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Ward Van Damme's Medical Expense Fundraiser
$1,055 raised
5% of $20k goal
16 contributors
3 Years running
Ward has faced many medical challenges over the past 14 years; beginning with a long illness which led to a colectomy and other subsequent surgeries.  During this time he was employed as a truck driver and spent many months off work.  ...

Wheelchair Ramp Nearing Completion

Ward has faced many medical challenges over the past 14 years; beginning with a long illness which led to a colectomy and other subsequent surgeries.  During this time he was employed as a truck driver and spent many months off work.  Because of his numerous medical conditions, 2 years ago he was forced to leave his long time job and go on disability at 61 years old.

In February Ward began experiencing pain and numbness in his legs leading to tests that showed he had a servere blockage.  He was scheduled for an appointment with a vascular surgeon but before that could happen, on February 20, 2014 he was rushed to the hospital via ambulance and immediately transferred to Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan. There he underwent a 5 hour surgery to clear the blockages.  Unforturnately too much damage had been done to the tissue in his foot and leg which ultimately led to an above the knee amputation on March 12.

Luckily, Ward does have Medicare but his expenses far exceed that coverage.  He has been in the hospital since February 20 and just recently found out that he will be discharged soon because of Medicare limitations.  Prior to learning this, he was told he would be in the hospital's rehabilitation center for 4-6 additional weeks learning to walk on a prosthesis. 

His family is now faced with numerous expenses.  He needs a ramp as he will be returning home in a wheelchair.  Changes will need to be made to their early 1900's home as there are no downstairs bedrooms and the bathroom is not handicapped accessable. Their vehicle, a 2004 Ford F150 pickup will also be unaccessible to him making it necessary to purchase a car so he can get back and forth to physical therapy which will continue for 6 - 12 months.

Aside from that, his disability check will not go far toward gas to and from physical therapy, medical bills, living expenses and the cost of the prosthesis itself.  We are told there are several prosthesis he will need to master before he receives his final one.  We have also learned they only last 3-7 years and can cost as much as $30,000 for a person with Ward's interests and physical activity level.

I also want to point out that through the last 14 years of medical challenges Ward has faced, this family has never once turned to a social service agency or received help in any form

Ward maintains an optimistic attitude often reassuring those of us who love him instead of our reassuring him.  We are reaching out to those that care for this family.  If you are able to give, please do so.  If not, words of encouragement and prayers are welcomed and warmly appreciated.

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