Dear Ellen,We are writing this note in response to your show of November 9, 2012. You spoke about the devastation and suffering in the Northeast as a result of Superstorm Sandy.
We have cousins who Live in Oceanside, New York. As a result of the storm, their home was nearly destroyed. Even so, they have been staying in the house without power for 14 days, because they have no place else to go. They also lost their cars, so they are virtually stranded in the disaster zone.
As truly terrible as this story is, it only compounds their back story. Our cousins, Ellen and Todd Turner, have four children. A daughter, Michelle, who just got married at the beginning of August. They also have 18 year old triplets, Robert, Andrew, who just started college at the end of August. And then there's Eric who is Autistic. Needless to say, HE has always been the major focus of the family's day to day life.
In addition, our cousin Ellen had both her Mom & Dad pass away within 10 months of each other in 2010 and 2011. During those two years Ellen spent nearly everyday helping to care for her Dad, who had Alzheimer's, until he died and then for her Mom, who had Cancer. She and Todd would run errands for them, cook and clean for them, and made sure they had their medications They took them to doctor's appointments and when they were hospitalized, they would visit them everyday, even when the hospital was in Manhattan. All the while, Ellen was still working as a Preschool Teacher and handling the daily responsibilities of being a wife and mother (with an Autistic child).
With all this on going trauma, there was yet another tragedy waiting for this family. Just before her Mom passed away, Ellen and her family had a major fire in their house, they lost everything they owned. Fortunately, they were able to find a house to rent in their neighborhood. After about year, they were finally able to move back into their renovated home. THAT WAS JUST THIS SPRING. They thought that finally they could move on and enjoy a normal life. Then, along came SANDY.
With all the difficulties and tragedies that this family has been through in the last two years, they have been able to cope with the adversity. Like the song says, "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger". Of course, Eric has always been a priority for this family. Even his sister and brothers help to attend to his needs. However, this situation has taken an incredible toll on everyone. Eric is very confused because his daily routines have been disrupted. He hasn't been able to go back to his school which has provisions for Special Needs students. He has lost most of the personal possessions which he needs to provide continuity and stability in his world. Ellen has been able to return to work at her preschool, so she's been taking Eric with her.
We, their cousins, are practically the only family they have. We all live outside of New York, and cannot just run over and help them out, or have them come and stay with us. Their biggest need right now is a car. Both Ellen and Todd finally have the opportunity to return to work. But they don't have a car. Fortunately, I was able to rent them a car that they will have on a week to week basis. They also need to have transportation to get Eric wherever he needs to be.
We are doing everything we can to help this amazing family, even though we are so far away. If there is anything that The Ellen Show can do to help them make it through yet another tragedy, we would be eternally grateful. Please give them all the consideration you possibly can. Our hearts are breaking over what they are going through, and that there is very little we can do to help them.
Thank You so much, in advance for any assistance you can provide. Thanks again.
Very truly yours;
David, Ricki, Sara, Jeremy, Stephanie & Jonah CohnReisterstown, Maryland.
Ted, Denise, Jackie, & Sami CohnManalapan, New Jersey.