Business owner steps up and helps complete pool for retired teacher
ABC57 met with Joanne in July of 2022 with the hope of getting the contractor who failed to complete her pool, Jeff Maurer, to finish the job.
After ABC57 News aired her story, it started trending on social media.
Her former students and the community started commenting and sharing her story, rallying around her.
"I got an old friend, Irish Saunders who works at Hoosier Tire in Lakeville. He reached out to me and he said, 'Hey, Jason, there's something I think you want to watch on ABC57 News tonight, I think you might be interested in helping,'" Jason said.
After watching the story, Jason Felty, who is the owner of Jason's Wholesale Spa and Pool, felt obligated to help out.
"I wish you can help everybody in the world but you can't. I think it was just her disability her getting taken advantage of waiting two years to get a pool. You know, Kevin, it takes us depending on Mother Nature 30 to 45 days to dig a hole, put a pool in and you're swimming. So, it's just, it's unheard of," stated Jason.
Jason walked me through what needed to be done to get Joanne in the pool by the end of this summer.
"See how high that is here, and then over here you have divots, you have sharp edges here. When you put a liner over that, it's not going to last. So, what we got to do here is we got to grind this down any imperfections and stuff, we have to grind down," Jason showed us.
Joanne was completely overwhelmed with emotion after seeing the support she was going to receive from Jason.
"When I got a call from a friend who knows Jason, he told me to give Jason a call, and he was just saying that he and another company, were going to finish our pool at no charge to us. And I was at work. And I just completely luckily, no one members or customers were in there. But I completely started crying," Joanne said.
Her faith in humanity was restored.
"Is this really, you know, happening? I mean, somebody like this in our community that stepped forward, and is doing this just out of the kindness of their heart," Joanne said.
Jeff Maurer eventually contacted Joanne and got involved in the project with Jason overseeing and contributing free labor and equipment.
Joanne is humbled and grateful to her former students for voicing their support.
"A lot of ex-students of yours stepped up and started sharing your story, saying wonderful things about you. How did that make you feel?" we asked.
"That just touched me. And I tried to reach out to each student that made a comment and just tell them how special they were to me when they were in my class," Joanne said.
Joanne shared a video of her enjoying her swimming pool on Labor Day.
Her wish, is now complete
"Luckily, in my life, I've been able to forge a lot of amazing friendships and contacts with wonderful people. But Jason's now and, Kevin, you're you yourself, are like, at the top of my list of people that I will forever be thankful to, because you just turn this negative completely around and made it a positive in my life," Joanne said.
Michiana's Problem Solver was created to provide a voice to those without one and help those in need.
Our initial story and the generosity of strangers was able to make a positive impact in completing Joanne's pool.
If you have a problem and want me to look into it - you can email [email protected]