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Building for Ben [Video]

By Dion Lamb, in All Communities

group photo - Building for Ben

In the fall of 2011 the Knapp family’s son Ben, the oldest of three children, suffered a medical emergency which caused him to stop breathing for a significant period of time and left him severely physically disabled.

Their world was turned upside down, and the family home, which had always served them well, was now woefully unsuited for their new situation. A friend of the Knapp family brought their story to our attention about a year later, and as part of our ongoing community outreach program we decided to get involved and see how we could help.

The video you are about to watch is extremely moving and I can tell you that the entire project was very powerful for me from start to finish. The fact that our company does this type of work, and knowing that whatever I needed, whatever I thought would help the Knapp’s the most, would be authorized with no questions asked, makes me exceptionally proud to be a part of the Schell Brothers family.

Personally, as a father of two children this project scared the hell out of me, I had to find ways to be compassionate and considerate without putting myself too deeply into their situation, because if I thought about it too much, if I started thinking about it happening to one of my own children it was impossible not to cry. I still feel the power of Chip and Cindy’s pain from our first meeting, and it is likely something I will keep with me forever. But even with all of the tragedy and difficulties associated with what has happened to their family, the Knapp’s were kind, gracious, and appreciative. It made me and the entire team, want to do whatever we could to help, and it was an absolute labor of love throughout the project.

I have endured my own tragedies, like most people have to one degree or another. This served as a stark reminder that bad things happen to good people, but that good people can still be strong, still be true to who they are, and not let tragedy change them for the worse. In fact, if anything, it might have made them even better people. I know that the Knapps inspire everyone they touch. This small thing we did to make their lives a little easier, a little less stressful, and a little more normal, could not have went to a more deserving family. I consider myself extremely fortunate to have had the honor not only to be a part of this project but to get to know the family and truly appreciate how wonderful they are. With all my heart I say thank you to the Knapp’s for letting me, and the rest of the Schell Family, be a small part of their lives.

Find out more ways we’re Paying It Forward in the community. You can also read more about the Knapp’s story from the Delaware State News article.