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Rebuilding Fort McMurray: One Year Later 

Randy Ettinger

Posted by randy

It’s been one year since the devastating wildfire in the Fort McMurray region. We are very happy to be helping many families rebuild their homes. In all our years of homebuilding, we’ve never had such a uniquely amazing and humbling experience.

Celebration has been able to help many families navigate the insurance claim system and get their rebuild on track. Since we’re also known for our custom work, many clients are taking the opportunity to make enhancements and improvements on what was there before. Sometimes, these are outside the scope of an insurance settlement, and the extra dollars are coming out of our clients’ pocket. We treat these personal investments with the utmost respect to make sure our clients are getting value for their money.

It’s not just a building boom going on in Fort McMurray… It’s a baby boom, too! Many of our clients are expecting! So we are delighted to be doing lots of baby rooms and nurseries. Congratulations to all our soon-to-be parents!

We have to share the saga of… The Door. A family’s old home had a very special and unique front door. Replacing it meant a lot to them. Celebration’s team was able to locate the original glass supplier… in Idaho! Then, we tracked down the last model of that door at a Home Depot in Great Falls, Montana. We placed the order and arranged for shipping. But it couldn’t possibly be that easy, could it?

Imagine our surprise when, expecting to receive a door, a refrigerator arrived! I can only imagine the looks on the faces of the couple in Seattle, Washington who received our door! We took up the battle with Customs, who insisted we had actually received a door (a door with a water and ice dispenser — fancy!). After a month, our family’s door finally arrived (and the Seattleites got their fridge!). They were great sports about the whole silly business, and it was a joyous moment when the actual door showed up.

The Fort McMurray experience has been filled with these sorts of contrasts: from devastation comes the opportunity to rebuild even better than before; from loss, new life; from frustration emerges joy.

It has been an honour to help rebuild the homes — and the lives — of our Fort McMurray families.

If, one year on, you’re still struggling to get your rebuild moving forward, please give Rachael Lawrence a call at 587 920 4245, or email rachael@celebrationhomes.ca. It would be our pleasure to help.

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