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Plumbing in Bay St. Louis

This project was an effort to do something for Michael and Terri Kirk, in return for all they had done for Katrina victims through the Blanket Brigade.  Vicki Wilkins had begun the efforts out of North Carolina, and Michael & Terri used their van to drive around and hand out the goods to people with no transportation or means to get to relief sites.  To this day, they are still dispensing goods out of their Store/Home to those who wander in looking for help.  When Kim and Alan were at the site for the plumbing, they witnessed a gentleman getting a box of 3 dozen t-shirts that had been sent down from Minnesota.

When Cliff Bishop put out the plea to help these folks, Alan contacted his friend Kim Graffunder, who was a retired plumber (St. Paul, Minnesota Plumbers Local 34) to see if he was interested in taking a road trip and volunteering his skills.  He was interested, and since the date had come to re-evacuate the Katrina victim from Austin, we made plans to swing through Mississippi to help the Kirks.  MGC-Group donated the plumbing supplies, and Kim donated his skills, time and labor - along with labor from Alan.

We left on our journey on Friday July 21, staying in Cape Girardeau the first night.  We arrived in Bay St. Louis on the 22nd, and scoped out the job site.  From there we headed to Gulfport to check in to our motel, and then on to Home Depot to pick up the plumbing supplies that Kim had listed out after surveying the job.  We determined that with our schedule we would not be able to do the entire plumbing job, but could complete the "Continuous Waste & Vent" installation, which would allow the next step of finishing the floors to occur.  

On Sunday the 23rd, we worked from 8 to 5 and I officially became a journeyman plumber for a day and a half.  It was fun hearing Terri proclaim "Look we have real pipes!"  Kim's plumbing skills were amazing and we worked until we ran out of the 2" PVC.  Kim made another list and we headed for the Home Depot again.  On Monday we returned at 8 and Kim worked on finishing up the kitchen drain and vent, while Alan had some other meetings and affairs to tend to.   The job was done and tools packed by about 2:00

The job consisted of waste & vent plumbing for toilet, bathroom sink, tub, shower stall, washer in separate utility room, and the kitchen.  Where the venting was to go through the roof, Kim cut the needed pieces and left those along with the vent caps for the roofer to cut holes and finish.  All hookups were above floor joists and ready to cut after laying of floor, and placing of the items.  We left a 2 page list recapping the next steps, including recommendations on how to proceed with the water hook-up.

Photos of the project: (click for larger)

Bonus Sighting
The massive house to the east of the Kirk's, was used in the film titled "This Property is Condemned", which starred Natalie Wood.


FEMA Blues van arrives with supplies - Before shots of stuff to pull out

More before shots

Washer site

Floor cut - tap in

Wash connect

From back

Kim toils

Bathroom area

 Kim and Al

Bathroom area

Bathroom Vent

Kim, Terri, Michael

Sink & Toilet hook

Kitchen Vent


Kitchen connect

Michael & Terri

M & T Closer