REDMOND, Wash. — For the last several years Lewis Harris, a Marine Corps Veteran in his 80s, has seen his health decline and his life become more isolated.
“I definitely don’t want to be a burden to anyone,” Harris said.
He lives alone in Redmond in a home that was quickly deteriorating, and last month his health took a turn.
Harris was running errands and said he couldn't remember how to get home. He said he found his way to a store and asked the clerk for help.
“I told her, ‘I’m not here to harm you, ma’am, I’m very sick,' I had a medical condition,” Harris said.
The clerk called the police and officer Toly Nazariya responded.
“The more I got to know him and when I came in here the more, I wanted to help him,” Nazariya said.
“We just had a really good conversation," Harris said. "I explained to him I was really ill and I could not see, and he volunteered to bring me home."
When Officer Nazariya saw Harris' home and how he was living, he knew exactly what to do.
Nazariya's wife, Tanya, is a professional interior designer. With her help, the couple started to help Harris renovate his home.
"It just snowballed into a really big project," said Nazariya.
Their good deed was contagious and in just a few weeks, dozens of businesses donated supplies and labor to help out.
From quartz countertops to a gallery wall featuring Harris' military service, the home got a complete remodel that was revealed to Harris this weekend.
“It almost brought me to tears, okay. I had a couple of drops there, it really touched my heart and my soul,” Harris said.
“I’m glad that I got it started she kind of took over and made the rest possible and I’m thankful for everybody that showed up and contributed,” Nazariya said.
Harris got a chance to meet the contractors and crew that made it all possible.
“There’s nothing I can do to ever repay them other than just be a good American and try to help other people,” Harris said.