After he heard two teenagers mock an elderly man’s house, saying, “Look at this crappy house! They just need to burn it down,” Josh Cyganik, a track inspector for Union Pacific Railroad, posted a message on Facebook, successfully rallying volunteers to help him repaint the man’s home.
Cyganik wrote on Union Pacific’s website, “I saw the look on Leonard’s face. I could tell the comment bothered him. I don’t think any elderly person should have to endure what I heard from those two kids’ mouths. I kind of stewed about it for a couple days before I decided to do something.”
Cyganik didn’t know Leonard Bullock, 75, although they waved to each other every day as Bullock sat on his porch. Cyganik didn’t hesitate to ask for volunteers and donations for the work. On July 15, he wrote on Facebook that he heard the remark of the teenagers, and it triggered his desire to help:
I looked at the old man sitting on the porch with his head down and it got me thinking. I went to Brian Christensen at Tum Lum lumber and asked him if he would be willing to donate paint to repaint his house to make it look better! And he agreed. So I’m asking if anyone that wants to help this Saturday to volunteer their time to help paint this gentleman’s house! I’m thinking 8 o’clock Saturday morning this weekend across from the UPRR yard in Pendleton on Goodwin Avenue! Thanks everyone for your support
Three days later, over 100 volunteers painted the house with supplies donated by Tum-a-Lum Lumber. Cyganik wrote, “Everybody was happy and excited. We received a lot of additional donations from people who didn’t come but wanted to help. People were dropping off food and drinks all day long. Starbucks even donated 6 gallons of water and iced tea.”
According to KIRO-TV, Tum-a-Lum Lumber will rebuild Bullock’s porch, and outdoor furniture is being donated by other sources.