January 27, 2008 09:34 PM by DA Southern
In May 2006, after four days of heavy rain, it was clear to Reynald and Casey Voisine and their four children that the water rising outside their home was far more than a puddle. Their house wasn’t in a flood zone and there was a four-lane highway between their neighborhood and the river, so they never expected that flooding would be a possibility.
FEMA declared their house a total loss and advised that they demolish it and apply for a loan. Thinking that FEMA knew best, Reynald had a family member in construction demolish it for free. But then the unexpected happened; they were denied a loan due to outstanding medical bills. Down but not broken, Reynald and Casey struggled to keep their family together. FEMA provided some rental assistance for the apartment they were renting next door to their former home, but it was about to run out when the family made a desperate appeal to the Extreme gang.
But now, Ty and the gang will step in to help out the Voisine family rebuild their shattered dream. While Ty and the designers Michael Moloney, Tanya McQueen, Paul DiMeo and John Littlefield, along with a hefty crew of builders and volunteers build the new home, the family will go on a vacation cruising the US Virgin Islands.
Day 1 started out bright and early at 8:32 AM as Ty grabbed the megaphone and yelled at the awaiting…I mean, the SURPRISED, family and they charged from their rental unit to greet Ty and the team. After the meet-and-greet, Ty and the parents went into the rental unit to see what they had left as the kids met with the other designers. Ty looked and saw that there was not much left because, well, most of their stuff was washed away. Ty did actually ask the parents why they wanted to stay in the community and Dad, Reynald, said that it was because that’s where their roots were.
Back in the yard, Tanya was determining that two of the boys were into snowboarding and skateboarding, John was with Ray Jr and determined that he was into baseball and Paul determined that the 3-year old was car crazy. Now that’s something you don’t see in a three-year-old boy too often, do ya.
Ty was talking to Reynald in the remains of the family’s washed away yard and again asked him why he didn’t just pick up and move the family somewhere else. Reynald turned it towards Ty and asked, “Why us since there are so many other families in the community that need help?” and that he was concerned for the other families as well.
Day 2 had the builders and volunteers showing up at 9:12 AM and Ty welcomed them by telling them that they were fortunate because Mother Nature had done their work for them by washing away the home. So, Ty, not wanting to waste any time on the build, decided to have Country Music Star Rodney Atkins help kick off the build by singing his song, “These Are My People”, the favorite song of the Voisine family. Ty got the video camera and showed the family all of the fun they were missing by having their favorite artist there while they were not. Ty introduced Paula Young from, “There is No Place Like Home”, an organization that helps a family in need from a natural disaster and she tells how another family in the community will benefit from the build as well by getting the home that was destined for the Voisine family. The family was seen singing along with Rodney Adkins and Dad, Reynald, singing “those were his people.”
Day 3 started at 4:20 AM…That’s right, AM. Paul was giving the details of the new foundation walls that would withstand a flood and how they were treated with a special chemical that would withstand mildew and mold. John explained how the walls were coated with a liquid rubber product and that the home was three stories and 3600 square feet because of the lot size. Tanya was off to the Snowboard shop and explains that this area was where snowboarding began and she was seen helping to design and build a snowboard for one of the boys.
Ty was seen wandering the river that overflowed its banks for inspiration for his secret project. Ty explained that a clue was in a floating leaf in the river…which was no clue at all when we see what the secret room was later. Thanks, Ty.
Day 4 at 9:38 AM saw massive progress on the skateboard and snowboard build as well as the Baseball room. In a pretty creative turn, Michael was seen at Manchester’s Community College with their building trades class seeking their help by building nine huge circles that will adorn the family room for an edgy, architectural design feature.
Ty then was seen taking all of the designers to Sears to completely fill the Voisine family home since they had lost everything. In a Ty-larious scene, Ty was seen with a leaf blower actually clearing a complete display of clothes onto Tanya for the Voisine boys.
Back at the build on Day 4 at 2:03 PM, Michael showed us the fall colors that inspired his choice of granite that would be used in the Granite patio design and Paul was showing us the Murphy bed design that was hidden in a bleacher system as well as the scoreboard that will house a flat-screen TV.
Ty again gathered the design team and sent them out into the community to lend a hand to help the community affected by the flood. Paul and John were seen helping at an Elementary School and Tanya and Michael were seen helping at an auction for the “There is No Place Like Home” organization. Tanya even manned the video camera for the family to show them Michael giving Paula Young a $15,000.00 gift from Sears to help.
Day 5 had us seeing the action at 10:10 AM with Michael’s circles being installed and Tanya and Paul’s wheeled designs, Paul’s blue car bed and Tanya’s skateboard bed. Paul was having cool-bed envy when he saw Tanya’s design and insisted that he and Tanya race their creations, which had the competitive Tanya ready for the race.
Michael went out to see one of the builder’s gathering donations for the families and in one of the best lines I have ever heard from a builder or volunteer utter when she said, “If you’re not givin’ then you are not livin’.” Nice!
Day 6 had another early start at 1:53 AM as the builders obviously were still behind the eight-ball with the tall home. You could now see a flurry of activity for the final push to get the home finished and as we progressed into the day, Paul and Tanya were getting ready for the big race.
9:13 PM had Tanya and Paul lining up for the big race and Ty manned the flag at the end of the course. Come to find out, the beds were not just given a push, but had racers on each side that were running along with them. I guess they didn’t want the beds to become damaged, nor the designers. By the way, Tanya won by a wheel.
Day 7 and the family arrived in the limo to a cheering throng. When the Voisine family got out of the limo all of them were in tears as Ty introduced the builders and the designers. Dad, Reynald, was a crying mess as he was probably one of the most grateful Dads that I have ever seen on Extreme. When Ty was standing next to the family, one of the neighbors yelled, “Welcome, Home Voisine family” spoiling Ty’s famous line as he ended every show. They should have ended the show right then and there, darn it.
After the shock of seeing their new home after the “Move That Bus” line, Ty sent the Voisine family into their new home. Dad was overcome with gratitude and Ty came in and said, “Dude…You alright?” Reynald finally pulled himself together and the family saw the rest of their new home. Son, Martin, was first into his skateboard room; He loved it. Patrick loved his snowboard room, which made me cold just looking at it…which I guess was the point. 3 year-old Trevin got excited for his “Blue Car” room and Rey Jr’s baseball room was a big hit. Mom and Dad’s room was a tranquil escape that had Dad, Reynald, kept saying to his wife, “You deserve it, you deserve it.”
Ty gathered the family for the final reveal, his secret room. Ty showed them the garage that had an actual rock climbing wall in the garage, a treehouse and a line that they could ride down from the treehouse into the yard and some colors from a leaf, I guess. Pretty cool.
My only fear is that the houses are getting so elaborate that the only thing Ty and the crew will be forced to build is a castle or something. I guess we will see. Anyway, Ty gave the patented line, “Welcome, home, Voisine family, welcome home” and everyone hugged.
The Superbowl weekend has a repeat episode of Extreme, but in two weeks a Marine and his family are in line for a makeover and RealityTVmagazine.com will have all of the details.
Photo Courtesy of ABC