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Disability Grants For Syringomyelia Disabled Carl To Meet Needs And Pay Bills

by Carl Hunnicutt
(Fort Huachuca, Arizona, USA)

Hi my name is Carl Hunnicutt. I am 46 years old. I am the father of four children, all of them grown up and living elsewhere in this country.

I am a grandparent of six grandchildren. At the moment I am currently living with my adopted son and his family.

Disability Issues

After a rollover car accident in 2006, I was diagnosed with Syringomyelia after having four spinal surgeries.

Between 2007 and 2015 I have had 10 surgeries to combat cysts that continue to grow in my spinal cord.

My doctor has put three shunts in my spinal cord where the cysts keep growing to drain out the extra spinal fluid to try to keep cysts from forming in those areas. I have a programmable shunt in my shoulder to regulate two of the shunts in my spine.

My doctor has expanded the dura around the spinal cord and has removed cysts as best can be done, but each time a cysts formed it pinched off the spinal cord and created damage to the spinal cord.

Each time more and more damage had been done. My last surgery to date in June of 2015, my doctor put in a programmable shunt in the vein in the brain that produces spinal fluid and ran a tube from the cranium under the skin down the back of my skull down the neck over the clavicle over my chest plate down to my belly area where when there is too much pressure it dumps the extra spinal fluid down into my stomach area where eventually my body reabsorbs it.

Because of all the surgeries I do not have bone in that area of my thoracic spine for the muscle to adhere to. Without the muscle having bone to attach to I have trouble keeping my back straight.

I am in constant pain for which I take a lot of pain medication that makes me very tired. I have fallen asleep sitting up while doing ordinary things.

Because of the pressure in my spinal cord, I get blinding headaches from bright light or sound that can be can be crippling.

I have to stay near a hospital that has the tool to reset the shunt in my brain otherwise the outcome could be fatal.

Financial Hardship

This has been very straining on me financially. I get $795 a month, which means I cannot live by myself and afford rent food and utilities.

I have been lucky in the past and was able to count on family and one woman I was in a relationship with up until she had a stroke.

After that my stepson came to my rescue and I am currently living with him temporarily. That arrangement is getting cut short due to him getting promoted and transferred sooner than we expected to Virginia, to a two-story home with no bedrooms down stairs.

I do not have anyone that can rent me a room and the waiting list is at least a year or longer for government assistance.

In the county where I live now, they have closed the housing list and they are not taking any more applicants because it will be three years before they get through the applicants they currently have.

Come June 19th I will have no place to go.

I am trying desperately to get back to Austin, Texas where my doctor is, where all nine of my last surgeries have been done and where my pain management doctor is.

I am unable to sit up for more than a couple hours therefor making it difficult to find work.

I am unable to drive to the store or to the doctor or to physical therapy to pick up my medicine.

I have to take public transportation, which means hours of waiting and sitting on a handicap bus which is uncomfortable and very painful for me.

I also do not have dental insurance, which I need desperately. I started to have implants, and I got as far as the anchors put in and temporary teeth.

But then I ran out of money and unfortunately the temporary plate broke.

My other teeth are crumbling, hurting, cracking and pretty soon they will break and I will not be able to eat the food I need to be eating because of my type II diabetes.

Income Efforts

I have tried to work. In the beginning I tried going back to operating heavy equipment but the pain of sitting up in the seat was too much.

I was only able to do it for a couple of hours at a time and at the end of the day I was in so much pain I could not even eat. The next day I wasn't able to get up at all.

Every time I think I can start looking for some kind of job I end up having another surgery after they find more cysts or more abilities to walk or sit up are lost.

At the stage I am at now all I can do is lie in bed.

I have called Medicare, Hud, Section 8, every government agency looking for help and I cannot find any more help than I'am already receiving!

I find this outrageous considering the money they have been taking from my paychecks all these years?!?!

Specific Needs

What I need is some type of housing grant, HUD or Section 8, every time I sign up for HUD I end up having to move and then I have to sign up for it again because I moved to a different county or state.

I still need HUD, but because I moved I have to start all over again at the bottom of the list?

I also need a grant for a pickup truck and grant money for handicap controls and that has a wheelchair crane so that I can be independent and able to make it to appointments on time and not have to be out of bed for 10 hours for 2 hours worth of appointments and dropping off prescriptions.

Medicare/Medicaid will not pay for some of the things I truly need depending on where I live, like ramps or a trapeze over my bed so I can get out of bed and into my wheelchair.

I need a grant for my teeth so badly.

And I also need to find some type of extra income if it is work from home or a grant or food stamps.

I cannot afford rent, bills and the food that I need to eat because of the diabetes.

I also have to buy medical gloves, rubbing alcohol, needles for my KwikPen insulin injectors (Medicare/Medicaid does not cover the needles), alcohol swabs and all the other things I just cannot afford and also pay all my bills.

I appreciate you taking the time to read my short story.

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May 28, 2015
Thank you
by: Carl

Thank you,

Wanted to take a minute to thank you for the time and energy you have give to my story and all the issues I had.

So thank you Mr. Coggan

Carl Hunnicutt

May 20, 2015
Follow Up
by: SheilaKay Paris

Hi Carl,

Like Don mentioned, I hope you can get into the Workbook. A business associate of Don's, Brian, also has a passion for the disabled and his service is free also. I have used it and it's really good.

Find it here:

Disability Digest

Scroll to the bottom where you click enter and join there. No worries, no charge, that's not what you need right now.

I'm so sorry you are going through this situation. If you run into a problem with the paperwork, write here and we'll get you through it. Just try not to lose your momentum to get things done.

Take care and many blessings!


May 20, 2015
Next step -- the Workbook
by: Donald

Hey Carl,

Now that your story is published, you can sign up for the Workbook, which will show you how to use your story.

Don Coggan

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