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Work progressing on house project for Pennock, Minn., family of girl with terminal disorder

Brandon Barber and a crew of carpenters put up the walls Saturday of an addition at the Emily and Trent Thompson home in Pennock. Tribune photos by Ron Adams

PENNOCK -- A crew of 20 to 25 workers raised their hammers Saturday morning and quickly built the walls of a garage and addition to Trent and Emily Thompson's home in rural Pennock.

The Thompsons' 21-month old daughter, Tenley, has been diagnosed with leukodystrophy. It is a rare genetic disorder and is a terminal illness. Tenley was diagnosed at 13 months after her parents noticed she wasn't meeting developmental milestones.

The effort to build the garage and addition began in November, when the block foundation was laid and volunteers began seeking donations for the project.

The goal is to finish the outside work by Saturday, when the family is expected to arrive home from a vacation to Disneyworld in Florida, according to one of the organizers of the project.

"Our hope is to, by next weekend, have the shell done on the outside," said Nikki Lindahl. The community has so generously given to the project that there are likely enough volunteers for the coming weekend, and enough food to feed them, but if folks want to come and help or just see the project, they are welcomed to do so, Lindahl said.

All of the materials for the two car garage, entryway, bathroom and laundry facilities have been donated, she said. Lindahl wanted to thank Willmar's Home Depot for the materials, Lake Region Construction for the equipment and Joe Caskey Masonry and Monson Concrete for their donations.

Get more information about the project at tenleythompson.

Tribune reporter Carolyn Lange contributed to this story.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

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