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Texas 1st Habitat Build Breaks Ground, 8th CDA National Habitat House

A ground-breaking ceremony for the first Habitat for Hummanity house to be built in Texas (the eighth in the nation), took place on Saturday, May 15, 2004, at 2:30 p.m. on the site of the new home, 5621 Palo Verde in Corpus Christi, Texas, Left to right, are: Olga Samaniego, first vice state regent; Dee Scheetz, Texas state regent; Carolyn Bachmann, Second vice state regent; Libby Ramirez, third vice national regent; Father Frank Martinez, chaplain of Court Juan Diego #2277; Eve Trevino, state CDA Habitat chairman; Corpus Christi Mayor Loyd Neal; and Gary Little, Habitat for Humanity Corpus Christi president.

Diana Alvarado, the new homeowner to be, is interviewed by Channel 6 of Corpus Christi, Other members of the media present were: KII-TV, KZTV, KRIS TV, KORO TV and the editor of "The South Texas Catholic", all of Corpus Christi.

The ground-breaking for the first CDA Habitat house in Texas and the eighth in the country, took place in Corpus Christi in sweltering 95-degree heat. The event was a triple blessing. First, a single working mother's dream of ever owning a house is being fulfilled; second, the goal of Dee Scheetz, state regent, of building a house during her term is being realized; and, lastly, the project give Catholic Daughters the opportunity to work together in "Unity and Charity" as an example to all Catholic women. Two hundred Catholic Daughters from 22 Texas cities from Brownsville to El Paso attended the ground breaking at the new home site of 5621 Palo Verde Street. The occupants of the home, Diana Alvarez, and her three children and three grandchildren, were present.

Libby Ramirez, third vice national regent, presented a check in the amount of $21,000 to Gary Little, Corpus Christi Habitat president, representing the funding from national CDA. This represents half of the cost of the . The other half will be paid by Texas Catholic Daughters. Dee Scheetz said that the 207 Texas courts had raised more than $21,000 which will help provide Ms. Alvarado with a few needed household appliances. Libby Ramirez remarked that it was an honor to present the check as part of the celebration of the organization's 100th anniversary. The invocation was led by Reverend Bob Dunn, chaplain of Court of the Most Precious Blood #2380, and the blessing of the site was by Reverend Frank Martinez, chaplain of Court Juan Diego #2277, both of Corpus Christi. Father Dunn commented, "Look what we can do when the Body of Christ comes together."

Eve Trevino, state CDA Habitat chair, reported that the concrete slab which was poured at the end of June took a long time to dry because of the heavy rains in the coastal area. The first CDA Habitat work day was Saturday, July 17. About 40 volunteers from Habitat, CDA members from Portland, Texas, and Diana Alvarado participated. Most of the wall framing was done by volunteers, while others cleaned debris and rocks from the yard and several ran weed eaters. The Corpus Christi members furnished cold water, tea, sodas and Gatorade. Food was provided by Court St. Jude Thaddeus #1770 in Alice.

The house was dedicated on Saturday, October 16th as part of the observance of Catholic Daughters of the Americas Day.