Vet owned business on the brink of closure due to COVID

Vet owned business on the brink of closure due to COVID

From Ricardo Ricketts

My wife and I open a space for inner city kids to play video games at an affordable rate, the. COVID hit. We are now on the brink of permanent closure because of recent laws and lack of business. We are covered in debt.

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We opened GameStation in a neighborhood that is underserved. Activities for youth are limited and safe spaces for a kid to be a kid are far and few. We had a great launch and community supported our efforts then COVID hit. We were forced to shut our doors. A few weeks later, the unthinkable happened. I am a Marine Corps veteran. I was an electrician in the Corps so naturally when I got out, I didn't let my skills go to waste. I was on a job when suddenly, my vision became blurry, and I became feeling hot. I went outside for some air. The world started spinning and I was confused about what was happening. I got in my car and started to drive home. I started to throw up in the car. I called my wife to let her know what was going on. I drove home. I got out of my car walked to my steps and collapsed. When I woke up it was months later. I was told that I was in a coma for over a month on a ventilator. I had pulmonary embolism bilaterally, the hospital gave me a medication called TPA which caused a brain bleed. As a result of this brain bleed, I lost all vision in my left eye and about 60% of the vision in my right. My kidneys failed and I was placed on dialysis and told that I would need a kidney transplant. The right side of my heart failed. My lungs collapsed and I was told I'd need a double lung transplant. All of my major organs failed and things were looking grim. The doctors told my wife I wouldn't make it and it was time for her to begin final preparations for my body. They pulled the plug. But to everyone's surprise, I woke up. I was lucid. I could not walk and could not talk. I had to learn how to do all of those things all over again. The doctors told me that there was no way I would walk out if there alive. Because of the ordeal my body went through and the stress my organs were under. My wife prayed for me every day, she prayed with everyone. She brought pictures of my family and posted them on the wall beside my hospital bed. She told me later on that she did that so hospital personnel would see a human, a loving husband and father, and they would treat me as such. It worked. My care was incredible. I left the hospital in June, the doctors were right. I didn't walk out of there but I was alive. I hadn't yet mastered walking on my own power and I knew I had a long road ahead of me. The whole time, I'm thinking about GameStation and not my health. I didn't want to fail the community. I didn't want to fail myself. As I became stronger and started to gain weight. My focus became clear. I needed to get back to GameStation. The rent was several months pass due and other bills were pass due as well. We applied for the PPP but to no avail. Our company was too recent. We asked the landlord for relief but she is frustrated and we can understand that. She gave us an ultimatum. Come up with some money or sell our business, she has bills to pay just like us. I still have a long road to recovery, and little glitches in my system now and then sends me back to the hospital. My wife is under an extreme amount of pressure having to deal with me, work, and home school for our five children. We hope to find some relief through. This site that I just so happened upon. Thank you all for sharing our story and supporting our cause through donations.

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