I got the call today. My cousin called me in tears and apologized for crying and for reaching out for help. She said, “I didn’t want to ask for help.” That will tell you a little bit about Irene and her heart.
Last year in June (2017) Irene’s daughter, Deanna, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Irene helped her daughter financially so she could take off work and fight this horrible disease. On November 9, 2017, Deanna was told she was cancer free. Praise God!
On that same day in the evening of November 9, 2017 Irene called an ambulance to transport her mom, my aunt, to the hospital. She had her 94th birthday in the hospital and 11 days later passed away. Her mom did not have life insurance. Irene took care of her mom for many years prior to her passing. As a former nurse at St. Anthony’s Medical Center, in St. Louis County, Irene had the perfect training over the years to help her mom. Not only does she have a nursing education, she has the heart, the passion, and the knowledge to go along with helping others.
One month later on Christmas Day (2017), Irene’s husband got sick and went into the hospital. Two months later this year in February (2018) Dale Bateman, Irene’s husband of 53 years, passed away from complications due to pneumonia. Irene also took care of her husband for many years after he suffered a traumatic brain injury when he was only 31 years old. In Irene’s words, “…through everything I always loved him just as much as I did when I first fell in love with him when I was sixteen and he was a handsome soldier.“ He did not have life insurance.
One month later on March 15, 2018 Irene had a stroke. She had no risk factors for a stroke. She is not over weight, does not have diabetes, etc. The doctor told her the stroke was caused by stress. Of course it was stress related! The past year has been HORRIBLE for Irene.
After helping her family for the past year, Irene now struggles to make ends meet. She had plans to get a part time job but had to put that on hold because of the stroke. She told me that she has no heat and hasn’t had any all winter. Her story breaks my heart. The stroke has affected her vision and she is hopeful it will return as she recovers. Irene also needs many prayers.
Irene is an amateur photographer and loves to hike and take pictures along the way. A couple of her favorite places to visit are Mastodon Park and Limestone Hill Trail. All of this has been put on hold as well.
Thank you for helping me help my cousin, Irene Kelley Bateman.
- Mary Krell
- Tyra Lusk
- Lola Brelsford
- Mary Beth Eaton
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