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Ann Arbor family opens doors to teens needing a helping hand from troubled homes

Posted at 12:00 PM, Sep 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-04 12:00:03-04

An Ann Arbor family is sharing their story of helping three teens who were in need of guidance, love and compassion.

Everything changed one day when the family's son came home from school and said his friends needed a helping hand.

Three young Ann Arbor men didn’t have the easiest of childhoods. All they wanted was a loving home. Micheal Bear, Terry Jackson and Brian Scurlock are different men but all come from similar backgrounds with troubled households. That’s when Kelly McDermott and her family answered the call and opened up theirs.

"I’ve grown just to be apart of it," Jackson said. "So they really embraced me as a son. A lot of foundational living standards or expectations aren’t met in my former household."

One year ago the teens needed a helping hand and guidance through these crucial years of their lives. Kelly's son Spencer came to his parents and told them about his friends.

"There are people of different races that have harder things going on, gender, everything they’re discriminated on daily," Spencer said.

Kelly says opening her home was a no brainer.

"We love each other equally, we listen, we’re a soundboard for all kinds of issues that come up," she said. "There’s a lot of pain, there’s a lot of struggles with these boys."

The family has since formed a tight bond. A bond they say has grown stronger and stronger everyday.

"I see in them all their beauty and their potential, which may not have always been brought out in various environments," Kelly said.

Now, these young men are thriving. Scurlock is attending Concordia University and playing football. Bear is a senior at Skyline high school and is also playing football and Jackson is at Washtenaw Community College. Now, all know what a loving home feels like.

"The focus of this (is) to grow and so who we are right now is never going to be the person we are tomorrow," Jackson said.

The McDermott family has grown in the last year. Kelly says her family hasn’t stopped growing and says she will continue to help as long as there’s a need.