When Statesboro High School’s National FFA Organization students volunteered to give up their Saturday morning to help build a Habitat for Humanity house in Statesboro Pointe, they expected to find your typical tools of the trade and a little hard work.
But not Alan Webb. Webb is a 1945 alumnus of Statesboro High.
“They did a good job,” Webb said about the students’ work placing siding on one side of the home. “They were young, they knew they didn’t know it all out here, and so they listened.”
That’s quite a compliment coming from one of Habitat’s most dedicated and revered volunteers and a 1999 Dean Day Smith Award recipient. He has worked on 37 of the organization’s 39 homes. The home the students worked on is Bulloch County’s 39th Habitat home.
Webb, a retired carpenter and a furniture manufacturing trainer, knew just how to direct the volunteer FFA crew, as he had once spent eight years teaching carpentry at Valdosta High School and industrial arts at Washington-Wilkes High School.
Webb is considered a "treasure" by Habitat and its regular volunteers, and it only took the students a few minutes on the construction site to see he is a knowledgeable, go-to expert.
Webb said he remembers Statesboro Pointe starting with four original houses built by the city, to a now complete subdivision filled with Habitat homes. Seeing the dedication of others and their willingness to help provide homes for people in need made an impression on the students.
“I appreciate how these students represented SHS in a very respectful and positive way,” said Allen Waters, an agriculture education teacher at the school and the FFA chapter’s faculty advisor. “Mr. Webb was an inspiration, and at 82 years old, he could still climb a ladder better than most of us,” Waters said.
Webb said that he climbed roofs until he was 75, but that ladders were now as high as he’d go.
For the students, climbing ladders and attaching siding were new a new adventure.
“It was a great learning experience,” said James Fraley. “I really enjoyed working with my fellow classmates and the people at the Habitat house.”
The other students said they recognized the value in serving the community, and plan to do more. The SHS students who assisted with the project were Jenny DeLoach, Kaitlyn Fischer, Kelly Fischer, Candi Reed, Leah Smith, Pratt Mathews, Cameron Foskey, Curtis Black, Josh Swindle and James Fraley.