Lifestyle & Human Interest

Lowe's Donates All the Supplies To Build Wheelchair Ramp for Firefighter Before He Comes Home


Even though some people like to mock businesses as money-grabbing entities, free-market economies don’t necessarily lead to oppression.

In fact, sometimes those companies go out of their way to help others at great cost. Consider the case of Albany, New York, firefighter Josh Woodward.

Woodward found himself in a nightmare medical situation in early February, according to the New York Post. An errant cough somehow introduced strep bacteria into a cut on his shoulder.

That soon developed into full-blown sepsis, a blood infection that can cause a catastrophic immune response. Indeed, “catastrophic” was the best way the describe Woodward’s illness, and doctors only gave him a 5 percent chance of surviving.

Woodward entered the hospital with difficulty breathing and required intubation. His kidneys had also begun to fail.

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Six surgeries that cost him multiple fingers did little to help. He only began to recover after physicians amputated his hand.

“He just was getting sicker and sicker and sicker,” his wife, Chelsea Woodward, said. “It forced our hand to go through with that surgery.”

“As soon as we (amputated), it was like his body could stop spending so much energy on the hand. As soon as it went, his numbers improved vastly.”

That wasn’t the end of Woodward’s travails, though. He also ended up losing all 10 toes and developing a terrible open wound on his right heel, according to WNYT.

He has since regained all of his kidney function, and Chelsea prepared to take him home. She wrote on Facebook that “one day a friend of ours, Pat, asked us if Josh was going to need a ramp to get in the house.

“When I said, ‘Yes, I’m going to work on that soon,’ he told me he wanted to build it.”

Two other men who owned construction companies also wanted to help.

When a local Lowe’s store heard about the project, its management donated all of the necessary supplies. They even brought doughnuts and coffee for the workers and helped with the project’s construction.

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Chelsea asked, “Have you ever such humanity at work? Have you ever seen such kindness from strangers?

“It’s impossible to not feel so grateful and taken care of despite all the trauma and stress. God is making his presence very well known in our lives right now.”

Lowe’s manager Eric Carne commented on the post, “This was a no-brainer when my store team was contacted by Pat, who we’ve done business with for years. Pat was ready to pay for the materials walking into the project, but when we caught wind of what and who it was for, I knew we wanted to help.

“I am proud of the fact we could be a part, even if a small part, of your families recovery and truly remarkable story. I wish you the best, and please let me know if you need help with any other projects to make sure Josh is as comfortable as possible.”

Liftable, a section of The Western Journal, has reached out to Lowe’s for comment but has not yet received a response. We will update this article if and when we do.

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A graduate of Wheaton College with a degree in literature, Loren also adores language. He has served as assistant editor for Plugged In magazine and copy editor for Wildlife Photographic magazine.
A graduate of Wheaton College with a degree in literature, Loren also adores language. He has served as assistant editor for Plugged In magazine and copy editor for Wildlife Photographic magazine. Most days find him crafting copy for corporate and small-business clients, but he also occasionally indulges in creative writing. His short fiction has appeared in a number of anthologies and magazines. Loren currently lives in south Florida with his wife and three children.
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