Volunteers clear snow and ice for senior, disabled housing authority tenants

We are continuing to cover a potentially dangerous situation facing elderly and disabled people trapped in subsidized housing because of snow and ice. We first reported Tuesday that some of their resources like food and medicine are running low. Since our story ran, people in the community have answered the call for help.

From the waterway to pathways packed with snow and ice, members of the U.S. Coast guard in Paducah said it’s part of their responsibility to help people wherever they can. “We are public servants,” said Capt. Malcolm McLellan.

About 15 men and women in the local unit shoveled, scraped, and cleared the sidewalks in response to a need. “We actually saw it on the news,” said Capt. McLellan. The group split up between Pierce Lackey Court and the location on H.C. Mathis Drive where most of the housing authority’s senior and disabled tenants live.  Capt. McLellan said, “We figured this is a prime opportunity for our unit to give back to the community and help some people who really need it.”

Carol Nielsen is disabled and said she is thankful for the help. “This makes you feel good when you see young people out here willing to help you.” The good feelings went all around. “Our goal is to go out and help, and that’s the biggest benefit,” said Capt. McLellan. “I can walk to my mailbox without worrying about getting killed hahaha,” said Nielsen.

After a couple hours of hard work, the paved areas starting to look a lot better. There is still a lot of work left to be done between the four housing authority locations. Executive Director Cal Ross said there is a long list of even more volunteers who have called in wanting to help.

The track team from Paducah Tilghman High School plans to volunteer to clear snow and ice at Elmwood Court on Thursday. The Paducah Housing Authority gave these groups permission to come on to the property and work. They are assuming liability on the volunteer’s behalf.


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