New Braunfels churches help fire victims

Volunteers repair Holler family's mobile home


NEW BRAUNFELS, Texas – Men from Oakwood Baptist Church in New Braunfels are just the latest volunteers pitching in to help a New Braunfels family that was burned out of their mobile home.

After a news story on the Holler family's plight aired on KSAT 12, Jason Holler and his family, including five children, have been besieged with offers of help from the community.

A fire started in their rural mobile home before Thanksgiving, burning some walls and ceilings and sending smoke throughout the structure, destroying nearly all of their belongings.

Holler was trying his best to make repairs but was not making much progress. Then word began to spread and volunteers like Michael Hardwick and David Bush from Oakwood Baptist Church started helping out.

"We were really thrilled to have the opportunity to come out and help with restoring his home, painting, sheet-rocking and all that kind of thing," Hardwick said. "There's nothing I'd rather be doing on Christmas than something like this."

Bush said he met the Holler family at the annual holiday dinner the church puts on for the needy.

"(I) just got to know him and his family and his needs and what had taken place," Bush said. "Our desire as brothers in Christ is to share the love of Jesus Christ and this is the way that we do it."

Volunteers were even willing to work the week of Christmas.

"I think more than anything because it's the holidays, it's what Christmas is about," Hardwick said. "This is the kind of thing we want to do anytime of the year, is to reach out and help people that have a need. Whether it's Christmas or anytime it's the right thing to do."

Grace Memorial Church also contributed presents to make the family's Christmas brighter. And a KSAT viewer named Jennifer and her family pitched in as well.

Jason was at work and was unable to observe Tuesday's construction, but said previously he has been amazed at how the community has pitched in.

"They're so open and friendly," Holler said. "You know, it's really cool. And some of these folks driving from San Antonio. They're driving from everywhere."

The family even received a $3,500 check from ValMark Chevy employees and management.

Bush said there is a reason he gives back to the community.

"At some point in somebody's life, we all need help," Bush said.

While the Holler family may not be back in their home by Christmas, hopes are it will be ready by the time school starts again in January.

In the meantime, they are staying with relatives.