Gray Resists Plans To Renovate House
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
May 17, 2004
CARLSVILLE, WISCONSIN--Jimmy Gray says he doesn't want to leave his house for fear that people will take away things that are important to him.
But Door County officials, along with the numerous volunteers that have descended on his property to renovate his house, are insisting he not be there during construction.
"I want to be here to see what they're doing," Gray, 37, told the Green Bay Press-Gazette. "They'll come in and say, 'That's garbage, we'll throw that away.'"
Gray, who reportedly has a developmental disability, said that is what happened last year when the county ordered a cleanup of trash that was stacked to the ceiling in his home. Gray called police at the time to report that people were stealing important items which reminded him of his parents, who died several years earlier. County officials said the empty soda pop cans, newspapers, and even used toilet paper were creating a health hazard.
The Press-Gazette reported earlier this month that Gray's life-long home was condemned as a health hazard. County officials, non-profit agencies, volunteers and anonymous donors have responded by offering to provide a new septic system, plumbing, exterior paint, appliances, bathroom fixtures, and to remove all rubbish and trash.
Gray says he just wants more room to store his stuff.
One county health official told the paper that Gray must cooperate or there would be severe consequences.
Last week, a state representative suggested a guardian be appointed to "take some responsibility for him [Gray] and help him improve his life."
"Gray balks at some aspects of home project" (Green Bay Press-Gazette)