Support Lance Corporal James Poggi
Lance Corporal James Poggi was injured while serving as a United States Marine in Aghanistan in 2010. He suffered a back injury when he helped catch a helicopter on mattresses he stacked on a trailer when it malfunctioned during landing. His injury not only lingered, it worsened. James developed spinal meningitis that resulted in the complete loss of use in his left foot. He has had to rely on the use of his wheelchair or braces to be mobile. He recently began using computerized braces that allow him to walk without the arm braces, but that has not been without challenges.
These injuries profoundly changed not only his life, but the lives of his wife and children as well. Stefanie Poggi is is every bit as tough and real as James. She is his full-time caregiver and pours herself into advocating for him and raising their two young children. They make ends meet on James' benefits and a small stipend she receives from the state for being his caregiver. They were recently featured by the Greater Chicago Food Depository for their Hines VA mobile food pantry.
In addition to the physical, mental and emotional challenges of their situation, the growing financial burden is weighing on them as well. In addition to pouring money and sweat equity into a car's repairs that they still owe a substantial amount on, medical bills are adding up and they need to be able to sell their current bi-level home for a ranch that they can modify for James. The last thing they should be worrying about is if their vehicle will make it to a physical therapy or food pantry appointment.
If you could donate to any number of organizations dedicated to serving the needs of veterans, why would you donate to this campaign?
Donating to the Poggi family will allow you to help make a direct and profound change to the lives of one family. It immediately relieves a crushing source of stress in the lives of good, real people that are already fighting a battle most of us are fortunate enough to not have to fight.
The Poggi family would never ask for it, but they deserve our help.
All funds collected will go immediately and directly to James, Stefanie and their two young children. Top priorities include repairing their current vehicle so that James may continue to attend physical therapy as well as all of his VA appointments. The family also has growing medical expenses and no chance at increasing their income to cover them. Any additional amounts collected will be used for improving their credit score so that they will be able to put their house on the market. Ideally, the Poggi family would move into a ranch that they will be able to modify to accommodate whatever medical equipmment will be needed by James to maintain his mobility and independence. If anyone is willing to donate a vehicle large enough to accommodate a wheelchair and two carseats (minivan/van/SUV) that is in good working order with a free and clear title, and local to the Chicagoland area for pickup, that would also make a huge difference.
Even if you are unable to financially support the Poggi family at this time, please consider sharing their story in the hopes that others will be given the opportunity to make a real difference in the lives of this family. Thank you.
We are doing well. Thank you to everyone that has donated!! We have been able to get current on our utilities, pay down some bills, and even improve his credit a little bit. All gets us closer to moving into a home with less stairs!
James received his computerized C-Braces in December 2016. There have been an unbelievable amount of challenges. They beep and lock up and random causing him to fall, they pinch his legs limiting his ability to use the braces that are supposed to help, they are only 3 months old and already coming apart in some spots, they're HUGE! Weekly, sometimes twice weekly trips to the VA for adjustments or repairs that are only temporary. He barely even fits in our van and he cannot move very fast at all.
If you have ever met James, you'd know he loves height, speed, and adrenaline!! These big honking braces, are NOT the answer!
May 2nd, 2017 will be a day nobody will ever forget! James will be undergoing a left leg amputation, below the knee. Within 4-6 weeks James will receive his new prosthetic leg! We could not be more excited for the changes to come! To live again without all this heavy equipment; ramps, walkers, wheelchairs, his dead leg(lol) slowing us all down, is a life we have dreamed of since he got sick. We are in very good spirits and cant wait for whats in store for us!
Please continue to share! Ask friends and family to share! Every donation helps us get back to the active lives we once had!!