It's like coming home for Ty Halverson

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It’s like coming home for Ty Halverson

Janell Bradley
Contributing Writer


"A house you once lived in is always partly home," so said Max Brand.

Hawkeye resident Ty Halverson must believe it's true after deciding to taking a leap of faith and move a four-bedroom, two-story home a block and a half to a new site.

Ty, 27, is the son of Brad and Lori Halverson, who lived in the house at Hawkeye's north edge from 1980 to 1990. With its pedestaled porch and attractive location, the house built in 1900 beckoned to those who drove past.

Born in late 1985, Ty only lived there until he was 5, when his parents made the decision to move to the country, choosing a home about four miles away. Even so, Ty has memories of living in the house.

Over the years other families lived in the home, but in 2009 it was purchased by the Hawkeye Co-op. The house continued to be rented out, but as the co-op's needs for expansion and storage grew, it was decided the house should be moved from the site or torn down.

Ty, living in a Hawkeye house owned by his grandparents, Wally and LaFonda McIntyre, admits he'd always thought he would build a new home on the Graham Street property where he was living.

Although his grandparents did some arm-twisting, he wasn't immediately convinced the 100-year-plus home where he lived as a child was in his long-term plan.

A teacher in the Tripoli school system, Ty says, "I wanted to have a couple of years of job security before I did something big."

But Ty and girlfriend Nikki Langreck agreed to look at the house.

Scott and Nicole Kleppe had been the last family to live there, and Nikki had been a babysitter for Kleppe’s infant son. She, too, admired the house for its character and charm.

"When we first moved to Hawkeye in 1998, I would drive by and want to see the inside of that house," she reminisced.

Later, when babysitting there, she had thoughts of living in the house one day. She loved the house's woodwork and features like the pantry adjacent to the kitchen.

The pantry is hidden behind a sliding door the couple found in the basement. Original to the house, Nikki's dad replaced portions that had rotted. The pulleys that operate it, were unearthed from the attic and sandblasted by Dave Smith, returning them to operation.

Ty discovered one room on the upper floor still had the wallpaper in place in what had been his baby room.

His mom, Lori, told him how she and her mother, LaFonda, refinished many of the baseboards.

It didn't take much convincing after Ty and Nikki saw the house. Agreeing on a price to buy the house from the co-op, the first step was to ask the fire department to burn down the house on his existing site. Long known as Harley Torson's house, 100 years ago there had been a blacksmith shop on the site.

As Randy Petsche excavated the ground for the pouring of a basement, Ty said they found quite a few horseshoes in what had been the lawn.

With the project underway, Robinson Construction poured the floor. Once Aylsworth House Movers had the house moved and in place over the basement, the walls were poured. Because Ty and Nikki had to wait a few weeks before the house could be moved, they repainted some of the rooms before the move. The couple also removed all the bricks from the interior chimney as it was replaced with an energy-efficient furnace, installed by Loomis Plbg. & Htg.

The two moved in a week ago, and soon they expect to have water hooked up throughout.  Nikki stays busy decorating the house for Christmas when she isn't working at the Hawkeye Post Office. Ty teaches third- through eighth-grade reading and works on the house nights and weekends.

In the future, the couple intends to reattach the porch and deck that were removed for the house move. A garage will be added down the road as well.

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