I am reaching out to ask for help in paying for my dear friend, Angel David Portorreal Abreu's final expenses. He has virtually no family in the United States and we desperately want to give him the funeral and burial he deserves.
Angel David in Life....
Angel is a once in a life time kind of friend. I met him because he is a "Dreamer" and he came to me for help with his dreamer application. Dreamers are people who were brought to the United States as minors who can qualify to temporarily live and work in the U.S. legally. Angel was only 16 years old when his mother left him in the United States and moved to Europe. Since then he has fended for himself.
While in high school in Fairfield, Ohio, Angel learned to speak English. Aside from school, he always held two to three part time jobs at the same time. He supported himself 100% and still found money to help his brother and mother. The day he graduated from high school was an enormous accomplishment and was one of the happiest days of his life! Angel graduated on the Honor Roll, a member of the National Honor Society ( NHS); he received an Academic Achievement Award, and also was given an extra special gift by his principal, a buckeye that was handed down to him by his father, a small token of the love and appreciation the principal and the entire school had for Angel.
Angel's passion in life was cooking. He made the absolute best empanadas I have tasted in my life...and he was always eager to volunteer to cook for parties and gatherings. Many of my fondest memories of our time together took place in the kitchen. In October of 2017, Angel wanted to roast a pig for our annual Halloween party. Even though it was my party, he insisted on paying for and preparing the pig himself, that's just the kind of generous person he was. He helped design a custom pig roaster for my husband to fabricate just for this special occasion. Angel also loved to cook lunch for my coworkers and myself and would bring it to us at work. He was always getting on me for not returning his plastic containers that he put the food in! I have a stack of tupperware on top of the work fridge right now that I never returned to him...It makes me cry when I pass by them, knowing I will never be able to give them back.
I mentioned that Angel was generous. It was one of his greatest attributes and is one of the reason so many people love him; but it was also one of his greatest faults. Multiple people took advantage of Angel's generosity, borrowing thousands of dollars from him at a time, and never paying him back. Angel worked sooooo hard to be independent, to save, to spoil his friends and this is the way some people chose to treat him. All of the wonderful things about Angel, the struggles he went through, his achievements as well as the despicable way people took advantage of him are amplified by Angel's extremely difficult medical conditions.
All of his life, Angel struggled because of his weight and his short stature. As a 28 year old man, he is just about 4'6" tall. He stopped growing at a normal rate when he was a child, but no one knew why. In mid twenties, he was finally diagnosed with Cushing disease. Cushing disease occurs when a tumor grows on the pituitary gland in the brain, stunting a person's growth. Angel underwent a risky brain surgery to have the tumor removed, but he still stayed short and he still was very heavy which caused even more issues for Angel. Both of his hips dislocated because of the weight he carried. Doctors would not operate to fix them because Angel did not have health insurance and it was considered an "elective" procedure. At one point he became very depressed because of the constant pain he had on a daily basis. Despite it all, he still worked two jobs and still paid his own way.
This past year, Angel started to put on extra weight and we worried that perhaps the pituitary tumor had returned. He was awaiting an appointment the following week with an endocrinologist when his ordeal started in May of this year. One evening he began to experience excruciating pain in his stomach. He was taken by ambulance to the ER where they discovered he had a ruptured stomach ulcer and emergency surgery. His recovery was slow, so he was placed in the Daniel Drake Rehabilitation Center in Cincinnati. While there, he suffered through an "accidental" overdose of pain medication and had to be revived with narcan. After he almost died as a result of this negligence, he was terrified to return to the rehabilitation center, but because he does not have health insurance, there was no other option but for him to stay there. Just several weeks later, he suffered a pulmonary embolism and cardiac arrest which stopped the flow of oxygen to his brain. Supposedly the nurses realized this right away and were able to shock his heart into beating again. However, it seems that a much longer amount of time passed than we were told....an MRI that we had to fight for two months to be taken revealed significant damage to his brain, meaning he was without oxygen for an extended period of time. He was just diagnosed as being in a "persistent vegetative state" with no hope of regaining consciousness.
Angel's mother, who had not been able to come back to the U.S. for over ten years, was finally able to get a visa to come see her son. Unfortunately, Angel will not gain consciousness to see her. Angel has now been in hospice care at Drake Hospital since August 29, 2018. While we do not know when he will pass, it is expected to take place within a week or so. That is why I am reaching out on this page to ask for help. I want to give this amazing person the proper burial he deserves. Thank you for taking the time to hear about my friend, Angel. If you are able to donate, big or small, I give you my sincere gratitude. Although I my never meet you personally, I pray that God will bless you greatly for your kind heart.
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