Miami Heat Greats Help Disabled Veteran Fix His Home

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — This Veterans Day a number of organizations are teaming up to help veterans in need.

On Friday, in South Miami, Miami Heat greats Alonzo Mourning and Glen Rice paid a visit to Archie Coates, a 32-year disabled Army veteran.

“We are very grateful and thankful and this is our way of showing our appreciation,” Mourning said as he presented Coates a team ball.

Coates tried to hold his composure but he had to step away. His emotions were overwhelming him.

His little brother spoke up.

“He doesn’t know how to take this. He does not know how to sit back. He’s always the one to give,” said his brother.

Coates’s home was taken over this Veterans day by U.S. Coast Guard members, the Miami Heat’s Mourning and Glen Rice, and Rebuilding Together Miami.

Together they transformed his home.

Travis Renville, executive director of Rebuilding Together Miami-Dade explained why they chose to help Coates with his home.

“He served for over 25 years in the reserves and he needs a lot of help. He had some back problems he suffered. And we are just here to help him any way we can. He served our country and we want to help him in any way,” said Renville.

Coates typically is the giver. He spends his time volunteering with youth, helping guide them to make smart decisions. He’s not one to be on the receiving end of help.

“It’s humbling and mind-blowing at the same time, but it’s greatly appreciated,” Coates said.

When the Miami Heat learned about what he was doing in the community and that he needed help, they stepped up.

Mourning explained, “When you do that, good things come back to you. That’s the reason we are here today because we are acknowledging the goodness and the greatness of a man that understands the purpose of his life. It’s not about him. It’s about improving other people’s lives.”

Coates smiled at his new paint, new landscaping, and new garden.

He said he’s grateful for all, including the new roof he had no idea how he was going to fix.

“Just to have somebody pop up out of the clear blue sky and say, ‘Hey, I’ll help you do that.’ It’s a humbling thing man, beautiful thing.”

While it was a great thing for this Veterans day, it serves as a good reminder that Rebuilding Together does this year round. They could definitely use your help. They are helping 25 veteran families so far this year and they plan to do even more next year.

To get involved, click here.

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