Brothers Hector (left) and Rudy Gutierrez of Shell Roofing

Brothers Hector (left) and Rudy Gutierrez of Shell Roofing in Chino stand in front of the Rodriguez home this week as the roof is undergoing repairs. Rudy is president of the company and Hector is vice president.

“Flabbergasted!” was the only word Augustine Rodriguez, 82, could think of when he learned recently that a local company was going to completely replace the roof of his longtime home on Witherspoon Road in Chino for free.

The grand gesture began when Renee Rodriguez, who has a disability and lives with her father, was trying to figure out what to do about the leaky roof on their home. Mr. Rodriguez’ granddaughter Marina Duran suggested they call Shell Roofing in Chino for an inspection because the owners of the company, brothers Rudy and Hector Gutierrez, are friends of the family. 

“I asked if the roof could be patched,” Ms. Rodriguez said. “There were water spots inside that have been there for a while.” She worried what potential rains this winter might do to the damaged roof.

The news wasn’t good. The roof couldn’t be replaced and a new one would cost $30,000.

“We were just going to hold on with a lot of prayer and hope that the roof would last another two years until we could replace it,” Ms. Rodriguez said.

Rudy said he and his brother, who are impressed with Mr. Rodriguez — a veteran, family man and retired correctional officer — talked it over and decided to donate the labor and wood for the roof. They talked to one of their vendors, ABC Supply in Ontario, and that company decided to donate the roofing materials. Another vendor, Ted Berkeley of Berkeley Construction is providing repairs on the wood and is painting trim.

The work is being done this week in 100-degree temperatures. Ever Sanchez of Pico Rivera is in charge of the project. He is being helped by Iran Guido, also of Pico Rivera, as well as several other workers.

The Gutierrez brothers plan to formally “present” the roof to the Rodriguez family today (Sept. 7) at 10 a.m.

“Mr. Rodriguez is in his early 80s,” Rudy Gutierrez said. “He is still very sharp and active and feels he can do the roof himself. He was very reluctant for us to do this.”

Ms. Rodriguez said she was in shock when she learned about the Gutierrez brothers’ plan. “The magnitude of receiving this gift is unbelievable,” she said. “We are very, very blessed.”

“You are our friends and neighbors, and at the end of the day, it’s about neighbors helping neighbors,” Rudy Gutierrez told Ms. Rodriguez in a text message.

On Sunday, the Rodriguez family is throwing a thank you party at their home for the Gutierrez family and the employees who worked on their roof.

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