MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. – When Katrina Miller lost her mobile home in the April 27th, 2011, tornadoes, a local church generously donated her a new home, but through a miscommunication they never registered the mobile home on behalf of the family.
When the Morgan County Inspection Office noticed the home wasn’t registered with the state, they told the family they had only days to fix the problem, or face a fine.
“I’ve had people praying, and I’ve thought, ‘Oh, I’m never gonna get this done!'” said Katrina Miller.
So for the last week, WHNT News 19’s Chris Davis has been Taking Action, digging through state documents and law books to get to the bottom of this case.
All to get results for Katrina, who is 100% deaf.
The missing puzzle piece from the beginning has been getting in touch with the church that donated the mobile home.
We were afraid that we had reached a dead-end when we learned that Crosspoint Church had shut down, and the pastor had moved out-of-town.
But within hours of our original story last week, members of that former church got a hold of Pastor Dave Anderson.
Tuesday afternoon, WHNT News 19 accompanied the family to the Morgan County Tag and Title Office to solve this once and for all.
Of all the people who walk through the doors of the Morgan County Courthouse, you’ve probably never met a family so excited to stand in line.
“She’s happy and she says thank you and she’s very appreciative to Channel 19 and the pastor for helping us,” said Caren Staten, Katrina’s Mother.
With the proper paperwork in hand, Caren and Katrina patiently waited their turn in line to right their unknown wrong.
“This is minor compared to what we went through,” said Staten.
Through every step, in addition to the role of mother, Caren also served as interpreter. Katrina is considered 100% deaf.
The Morgan County License Commissioner declined to do an interview with us, but tells me, they had nothing to do with the notice the family received but were more than happy to work with us to get Katrina registered.
They even offered to waive some of the back-dated late fees, that originally mounted up to more than $150. They were able to get the final price below $50.
“Thank ya’ll so much, we’ll definitely have a good day,” Staten told the office.
With the proper registration sticker in hand and deep appreciation in their hearts, they made their way back to make Katrina’s home official in the eyes of the state.
“We appreciate it so much, we appreciate it,” said Staten. “Y’all have done a wonderful job and everybody that’s been so supportive of all of us. I thank God for all of it, I really do.”
Katrina may not be able to put into words just how much this means to her, but sometimes a hug and a smile says more than words ever could.
“And I appreciate it so much,” she said.
Hopefully Tuesday’s registration fee is the last Katrina will ever have to pay.
WHNT News 19 dug through Alabama law and found the state offers a renewal exception for anyone on 100% disability, which Katrina qualifies for, because of her hearing disability.
Katrina will have to send in the proper paperwork for that exception when her tag expires later this Fall.