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Cancer diagnosis, layoff bring hardship to couple

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Friday, Dec. 6, 2013, at 7:04 p.m.
  • Updated Thursday, June 26, 2014, at 12:32 p.m.

Share the Season is an annual campaign that offers one-time aid to people affected by unforeseen hardships. The people are not identified to protect their privacy.

This couple has faced home foreclosure, owing back taxes and scrambling to make ends meet by working odd jobs.

They landed in this position after a series of events, including canceled health insurance after the wife was diagnosed with breast cancer four years ago.

He is 70, she is 61.

“I never ever thought that at this point in my life I would be in this position,” the husband said. “But here we are, despite all my best efforts.”

He was laid off from his job in 2010, just short of his 25th year with the company, leaving him with no retirement benefits.

Medical bills had already been mounting because of his wife’s breast cancer. Her cancer is in remission for now, he said.

His wife had her hours cut back when she was battling cancer and she hasn’t been put on full time since.

“I’ve been able to find part-time jobs here and there,” he said, “but not enough to keep us afloat.”

He and his wife owe $4,000 in back taxes to the state. Needed car repairs are at $400.

“It is very difficult for me to ask for this because we’ve always tried to be there to help others,” he said. “A gift from Share the Season would help me get back on my feet again, so I can hold my head up.”

So far, Share the Season has raised more than $115,458.

Send contributions to Share the Season at the Wichita Community Foundation, 301 N. Main, Suite 100, Wichita, KS 67202.

To donate online, go to www.sharetheseason.org.

Donors will be listed in The Eagle; please note if you prefer to remain anonymous.

To apply for help, fill out an application at www.sharetheseason.org or pick one up at the Salvation Army, 350 N. Market. The application deadline is Dec. 16. For more information, call 316-263-2769.

Among recent donors: Marvin and Connie Angleton, in memory of Stella Nadine Angleton; Robert and Rita Benoit; Louise Brinegar, in memory of Frances Brinegar; Cessna Aircraft Company; Harry and Marilyn Crow; Dorth and Virginia Coombs Philanthropic Trust at the Wichita Community Foundation; Claudia Ellerman; Rick and Susan Hoppe, in memory of Milt Sills;

Gary and Tammie Johnson; Janet Miller, in memory of Milt Sills; William and Marva Reeves; Pat Rickman; David and Sherry Robinson, in memory of Milt Sills; Bruce and Linda Schreck; Fred and Carol Schwarz, in memory of Milt Sills; anonymous in honor of grand and great grandchildren; anonymous in memory of Ivy Quigley; and 12 other anonymous donors.

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