Springfield home gets makeover by historic revitalization group

By Allyson Henning - Reporter, Roxy Tyler - Web producer

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Springfield Preservation and Revitalization, or SPAR, spent the weekend working on its second annual residential revival project. 

The community has been coming together to support longtime Springfield residents Raymond and Debra Thomas. Raymond is a disabled veteran. Debra is a cancer survivor. Both said they're overjoyed about their longtime home getting a facelift.

"The old gone, and here come the new," said Debra Thomas.

From the patio to the paint job, volunteers from across the city spent countless hours this weekend to bring the Thomases' historic Springfield home back to life. 

"It was just beautiful. It was like, I never would’ve thought my yard would be like this. It looks like just like the magazine," said Debra.

SPAR chose the Thomas home as recipients of this year’s residential revival project and over two days it’s come a long way.

"Not only does this help benefit our longtime residents that have been supportive of Springfield, but it also takes care of some of our historic housing stock. So it is a contributing factor to the historic district and so anything that we can do to help protect our historic homes, all the better," said Kelly Rich, executive director of the SPAR Council.

Raymond Thomas called the transformation a blessing.

"It was really unexpected, and a blessing because it was only divine intervention that came through and helped us. We had no clue that they had in the resources available for a project like this, and we would like to thank everyone for the individual and collective effort to this project. We really appreciate it. When you give, it will return to you," said Raymond.

Both said they’re looking forward to spending many more years in the Springfield neighborhood they love. 

See photo gallery of SPAR working on home below.

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