David Lloyd has the "Habitat Fever."
Lloyd is a regular Tuesday-Thursday volunteer at Knoxville Habitat for Humanity who volunteers his time and skills on the electrical crew, a group of approximately 10 retired gentlemen led by KHFH staff member Danny Mitchell.
Before Lloyd's retirement from Oak Ridge National Laboratory, he volunteered to build with Habitat through his church, Fountain City Presbyterian, a long-standing Covenant Partner. But in 1996 after his retirement, Lloyd's friend and fellow parishioner Bill Whitehead asked him to become more regularly involved in the mission of Habitat as a member of the electrical crew.
"I didn't know anything about what the electrical crew did, but Bill asked me to get involved and so I did," said Lloyd. "You get involved in something and it becomes part of your life. I don't stop to think every day why I'm gonna do this, I just do it."
Depending on the construction schedule, a typical week for Lloyd and the electrical crew involves 5 or 6 hours of volunteer time working in homes to install electrical boxes, pull wire, or install switches and outlets. During off weeks, the group assembles electrical panels.
He credits his volunteer work with building some very strong friendships.
"The thing that is most important is the friendships and relationships among the crews," said Lloyd. "The electrical crew is probably one of the nicest groups I have ever worked with."
"That's how you get to know someone is working alongside them," he added. " We work in all
kinds of conditions from heat or cold and none of these guys ever
complain. Everyone is there to help someone else and they all work harmoniously together."
Lloyd said one of his most memorable experiences working with Knoxville Habitat for Humanity was in 2000 during the 20-house blitz build in the Easton Meadows subdivision.
"It was amazing to see those houses go up so fast," he said.
Lloyd and his wife Susan, who is a loyal volunteer at the Knoxville Habitat for Humanity Thrift Store, have been married 56 years. Originally from Rochester, NY, they moved to east Tennessee in the 1960s when Lloyd took his position with ORNL.
Although his friend Bill Whitehead, now 92, no longer works on the electrical crew, Lloyd expects to continue on in his work for the forseeable future.
"The time I spend volunteering for Habitat is good for my soul," he said.