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Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Peggy McCracken

Squarely Pegged

By Peggy McCracken

Family elbow grease
repairs wind damage

Blow, West Texas wind. My roof is tarred and nailed down this time, so you won’t get many shingles off of it.

Son David brought help from Del Rio last weekend to repair roof damage done a week earlier by a ferocious windstorm. He and grandson Jason donned coveralls bought at Gibson’s and started removing broken shingles about mid-morning. A cold north wind made it a little uncomfortable, but they didn’t complain.

Soon, they called for Deanna and great-granddaughter Jasmine to help them, and Helen tagged along to do her bit. It was neat to see half my family on the roof, nailing and tarring and passing along new shingles.

After the big wind, I didn’t let my shirttail hit my back until I went to Lee Lumber Co. to buy a square of tan shingles, knowing lots of other folks would also need them. Later, after an insurance adjustor said I needed a new roof, I thought I had wasted $54. But then came a letter from the insurance company saying they were canceling my policy because the roof was in poor condition and “not an acceptable risk.” They didn’t waste any time, and a day later I got a refund check on the unused premium.

No, I am not angry. Those shingles were shoddy when they were installed 15 or 20 years ago, and repeated wind and hailstorms have not improved them. I have replaced almost a full package of shingles myself over the years, and noted others needed a fresh application of tar to re-adhere them. It’s one of those things I never got around to.

What does disturb me is that the adjustor told me he found hail damage “all over the roof.” When I turned it in for hail damage about two years ago to my old insurance company, their adjustor said I didn’t have any damage. I told him that some neighbors had received 100 percent replacement, but he said my shingles were in better condition than theirs were. Ha.

Anyway, I am thinking of having a metal roof installed when I get my check from the sale of the St. Louis house. I should get my down payment back, and that might be enough to pay for an expensive metal roof.

If I decide it is not worth the investment, I will make do with the old shingles, go without homeowner’s insurance and trust my kids and grandkids to keep it in good shape.

“Grandchildren are the crowning glory of the aged…” Proverbs 17:6

EDITOR’S NOTE: Peggy McCracken is Enterprise business manager. Contact her at

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