Last updated: August 25. 2013 4:28AM - 144 Views

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LIMA — Nancy sits home alone in a house without heat, waiting for the cold days to pass.She said she is unable to work due to a common heart arrhythmia and her husband does not make enough as a custodian to pay the bills. She and her husband, Scott, had heat in their house but it was turned off. They heat whatever room they are in with space heaters. While it hasn’t been brutally cold yet, Nancy knows those days are not far away. “We’re in trouble. We’re going to freeze,” she said.Nancy has one grown child, a daughter, Patti, still living at home. Her other daughter, Kim and son, Joel, moved out years ago and have families of their own.Besides not having heat in the house they rent, Nancy doesn’t have a stove that fully works. She needs a replacement but can’t afford it. Nancy loves to cook but her cooking now is limited to the microwave, she said. Paying the gas bill to get the heat back on is the first priority but one they can’t manage due to Nancy’s medical bills, including the cost of medicine. She’s on five medications and said she does not take all of them because she cannot afford all. She also has the monthly copay for having her blood drawn to make sure it’s not being thinned too much. Scott’s wages are being garnished due to family medical bills, which adds to the financial struggles, she said. “It’s paycheck to paycheck,” she said.Nancy and Scott already agreed not to exchange presents and Patti agreed, too.“We’re not having Christmas this year, at all. We’re just going to go without. We can’t afford to get anything so we decided no Christmas this year,” she said.Nancy feels bad she cannot buy her grandchildren presents this year but she said it’s reality. “Sometimes we don’t even have enough money to get food. We just eat baloney sandwiches,” she said. The Empty Stocking Fund benefits three cooperating agencies: Bradfield Community Center, Cheryl Allen Southside Community Center and the Salvation Army. Money can be donated by sending it to The Lima News, 3515 Elida Road, Lima OH 45807, or by dropping it off at any Superior Federal Credit Union branch. Donations of new toys and nonperishable food items will be accepted at The Lima News office. For past stories, go to www.limaohio.com/emptystocking. These stories use assumed names to protect the participants’ privacy.You can comment on this story at www.limaohio.com.

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