MILWAUKEE — The very foundation that Milwaukee native Jimmie Lockett stands on will soon become the house he'll own at just 23 years old.
"I didn't know that a young kid like myself could do this," said Lockett. "I could've paid rent somewhere but owning a house is the goal anyway in life, so why not start it now?"
When he was 22, Lockett got approved through Habitat for Humanity to help build and own his own habitat home. He made the decision to apply after his parents went through the same process when he was a kid.
"As I got older my parents really stressed that owning is the way to go, because when you own something they can't take that away from you."
On Thursday, Lockett teamed up with employees from manufacturing company Komatsu to work on his house along with another habitat home along North 5th Street.
"What this block really represents is a sense of optimism and a focus on the future," said Komatsu social responsibility manager, Cathy Stagmer.
"I'm like sweating a lot. It's a lot of hard work, but it's rewarding work," said Lockett.
Now, Lockett says he wants to be an example for other young Black men and women in the city. To show them that nothing, even becoming a homeowner, is out of their reach.
"Just showing my people that this is something we can do is amazing," said Lockett. "I know what it takes, so I just want to be the bridge to connect people."
Lockett hopes to complete and move into his habitat home early next year.