Bryan's Wheelchair Fund

After working for more than 25 years as a stage technician, my husband started having some problems with his back. It was discovered that he has osteoarthritis in his hips, degenerative disc disease, and a previously undiscovered case of spina bifida. He was able to function with a cane, sometimes he needed two. After a few years, it became impossible for him to walk for more than 5 minutes before he could not stand the pain. We realized it was time for a wheelchair.

He is on permanent disability, and is unable to work. We were lucky enough to have a friend that works at the Salvation Army, and  pretty soon she was able to locate a wheelchair for him. All was fine for about 3 years.

We were out for a stroll last fall when suddenly his wheelchair broke! Part of the frame just snapped! So...

I contacted the disability office, who informed me that we needed to get the chair assessed as to whether it was repairable or not. We took the chair to the place they recommended, and as it turns out the chair could not be repaired and still be considered safe. He would require a replacement. The catch is, because the chair was not provided by Disability to begin with, he would have to jump through several hoops in order for the powers that be to agree to replace the chair. He has done everything they have asked of him, however the big holdup has been getting an appointment with an Occupational Therapist. They are the ones that will ultimately decide if he is in need of a new chair, and if so, what kind of chair. We have been waiting since before Christmas and still no appointment has been set.

In the meantime, Bryan has been virtually housebound. This is a man that greatly values his independance. Staying home while I walk to the grocery store is just one of the many things that, although it seems like a small thing, are slowly eating away at his morale. We do not own a vehicle, so 'going out for a roll' was one of his few joys in life.

I created this page hoping that somehow, someway we can get him a new wheelchair. When I say 'new', I dont necessarily mean BRAND NEW. We would be happy with a used one, as long as it's in good condition. I would hate to end up in this position all over again simply because we went with a used chair that will not last more than a couple of years.

Anyways, I know that there are many people out there that are worse off than us. We have each other (married more than 30 years). I only want to improve Bryan's quality of life, and hopefully bring back the spark that seems to have dimmed since all this happened. Any help we can get will be greatly appreciated.
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Melanie Putz 
Pitt Meadows, BC
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