Disability Grants For Trucker James With Broken Back To Make Ends Meet
by James Legg
(Bryan, TX, USA)
I am a 52-year-old male. I reunited with my high school sweetheart back in 2009 and we were married in 2010.
I have no children of my own, but I gained two wonderful step-sons through our marriage. My wife and I are Christians and love our church and church family.
My wife and I at a church Christmas banquet in 2011.
I am a truck driver by occupation.Disability Issues
Back in 1997 I was rear-ended by an 18-wheeler and my back was broken. The truck that hit me left the scene of the accident and I was unable to obtain any type of settlement or compensation.
I just thank God that I was not paralyzed or killed.
My back surgeon surgically corrected the lumbar portion of my spine, but the problem in my thoracic spine was too dangerous to correct at that time.
It causes me shortness of breath and I go into a panic and have to take medication to relax.
From driving a rig to trying to get comfortable with a wedge pillow.
I am unable to drive a truck on the prescribed medication because it makes me unsafe to drive.
I have been through years of pain management going through procedures to burn the nerves so I could continue to work through the years.
But now the breathing problems have gotten significantly worse making it impossible for me to keep a job.
I lost the best job I ever had back in August 2015 because I could not drive for several days due to taking my medication and I have been out of work since then.
I have had and lost several good jobs over the last several years because of the pain I experience and the trouble breathing.
My back surgeon is finally able to correct the problem in my thoracic spine; however, I have to meet a $4,000 deductible before I can even consider having the surgery.
My surgeon is in Dallas, 195 miles away so every trip to Dallas costs us gas and food money that we do not have without me working.
Another thing that worries me is that my wife's van has been broken down for almost two years and we are having to drive my old car everywhere and it has several problems that need to be fixed, but we just do not have the money to fix them.
I worry that the constant wear on the car is going to eventually leave us stranded without a way to go.Income Efforts
I have been off work now for over four months and I am scared that I will lose everything if I cannot get this surgery so I can return to work.
I tried to get unemployment, but I have to be physically able to work to be eligible.
I checked on Social Security disability benefits, but that could take up to 10 months to get a determination and, according to the requirements I read, I am not sure I am eligible.
My wife has borrowed money from her employer and has taken loans on her 401k so those amounts are being deducted from her pay making it difficult to survive on her income alone.
Also, I am on her insurance and that deducts another $500 per month from her check.
My wife and I cut up all of our credit cards in 2013 to get out of debt so we have no other options for buying food or gas. If the money is not available we just cannot pay bills or buy food.
Some of our church family and friends have stepped in and bought us food.
We have several items listed for sale on different classified ads sites to attempt to bring in some money, but there have been no responses.
My wife donates plasma when she can to put food on the table.Specific Needs
Until I can return to work, we need an extra $1,500 per month to be able to pay bills and have money for gas and groceries.
We also need $4,000 to pay the deductible on my insurance so I can get the surgery on my thoracic spine and get released to go back to work.
I also need money to fix the car, which could cost up to $5,000.