Double amputee war vet says contractor took $49K, did not finish work

Contractor hired to build barns for rescue horses
Posted at 3:42 PM, Oct 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-12 00:46:47-04

KIOWA, Colo. -- A wounded veteran who nearly lost his life fighting on the battlefield in Iraq says a Colorado contractor refuses to refund $49,000 he paid for unfinished work.

Travis Strong lost both of his legs nearly ten years ago in an IED attack and now says he finds peace living in the country near Kiowa. Strong and his family rescue horses and hired Larkspur Buildings to construct two barns back in April.

Work was expected to take about a month, but instead the project came to a halt months ago and remains incomplete today.

“I have over 40 phone calls to him, saved, asking please come out here and fix this … and it's still not done,” Strong told Denver7 Investigates. “It's just frustrating that we paid this money and it's just sitting here.”

As for the construction work that has been completed, Strong says he’s not satisfied with the quality. When Denver7 Investigates visited his country farm, he pointed out three of the four Dutch doors on one of the barns were installed upside down.

The unfinished work is an especially difficult pill to swallow for Strong because he says he chose the contractor specifically for his stated commitment to supporting veterans.

“He said he tries to do stuff for troops and he really cares,” Strong said. “He said, 'Thank you for your service.'”

When Denver7 Investigates reached Larkspur Buildings by phone, the owner said he isn’t willing to give the Strongs a refund because he has already completed a lot of work on the project. He admitted his company never secured any permits for the work but insists he can still finish the construction.

The contractor claimed the Strongs changed the design for the barns and contributed to the delays, but the couple denies that. Travis Strong says he doesn’t want to work with the company any longer – he simply wants his money back.

“I don't think anybody has ever challenged him. I think everybody has just kind of backed down and I'm not that kind of person,” Strong said.


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