Looking to go home

Hi, my name is Joe, most know me as Joey, some as Joseph and this is one of the most difficult things I have had to do.  I was diagnosed with stage 4 small cell lung cancer and Metastic squamous cell carcinoma to my brain in May 2017.  I have been undergoing immunotherapy for over a year now and while the treatment was positive, it appears that it has run its course and I am scheduled to begin daily radiation treatments this week.  I have had gamma knife radio surgery to my brain in June 2017.

I am a 61 year old, soon to be 62 and never have been one to ask for help.  I have had numerous health issues beginning in 2003 and have had the occasional “set-backs” here and there, but always have kept a positive attitude and soldiered on.  I had to take a medical break from work in 2007 right as the financial crisis began, and as a result, left my job in Virginia and moved to the mountains of West Virginia to stay with a friend.  Soon after, like many people who face catastrophic health issues, I was classified as permanently disabled and began the process of qualifying for social security.

I was granted my social security after a two year process, in which costs of treatment, medicines, and daily living took what savings I had left after the market crashed and my 401k all but vanished.  Despite all of this, and in an effort to just keep going I began to sell off personal items, including my vehicle to stay afloat.  As fate would have it, my friend at whose small farm I was staying at suddenly passed away and his family sold the farm.  A realtor in the area had some rentals and opened up one of them to me and I have been there ever since.  It is 14 miles from the closest town, and a 98 mile drive each way to treatment.  I cannot complain, but have to face the realization that there is going to come a time (relatively soon) that I am going to require assistance, which brings me here.

I have no family here on the east coast; I am from California and have been longing to go home.  I truly believe there are many forms of health care for those facing mortality and equally believe that the power of positive thought, and positive thoughts from friends and family are as important as the chemicals we use to simply maintain.

Now back to the “difficult part”… I am looking to raise money to get me home for what will be the remainder of my life.  I have been working with people in California over the phone who can help me find residence; my medical team here has assured me that moving will not interrupt my treatment should I decide to go.  I have been calling moving companies and getting quotes on moving prices and they range anywhere from $4,800-$8,900, and I just don’t have it and do not see any way of coming up with it on my fixed and very limited income.  I have always tried to maintain my independence, but equally realize that I am going to need a village sooner than later, and a village of lifelong friends and family, where I was born, where I grew up, where I experienced my first heartache, where I first fell in love, where my parents are buried and ultimately where I want to die.  If you can find it in your heart to help me raise the funds needed I would be eternally grateful.
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Joey Cruz 
Carter, WV
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