“Having diabetes, you have to be on a pretty strict diet. I can’t afford the food I need. I don’t qualify for food stamps and carbs are what are cheap.”
- LaVone O'Leary
My name is LaVone O’Leary. I had a heart attack and lost my job. What happened was I’d been looking for a job for like a year and I finally got a job and I worked like four months and then I thought I got the flu. Found out I didn’t have the flu, found out I was having a heart attack, and I went to the hospital and I found out I was diabetic which is what caused my heart attack. And I stayed in there for about four days and I went back to work, and work only lasted about two weeks then they let me go. They thought I was too much of a risk.
When I was in the hospital, I found out I had no medical coverage, no insurance whatsoever, so I found out we made like $246 too much, my husband and I together, to get any insurance. So I now have a $129,000 hospital bill and everything just started snowballing after that.
Now I’m still looking for work. I have no work now. I get $88 a week unemployment. I can’t afford the foods I need to eat. Having diabetes, you have to be on a pretty strict diet and I can’t afford them because carbs are what are cheap. To buy better foods, my husband and I can’t afford that, and I don’t qualify for food stamps.
I know there’s a lot of resources out there, but when you fall into the middle line in-between there’s nowhere to go. My kids, I can’t count on them. They have to pay for their own families right now. You know, the churches can only give so much, and they give to the families that have kids, not to the husband and wife that don’t have kids. It’s not that we don’t want to work. My husband works and he’s always worked, and so would I, but there’s just nothing out there.