Augusta family watches 'Extreme Makeover: Home Edition' story told on national television

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Earnie Graham and her family shared laughs and tears with an auditorium filled with several hundred new friends while the nation got a peek into her life Sunday evening.

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Earnie Graham (from left) laughs as she watches the premiere of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition with her children, Tiffany, 22, and T.J., 10. The family was invited to a viewing party at Augusta State University.  Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Rainier Ehrhardt/Staff
Earnie Graham (from left) laughs as she watches the premiere of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition with her children, Tiffany, 22, and T.J., 10. The family was invited to a viewing party at Augusta State University.

"I'm nervous and excited and ready for it to calm down," she said Thursday in anticipation of her premiere on ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition .

It's been a whirlwind couple of months for Graham, her 22-year-old daughter, Tiffany; and her 10-year-old son, T.J.

On Dec. 2, after a surprise visit from Extreme 's Ty Pennington, the family was swept away on a weeklong vacation to Disneyland in California.

When they returned, it was one surprise after another. The family's termite-infested house on McCain Way had been replaced by a spacious, three-bedroom home; a handicapped-accessible cabin had been built at the Camp Tanglewood Girl Scout Camp in Columbia County; and the family found itself in the arms of more than 4,000 hands that had helped make their dreams come true.

"She's cheesing from ear to ear," Tiffany said of her mother before the premiere.

Hundreds of friends, neighbors, volunteers and sponsors filled Augusta State University's Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre on Sunday evening for a four-hour Extreme Makeover celebration.

Stephen Beazley, the president of Bill Beazley Homes, which sponsored the build, thanked those in the crowd for their selflessness. Augusta's makeover attracted more volunteers than any other makeover project, he said.

Mayor Pro Tem Joe Bowles read a proclamation from the mayor making Sunday Bill Beazley Homes Day in Augusta.

Graham said she was so happy for the blessings her family has received and can't wait to pass those blessings on to others. As part of the Extreme Makeover family, the Grahams said, they have committed to traveling to other makeovers in Georgia to help another family's dreams become reality.

"Tonight was spectacular," Graham said. "I feel like we're stars, like we're on the red carpet."

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grinder48
2005
Points
grinder48 01/24/11 - 10:38 am
0
0
Happy for these people but it
Unpublished

Happy for these people but it still seems warped to me. Couldn't more have been done for more people at the same cost by using a little creativity? And the story of these people not nearly so gut-wrenching and many other winners. And today they could sell the house and do whatever with the money? And all the people who volunteered to work for free for a for-profit venture (i.e., the TV network and the advertizers) ... do Ty, Paige, John, Ed, et al cast members work for free? Hummm ...

jones255
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jones255 01/24/11 - 11:04 am
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As someone posted last night

As someone posted last night on Facebook, "There's always one". And you, grinder48, must be the "one" for the AC. You must not have seen the pre-show piece done by WJBF. Everyone on their street got something done to their house. New roofs, new siding, painting, new kitchen cabinets, new lawns/landscaping. Everyone got new mailboxes with street numbers ! EMHE is feel good television, and we need a heck of a lot more of it. And last but not least, two people were remembered in this build. I just wish I could've been there to help.

ungowa
11
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ungowa 01/24/11 - 12:14 pm
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0
The Pre Show was an awesome

The Pre Show was an awesome LOCAL perspective. WJBF Rocks!

dani
12
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dani 01/24/11 - 12:40 pm
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0
I know that I am missing

I know that I am missing something, I haven't been following the story, but...
Why was the lady giving so much of her time to Girl Scouts while her children lived in such conditions. Usually a person puts her own children first. Couldn't she have found a job that paid her a salary and continued to work with the Scouts, just part-time. Don't intend to be ugly, I just don't get it.

BombquishaDavis
113
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BombquishaDavis 01/24/11 - 02:59 pm
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0
No Dani you don't get it. I

No Dani you don't get it. I tell you what though---I have a new hero...Stephen Beazley!
You did your mama proud Mr. Beazley!

BombquishaDavis
113
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BombquishaDavis 01/24/11 - 03:00 pm
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Oh yeah..its called Agape

Oh yeah..its called Agape Love....

jones255
0
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jones255 01/24/11 - 04:48 pm
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@dani - She has a real paid

@dani - She has a real paid job, working for the Girl Scout organization. She does volunteer her weekends for the kids as well.

dani
12
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dani 01/24/11 - 05:35 pm
0
0
Thank you Jones255. That is

Thank you Jones255. That is the part I was missing.

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