Sudbury man gifts his seriously ill neighbour a new roof

In a true act of loving thy neighbour, a Valley East man has gifted a new roof to his seriously ill neighbour. (Lyndsay Aelick/CTV News)

In a true act of loving thy neighbour, a Valley East man has gifted a new roof to his seriously ill neighbour.

Dan Labre’s health challenges began at the beginning of last year.

“He actually had a stroke in February 2020 and then in August -- six months later -- we found out about the small cell lung cancer, which is only 25 per cent curable,” said Joanne Nadon, Dan’s wife.

"When we reached around April/May and he had completed the radiation and chemo, for quite a long time he was confident that he would be able to get back to work, and so we started reaching out to his boss and coworkers and wanting to get back to work."

But Nadon said illness returned in May.

"I brought him to the hospital and that’s when we got the unfortunate news that the small cell lung cancer had actually spread to his brain," she said.

The couple was informed that Dan would only have months to live. Since then, his wife and community members have been doing all they can to relieve any stress he may be feeling. One of the things he was most worried about was his aging roof.

“I was pretty upset about the story and watching Dan -- tears come to his eyes -- really took my heart and I just wanted to show some support,” said Nathan Badour, of Undercutters Roofing.

"I wanted to have a barbeque for him. All of my guys are doing free labour we’re putting on his roof for free. I just want to show the community that we actually care -- we care about our friends, family and community."

Badour said if his neighbour's roof wasn’t replaced by the end of this year, water would start leaking into his home.

“Just to see him happy with his new roof," he said. "He’s not going to have to worry about it for 30 years.”

Outpouring of support

Labre has lived in the Valley his entire life. He and his wife raised their kids here and they said the outpouring of support -- in big and small ways -- means everything to them.

“We’ve had somebody come over and bring us jarred goods or fresh tomatoes, plants you know just to cheer you up," said Nadon. "So every small thing you can offer somebody in your community that is suffering is absolutely appreciated, probably more than words can ever convey.

"Family, family friends, kid’s friends that grew up with them donate to the GoFundMe and Nathan doing this was just, like I said, there’s no words for that enormous generosity.”

If Labre had to replace the roof with money out of his own pocket, it would have cost him more than $7,500. He said the new roof means he can enjoy the days he has left not worrying about what will be left behind for his wife.