/Joy Lutheran Church Volunteers Build a Ramp for Matt
Matt Smith

Joy Lutheran Church Volunteers Build a Ramp for Matt

When members of Joy Lutheran Church in Gurnee heard about Matt Smith‘s plight, in being unable to get from his house to his garage for trips to the doctor’s office, they decided to help.

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Late last year, Matt was on a vacation at his hometown in Ohio where he developed an E-coli infection in his left foot necessitating a one week stay in the local hospital. One day after his return to Illinois, he was admitted to Condell due to the spread of the infection. After another week of treatment, it was determined that the infection had entered the bone and amputation would be required.

Matt is your typical hard working guy who bought a house for his family here in Round Lake Beach, got up in the wee hours every morning, and spent an hour and a half in traffic commuting to a job in Batavia that paid more for his advanced skills. But now Matt is facing a financial crisis and needs your help and prayers.

Due to an FLMA error on the part of his employer, his salary continued while a dialogue ensued with the insurance company. The payment for disability insurance was withheld every week from his paycheck but the paperwork was not completed. The day after the insurance company denied his claim, his employer sent out a letter of termination.

Due to the lack of insurance, he is now paying full price for prescriptions and doctor visits, the family’s savings are all but wiped out. His wife, Jennifer, works but her hours are limited due to her own battle with cancer. COBRA insurance coverage of around $1,000/month would cost more than what she brings home in pay.

They were able to install some handicapped accessible devices in the house but they didn’t have the resources for an access ramp. That was before four volunteers from Joy Lutheran Church stepped in. They were Gary Koehler from Wadsworth, Steve Shaffer from Wildwood, along with Greg Steele and Doug Bailey from Gurnee.

This family is in urgent need of financial help from month to month until such time that Matt’s leg is fitted, subsequent therapy is complete, and a return to the workforce can happen. Matt has a quote to be fitted with a prosthetic leg but due to the lack of insurance the process is at a standstill as he is considered a ‘pre-existing condition.’ The cost of it alone is $13,200.00 which once fitted, would allow him to return to the job market and regain an income stream.

He has already lost his truck but was able to make his March mortgage and wife’s car payment with donated funds. With your prayers and donations, Matt would like to begin supporting his family again with full time employment by August 1, 2018.

Please consider donating to his GoFundMe page at:

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