A Florida woman was able to move back into her home of 35 years after being evicted last month, thanks to a generous neighbor.

By Alex Heigl
Updated December 07, 2016 04:36 PM

A Florida woman was evicted from her home of decades, a month before her 89th birthday.

Angie Tyma found herself in the unthinkable situation in November. She’d lived in a home on Harbor Drive in Hudson, Florida, for 35 years. Her husband died years ago, and when he did, a family friend who lives in Europe bought their home and rented it to her.

But Tyma was in the dark about all this until November 16, when the new owner showed up. Her friend had ran into financial trouble and stopped paying the mortgage, at which point the bank foreclosed on the property, and it was sold at auction. Tyma was forced out onto the street with her belongings, the front door to her home padlocked. She was only able to return for her medicine and dentures with the help of the county’s Human Services.

But Tyma’s neighborhood closed ranks around her: They divvied up her belongings for storage, and the rest were housed at Pasco County’s Boys & Girls Club. The county also helped lodge her and her two dogs at a local motel where a neighbor worked.

Tyma made a bold next move: She asked her neighbor Danielle Calder to buy her house back from her. Calder, 65, lives mostly outside Boston but owns a home in Tyma’s neighborhood, and agreed to buy the home and rent it to her friend. The deal closed Friday and Tyma got to move back into her house — replete with a fresh new coat of paint — Tuesday, coincidentally the same day she turned 89 years old.

She was also pleasantly surprised by the belongings her neighbors had managed to salvage, which they’d moved back into the house. Among them is a statue of the Virgin Mary, which has been moved to its original spot on her front lawn: “Everybody has to rub the Holy Mother, and whatever you wish for will come true,” Tyma told the Tampa Bay Times. “It worked for me.”

Tyma will be renting the house from Calder, who refused to disclose what her neighbor is paying. “It was worth it,” she told the Times. “I’m blessed to be able to help her.”