Jewell Cardwell

Weeks ago I alerted you, dear readers, to a kind-hearted gentleman who stepped forward under the veil of anonymity, wanting to help some of the working poor with verifiable and established work records but where circumstances out of their control have put them behind the eight ball fulfill some of the things on their wish list.

Well, over 200 of you responded with needs that were forwarded to the Secret Angel, who took great patience to read them all and try to figure out what was doable at this time.

Of course, there were a few who tried to take advantage of his generosity, but he quickly saw through those.

But as the Secret Angel suggests: Lets talk about some good people who we were able to assist:

We responded to a lady that has been working for 24 years and her husband passed away this past October. She has one son and two daughters to support. She is desperately in need of bathroom repairs. We have made arrangements to take care of the needed repairs and replace the tub if needed.

We have one lady who is struggling and has been a victim of abuse for over 20 years. She finally found the courage to divorce her husband and start new. She went out and got a job in a major box store to start earning her income and take care of her two kids. She said she is working at a job that her husband repeatedly told her she was too stupid and lazy to ever do. She had no money for gifts for her family and wanted some help. She also needed a little money for food until she received her first paycheck. She was provided a gift card for $400 to buy food and Christmas gifts. When handed the card, the lady broke down crying and was so very thankful.

I heard from a veteran who is disabled and uses a wheelchair and walker. His wish was to get back into some sort of part-time work and have a meaningful existence again in his life. We found him a part-time job and he is so thankful. He uses sir in every sentence when talking directly to me, which I explained is not necessary. His response was simply that that is how he conducts himself he gives respect to each person he meets. I thanked him again for his service to our country and wished him Happy Holidays!

One woman who responded needed brakes for her car so she could get back and forth to work. We put brakes on all four wheels of her car. Needless to say, she is very appreciative.

We had a request from a lady in her 70s who had no money to visit her very ill brother in New York. We talked to the husband who sent the letter on her behalf. We asked him if he was also going to New York with his wife and he said no that he would not impose that cost on our generosity. Further discussion revealed that he was a disabled U.S. Air Force veteran. So, it was decided to send them both to New York. He was speechless and so very thankful. We then thanked him for his service to the country and he said there was no need to thank him; it was his pleasure to serve this wonderful country.

We had a woman who works hard at her job cleaning rooms in a hotel. She had used all her money for repairs on her car and could use some money for food for her kids. She was given a $200 gift card.

I had a young woman who was involved in a car accident. The other party, who was at fault and charged with DUI, had no insurance so all the damages were never paid. This young lady works part time and was having a hard time making ends meet. She was provided a gift card of $200 for food and other essentials.

I heard from another lady, a mother of two children ages 6 and 3. She is working hard and enrolled in college to get a better education and job. She has a need for some money to help pay for food and gifts for her kids. She is living paycheck to paycheck and trying to make ends meet. She was given a $200 gift card to help her out.

We responded to a father who worked several jobs and then was injured and is not able to work. But he loves his four sons very much and wants to provide them with some gifts for Christmas. We provided him with $200 for Christmas gifts and another $100 for miscellaneous extras.

We responded to a lady who has had hard luck lately. Several family members passed away in the last two years and she is having trouble making ends meet. She just wants and needs some boots and a coat. We provided her with the ability to pick a coat and boots that fit her needs.

Once word spread through my column that the Secret Angel was busy trying to help the deserving and hurting who have no safety net, other Secret Angels took the cue and sprung into action.

A Cuyahoga Falls couple with a gently used electric cook stove with a glass top to donate contacted me (We remodeled two years ago and got new appliances) and I was able to match their gift with a need in the community.

The stove was delivered Saturday morning in response to this letter about a mother in need of a stove:

She and her family have been without a stove for the better part of six months now. She has worked for 12 years but because of how tight things are financially she cannot afford to buy a new or used stove. She has two high school boys living with her and one of them is not her son. The one who is not her son is the son of a relative who is on drugs and has been for years.

The mother was not home when the delivery was made: She was tickled to tears when she arrived and the stove was there when she got home, the letter writer said. Thank you to that wonderful couple.

Yet another family stepped forward to fill a holiday wish list for a single, working mother of two whose baby recently underwent a second open-heart surgery. The gifts arrived beautifully wrapped and clearly shopped for with lots of love.

Others have called with similar offers. Im still working on the logistics and trying to find someone who will make the deliveries for free. Ill be in touch after the holidays.

Now back to our original Secret Angel who helped spawn so many good deeds.

Tears of joy on each and every one of those we were able to help, the Secret Angel said. They are shocked and so thankful!

The Secret Angel vows to extend the outreach next year and will start much earlier in asking for requests to allow more time to process, filter, contact and execute some goodwill to those in need. I am also working on developing some stronger business contacts that may be able to assist us also next year.

Were very thankful to the three donors of money who just wanted to help the Silent Angel reach more people, and with their contributions we will do that exactly. Additional donations can be sent in care of Jewell Cardwell at the Beacon in the form of a money gift card. A receipt will be returned.

The need list is long, and the Secret Angel is still working to assist those down and out.

However, as I shared in an earlier column, he could use a strong assist.

I am also looking for owners of new or used appliances [and stores that sell] washers, dryers, refrigerators and stoves that want to donate appliances or provide them at a very reduced cost, he said.

I am also looking for owners of heating services who want to donate heating repair services.

I could also utilize another car repair shop that would be willing to fix cars, donate labor and we would pay for the parts. I am also looking for a store that has used or new twin bed frames, box springs and mattresses for kids

Lastly, any other businesses that are willing to donate, please let us know.

Rest assured that if you submitted a request for help, your letter is still on file and will be addressed if and when funds become available. No new requests are being accepted at this time.

Join with me in thanking the Secret Angel for his over-the-top holiday outreach and all of the other Secret Angels his message may have awakened.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to one and all.

Jewell Cardwell can be reached at 330-996-3567 or jcardwell@thebeaconjournal.com.