By Stephanie Malench
On Saturday, October 23, the Lewis and Clark Chapter of Habitat for Humanity held the ceremonial ground breaking and ribbon cutting for the first annual Christian Wolf “Build for the Cure” at 501 Forest Drive in Collinsville.
Christian Wolf was an active volunteer in the Collinsville church community who passed away on June 22 from esophageal cancer. His widow Carrie is the store manager at Habitat for Humanity Restore in Collinsville.
The family selected through a stringent application process was Joseph and Kristen Lama and their three children, Sophia (5), Olivia (1), and Joseph (3 months). Joseph is a 4th generation Collinsville resident, and his 91-year-old great grandmother is still living in Collinsville.
Lama learned about the request for people to apply for the Habitat for Humanity House as he showed up to Meadow Heights Baptist Church to play in the praise band and another member gave him the article detailing the program with the picture of Wolf.
It wasn’t until after the service that Lama pulled out the article and learned of Wolf’s death, whom he had met through Swing City Music in Collinsville where Lama worked as a teacher and ran into several other times when Wolf was volunteering in the community.
Lama and his family are currently living in an apartment in a 100-year-old farmhouse that has a leaky roof and ceiling not far away from the building site. In the new house each of the children will have their own room and Lama will have a study for his collection of books. Habitat For Humanity Lewis and Clark Affiliate CEO Ralph Jackson said the goal is to have the house completed for the family to move in by Christmas.
Throughout the build, Habitat for Humanity will have special “Survivor Days” for volunteers who have beat cancer and fundraisers for the Siteman Cancer Center in Shiloh.
The land for the house was donated by Charles Reimer used to contain a duplex that was destroyed by fire.