Sandra and Ken Murphy were stunned when a team from Langley’s Acts of Kindness ministry, along with lifetime friends Lola and Bella Howet, arrived in Sandra’s hospital room in Abbotsford on Christmas Eve with news that their home will be the subject of the 2020 Extreme Home Repair. (Michael Dauncey/Church in the Valley – Acts of Kindness)

Sandra and Ken Murphy were stunned when a team from Langley’s Acts of Kindness ministry, along with lifetime friends Lola and Bella Howet, arrived in Sandra’s hospital room in Abbotsford on Christmas Eve with news that their home will be the subject of the 2020 Extreme Home Repair. (Michael Dauncey/Church in the Valley – Acts of Kindness)

VIDEO: ‘Unbelievable’ Christmas gift delivered to ailing B.C. woman in hospital

Acts of Kindness team will be renovating the Murphy home, so new amputee can come home

A recent two-foot amputee from Langley City received an early Christmas gift from Church in the Valley and its Acts of Kindness team on Dec. 24.

Sandra Murphy, with her husband Ken at her side, was in Abbotsford hospital on Christmas Eve – having just lost both her feet and several of her fingers to amputation.

The Langley City couple was surprised when a delegation from the Seventh-Day Adventist Church paid them an unexpected visit, but shocked beyond words when they learned the real motive for the stopover.

Murphys will be the 2020 recipients of the Extreme Home Repair, explained AOK pastor Michael Dauncey.

“We figure this news today could be something to brighten up the negative situation right now,” he said of the decision to announce next year’s recipient just ahead of Christmas.

AOK organizers Lorne Brownmiller was also on hand for the announcement at Sandra’s hospital bedside.

“We believe you guys really deserve a Christmas to remember… you’ve had a rough go,” Brownmiller said.

AOK’s annual Extreme Home Repair program sees a team of businesses and community volunteers go in and retrofit homes for people who cannot afford or are not – for various reasons – able to do the needed restore their home to a safe and liveable standard.

RECENT COVERAGE: Aldergrove single mother given ‘brand new’ start

For the past 17 years now, the Aldergrove-based AOK team has tackled these home renovations, typically taking upwards of two weeks in May. The Murphy home will be transformed between May 1 to 18, Dauncey confirmed.

They’ve done about two dozen such repair and renovation projects for deserving people. The jobs have ranged from small projects such as a new roof to total re-dos, he explained. Up to a few dozen nominations a year are received.

The Murphys, including their adult daughter Jillian, were nominated by Aldergrove’s Bella Howet, and her sister, Lola. The sisters have know the family for 53 years, and Bella was the one to surprise the Murphy’s by announcing the news on Tuesday.

“You guys are the most deserving people I know,” Bella said.

“It couldn’t happen to a nicer, more deserving family,” she added between sniffles and hugs.

“I can’t believe this. Nothing like this has ever happened to us,” Sandra said, turning away from her guests to hide the flood of tears she kept wiping away from her face. “It’s so amazing,” she added.

Ken was almost at a lose for words as the reality sunk in.

“It’s so awesome, you guys. Thank you,” he said. “Thank you for just being there like this. This is such an awesome thing.”

Murphys bought a Langley City rancher a few years back, as a fixer-upper project they were going to work on together – Ken being “talented with carpentry,” Dauncey explained.

Sadly, a number of issues arose for the family since then, making the renos impossible – at least short-term. In fact, given Sandra’s amputations, the initial plans for retrofitting the house changed. The only priority was to make it wheelchair accessible throughout, so Sandra could get around in her own home, Bella explained.

“They are a good family with true Christian beliefs and have always opened their house and home to those who needed it. Now they need the help…” she said in submitting the request for the AOK team to help the Murphys.

PAST COVERAGE: ‘Extreme Home Repair’ kicks off in Aldergrove for deserving family

After their son died in the summer of 2016, the loss took its toll on this family, Dauncey elaborated. And through all this, Sandra has battled health issues for many years.

Then, just a few months ago, while travelling in the States, Sandra took sick and ended up in hospital with only 85 per cent of her heart working.

Doctors did what they could to stabilize her, then airlifted her back to Canada.

Because of Sandy’s declining health, Ken left his job to be at her bedside while she was waiting for the amputation of her feet and parts of her hands.

“Not only do they have this on their plate, but now they have a home Sandra can’t return too,” Bella said.

Admittedly, although Ken professed to be “handy,” he knew little of what he would have to do to modify their home so it can accommodate Sandra and her wheelchair.

At the very least, she explained, they’ll need a larger, wheelchair-accessible bathroom, and a ramp to allow access in and out of the house to make it habitable for Sandra.

“I do not know what other problems they will have concerning the house,” Bella added.

Dauncey said the selection of this year’s recipient for the Extreme Home Repair was not as difficult as many in past. The Murphys need help, and need help immediately.

“This has all occurred just in the last few months,” he said. “How devastating to lose limbs like this… this family could really use some help right now… this is definitely a special Christmas gift for them.”

“This is a true blessing,” Sandra said. “I can’t believe this… This kind of thing doesn’t happen to us.”

.

_________________________________

Is there more to this story?

roxanne.hooper@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter

_________________________________

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Sandra and Ken Murphy were stunned when a team from Langley’s Acts of Kindness ministry, along with lifetime friends Lola and Bella Howet, arrived in Sandra’s hospital room in Abbotsford on Christmas Eve with news that their home will be the subject of the 2020 Extreme Home Repair. (Michael Dauncey/Church in the Valley – Acts of Kindness)

Sandra and Ken Murphy were stunned when a team from Langley’s Acts of Kindness ministry, along with lifetime friends Lola and Bella Howet, arrived in Sandra’s hospital room in Abbotsford on Christmas Eve with news that their home will be the subject of the 2020 Extreme Home Repair. (Michael Dauncey/Church in the Valley – Acts of Kindness)

Sandra and Ken Murphy were stunned when a team from Langley’s Acts of Kindness ministry, along with lifetime friends Lola and Bella Howet, arrived in Sandra’s hospital room in Abbotsford on Christmas Eve with news that their home will be the subject of the 2020 Extreme Home Repair. (Michael Dauncey/Church in the Valley – Acts of Kindness)

Sandra and Ken Murphy were stunned when a team from Langley’s Acts of Kindness ministry, along with lifetime friends Lola and Bella Howet, arrived in Sandra’s hospital room in Abbotsford on Christmas Eve with news that their home will be the subject of the 2020 Extreme Home Repair. (Michael Dauncey/Church in the Valley – Acts of Kindness)

Just Posted

Nuxalk Public Health Nurse Sophie Mack is all smiles as she vaccinates her dad, hereditary chief James Mack Sr., with his first dose of the Moderna vaccine (photo submitted)
Cases drop as vaccine continues to roll out in Bella Coola

Seniors at Mountain View Lodge, long-term care residents have all received their vaccine so far

Interior Health has declared the Cariboo Chilcotin a community cluster. (Angie Mindus photo)
Interior Health declares Cariboo Chilcotin region a COVID-19 cluster, 215 cases since Jan. 1

Most cases are related to transmission at social events and gatherings in Williams Lake

A vial of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is displayed on Jan. 5, in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Rick Bowmer/AP)
Power outage spoils COVID-19 vaccine at Tl’etinqox

Temperature-sensitive vaccine no longer viable after Jan. 18 event

Nuxalk elder Caroline Mack, 85, receives her first dose of the Moderna vaccine on Jan. 19, at the Nuxalk Hall. (Caitlin Thompson photo)
First vaccines roll out for Nuxalk elders, hospital staff and long-term care residents

The Moderna vaccine arrived in Bella Coola on Sunday, Jan. 17

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Gem Lake Top, at Big White Ski Resort, seen at Jan. 8. (Big White Ski Resort)
Big White cancels $7.3M in lift tickets, accommodations due to COVID-19 orders

Since November, the ski resort has been forced to make several changes

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Mowi Canada West’s Sheep Pass salmon farm, the company’s final B.C. operation to receive certification from the Aquaculture Steward Council. The Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) is questioning a government decision to phase out salmon farms in the Discovery Islands. (Photo supplied by Mowi Canada West)
Canadian Federation of Agriculture backs B.C. salmon farmers

Letter to prime minister calls for federal “champion” for aquaculture growth

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Most Read