Widow struggles, searching for help to save family home

Williamson County

TAYLOR, Texas (KXAN) — A widow in Taylor is looking for help.

With torrential rain coming down on her, she says she’s at a breaking point. She’s been trying to keep up the home where she’s raised three generations.

“Yes, this place sure does have a lot of memories,” Mary Pulkrabek said.

But when it pours in Taylor, it’s not just raindrops falling.

“It’s like it’s crying. The tears are from the rain and it’s coming through that ceiling there and it looks like teardrops. Like, I’m sad this is happening to me. I just feel real sad, you know?”

For 30 years, Pulkrabek has lived in a mobile home. When her husband of 43 years died in May, it became even more important to preserve the place they built their memories.

“Is this the process of healing after the loss of a loved one? I’m not sure. I’d just like to make sure that what I’m doing is what my husband would approve of if he is still here today,” Pulkrabek said.

But it’s hard to keep the dream alive when the home isn’t physically equipped for the challenge.

“You have to use your gut feelings that what you are doing is right. And I don’t get that feeling exactly,” Pulkrabek said.

Mary has filed an application with Habitat for Humanity, but she just found out the roofing repairs would cost more than the trailer itself.

“I don’t really want to give up this house, but I’m being made to feel like I have to or I need to do something and that I have a limited time frame to do it in,” Pulkrabek said.

Habitat for Humanity said it’s doing what it can to keep Pulkrabek’s dream home up. But at this point there just aren’t many options left.

“I do have a daughter in upper Washington State and they want me to get up there, but I keep telling them I like my personal freedom. I do! I value that, too,” Pulkrabek said.

In addition to construction and repairs, Habitat for Humanity also renovates homes, particularly in urban areas. It advocates for affordable housing programs and the organization also responds to help with rebuilding efforts following natural disasters.

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