Not only is my dad a dedicated father, he is a friend to everyone and has lived a life of service. He is always there when you need him. He is a career volunteer. For example, he's the guy folks call when they need a ride to the airport or need a place to stay. On a weekly basis, he can be found driving his senior citizen neighbor to her weekly bowling event. In fact, we've been canceling that (and all of his other volunteer gigs,) because he can't serve while he has been in the hospital. Dad doesn't just take care of people; he is an avid animal lover/caregiver. He even built homes for a feral cat colony. My dad is the guy who keeps dog biscuits in his car in case he comes across a dog in need. My dad was even my Girl Scout leader. It isn't hard to see that my dad is one-of-a-kind. I cannot express enough what my father means to me. My mother passed away when I was five years old and I am an only child. For 28 years now, my dad has been my everything for me. He worked three jobs to support my Grandmother and me. Now, and for the foreseeable future, I will need to be everything for him.
In this new role caring for Dad more formally since his tragic accident, I visit him at the hospital and attempt to manage all of the moving parts, as well as to advocate for his needs. My heart aches because Dad cannot reciprocate my hugs or speak as he wishes. I miss the way things were just a few weeks ago when I would call him up and hear him tell "corny" dad jokes. As I write this, I am struck by how much everything has changed. I miss the comfort of knowing that he is where he should be, safe and sound at home. Fortunately, we have a strong extended family and Dad has great friends. Someone is always with him 24/7 since the accident. We also have someone staying at his home. His beloved cats are being taken care of too. We thank all of you who are there for Dad and all of us during this difficult time. The support from his family and friends has been amazing, but we are not sure how we will be able to pay for Dad's astronomical medical bills and rehabilitative care.
He had been in the ICU for the past two weeks, and there is no end in sight to his hospital stay, to his surgeries, or to a time when he can care for himself. Insurance will only cover so much and we do not expect to recover much, if anything, from the driver. Her actions have resulted in Dad breaking nearly every bone in his body and in the total destruction of his vehicle; both prevent his ability to work. The driver has the minimum insurance allowed by the State ($15,000 towards his bodily injury and medical bills) and more than likely, no assets. At a time when we may feel paralyzed by the fear of the unknown, we have to act. We ask you, Dad's network of friends and co-workers, extended family, and complete strangers for your financial help to assist in his recovery. You can be sure that if it was you in need and Dad knew about it, he would do everything possible to help you.
We thank those of you who have contributed financially or otherwise. It eases our worry to feel your support. We would also appreciate it if you would take the time to share his story on social media and to mention his story to in your community relationships. While we need financial support, we also seek prayers. We anticipate needing other supports as time progresses.
- George Kazepis
- Linda Machi-Smith
- Richard Ludmerer
- Jexie Youssef
- Bonnie Kissel
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