Good Samaritan makes request

Sue Guinn Legg • May 25, 2012 at 8:30 AM

Good Samaritan Ministry has made a special request for the donation of dependable automobiles for a couple of clients in need — a recently homeless family with three children and a mother battling cancer and an Afghanistan war veteran with disabling post- traumatic stress disorder.

Good Samaritan social workers Tammy Kosa and Sally Biles said the family had been living doubled up at the homes of friends and family for about a year. They were staying at a local hotel until last week when the ministry and an individual donor helped them with rent and utilities deposits needed to get them into a place of their own.

The father, who had been unemployed, has found a job with a local construction contractor who is holding his position open until he finds a car to get him back and forth to work. The mother is receiving treatment for a cancerous mass on her lung and recently had a miscarriage. Their youngest child is 3 years old and the oldest is in high school.

The veteran is a Johnson City resident with severe PTSD, for which he is seeking disability benefits. He and his wife have an older car that is in need of repairs that will cost more than the car is worth. Kosa said they depend on the car to get them to and from her job in Johnson City and his medical appointments at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center at Mountain Home.

Anyone who wishes to help with the donation of a car for either of the clients may call Kosa or Biles at the ministry at 928-1958. Donations to help may be earmarked for “veteran’s car” or for “family’s car” and mailed to Good Samaritan Ministry, P.O. Box 2441, Johnson City, TN 37605, or made online at www.goodsamjc.org.

Cindy Stout, a Johnson City woman with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease who has been waiting for a double lung transplant at Vanderbilt University Medical Center for more than a year, is continuing to raise funds for the portion of the procedure that will not be covered by insurance and for travel expenses and lodging in Nashville for several months of follow-up care.

Stout has been battling COPD since 1993. At 56, her lung capacity has diminished to about 16 percent of other women her age and she is dependent on supplemental oxygen around the clock.

A former textile worker, Stout spent most of her adult life caring for two daughters and a son on whom, along with her husband and their grandchildren, she now depends on for assistance with most of her daily activities, including fundraising for her upcoming transplant.

The family has been planning a large garage sale since late last year and have come up short in their search for an adequate location. Stout said their best idea at this point is to rent a spot for their wares at a local flea market, where they hope to stage the sale next month.

Stout also is still in the process of securing assistance from one of several transplant funds that help transplant candidates with their fundraising. In the meantime, an account set up at First Bank & Trust in Johnson City to help Stout with her out-of-pocket medical costs and with incidental costs of her follow up care remains open for donations.

Contributions to the Lucinda Stout Transplant Account may be made at First Bank & Trust, 1185 N. State of Franklin Road, located adjacent to Fuddruckers, or by mail to First Bank & Trust Co., Attention Kim Hensley, P.O. Box 4475, Johnson City, TN 37602-4475.

The Shepherd’s Inn domestic violence and homeless shelter for women and children in Elizabethton will celebrate its 15th anniversary on Sunday. Since its opening on May 27, 1997, the shelter had served more that 1,400 women and children in crisis.

Unfortunately this weekend’s milestone for the the inn will be marked at a time when it is struggling mightily to keep up with the costs of operation. Executive Director Paul Gabinet reported last week the shelter was more than two months behind on payments to creditors, including local utilities and contractors who helped with a recent plumbing emergency.

For those who wish to help, donations may be made by mail to The Shepherd’s Inn, P.O. Box 2214, Elizabethton, TN 37643. More information about the shelter and how to help may be obtained by calling 542-0180.

If there is a need or a project in your neighborhood the Good Neighbor column can assist with, contact Sue Guinn Legg at slegg@johnsoncitypress.com, P.O. Box 1717, Johnson City, TN 37605 1717 or 929-3111, ext. 335.

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