Warner puts down helmet, picks up hard hat - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Warner puts down helmet, picks up hard hat

by Bryan Goettel

CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) - For a guy used to leading a team, on Monday Cedar Rapids native Kurt Warner was perfectly content just being part of one.

"When something like this happens I just felt like there was a sense of responsibility to make sure that I made people aware of what was going on," the Arizona Cardinals' quarterback said.

"I personally think he's one of the coolest, nicest, most giving guys I've ever known so it doesn't surprise me that a guy making 19 million dollars would be out here hammering 16 penny nails," ESPN's Rick Reilly said.

Warner, his wife, Brenda and Reilly are among the more than 500 people helping build 20 Habitat for Humanity houses in Cedar Rapids.

"It makes it a little more real to see the actual walls going up," future Habitat homeowner Shannon McFadden said.

McFadden didn't get enough water to force her out of her house last June , but the flood's effects have taken a toll on her 9-year old son's asthma.

"Once they started tearing out more houses and my son not being able to go ride his bike or play in the neighborhood just because it just isn't safe for him," McFadden said.

But thanks to Habitat's Build-a-Thon, McFadden and her son are getting a new beginning.

"Finally I'm going to have a moment where I'm not going to have to worry," McFadden said. "My son will be able to go ride his bike around the neighborhood and it'll be ours."

"That's why you get involved because we want our legacy to be so much bigger than a football field and a Super Bowl, but we want it to be impacting the lives of other people," Warner said.

As for a future career in home construction after football...don't hold your breath.

"You know all that stuff about accuracy? He misses nails completely, just entire whiffs," Reilly joked. 

"We're lucky that he can hire someone to do the hammering," Brenda Warner laughed.

Warner spent the afternoon on the city's northwest side helping to build another 11 Habitat for Humanity houses. The goal is to have all 20 ready for families to move in by September.

Online Reporter: Bryan Goettel

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