Volunteer crews to renovate injured HPD officer's home

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Nearly three years ago, a Houston Police officer was critically injured in Victoria driving home from a family wedding.

Ramiro Garcia was a five year HPD veteran. He was a father of three young girls. He was a man who loved to put on the badge and uniform every day and hit the streets to make Houston safer.

"He loved what he was doing," said his mother Dora Garcia. The SUV in which he was riding blew a tire and Garcia was ejected.

Since the accident his mother quit her job to care for him full time. Today he's confined to a wheelchair. He can't walk or talk. "You just learn to live in a different way," she said. They've made what accommodations they can for the wheelchair but the largest of the bathrooms is too small for the chair, making bathing Garcia difficult.

With the wreck happening off duty, he and his family only qualified for so much help and compensation.

"When we see somebody who is in dire need like this, we have to step in," said Houston Police Officer's Union member Luis Menendez. The union heard about the situation and shared details not long ago with Texas Home Improvement radio host Jim Dutton, who was coincidentally looking to help a family just like Garcia's.

Dutton took one look and decided their entire house should get a remodel.

"It's something that's truly going to make it nice for them," Dutton said.

Two dozen contractors have signed on to volunteer their efforts and materials through the "Overhaul for a Hero" project. They'll get new floors. A new roof, new air conditioning new cabinets. And that master bathroom will soon be big enough to more easily bathe Garcia. Literally the entire house is to be gutted and be rebuilt. Dutton says the project, which would normally take at least 6 weeks will be completed in just 7 days next month.

Garcia's can't express her gratitude enough.

"I don't consider myself suffering compared to others. But i still.. I'm being blessed," she said.

The catch is that they still need donations -- about $18,000 to round out the project. That's where you can help. You can log onto http://www.thipro.com/ or go directly to the YouCaring page here.
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