Jul 22, 2011

    While I commend Barbara Marshall wanting to help other veterans, and the workers who spent hours on the project, I can not for the life of me see how some folks can stand and applaud the arrival of someone just because of her name or who she is. She's just another woman, and no I wouldn't have been there even if it was Laura Bush! Get over that already! She was there for two reasons..PHOTO OP and hope it helps her hubby's campaign. Do you so easily forget her husband threatening government checks such as SS or VA pay on August 1st? And yet she wants to be there on opening day? Cmon give me a break! It's not about Ty, Paulie, Mrs. O or anyone else. Wake up,it's all about Ms Marshall, the veterans that live there, the VOLUNTEERS that worked tirelessly THEY MADE THIS HAPPEN. Without the volunteers it would not have been possible! End of story!