Please Help Save Our Home!

My name is Will Staples. On January 30th 2014, I learned that my family will be evicted in one month.

Due to an inability to pay property taxes, the city of Springfield foreclosed on our home. I, my mother, my sister, her fiancee, and their 1-year-old son will be evicted on February 28th if we are unable to pay our back taxes.

The last decade has been hard on us. In 2008, my father died, and the medical bills for his cancer nearly bankrupted us. I was unable to find work for the next four years, and my mother missed over 100 days of work last year due to illness. And in October 2012, my sister and her fiancee unexpectedly had a baby, who suffers from congenital health defects and requires constant medication to stay alive.

I have a full-time job now, my mother has been working full-time, and my nephew has the medicine he needs to live. I truly believed my family was finally out of the woods and that we were free to start working toward prosperity again.

And then the foreclosure notice was posted. I learned that my mother, who suffers from an acute anxiety disorder, had been neglecting to open bills and not telling the rest of my family how much we owe. We owe property taxes for 2010 and 2011, plus legal fees and other costs. I don't yet know the full amount we owe, but the property taxes alone are more $6,000.

I work a minimum wage job and have saved up a little over $1,000 in my bank account. My mother, a nurse, makes more than me, but is often broke because she has to pay many other bills to keep our home running. My sister and her fiancee are attending vocational school and rely on government assistance to feed and care for their baby. We're doing the best we can to scrape by, and it's not enough.

And that's what brings me here. I was hesitant to start a collection because I don't like asking for help that I can't pay back, but some friends urged me to try it. I can't bear to lose my home. I've lived here for 22 years. I know every nook and cranny. I love this house. The thought of squatting in a tiny government-provided apartment - or worse, homelessness - terrifies me.

So I'm swallowing my pride and asking for help. I'm shaking as I write this and trying to hold back tears. I've never been more frightened in my life. When my father got sick, I had time to emotionally prepare myself, but this has blindsided me.

If there's anything you can give - anything, no matter how small - please, consider helping us. I have no other recourse. There's a tiny chance we can pull ourselves out of this and truly get back on the road to recovery.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for whatever you can give.

Will Staples
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William Staples 
Ludlow, MA
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