Ronald McDonald House Rebuild Creates Nostalgia for Central Iowa Family

DES MOINES, Iowa -- Three days into the construction of the Ronald McDonald House, eight more days to go.

The bigger and better Ronald McDonald House is quickly beginning to take shape. The building was demolished last month and is now a part of the Hubbell Realty's Extreme Building project, a project to construct and furnish the building from the ground up within eleven days.

Crews are working around the clock to turn the Ronald McDonald House into a home. According to executive director, Brenda Miller, roughly 450 families stay at the house every year when their child is sick and in the hospital.

"It saves them money. It saves them worry," Miller says. "So many of the families build close relationships when they are here with us."

The McAlexander family visited the construction site for the first time on Wednesday, for them the return was nostalgic.

"Our son got sick about eight years ago and at that time we stayed in the house 80 nights over a nine month period," says Earl McAlexander.

The couple's 17 - year - old son, Jacy, is still battling cancer. They say knowing the new Ronald McDonald house will have more sleeping space and room for visitors is comforting. It will keep them from making frequent trips back and forth from Calhoun County.

"When the new one is built we will continue to come and do things for the house because we know how big of deal this is for all those families. There's nothing we can do that would pay back all the stuff they’ve done for us."

The project has received $3 million dollars in donations. Construction is scheduled to be completed on September 22nd. However, the facility will not be open to families until November 1st.