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Habitat News

Senior Crew Spotlight | Emory Laffin

I grew up on a dairy farm outside of Wausau, Wisconsin. I met my wife of 49 years, Paulette, while attending Wausau Senior High School. I spent two years attending the University of Wisconsin Marathon County and then 3 more years at UW Madison to complete my Pharmacy degree. After completing my internship at Look Drug in Kaukauna, I worked as a pharmacist for five years in Merrill, Wisconsin. I joined the Shopko pharmacy program in 1975 and worked for four years in Stevens Point, Wisconsin before becoming the pharmacy manager in Kimberly, Wisconsin. I retired from Shopko Kimberly in 2011. When I retired, I had a long list of DIY home improvement projects (siding, windows, roof, etc) to work on. I also volunteered at the Partnership Health Clinic in Menasha. Emory Laffin photo for SC spotlight

I have always had an interest in DIY home projects and thought I could be helpful and give something back to the community by volunteering at Habitat. Habitat has such a great reputation in the area and I felt that I wanted to see what the organization was all about. Since I started with Habitat in the winter, there was little new construction going on, so they assigned me to the Decon crew. I was pretty surprised to learn about Decon, because I always thought that the focus of Habitat was to BUILD houses not take them apart. My first day was spent “harvesting” copper pipe from a soon to be torn down building in Greenville. At the end of the day, we weighed up the copper and could easily calculate the “fruits of our labor” to benefit Habitat. After a few more volunteer Decon days, I got to know the other Senior volunteers better, and enjoyed the camaraderie of the group and the challenges of some of our decon projects (especially taking out those HEAVY granite countertops). It is always interesting to check the Restore prices on things that we have “harvested” and know that the Decon crew contributed to the mission of Habitat. Besides, as Craig always says “on Decon you never have to worry about whether anything is square or level”. I have found ALL of the volunteers are always friendly and willing to help. I also enjoy the positive “can do” attitude of the crew.

In addition to working with Decon, I enjoy camping/traveling, fishing, deer/turkey hunting, spending time with our four grandchildren, and snowmobiling in the winter.

A surprising fact about me is in 2016, on a camping trip to Alaska, I drove my RAM pickup truck on a 1,000 mile round trip on the oil pipeline “haul road” from Fairbanks to the oil fields on the Artic Ocean at Prudoe Bay (I only had one flat tire).

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