Today I found out that my good friends Matthew Miller and Susan Kenyon had a disaster happen to them that could have happened to any of us. They are in a desperate situation and I am asking today for everybody to help them out.
Matt & Susan have two kids living at their home: Susan's son 12 year old Joey and their 3 year old son Casey.
Matt, Susan and their kids started feeling sick and their house started to smell strange. A neighbor came over and told them the carpets felt wet. They lifted up their couch and to their horror the carpet underneath was covered in black mold. They cleaned it up and sent it to the lab to be tested. It came back as toxic.
Matt & Susan rented this home for a number of years before saving up enough money to buy it within the last year. Susan recenlty had back surgery which has kept her from working so they are a one income family, with Matt doing his best to pay the bills and put food on the table. Recently, he switched jobs with Susan taking care of little 3 year old Casey full time. 12 year old Joey lives next to the school and was just walking there.
We had a record amount of rain this winter and apparently that caused water to seep into the foundation of their home. When they called their home insurance company Mercury, they were told that they would NOT be covered because it was considered flooding. Apparently, they would have needed to buy optional flood insurance (which they thought was only available in high flood risk areas). If the mold had been covered by a pipe bursting or just leaving the shower on too long, that would have been covered... but because it was "groundwater" it was not covered.
The situation right now is pretty dire. The repair bill after multiple estimates is upwards of $50,000. That is not a typo. In the meantime, they have been evacuated from their home, 12 year old Joey is living with his Dad miles away from his school while 3 year old Casey, Matt & Susan are bouncing from home to home as they have nowhere permanent they can stay. Little League is just starting for Joey and Susan's back has flared up with all the stress. It appears that they won't be able to move back into their home for weeks now, as the walls, carpets, floors all need to be tore out and replaced.
They are at a point where they don't know if they should walk away from their home or fix it. If they walk away, their life savings investment is gone; if they stay, they will have to cash out their entire 401K Retirement Plans and still not have enough. Many things in their home have been damaged as the mold has seeped into their clothes, couch and everything pourous. They are wonderful people who would do anything to help others but now are trapped in a nightmare scenario.
Please consider helping. If we could raise $10,000 for them, they could at least (at the minimum) have the money for another place to live close to Joey's school while they figure out the next steps.
We all have an "emergency" fund. They are good, honest and responsible people who didn't know that they would need "flood" insurance because they don't live anywhere near a risky flood area or creek. This far exceeded the "emergency" fund that they had set aside.
Please take a moment and make a donation to help them out. They would be forever grateful. Any amount helps, so even if you can only give a little it would be much appreciated.