Korean War veteran’s widow receives new roof for Whittier home

WHITTIER, Calif. (KABC) – It’s been a difficult journey for Mary Jean Berling since she lost her husband, nearly 55, but a program that helps veterans and their families with roof replacements is helping change things.

William Berling was an Army veteran who served in the Korean War. He lost his battle with Alzheimer’s in 2017.

“It was very sad because he had been sick for a long time,” said Mary Jean Berling.

The veteran’s wife said he enjoyed helping his community and volunteering with the sheriff’s department after he retired – always fixing things in the neighborhood.

“Oh, he’d be so proud of us having this done. He was such a go-getter when it came to doing things around the house and for other people,” said Berling.

The community is now giving something back to Berling’s widow.

She said her roof was leaking and she couldn’t afford to fix it. Money is tight and she is still healing from a broken back in 2019.

The Owens Corning Roof Deployment Project has partnered with Habitat for Humanity and certified roofing specialists to replace it.

Rolando Noriega, an area sales manager for the project, said the goal is to give back to veterans and their families.

“Oh, it was great. We donated over 200 projects across the country. We work with Habitat for Humanity and our local contractors in the area and the community loves it,” said Noriega.

Calling it “incredible”, Berling added, “We’re just excited. We really needed the help.”

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