Motorist without legs seeks assistance
When Neil Stewart parked his motor car in the handicapped section of The Gleaner Company Media Ltd’s offices yesterday, one would think that he may have not seen the sign.
But upon closer inspection, it was discovered that he had driven the vehicle without legs. In fact, he has been driving without legs for several years.
Stewart said it was terrible car accident in 2008 that caused him to lose his mobility. He stated that his lengthy stay in the hospital and being forced to use a wheelchair resulted in him having circulation problems and other complications.
“It was actually Valentine’s Day and I was going to visit my mom in St Mary when the accident happened. I damaged my spine and spent a few months at the Kingston Public Hospital (KPH) before going to Mona Rehab. Mi did have on the two legs at the time but because mi never did a use them much, them end up get slim and black,” he said.
Stewart said he was later told by his doctor that it would be best if he got both legs amputated, and after much thought, he underwent the procedure in 2015.
NEVER MAKE ANY SENSE
“It never make any sense keep the foot dem because they were infected and it never make any sense to keep the legs and let it cause my life. The person who I was involved in the accident with, when he saw that I was going to lose the legs, he gave me one of his vehicles and that is what has been helping me out,” he said. Stewart had to modify the vehicle to be able to drive it. “When mi get the van mi start sell bag juice, doughnuts, sweets and snacks and so on.”
But his ability to earn a living has been stifled since the arrival of COVID-19. He points to the empty cardboard boxes on the back seat, stating that months ago they were loaded with his goods.
“However from COVID come into play, everything gone bad. School lock so I can’t sell at school gates any more and some of the shopkeepers who used to buy, stop, or not buying that much again. Mi is a very hard-working man and it’s my responsibility to take care of my family,” he said.
Stewart said that before COVID-19, he had saved up $60,000 but that has dwindled.
“One time if a even silver (coins) mi coulda save and take care a myself, the vehicle and mi family. Mi save enough silver to buy tyres, oils and everything it need. Mi have a youth who use to work with mi and mi could pay him a day time and still save a $700 or $1,000 but I can’t do it any more,” he said.
Stewart, who lives in Huntley district,
Manchester, is pleading with the public for assistance to get his business back up and running. He is seeking roughly $100,000.
“I will be okay and I will not ask for help again because I will be able to manage on my own,” he said.
Neil Stewart says he needs help to get his business restarted.
According to Stewart, these boxes are usually filled with goods for sale, but COVID19 has put a damper on his livelihood.