I was injured at work. I need help with my bills and living.

I was injured at work. I need help with my bills and living.

From Stephen Tatum

Im on the verge of being bankrupt and homeless due to a work injury that doesn't begin to pay my bills.

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My story.

I was a professional truck driver for about 35 years. I'm 57.  The last 17 years as a heavy hauler. 

Like many people as we get older our health takes unexpected turns. In 2002 i was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and later diagnosed with Hyperlipemia after 16 hospital stays with pancreatitis. Once the doctors got these conditions under control, I was leading a normal life.

In 2019 my legs began to have open sores that just poured clear fluids out 24/7. I was referred to a wound care clinic and this is where my life begins to go sideways.

Approximately a month later, I rushed myself to the hospital, after I passed out while driving my truck back to the yard. I woke up in time to get back on the road but I knew I needed to get to the hospital. While in the hospital i was diagnosed with lymphedema and congestive heart failure. I was also suffering from sleep apnea due to the sudden weight gain from fluid build up. I was put on a CPAP and oxygen. The leg wrapping that helped my legs, pushed the fluids up into my upper body and into my heart. Since my conditions were found during covid, I was rushed in my care by the hospital Drs and staff to make room for the covid people.. I asked why or how this happened and they had no answers They were more focused on covid. After doing my own research, I found out that I had a parasite, that I probably got while I was in the Dominican Republic or Haiti for cruise vacation years prior since none of other reasons were left.

However, the damage was done. The lymphedema had caused muscular atrophy though out my body. Not to mention causing my teeth to become very brittle and have started to break.

Once I was cleared for work I resumed my driving later in 2020. The in May of 2022 I was involved in a incident where my Over-Sized Load got hung on a set of rail road tracks. (The load was 65,000lbs and the gross weight was100,000lbs.) causing my heavy load to come unsecured and slam into the back of my drop deck trailer, and all the kenetic energy caused whiplash in my neck that has cause issues with my arms and hands and also caused damage to my lower spine that requires surgery, but the doctor feels the that with my health conditions I wouldn't make it off the table due to complexity of the surgery. At the time of my injuries I weighed 450+ lbs. It took me almost a year to drop 100 lbs to (350+-) and at that point I was able fit into an open MRI to get the medical evidence needed for my case.

Sadly workers compensation cases are nothing like you everyday lawsuits. These adjusters and lawyers for WC play games with your life cause the system in Ga like most states are stacked against the worker. My pay $675 a week then reduced by 25% by my lawyer to $506 a week. This wage no person can live off long term. This is how they force you back to work knowing that you can't live on this wage. 

For the last two years, I've had no choice but to live with my sister and her 18 yr old daughter. They both are on disability. Its a very toxic relationship. We live in a 2 bedroom single wide trailer. I sleep in the living room. I have a power chair, but it needs new batteries. 

They both are slobs and lazy to say the least. A water pipe broke almost a year ago. Since then we've been without running water.

The kitchen is stacked with dirty dishes and trash now to the point one can barely get to the refrigerator to get my meds and the pantry has what appears to be black mold in it. Their bedrooms are no different. The bathroom is barely fit for any human. I refused to allow my area to become as theirs is. Sadly this is the only family I have left. 

I don't qualify  for the government housing since I'm not on government assistance and WC is a private insurance. The charity organizations in my area are focusing on women and children. No men.

I need help getting out on my own away from this unhealthy situation. My pride has previously prevented me from asking for help. 

Im looking for a small used RV that I can live in or a small bus that has or can be easily converted to a RV. Approximately 25ft. Not a one towed unit since it would need a permanent location to place it.

I know these are not cheap, but I need to get a semblance of life back. I would like to do the simple things like shower ,use the bathroom, cook, and have a safe and clean space to live.

Any money collected will be used to buy a RV or Bus, pay any medical bills I have, and hopefully get my teeth fixed.

Please help I cant live like this anymore. This my last option. Please help me if you can.


Thanks for taking your time to read my story.

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