The impact of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is the cherry on top of what has been a perfect storm for the already ailing Sharolyn Albury, a senior citizen from Abaco who has been struggling to recover from Hurricane Dorian.
Albury has been stuck in the United States for months, bedridden and in need of 24-hour healthcare that her family cannot afford to provide.
But Gracie Albury, her daughter-in-law, said the novel coronavirus has now impacted the family’s income, posing even more of a challenge for Sharolyn to be able to get the healthcare she desperately needs, on top of their concerns about protecting her from becoming infected with the virus.
“I am afraid to have her home, as I know she would never survive should she get this virus, and yet no one will take her unless we can pay the $10,000 per month,” Gracie told The Nassau Guardian yesterday.
She added, “It’s been super hard as financially we need Myron (Sharolyn’s son) to work and yet we can’t have him trapped and unable to get home from Marsh Harbour.”
At the start of this month, long before The Bahamas confirmed its first case of COVID-19, Sharolyn’s family told The Guardian of how she lost her home and car in the storm that devastated large portions of Abaco and Grand Bahama last September.
Within the six months that followed, Sharolyn also suffered a heart attack, broke one of her legs and lost her daughter, Marcia, to a heart attack.
Her home has still not been fully repaired, and now that the new coronavirus has restricted travel worldwide, repair work has come to a halt, leading to even more uncertainty as to when Sharolyn’s life will return to normalcy.
However, a good Samaritan in the form of 34-year-old healthcare worker Andrea Allen, Gracie’s niece, recently started a fundraiser in an effort to get Sharolyn the help she needs.
Overcome with emotion, Allen tearfully told The Guardian she decided to start the fundraiser because it was the only thing she could think of to try help the hurting family.
“Literally her and my uncle Myron are two of the most giving people I have ever met in this life…it’s beautiful to witness, and when this happened with her mother-in-law, with Cherry, it broke my heart and it’s still breaking my heart,” Allen said.
“It’s too much, and none of us have the means to fix it for her and she fixes everything for everybody, and it just hurts so much.
“The only thing that I knew to do was a fundraiser and I’m just hoping that the kindness that she’s put out will come back to her.”
Up to yesterday, the fundraiser had received $861 in donations out of a $100,000 goal.
But both Gracie and Allen said they are trying to keep faith in God that everything will work out for the better for Sharolyn.
Allen has asked interested parties to visit https://www.facebook.com/donate/220590342653532 should they wish to make a donation.