How a Vietnam vet found healing as the “Honey-Do Dude”

Freeman

Waveland, Mississippi — Following his retirement and the death of his wife, 76-year-old Danny Chauvin of Waveland, Mississippi, said he had way too much time on his hands.

Chauvin served in the Army during the Vietnam War and has been treated for depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. It’s when he’s alone with his thoughts that he’s the most vulnerable.

“That’s when stuff comes back to you,” Chauvin told CBS News.

But to keep his sanity, he knew he also had to keep busy. But how?

That’s when Chauvin realized one of the things he missed most about his wife was all the little handyman jobs he used to do for her. So, a few months ago, he posted a note on Facebook that read: “If there’s any honey-do jobs that you can’t handle, I’m willing to help.”

“And it spread,” Chauvin said. “It spread like wildfire.”

So now, on a daily basis, and sometimes four times a day, Chauvin fixes the hole in his heart by fixing just about everything else, like putting up a shower, hanging up a porch swing and fixing a closet door.

The price for his services? Nothing. It’s free.

“He showed much kindness to people,” one of his customers told CBS News.

Most of those Chauvin helps are women, many of whom are single or widowed. They call him the “Honey-Do Dude,” and say he is just about the only person they know willing to help with these small jobs. And, obviously, no one is going to match his price point.

In fact, when the work is done, the only thing he takes is a picture with his customers as a reminder that he is not alone in his struggle.

He also revealed his PTSD has improved since he started offering free handyman work.

“Right now, I’ve got a lot of friends,” he said.

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