Patty's Medical Support

$24,085 of $25,000 goal

Raised by 293 people in 37 months
Dear friends and family-

It breaks my heart a little to have to do this, but over the last couple months, I’ve learned that you truly ONLY get by with a little help from your friends.

The Story

Some of you know different pieces of the story of what’s happening with our mom, Patty, right now. Patty had brain cancer and brain surgery 17 years ago. She recovered and things were great, for about 12 years. Five years ago, she began experiencing memory loss and other cognitive issues, and she was diagnosed with dementia. My dad, Mark, has done a truly amazing job taking care of her. He is a saint. He is literally the strongest, most dedicated man I’ve ever known. The love my parents have for each other is something I wish everyone had the chance to witness firsthand.

Two months ago, my mom fell and broke her hip. She’s been at a rehab facility ever since, and while hip rehab went well, her cognitive abilities declined, and her physical needs simply became more than my family can handle at home.  Last week, she moved into a facility where professionals can care for her, and her dementia, and keep her safe and happy. That’s what we’re hoping for, at least. This was a horribly difficult decision to make, but in the end, we’re hoping it’s what’s best for Patty.

This is emotionally devastating and financially troubling for my family. These last two months have been difficult beyond measure. I thought my mom’s brain cancer would be the worst thing that would ever happen to my family, but this is much, much worse. My parents are so young and have SO much life left to live, and I need to make sure that happens.

The Ask

Among other financial needs, one thing I’d really like to try to get for my parents is an accessible van. My mom is unstable and sometimes transferring in and out of a vehicle is a huge issue. Having an accessible van would allow my parents the freedom to get out once in a while and do things they love doing. Fairs, farmers markets, festivals, Whiskey Belles concerts, just get out and live life a little. It would also make routine appointments much, much easier.

Luke and I wanted to set up this account to make sure our precious little family is able to stay that way for a long, long time.

Anything you can donate to our family is greatly, greatly appreciated. We have chugged along for years now, and are used to making the best of what’s around, but we could really use a little help doing that right now. I can’t even believe I’m writing this, or asking for this, but this is the reality, and we are forever thankful and grateful for your help.

Thank you. We love you.

Dana + Luke Nowakowski
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Hi everyone!

I just wanted to share some good news! A couple weeks ago, my dad purchased a van he's comfortable transporting my mom in.

This is a huge deal to us for many reasons -- I can't even begin to explain. I just want to thank you ALL for everything. For giving your time, money, energy, love, and support during the last year. We still need you -- we'll always need you -- but I am so happy to report that my family is in a good place. We are looking ahead and making the most out of every moment we have together.

Please know that your donation made a very dark time seem a little brighter. We truly wouldn't have been able to get through this without all of you!

If anyone would like to drop my dad a note to check in or say hi, let me know and I'll send you his email address! I'm sure he'd love to hear from you.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

We love you!

The Nowakowski Family
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Thanks to you and your amazing generosity, this story was picked up by The New York Times. Yes, THE New York TIMES.

Thanks again. This is all just overwhelming in a good way.

All our love,

Dana + Luke

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“My mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of disaster, I remember my mother's words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world."

- Fred Rogers

Mr. Rogers would be proud right about now. Thank you, all you kind, amazing, selfless helpers.

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The fact that YOU raised more than $10,000 in just over 24 hours is completely mind-blowing.

We are humbled, grateful, and feel so loved by everyone. Luke and I can't wait to share this good news with our parents. Let's keep it up!

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

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$24,085 of $25,000 goal

Raised by 293 people in 37 months
Created November 16, 2015
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32 months ago
Mary Kay and Phil Windler
34 months ago

Thinking of you all...

Liz Arezina
35 months ago

I know it's not much but I hope it helps. I'm sorry that your family has to go through something like this but it seems like you have a pretty amazing support system :).

Jan Schweiger
35 months ago

Wishing you all the best.

Alan & Sheila Hauenstein
36 months ago

So blessed to have such special people in our lives. Prayers and hugs to all of you.

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