Published: Thursday, April 1, 2021
Orignally published in the spring of 2021.
Dan Butts can access his cupboard shelves these days - a feat that, for him, had long been out of his reach.
The Grand Forks resident, 43, still needs companion DeeDee Lewis’ help to get in and out of bed, and vehicles, too, but with less difficulty than he used to face. NDAD provided him with a power elevating seat lift for his wheelchair in 2020 that has helped add to Dan’s independence - a boost he’s welcomed since seriously injuring his spinal cord in a near-fatal 2013 automobile crash ejection.
NDAD has helped Butts multiple times. A year ago, he borrowed an NDAD portable ramp so he could visit his ailing mother in her Fargo garden-level apartment which, without that ramp, was inaccessible to him. “It was a great experience to be able to sit at her table and visit with her... for the first time in years,” he recalled.
The ramp came via NDAD’s Healthcare Equipment Loan Program (HELP), which provides free loans of durable medical equipment and other adaptive devices for up to 90 days. In past years, he’s also borrowed a wheelchair to use while getting his repaired and a bathroom commode several times prior to having a colostomy.
Lora Machart, Grand Forks client services representative, was quite helpful when he applied for the elevating seat, Dan said. “She let me know what I had to do. She must have gotten on it right away.... Even with COVID and all going on, we were able to work right through it. It was a great experience working with her....
"I have brought up NDAD to other people. I would describe (NDAD) as very giving... (and) very responsible. I’m very grateful.”