Diabetes, liver transplant and a triple bypass, now Eddie Burrows is in need of a prosthetic leg; Catholic Archdiocese to host benefit concert
In the last two decades Edward “Eddie” Burrows has been diagnosed with diabetes and battles with the non-communicable disease to get it under control. He’s had a liver transplant and a triple bypass after suffering a heart attack. And has been on a medication regimen that costs approximately $2,500 a month. To compound all of that, in February he had his left leg amputated to just below the knee – this after he had cut himself on the bottom of the foot and didn’t know he had, which resulted in his five toes being removed, an infection setting in forcing the below the knee amputation. And now he is in need of approximately $20,000 for a prosthesis.
Burrows is scheduled to be fitted for a prosthetic leg in Tampa, Florida, on July 9. The funds needed are to cover the cost of the leg and his living expenses, as he has to be in Florida for approximately six weeks for therapy after receiving the leg.
The musicians of the Archdiocese of Nassau will host a medical benefit concert in support of Burrows, an organist at St. Cecilia’s Church, featuring Francis Richardson and musicians of the archdiocese, including Burrows himself. Donation is $20 per ticket. The concert is scheduled to be held at St. Joseph’s Church Hall on Sunday, June 30 at 4 p.m. for the St. Cecilia’s Church member, organist and Koinonian.
Burrows said it made him feel good to know that his church members and members of the Archdiocese have stepped up to help him.
Burrows, 54, was diagnosed with diabetes in 1999. In 2003 he said he started to fall out in comas all over the place and said the doctors discovered his liver was bad and he had to have a liver transplant which he had in May 2004 after a donor was found. He was placed on medication that cost $2,500 a month so his body did not reject the liver.
In October 2012, he said he noticed swelling on his side and thought it was his liver. He returned to Tampa to have it checked out. When he got there, he was rushed into emergency surgery; he had a heart attack and had to have a triple bypass.
Since then he said he had been doing well and just undergoing regular checkups, until he got cut on the bottom of his foot in December 2018 and didn’t know. Infection set in and he said it started to “eat” the bones of his toes which meant the removal of his five toes. He suffered another infection and got sick again in February 2019, which was when he had to have the left leg amputated below the knee.
After four weeks in hospital rehabilitating, they began the process for him to get a prosthetic leg, including his measurements, but he was short on funds and returned home. Burrows, who is now self-employed and does repairs on home and commercial appliances with his company Eddie’s Repairs, also no longer has insurance.
“I came back home and Father Simm put it to the congregation and the congregation decided to give me a helping hand. Father Simm and Francis Richardson, the head organist of the Catholic Diocese decided to do a benefit concert for me. All of the musicians of the diocese including Burrows will be playing.”
The $20,000 hoping to be raised will cover the prosthesis and Burrows’ living expenses, because he will have to be in Tampa for six weeks to go through therapy again when he gets the leg.
He is looking forward to receiving the prosthesis.
“Been through a lot. Every cent I had I lost to medical expenses. I even lost a house in Pinewood because of medical expenses – but I just give thanks to God – in all things he provides for me. But I work for myself, so it’s very hard for me to get around on one leg, because I repair home and commercial appliances.”
He also continues to play the organ at church and misses his left leg which he used to play the pedals. But the church has purchased a new organ which he can play without the leg as it has a switch on it for the base. Once he puts it on, he’s able to play.
“But I miss the leg, because even now when I play, I keep moving the ‘knuck’ because I’m thinking the leg is there. But I get the job done, and people really appreciate it and enjoy it,” he said.
Burrows was also appreciative of his family as well as his church family.
“They treat me like a real son – Father Simm and the diocese has been good to me. My family has been good to me. This foot, I’m trying to get that back. Can’t take much more because I’m not as young as I used to be, thank God I have my family – my wife [Anastasia], my children [Lenice, Edward Jr. and Edvardo] and I have three grandchildren – they all support me. I have a lot of love around me that makes me keep going.”
Shavaughn was appointed as the Lifestyles Editor a few years later.