Can You Help Me Now? by Martha Rose Woodward
Dr. Ric Morgan is an individual who has spent most of his life giving to others. Most recently, when the earthquake struck in Haiti, he responded to the call from our government and spent 5l days in sweltering heat volunteering his time to counsel service men and women who were in Haiti to deal with the death and destruction. Morgan was a full-time motivational speaker for much of his career and had retired to Gatlinburg, Tennessee due to several severe medical conditions. However, an unexpected medical emergency nearly took his life as he was forced to make a split second decision when he woke up in an emergency room with a surgeon standing over him who said, “You have two options, we can let you die, or remove your right leg?” Morgan chose life, but is now facing another kind of emergency—-financial.
“Can You Help Me Now?” is a e mail Morgan recently sent out to several thousand friends. Maybe you can find a way to help him, too.
The year 2011 has been a difficult, yet eventful year for me. Doctors still can’t explain my near-death experience in January when all the systems in my body began to shut-down and fail…heart, brain, kidneys, liver, digestive system, plus malnutrition and dehydration. At one point I was given anywhere from a few hours to six months to live. I was able to recover quickly due to the efforts of the medical staff, and even though I have Medicare supplemental insurance, there are still several hundred dollars in co-pays.
At 7:40 p.m. on March first a tow truck coming down the mountain I live on lost it’s brakes and slammed into the apartment building I live in at 85 m.p.h., losing its load of a minivan and injuring two of the three people riding in the truck. Three apartments were destroyed (fortunately not mine, and more amazingly no one in the apartments hit was injured) forcing all the tenants to move out as the building was temporarily condemned until it could be thoroughly inspected. I had to move into a motel and eat all my meals out for eleven days. Besides the manager of the complex, I am the only tenant with renter’s insurance. While the insurance covered a great deal of the expenses, there is still a deductible and uncovered things to pay for.
But God was not finished with me.
On April 27th I woke up and the nail on my big toe on my right foot was a dark gray. Over the next four days the nail got darker, turning back and getting very soft and bloody. On May 2nd I decided to see if I could get a fill-in appointment with my podiatrist, but as I was dialing the telephone number I collapsed. While unconscious I somehow got from my desk across the living room to the front door, and somehow dialed 911. I was told later that I was so close to the door they had trouble getting in past me. They couldn’t revive me, loaded me into an ambulance and drove me about three miles to a waiting medical helicopter. I came to in the air (even though you don’t know what’s going on or where you are going, it’s still pretty neat to be flying like that) on my way to the University of Tennessee Medical Center.
After I arrived in the emergency room, a doctor put his face down close to mine and said, “I am either going to have to cut off your leg, or you are going to die very soon. You have 15 seconds to decide.” I resisted until I could talk to my own primary care doctor, who I trust implicitly. We talked about ten minutes and I decided to have the leg removed.
After the surgery I spent nearly a month in the hospital, and then was moved to a good rehabilitation center. Again, while I have insurance to cover the bulk of the cost, I still have a co-pay of $100 per day that I am in rehab. I have a 100-day limit, and it is expected I will need that entire time to recover. The process of getting fitted for and learning how to use a prosthetic leg has started, that also has a major co-pay that covers 20% of the cost of the leg and follow-up care. One-hundred days at $100 per day amounts to $10,000 in co-pays, plus whatever other expenses I don
’t know about.
Dr. Morgan wrote:
“I have always been a person who has had little trouble giving, but receiving and asking for help from others has always been another thing. But this time is different.
While our medical system in the US is by far the best in the world, even if you have insurance, it can be very expensive for the patient with the co-pays in a catastrophic illness or injury.
So, I made the decision to try to raise as much as I can through my website and any other means possible. My goal is $15,000 and whatever you can afford to donate will be greatly appreciated. In the event there is any left over after I pay all the bills, any residue will be donated to the Salvation Army.
If you would prefer to make a donation by check, make it out to “Ric Morgan,” and send it to 308 Ownby Street, Apt. 1, Gatlinburg, Tennessee 37738-3116. If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact me at (865) 384-6198 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Whatever amount you can afford, even if its just a dollar, it is greatly appreciated and I thank you in advance.
You can’t go through what I have been through the first six months of 2011 and not learn some lessons. For that reason I am going to write posts about what I have learned and share with you my newly acquired wisdom, experience and knowledge. Please visit my web site www.ricmorgan.com from time-to-time to see what new posts have been written. You never know how much one or two may be of interest to you and help you in some way on your Life’s journey. I will also post the amounts raised and the difference to the goal.
God bless you and thank you for your time and donation.” .