I am a parent with two severely disabled adult children. My daughter Lauren is 25 years of age. She attends an Adult Day Program in Cranford. Due to budget cuts, she is not able to attend a program locally. She was accepted into the Day Program in September of 2010. I was told the transportation would go into effect in a couple of weeks.
Lauren’s grandfather, my dad, always being so helpful, didn’t want Lauren to lose her place. So he volunteered to drive her daily. He made the trips to bring her to the program at 9 a.m. and pick her up at 3 p.m. five days a week. This all at the age of 79! This is wearing on a person, especially with my mom suffering from congestive heart failure.
With my dad driving from September 2010 until February 2011 and no results from the State of New Jersey, I decided to call my assemblyman, Jason O’Donnell, to see if he would help us. I have to tell you, I spoke to his office manager, Jennifer, and she said he would get back to me. Jason O’Donnell called me at home that night, and I was so touched by his words of encouragement. For the first time, I felt that there was finally someone that was really listening and someone really cared. That night, he gave me his cell phone number and told me he would have this problem resolved. He told me that there was no way that my dad should be making that trip for this amount of time, and he would do something about it if he had to drive my daughter himself until this was resolved.
Within the next week, Jason O’Donnell got together with Mickey McCabe, owner of McCabe Ambulance, and they worked out a schedule of transportation to take my daughter to her program each day at no cost to me.
This is not the first time Mickey McCabe came to my children’s assistance. I lived in a house with two flights of stairs, and McCabe Ambulance would come to my house, again at no charge to me, and for years carried my children up and down the stairs just to get the children out of the house. Mickey McCabe has done so much for my children, and now to do this is just heart wrenching. I thank all the staff at McCabe Ambulance for their kindness; they are a fine group of people.
Jason O’Donnell did keep his campaign promise that he would not forget the disabled. We have the right man in Trenton. Thank you for all you do!
MARY SHIVERS & THE ENTIRE RYAN FAMILY