KSAT viewers respond to help Navy vet living in deplorable conditions

Offers of help for Lawrence Ferrell, 79, multiply on KSAT Facebook page

SAN ANTONIO - Lawrence Ferrell, a 20-year Navy veteran featured in a KSAT story Monday night, has elicited a huge response from viewers willing to lend him a hand.

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Lawrence Ferrell, 79, was ordered by Adult Protective Services to leave his home because it was falling down and filthy. Ferrell's house used to be full of junk with faulty plumbing and debris everywhere.

Ferrell's friends, Yolie Arriaga and Amy Sanchez, cleaned it out but could not do everything. "If we could have gutted it out, we would have,” Arriaga said. “We did stuff that we didn't even know was possible for us."

They came to the KSAT Defenders, who contacted APS again and Ferrell got his roof patched with APS funds. APS is also paying for some plumbing work, which Ferrell appreciates

"Let's have my hot water heater done and have my shower done in the bathroom," Ferrell said. That will make his house functional but far from desirable.

But many KSAT viewers took to the internet to offer more help for Ferrell. Sanchez, who initially brought Ferrell’s situation to light, saw the posts.

"It's a blessing,” Sanchez said. “It really is and everybody offering food, clothing, money."

And pest control. Vonda Love, of Sunland Termite and Pest Control, saw the Defenders' Facebook post about Ferrell and decided to step in.

"I started reading the comments and I thought, 'Oh, all these people are doing things (but) I don't see anything about pest control,'" Love said.

So she had her husband shimmying under the house to look for rodents while she went room to room in the house spraying for bugs. And she says they'll be back.

All of this was for a 20-year Navy veteran with a song in his heart who turns 80 next month.

Ferrell is also a man who appreciates the community support and hard work from his friends. "She's determined,” Ferrell said of Arriaga. “If there's anybody determined, she is."

The women trimmed shrubs, but say lawn mowing is a possibility if a lawn mower can be found. To find referrals for seniors with problems, dial 211.

For a list of recent stories Brian Mylar has done, click here.


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