CARROLLTON, Texas — The fabric is ripped. The shocks are out. A wheel is broken. The left arm is zip-tied, and the right one is wrapped in tape.
Douglas Baldasaro is riding in a wheelchair that’s barely getting by.
“I’ve been just patching it and patching it and just accepted life,” he said.
Baldasaro spends most of his life in his patched-up chair.
He’s five years into a battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, better known as ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease.
He’d been saving up enough money to cover the cost of a co-pay for a new chair, but he had to spend that savings repairing his Carrollton home after February’s winter storm left it damaged.
When Baldasaro reached out to the city of Carrollton for help getting a COVID vaccine, he was referred to a non-profit organization called Metrocrest Services.
And, lucky for him, Metrocrest assigned him a remarkably caring caseworker.
Case manager Shalawn Moore helped him with the vaccine - and didn’t stop there.
“One thing he did share with me, is that having a new wheelchair would be like a dream come true,” Moore said.
So, she made it happen.
Moore nominated her client for a Little Wish, a program sponsored by Sam Pack Auto Group, and the wish was granted.
“People are angels, and she’s my angel now,” Baldasaro said through tears, after he learned his wish was being granted.
Moore said she was “lost for words” when Baldasaro said no one had ever done anything so kind for him before.
“She will always be in my heart,” he said. “There won’t be a day that I will wake up and her name won’t be coming to my mind.”
“This is the best day of my life," he said.