Mungo Community Builders: One man's legacy to help others

(Source: Courtesy)
(Source: Courtesy)

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - You've likely seen the name or maybe even lived in a home they've built.

"We like to think we're the bedroom you wake up in," said Steven Mungo of Mungo Builders.

But what's seen today started 60 years ago with one man.

"He used to always say 'You can't imagine what it's like not to know where your next meal is coming from,'" Mungo said of his father, Michael.

Driven by the desire to change that, Michael J. Mungo founded his own land development company in 1954. As the company grew, so did his heart for helping others.

"He was very determined never to be poor again, and as he became successful, he was determined to help other people not to be poor ever again," said Steven Mungo.

In 1978 Michael Mungo had a heart attack and retired. However many might say that's when his real work began.

"He basically became a philanthropist after that, but it was all very, very quiet," said Stewart Mungo, Michael's son and Steven's brother. "He just didn't want people to know what he was doing in the community."

Before he died in 2010, Michael left his entire estate to his foundation to continue his mission of helping those in need. That foundation is projected to give $1 million annually to Midlands charities.

"He wanted people to know how much he appreciated what he got out of our community and he wanted to put it back," said Stewart.

And as sons Stewart and Steven continue to lead the company, they're honoring their father's wishes. The Mungo family is establishing the Community Builder award to recognize others who continually give their all to their community.

"Recognizing the good that people do, helps to encourage other people to put back to their community, together we can make a real difference," said Stewart.

A difference that started with a hard hat and ended with a dream that now lives on.

You can nominate a Community Builder in Richland and Lexington Counties by clicking here.

Winners of the Mungo Homes Community Builder Award will be recognized on WIS and receive a $1,000 gift to the charity of their choice through the Michael J. Mungo Foundation.

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