2002 Grant Recipients


The Nicole Family
$2000 grant
February 19, 2002

Sandra, a single mom from Manchester, N.H., and her two daughters, Michelle and Moriah, lost everything they have ever owned including their two cats (and they had no renter's insurance) when a devastating fire swept through their apartment building, burning it to the ground. A request from Wendy Moquin from Manchester, New Hampshire, resulted in The Weber Foundation issuing a grant for $2,000 to help alleviate some of the expenses the Nicole family is enduring as a result of the fire.

Kevin O'Connell
$3,600 grant
February 20, 2002

Kevin and Diane O'Connell live in Salem, Massachusetts and have 2 children. Kevin is suffering from cancer and desparately needed assistance so that they would not lose their home. We were able to help them with 3 month's mortgage payment. Kevin has received aggressive chemotherapy and bone marrow treatments. Kevin, who was working 50 to 70 hours per week to raise his family, will be out of work for an extended period of time. He is receiving approximately $375 per week from disability. Patty Palumbo from Melrose, Massachussetts alerted the Weber Foundation to Kevin's plight, and the foundation responded with a grant to help cover Kevin's mortgage payments for a three month period.

Mary Marshall
$1,530 grant
February 28, 2002

Mary, who resides in Douglas, Massachusetts, was diagnosed with an aggressive form of Breast Cancer and The Weber Foundation issued a grant to help with the high costs associated with her alternative therapy plan (the Haelan 951 Plan) which she desparately needed. Mary's situation was brought to the attention of The Weber Foundation by Sherri Smith from Milbury, Massachussetts.

Julie Prahl
$2,500 grant
March 13,2002

After receiving a request from Jodi and Paul Poirer The Weber Foundation issued a grant to Julie Prahl of Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Julie was diagnosed with Acute Lyeloid Leukemia, the most progressive form of bone marrow cancer. This grant was to help alleviate some of the expenses associated with the high cost of medical treatment neccessary for Julie's recovery.

Gail Doherty
$6,500 grant
April 8, 2002

Gail Doherty, from Natick, Massachusetts, a mother of two girls, has suffered for the past four years with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), commonly called Lou Gehrig's disease. Brenda Asis requested help from The Weber Foundation of Helping Hands on behalf of Gail. The Doherty's had to sell their home this year and rising medical costs may deplete all of their funds by early this summer. Gail needs $30,000 to cover her living and home care expenses for the summer. People from the community so far have donated $7,000. If an additional $23,000 is not raised Gail may have to enter a nursing home by June and will not be able to spend the summer with her two girls. The Weber Foundation issued a grant of $6,500 to help alleviate some of the expenses associated with Gail's home care and help her to continue to live with her family during the summer months.

Kevin Bauman
$6,000 Grant
April 8, 2002

Kevin's mom, Cynthia, contacted The Weber Foundation after seeing a newspaper article about the Foundation in the Boston Globe. Kevin, who lives in Revere, Massachusetts, is 31 years old and is married with three children, ages 2, 5, and 14. Kevin has a cancerous brain tumor and is unable to work and pay for his medical insurancee for his illness.

Elliiott Mattherson
$6,000 Grant
April 8, 2002

Twenty-one month old Elliott and his mom, Kristen, of Stratham, NH, currently reside at Fairview University Childrens Hospital in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Elliott suffers from MPS-Hurler Syndrome- an extremely rare disorder for which there is no treatment. Elliott is totally disabled and will need constant, specialized care and therapy for the rest of his life. Elliott's mom cannot work and his dad, Ron Jr., is struggling to support the family's needs including Elliott's astronomical medical costs and his four and one half year old sister. Ron Matteson Sr., Elliott's grandfather, from New Hampshire, made the request to the foundation for Elliott.

The Alexander Family
$10,000 grant
April 8, 2002

Margaret Cipriano, Trustee for the COTA for the Melissa A. Fund, put in a request to The Weber Foundation of Helping Hands for Melissa Alexander, a 31 year old from Norwell, Mass., from suffering from Cystic Fibrosis since birth and now in need of a double lung transplant. The amazing thing is that the foundation received 3 separate requests to help Melissa with the costly transplant related expenses not covered by insurance.

Sabrina E. Joseph
$1,600 grant
April 9, 2002

Three and one half year old Sabrina, from Mattapan, Massachusetts, was admitted to Boston's Childrens Hospital diagnosed with Burkitt's Lymphoma (a form of cancer). Sabrina and her three siblings (ages 19 months, 6 and 12) live with their single mom Marie Thelisma who has been forced to take an unpaid leave of absence from her job due to Sabrina's illness. The Weber Foundation of Helping Hands responded to a request from Arielle Davis to help Sabrina's mom to pay $1,600 necessary to cover a security deposit on their apartment. Pictured (right) Elizabeth Weber presents the grant, on behalf of Sabrina, to Joe Chabot, Senior Resource Specialist for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

Kelly Costedio
$5,000 grant
August 1, 2002

Kelly Costedio of Billerica, Massachussetts has two small children, Alec and Camryn, both suffer from Alternating Hemiplegia, a devastating neurological disorder. The children require physical, occupational and speech therapies. They also need to wear many different braces and take medication to reduce the severity of their attacks. The grant was given to help alleviate the expenses associated with the high cost of the braces and medication, which are not covered by insurance. The check will be presented to Kelly by her sister and guardian angel Dana Perry. 

Virginia Sequeira
$2,940 grant
August 2002

Virginia Sequeira of Plymouth, Massachussetts, is a single mother of three children. Two of her children, Ashley and Alexander have a rare neuromuscular disease called Spinal Muscular Atrophy. They are not able to walk and require the use of wheelchairs. Virginia has been unable to work this past year because of the many surgeries her children have undergone. The children’s father gives her no assistance and has recently tried to reduce the minimal child support he now gives. She has high monthly bills including her handicapped van payment. The grant was given to help Virginia with two months mortgage and van payments, in hopes that she will be able to continue to stay home to care for her children. The check will be presented to Virginia by her friend and guardian angel Marla Monteiro. 

Lisa Levy Langsam
$1,000 grant
Sept. 30, 2002

A grant was given to Lisa Levy Langsam of Peabody, Ma. for $1,000.00. Lisa has ALS and is on a ventilator and in a wheelchair. She must use a handicapped accessable van service to go to doctor's appointments and any activities with her children. The cost of the service is not covered by medical insurance and runs about $100 a trip. The grant was given to cover the cost of ten van rides to give Lisa the opportunity to enjoy many activities with her two daughters outside of the home. Her guardian angels are Terry and Bob Mello of Peabody.

Abby Shanley
$3,500 grant
October 1, 2002

A grant was given to Abby Shanley from Boyertown, Pa. for $3,500.00. Abby is a 21 year old who was diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma (a very rare form of cancer), which kept her from returning to her senior year of college. She and her mom must travel to New York for her chemotherapy treatments. This grant was given to help Abby's family with the over $35,000 in bills they currently have for Abby's uncovered medical expenses. Her guardian angel is Marice Kozub of Stowe, Pa. 

Tina Willard
$1,000 grant
October 1, 2002

A grant was given to the children of Tina Willard of Londonderry, N.H. in the amount of $1,000.00. At 34, Tina passed away in August of cervical cancer. She and her two children had been living with her dad, who quit his job, so he could help her with the children. Tina's husband had passed away 6 years ago. Tina had no life insurance, so her dad had to pay for the funeral with his savings, which he was using to pay the mortgage. This grant was given so that their guardian angel, Linda Powers can take Mellissa and Christopher Willard to shop for new clothing

Kristen Kocourek 
$6,500 grant 
October 31, 2002

On October 31, 2002, a grant was issued to Kristen Kocourek of Worth, IL in the amount of $6,500.00. Kristen is 12 years old and suffers from mitochondrial encephalomyopathy (cytopathy) and central hypoventilation syndrome. Her sister, Annalies, also suffers from cytopathy. Because of her conditions, Kristen uses oxygen and an iron lung to breath at night and a chest shell at intervals during the day. Many of the items required to care for the girls are not covered by insurance. This includes a service dog specially trained to meet Kristen’s unique needs. This grant has been given specifically for the purchase and training of an assistance dog for Kristen. Kristen’s guardian Angel is Sherry Lower of Alsip, IL.

Meredith McCarney
grant $2,500
November 7, 2002

On November 7, 2002, a grant in the amount of $2,500.00 was given to Meredith McCarney of Greenfield, IN. Alan McCarney and his wife Mary have five boys and a little girl named Meredith Hope. In January of 2001, the McCarneys learned that Meredith had serious health issues. After countless tests to get a diagnosis, it was learned that she has a muscle disorder, which affects the muscles, brain and sight. At two years old, Meredith is blind, and she can’t sit up or even crawl. In addition to that, she has a serious seizure condition, which requires daily medication. Due to a devastating blow to Alan’s income last year and the loss of his health insurance, the family has been left with many uncovered medical bills. This grant has been given specifically to purchase a special needs stroller for Meredith. The McCarney’s Guardian Angels are Daniel and Terri Whited of Fishers, IN.

Jenel Avola
grant $5,000
December 17, 2002

On December 17, 2002, a grant in the amount of $5,000.00 was given to Janet Avola for her daughter Jenel. Jenel is a 7 year old girl from Peabody, Mass. who was born with a very rare connective tissue disorder. Jenel is restricted to a wheelchair because her bones lack the ability to hold themselves together, causing frequent fractures and dislocations. Jenel's doctors feel that daily aquatic therapy is the best way for her to receive must needed exercise, to keep her as healthy as possible. The Weber Foundation has granted the Avolas $5000.00 to go towards enclosing their pool for Jenel. Her guardian angel is Deborah Jones of Andover, Mass.

Matthew Thomas Proctor
$2,000 grant
December 17, 2002

On December 17, 2002, a grant in the amount of $2,000.00 was given to Tammy Lynn Proctor of Ocean Pines, Maryland, for her 13 year old son Matthew. Matthew was diagnosed with a pilocytic optic pathway glioma (brain tumor) when he was ten months old. Tammy is the single mother of Matthew and his nine year old sister Sarah. She can not work because Matthew requires round the clock care. In addition, Matthew has had ten major surgeries in the past year alone. The hospital is 150 miles away, so the cost of travel, lodging and food is a great expense. This grant is being given specifically for the purchase of an adult adaptive tricycle for Matthew's physical therapy and to make this a very special Christmas for the Protor children.

Mitchell and Kyle Forslind
$5,000 grant
October 19,2002

On October 19, 2002 The Weber Foundation of Helping Hands sponsored "Angels on Foot" Walk/Run. A grant in the amount of $5,000.00 was presented to the Forslind Family of Farmington, N.H. In June of 2002 Mitchell (3 years old) and Kyle (one year) were diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder known as Krabbe Disease. They are being treated at Duke University in North Carolina where they underwent core blood stem cell transplants. The great news is that both transplants were a Success!! Their dad, David took a leave from his job so that he and their mom, Fran could be in N.C. during their treatments. They have the financial burden of paying for an apartment in N.C. as well as their home mortgage. In addition they need to make many renovations to their home to make it handicap accessible for the boys. This grant has been given to the Forslinds to help them make these renovations. Their guardian angels are Robert and Leona Newell from Pepperell, MA. After receiving a request from Jodi and Paul Poirer The Weber Foundation issued a grant to Julie Prahl of Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Julie was diagnosed with Acute Lyeloid Leukemia, the most progressive form of bone marrow cancer. This grant was to help alleviate some of the expenses associated with the high cost of medical treatment neccessary for Julie's recovery.