Woodland Direct joins with Extreme Makeover Home Edition to Bless the McCulley Family
with a Custom Outdoor Natural-Gas Firepit
When Woodland Direct was contacted to be a part of ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, their designers jumped at the chance. But it wasn't until they began working with Ty Pennington and his crew that they realized what an incredible story it was in which they’d been asked to play a part.
Ten-year-old Job McCully might have been any little boy. He loved video games and pirates. He'd spend minutes on end simply laughing with his big sister Nicole. And Job loved being outdoors, roasting marshmallows over a blazing campfire with his family. But all that changed when he was diagnosed with leukemia at age four. Job endured years of treatment that included a bone marrow transplant and a double lung transplant. When he was finally able to return home to his family, his life had changed dramatically. Now, with diabetes and other severe complications brought on by his illness, Job faced a long recovery made worse by tender, vulnerable lungs. Sadly, his sensitivity to smoke made camping and bonfires a thing of the past.
But ask anyone who knows Job, and they’ll tell you – this little boy is a hero, both to his community and to his family. To his grandma, who lives with the family and has recently battled breast cancer, Job is a source of encouragement. To his parents and sister, he’s a living testimony of their faith and their love for each other. And to their small town of Bigelow, Arkansas – population 329 – Job is simply a miracle.
So when the damp, moldy conditions in the McCully’s home made it impossible for Job’s lungs to recover, the community offered the family a rental property for a short-term stay. Though the McCully’s were blessed by the town’s generosity, they weren’t sure where they’d go after that.
They certainly didn’t count on Ty Pennington and the crew from ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition showing up on their front lawn! As soon as the family was whisked off to a beach vacation in California, Ty and his team began a race to finish their gift for the family: an incredible new home in just seven days.
When demolition began, the entire construction team donned swords and pirate costumes. Then, through a remote video connection, Job was able to watch the gang use cannons and bulldozers to destroy a place that had become a symbol of illness. The little boy couldn’t have been more delighted. “Pirates bombarded our house!” he exclaimed with an excited smile.
In the days that followed, the EMHE crew used all-natural materials and creative ideas to perfect the roomy house. Meanwhile, Woodland Direct designers worked to create a custom gas firepit for a special campsite in the family’s backyard.
Woodland Direct carries beautiful stock firepits and creates custom pieces for its customers, but this project posed unique challenges. Their goal was to bring the camping experience back to Job, making it possible for him to enjoy the fire with his family without the smoke harming his lungs. This was accomplished by creating a custom Natural Gas Firepit. Though the firepit seemed a small part of the extreme makeover, Woodland Direct knew that it would be important to Job.
When Job and his family returned in a limousine to a cheering crown of volunteers and Bigelow residents, their new home was picture perfect and air-tight. As Mr. and Mrs. McCully wheeled their son through the house, the boy’s face simply shone with excitement. When they reached his bedroom – a larger-than-life pirate’s den – he covered his mouth with his hands in amazement. “My room,” he said, wide-eyed, “is unbelievable!”
The family couldn’t have found a better word to describe their new home. Big sister Nicole’s room, complete with a guitar bed, showcased her love for music, and the parents’ and Grandma’s bedrooms were elegant retreats decorated with family pictures. Finally, the family was led outside to “Camp McCully” – a ring of tents complete with a blazing fire in the stone firepit Woodland Direct had created for the family. Now Job could roast marshmallows over the fire just the way he’d done before his battle with leukemia had begun.
Job’s mother, Tina McCully, makes an effort to recognize what she calls “those precious moments that others take for granted.” As Job and his sister Nicole made s’mores around the firepit, their mom’s eyes shone as she enjoyed one of those moments. Woodland Direct is privileged to have been a part of this family’s incredible journey. Along with Ty and the rest of the ABC Extreme Makeover: Home Edition crew, their team is certain that the McCully’s will have many more precious moments with little Job as he makes a full recovery in his new home.