By Brian Morton & KDRV Staff
MEDFORD, Ore. — The McPhail family was thrust into the spotlight in early September.
Before anyone knew Extreme Makeover: Home Edition was coming to the Rogue Valley, someone had to submit the McPhails. That someone was one of their closest friends.
Matt Sampson noticed an unusual email in his inbox: it was from a producer for Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, wanting to know if Matt, through his role with Sparrow Clubs, knew of any good candidates for the show.
Producers immediately wanted to know about C.J., Lindsey, and their three boys. There were lots of phone calls, emails, visits, and an official application and video from the McPhails, then an agonizing month of silence before a select few heard the good news.
“I just about passed out at that time point, and that’s kind of when the train started going full speed. We met with the bigger team of producers that had been here in town and for the next month and a half it was the biggest secret I’ve ever had to keep in my life! It was a lot of work,” said Sampson.
Matt Sampson submitted the McPhails for a lot of reasons. One of the biggest, of course, was the problems with their old house. Built by one of Lindsay’s family members, the home had its entire original wiring in cinderblocks, so the family couldn’t change any of the wiring. There was no heat or air in the back of the home. The linoleum under the carpet was filled with asbestos. Original windows meant black mold was creeping into the house. For all its problems, however, it was still considered a home by the McPhails.
“The truth is there are a lot of great memories there,” said C.J. McPhail, “and we’ll always cherish those.”