A Truck for Walter

A few years ago a brother named Walter came to the Lord at HOPE Christian Fellowship, one of our partnering churches where we worship most Sundays. It wasn’t long before Walter was playing drums on the worship team and Marilyn and I began to get to know and love him. We learned of his rough background and that several years ago he was injured in work related incidents that resulted in his losing the use of two fingers on his right hand and back pain that limits the time he can be on his feet. Surgery was unsuccessful in regaining the use of his fingers and the odds of successful back surgery have so far not been worth the risk. The small monthly disability checks he gets have helped, but not enough to keep Walter and his wife from losing their home and Walter’s truck. Walter has made a claim for his work-related injuries, but after years of the insurance companies continuing to haggle over who should be responsible, the possibility of some kind settlement is doubtful.

          As a few of us at church came to know about Walter’s skill and experience as a quality tile contractor and builder, we started offering him work on small, home improvement projects. I was one of those, asking Walter to help with a bathroom makeover. He accepted and we're nearly finished. He has done a great job and wants to continue working as he is able. But one thing has been obvious! Walter needs a truck! His old, overheating Pontiac sedan, literally on its last leg, is inadequate for hauling his considerable collection of tools let alone things like dry wall and lumber.

          One day after thinking about Walter’s need, I decided to see if anyone on our Neighborhood website might have a used pickup for sale. To my surprise, I got an answer almost immediately. A neighbor had a truck he wasn’t actually planning to sell, but felt prompted to respond to my inquiry and texted a reply. I went over to check it out and we quickly struck up a friendship. The truck is a mint condition, 2004 Chevy Silverado with only 80,000 miles. It has new tires, a bench seat and a tilt-up lockable bed cover that’s perfect for storing tools or hauling materials.

          If you know anything about pickups, you’ll know they are very expensive. So I was blown away when I learned the man, also a believer, was asking just $7000, about half the going rate for trucks with double the miles. The more we talked, the more the owner liked the idea of the truck going to Walter and sharing the blessing through a go-fund-me campaign. When he graciously offered to hold it for me until the funds were raised, I sensed God was in this. I’ve had the truck examined by both my mechanic and the owner’s mechanic who has serviced it from the beginning. Both agree it’s a gem.
          Two other brothers in our church who know Walter well, Mark West and David Rydman, are joining me in inviting friends who receive this to help us get this truck for Walter.  Once the goal is met, I’ll withdraw the funds, buy the truck and we’ll find a creative way to present it to Walter.  Would you please consider helping? No gift is too small (or too big). Please follow the Go Fund Me link and instructions for donating. While you may forward this to friends you think might be interested, please do not publish it on social media, at least not until we give the word. We'd like it to be a surprise! 

Help us get Walter set up for a productive future and make this a very special Christmas. Oh yeah, Walter told me he's always been a Chevy guy! 

Jerry, with Mark and David
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Jerry Hogshead 
San Gabriel, CA
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