Help Laurie With Your Ideas

I need your brainpower for a few minutes.

Friends mean a lot when you’re a “military brat”. They are the only roots you have to a place you might call “home,”  as you travel with your parents from post to post. My husband Clovice grew up on Air Force bases throughout the US and Europe. Laurie Marvin is one of my husband’s oldest friends.

Clovice was the first person Laurie called this morning after she got the news she has ovarian cancer.

Now, this news is pretty catastrophic to anyone who receives it, but much more so to Laurie. Here’s why:

Twenty years ago Laurie left a successful career as a lecturer in veterinary sciences at Midland College in Midland, Texas to care full-time for her daughter Leslie Collie, who was born with childhood diabetes. Leslie requires round-the-clock care, as she has frequent seizures that need immediate and life-saving intervention. Laurie is never farther than a quarter of a mile from Leslie’s side.

Laurie left her career because her teaching salary and benefits could not cover her daughter’s medical bills. Laurie chose unemployment so that Medicaid would cover Leslie. Laurie is a single mom and has no medical insurance.

It’s a miracle Leslie has survived as long as she has, and has lived a somewhat normal life. She’s currently a Junior at Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, majoring in music. She has the voice of a nightingale, and the potential for a very promising singing career.

Now, here’s where you come in: We need your ideas.

Clovice and I have come up with a few of our own (e.g., Clovice is a professional cellist and composer. He is considering the possibility of hosting a concert for Laurie, and getting Leslie to perform with other first-class musicians he knows.)

Here are some thoughts we need ideas around:

  • Where can Laurie go for assistance?
  • What are useful things Laurie can do for herself now?
  • Do you know of any government programs that provide medical help to poor women?
  • Do you know of any private foundations or non-profit organizations that help women in Laurie’s situation?
  • Are there physicians’ organizations that can help?
  • Any other ideas or suggestions?

Please comment to this blog post with your thoughts, comments, offers of help, etc.

And, go here to sign up for an update newsletter about Laurie and any actions taken as a result of all your suggestions (link opens in a new window or tab).

Should you wish to contact Laurie directly, you can reach her by email at Call me if you want to get hold of her by telephone – my number is below.

Thanks in advance for turning your attention to this pressing need!

Carol Cole-Lewis and Clovice Lewis
tel. 707-587-4277

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