Church fights to keep member alive -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Church fights to keep member alive

January 31, 2005

Sylvester-- Stanford Denby needs a new heart, but has no medical insurance. Now the congregation at Isabella Baptist Church is hoping the entire community will step in and help give him another chance at life.

The chimes outside Stanford Denby's house may be ringing, but it's been six months since he's been able to walk outside and feel the wind blowing them without getting tired. "I started having problems with my heart retaining fluid and abnormal heart rate," Denby explains. "I'm on medication that's feeding through an IV at all times to my heart to keep my heart rate under control, but that's not a long term thing. After a while it just quits working."

Doctors say the only way to fix his congestive heart failure is to give Denby a new one. St. Joseph's Hospital has agreed to waive $230,000 the procedure costs, but with no insurance Denby has to find a way to pay for medication he'll need after the surgery. "The medication is like $2,000 a month just for medication for the rest of life," says Denby.

"I have set by three transplants and I know how expensive the medicine is," says Janice Cagle. When Cagle found out Denby was sick, she and the rest of her Sunday school class began organizing a fundraising effort. "It's looking good because we've got a bunch of Christian people working the situation."

The church will hold a bake sale next weekend and are planning a gospel concert to help offset their friend's medical expenses. "It's a rough road. It's not an easy thing. It's not anything anybody wants to go through," says Sam Cagle.

It's been three years since Sam Cagle had his kidney transplant. In addition to the monetary help, Cagle says he'll give Denby his moral support. "We all lean on each other and it's a good feeling to know that you're not alone," Sam Cagle says.

"I really wasn't expecting people to jump in like they did, but you'd be surprised how people will jump in and help you," Denby said. "I really appreciate it I really do."

Denby says he may be a little nervous about the surgery, but knows with the prayers and support of his church family everything will be all right.

The bake sale will be held on February 12th at 9:00AM in front of Snipes Piggly Wiggly in Sylvester.

Donations can also be made through the National Transplant Assistance Fund (NTAF). For more information call the NTAF at 1-800-642-8399 or contact Glenda Clark at 229-776-3579.

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