Sterling and Rhonda Combs are getting a fresh start at life.
The Bossier City couple will soon call 641 Yarbrough Street home, something they never thought would be possible. As the walls were raised, Rhonda’s emotions took over.
“We’ve never had anything like this happen before,” she said. “This is something that’s going to be ours.”
The Combs’ home is the 57th home and third home built in Bossier City by the Fuller Center for Housing of Northwest Louisiana Inc. Their goal is to build affordable new homes for low-income individuals who currently do not have adequate housing and are unable to obtain adequate financing through other conventional means.
This is no ordinary house, though. It will be known as the “Molly Build” project, which continues a mission started in 2011 to honor the lives of three local teens.
Molly Reed, 15, Emily Perdue, 16, and Katy Watkins, 16, were killed in an automobile accident in October 2006 while driving on I-49 through DeSoto Parish. Asbury United Methodist Church has already constructed two homes in honor of Katy Watkins through a partnership with the Fuller Center and there are plans to build a home in memory of Emily Perdue as well.
Bryan Reed, Community Pastor for the Simple Church, said his daughter, Molly, truly lived a servants life. He can‘t think of a better way to honor her memory.
“It’s been almost two years since we started this process. I know that God’s timing is always right,” he said. “The exciting thing, as Molly’s dad, is to know how excited she would be that this is happening. Her desire was to make a difference. It’s amazing what the three girls have done beyond this life and the legacy they have created.”
Reed said it’s also exciting to know that he has made a lifelong connection with the Combs family and will always be part of their lives in this way.
“I’ve always said that one of the things God gives us to help us through the tough times is our memories,” he said. “This home is where I see her love for God and her desire to serve others.”
Even though she never knew Molly, Rhonda said she can feel her presence.
“She’s here with us,” Rhonda said. “When you look at this home, she’s a big part of this story and always will be.
The Combs home wouldn’t be possible without a tremendous network of community partners. The land was donated by Venson and Sharon Kay Peters Maggio in honor of Melissa Rose Maggio. Other partners and supporters of the “Molly Build” are The Simple Church, Airline High School, Asbury United Methodist Church, Bobby Brannon Heating and Air Conditioning, City of Bossier, Hardware Distribution Warehouse Inc, Lowe’s, Praise Temple Bossier, Tamko Roofing Products, and United Built Homes.