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  • Rachel Cole

Blameless at Barksdale

Updated: Aug 2, 2019

This was my house for a few years at Barksdale AFB. We loved it. Then came the rain, and two severe roof leaks that took more than a year to fix. Then months to get a paint crew out. Months after my husband left for a 1/2 year deployment, the paint crews showed up, and I discovered what was hiding in our home. MOLD.


From the beginning, I felt like I wasn’t taken seriously by Maintenance or the housing office. It took me taking my mold riddled wall art to the office to really get attention to the issue. We ended up in a hotel for the weekend due to the seriousness of the issue and placed in a “hospitality house” until Monday. We picked up the keys and arrived to the hospitality house and it was a completely empty house. Shocked, frustrated and confused, I went back to the office where I was told to be patient. 8-10 hours they were expecting furniture to be delivered. Luckily, my husband's leadership was awesome and fought for us, and back to the hotel we (kids, pets and I) went..for 3 weeks.


When we got our keys to our house back, what we found was not what we were promised. Areas remediated weren’t contained. Contents of closets were thrown on couches and beds. Furniture moved and not returned to their spots, vents cleaned while nothing was covered; vent debris on everything. Construction debris covered areas not being remediated or worked on. Remedial work items, like drop cloths left in our home. And mold. Visible mold still left in most of the areas that I personally walked through and showed management before remedial. Housing sent maintenance to come clean up the mold areas (with bleach), apologized and insisted our house was done properly,despite me knowing it wasn’t. They refused to give us the name of the company that did the remedial. Refused to tell us the scope of work done in the remedial. They told us we couldn’t hire anyone to remediate and no one was allowed to come and do testing of mold.

Even at the end of the day, leadership couldn’t make housing do the right thing. Doctors notes stating our house with mold was a serious health concern, wasn’t enough to make housing do the right thing. Our options of reconciliation were: 1. Stay in the house 2. Move to another house on base at our cost 3.move off base. We moved off base (Nov2016), paid deposits and replaced contaminated furniture/household goods at a cost of around $10K. Everything we worked for or saved for: gone. Civil court was our only hope, and no attorney would take a case “against base”. Now my family is out of the statute of limitations and forced to eat the loss.

#militarymatters #yourMMstory #militarymold

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