A group of volunteers come to the aid of a man living in squalor in northwest Oklahoma City.
Jeremy Nichols made a telephone service call to the home near NW 36 Street and N. Meridian Avenue when he discovered the homeowner's living conditions.
“I just couldn't believe the conditions this gentleman had been living in for who knows how long,” said Jeremy Nichols.
Nichols enlisted his sister and other volunteers to clean up the home this weekend.
“I knew it was going to be a big chore,” Jeremy said. “None of the toilets were working, the toilet in the back was completely filled with feces, and feces were all in the carpet where he had tracked it through the house.”
Piece by piece and tub after tub, volunteers gathered up and hauled out years of neglect inside the home. The overwhelming stench, human waste and dead rats were among the worst of what they faced.
“It's just labor intensive, you think one area is clean and then you discover something else,” said Karena Nichols, Jeremy’s sister.
Jerry, the homeowner, told us he's legally blind, lives on a fixed income and was unable to find any help, until now.
“It feels great, they're great kids. I wish I found them a long time ago,” he said.
Phoenix Restorations in Edmond donated hazmat suits and other cleaning supplies, but more volunteers are needed.
“The human waste and biohazard aspect of it is not what I’m asking people to come help with, it's the actual muscle and moving equipment and furniture, stuff like that,” Karena Nichols said.
Despite the disgusting conditions, volunteers remained steadfast in their cause.
“It just feels good to make a difference for him,” said Jeremy Nichols.
The home must be cleaned and pass inspection by the state health department by Wednesday, otherwise the home will be condemned and the homeowner evicted.
The toilets have been replaced and the plumbing repaired, but more work is needed.
If you would like to help out, email Karena Nichols at firstname.lastname@example.org.