New homes for Collier County seniors after Hurricane Ian destroyed theirs

Reporter: Elizabeth Biro
Published: Updated:

Marie Powell has a new place to call to home.

 “I’ll tell you I honestly cannot believe that this has happened to me. Did I deserve it? I don’t know,” said Powell.

She is one of five seniors getting a helping hand and a new home courtesy of the Baker Senior Center Naples and the Collier Community Foundation. The Foundation collected donations while the Senior Center helped identify the people to get the homes.

“It took the generosity and the resilience of this community. That’s what it took.” stated Dr. Jaclynn Faffer with Baker Senior Center Naples.

Eileen Connolly-Keesler, President and CEO of the Foundation added, “I wish every donor could be here today to see this because it’s amazing. It’s humbling, it’s, it’s honored, we’re honored to be part of it.”

Powell and the others lost their homes to Hurricane Ian. She was forced to move in with her daughter, Sherry Spinella, and had lived there since the storm.

“Am I going to miss living with her? Yes and no. It’s nice. It was nice. But I’m, I, I just love having my own place,” a smiley Powell said.

“The most important thing is for her to be where she wants to be which is in her neighborhood with her friends that she’s known for many years,” added her daughter.

Friday, she got to walk through her new home.

The homes are located in Moorhead Manor, in East Naples, the same place Powell and the others lived before Ian destroyed what they had.

She walked us through her storm-damaged home in March, and reflected on what she lost. “My husband and I, he built this one. And he built that room on and he made it as homey as he could for me. It’s gone,” Powell added.

But now, she looks forward to the future and making her new house a home. “The first supper here is going to be meatballs and spaghetti,” added the happy homeowner.

Past coverage:

Collier County seniors get new lease on life after Hurricane Ian

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