At nearly 82 years old, Frank has many stories to tell. “I’m going to hit 100,” he says. “I’m a fighter from the word go.”
He has overcome cancer, battled through a lifelong spinal condition, raised four children, and headed up a successful construction business before illness forced him to retire.
But, despite all that, Frank has hit a wall financially. No matter how much he cuts back, his expenses and his income just don’t match up. Even with an electronic device implanted in his spine to control pain, he has just applied to go back to work —as a greeter at retail stores.
“Nothing is coming to you,” he says. “You have to earn it.” At the same time, he is passionate about helping his neighbor. He talks of cooking for friends, giving rides to appointments, and training for a 5K walk in honor of his late grandson whom he lost to addiction.
In the meantime, he’s $200 short this month and his power bill is scheduled for disconnection. He’s worried about his canine companion Pheobe, about charging the controller for his spinal implant, about losing internet connectivity, and especially about his groceries spoiling. He’s a great cook, he says, and he loves to share his favorite Italian dishes.
Fortunately, help is available in the form of a caring caseworker and an emergency payment issued directly to his utility company. Because of you, Frank will stay on track with his treatment, and, he says with a glimmer in his eye, get those chicken cutlets in his fridge in the pan for supper. He rattles off the recipe from memory and decides to invite a neighbor to join him.
“You can’t give up,” he says. “You have to help each other. None of us would be here without that. It’s so important to know help is there when you need it. Thank you.“