NBC’s “Dateline” program scheduled to air at 6 p.m. Central Time on Sunday, March 28, may feature members of First Immanuel Lutheran Church in Cedarburg, Wis.; St. Paul Lutheran Church in Grafton, Wis.; and students at Concordia University Wisconsin, Mequon.
The hourlong program, hosted by reporter Ann Curry, tells the story of Karen Longoria and her teenage triplets — two of whom use wheelchairs — and how hundreds of area volunteers surprised the family with a remodeled home in November 2008.
Among the volunteers, a group from First Immanuel refurbished and decorated the master bedroom, according to the congregation’s pastor, Rev. Randy Raasch. “We even had a prayer time and a blessing,” Raasch told Reporter, and the television crews “taped everything we were doing.”
Members of St. Paul, Grafton, helped decorate two of the children’s rooms.
Students from Concordia University Wisconsin helped landscape and renovate the ranch-style home, which underwent a total transformation, including the installation of wheelchair-accessible showers, new appliances, a new family room, and a fixed-up basement, complete with an elevator.
In fact, it was the Concordia students who earlier, in spring 2008, had “adopted” the family, raising money for them and bringing their needs to the attention of others in the community, said Jeffrey Bandurski, director of university relations.
The Longoria family’s home makeover “really did turn out to be a great community endeavor,” Bandurski said. “It was just a neat, feel-good thing to be involved with” and “shows you what’s important in life.”
To watch a promotional video about the program, visit the “Dateline” Web site at www.dateline.msnbc.com.
Posted March 26, 2010