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Camillus family’s story inspires home makeover

Dave and Michelle Peek stand in front of their newly made over home on Kastor Avenue in Camillus.

Dave and Michelle Peek stand in front of their newly made over home on Kastor Avenue in Camillus. Photo by Ned Campbell.

— Dave Peek and his wife, Michelle, bought their home on Kastor Avenue in the village of Camillus with plans to fix it up.

They couldn’t have planned for what happened next.

“The second we had our daughter, Sarah, there were a lot of medical complications, and life just changed,” Dave Peek said. “All of our priorities changed.”

Sarah would be diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension nearly three years later. The disease is described by the PH Association as an increase in blood pressure in the lungs that, if left untreated, can lead to heart failure.

There is no known cure for the illness, but through advanced treatments, Sarah was able to live five more years, for which the Peeks are thankful.

“There were a lot of costs,” Dave said, “even time from work that had to be taken off to take care of medical issues. But that’s where our priority was. It was well worth it.”

The Peeks put their house on hold for their daughter, but over the past few weeks, two manufacturing giants stepped in and helped them get “back to where we wanted to be,” Dave said.

The Peeks were selected in late June as a winner of the GAF Homeliest Home Contest, which had a category for families who had dealt with an illness. The family entered in memory of Sarah, who died March 3, 2010, and in hopes of raising awareness for pulmonary hypertension.

The prize was a full exterior makeover featuring a GAF Lifetime Roofing System and windows, siding, stone veneer, railing and designer accents from The Designed Exterior by Ply Gem.

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The Peek home, prior to the makeover.

“We were thrilled to surprise the Peek family as winners of the illness category,” said Alyssa Hall, marketing communications manager at GAF. “There were so many deserving families in need of this giveaway, making it a very difficult decision. The Peek family had a truly touching story and a home in great need of repairs. We are honored to give their home an exterior makeover and bring attention to pulmonary hypertension.”

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