KILLEEN, Texas — The sounds of manual labor echoed through a neighborhood in Killeen Tuesday as veterans worked to repair the roof of a fellow veteran they've never met.
"We have something in common," Luke Duell said.
Duell is the owner of Knowater Roofing, a company he founded while following his own service to our country, including the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Duell said he hires veterans every chance he gets because the values instilled in them while in the service are the same ones he operates under today.
"I believe in them. Loyalty, duty, selfless service, honor integrity," Duell said. "So, if they can bring that over, not necessarily knowing how to fix a roof, we'll teach them how."
Omar McKanney works for Duell.
"It's hard to just sit still. It's given me a purpose," McKanney said. "You know, sitting at home, it's just hard to sit there and not do anything. I have to have something to do. So, this gives me purpose going forward."
"I'm looking to give people that push that they need," Duell said.
He said he wants to be a stepping stone for others, veteran or not, because sometimes that's all you need.
Duell said he also hopes to help homeless veterans.
"A lot of people live day to day, so if I can make them shine for one day, put a little money in their pocket, that alone is rewarding," he said.
McKanney said Duell and his wife are a lifeline he needed in the worst way.
"You pray, you pray, you pray," McKanney said. "And when you see it manifest in a human being, through God, it almost, it shakes you a little bit. It makes you want to go forward and be the best person you can be."
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