FYI

The Charitable Mint provides a means and a way to fundraise for nonprofits and organizations.

Dallas resident Ken Shelton and his son Nate, 20, visit Opal Lawrence Historical Park annually. Most recently, a house just a block away caught their attention because it wasn’t being maintained like the other homes in the neighborhood. The house had a broken window, there was trash and debris in the front and back yards, and the grass needed to be mowed.

Shelton said they picked up a mattress, box spring and items they considered to be flammable or unsafe within arm’s length of walking the neighborhood. After a few weeks, Nate asked about this house again, so Shelton Solutions partnered with Charitable Mint president and Don’t Mess with Texas campaign supporter Joe Duncan to see what they could do to clean up the home. Shelton and Duncan saw this as an opportunity to give back to the community of Mesquite and teach their sons a lesson.

“First, we had to locate the owner, which was JP Morgan Chase,” Shelton said. “They weren’t picking up trash or even aware of the municipality liens and over $1,700 owed for services; furthermore, JP Morgan Chase had not paid the 2012 county, city or ISD taxes.”

He added that it was a task to weed through the red tape, but once they were able to reach someone who represented JP Morgan locally he acquired the home, paid off all the taxes and city liens and immediately he and Duncan, along with Nate and his cousin Robert Chaves, began cleaning up the abandoned home.

Shelton said he was able to find another Don’t Mess with Texas supporter and brokered the home to be sold to an asset manager based out of Austin. In less than eight weeks they got the place cleaned up, fixed and sold.

“Admittedly, we profited about $3,400 but that was not our goal. Honestly, I'm just proud that my son had the desire to want to clean up this house,” he said. “Most importantly, the home was brought to code standard while two young men learned to solve a problem when many overlooked or failed to care.”

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