LIMA — Faith and family are all that Bethany has left.
The single mother of four has been living out of a small, one-bedroom hotel room with her teenage children since their rental home was destroyed in a fire this past fall.
The family’s few remaining belongings are scattered about, reminders of what was lost and the generosity of those close to the family.
“It destroyed everything,” said Bethany (not her real name). “We lost everything that we had.”
But Bethany still has faith that things will eventually work themselves out.
“That keeps us going,” she said.
Still, life is stressful for the family living in such tight quarters.
Bethany cooks dinner when she can, relying on a small slow cooker, hotel microwave and bathroom sink to prep a meal for five. But with only enough space in the hotel’s miniature refrigerator for a day’s worth of food, and little space for the family to eat together, Bethany takes the family out to eat often.
The family walks most everywhere despite the cold, their car no longer working after the power steering pump malfunctioned.
“We have to walk to look at houses, get the stuff we need,” Bethany said.
While the cost of the hotel room is still covered by the family’s renters’ insurance, Bethany is struggling to find an affordable rental house in Lima that allows pets. And while Bethany will eventually need help furnishing her home and stocking her kitchen, she has limited storage space in the hotel room. In the interim, Bethany needs basic household items like silverware, plates and a can opener. Restaurant gift cards — especially those to restaurants within walking distance of Harding Highway, where the family is staying — would be helpful as well.
“All we have is a Crock-Pot and a microwave,” Bethany said.
Reach Mackenzi Klemann at 567-242-0456.