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Things go from bad to worse for displaced Sudbury senior

Pansy Halls waiting in hospital as repair work on her Capreol apartment continues

A tough stretch for one Capreol senior took another turn for the worse recently, as 79-year-old Pansy Halls has been laid up in a bed at Health Sciences North since Aug. 19.

The mother of four has been couch surfing at her daughter's house for more than three months, after a pipe burst in the bathroom of her apartment at the Coulson Court Senior Citizen Complex in Capreol on May 7.

Frustration has been mounting for Halls as she just wants to get back into her home, and the stress of the lengthy wait has been wearing on her physical and mental wellbeing.

On Aug. 19, Halls was at her daughter Kim's home in Capreol, where she's been staying since her apartment was flooded, when she began experiencing severe stomach pains. She was rushed to hospital by ambulance where it was discovered she was suffering from pancreatitis caused by gallstones. 

Halls underwent surgery to have her gallbladder removed and has been in hospital ever since.

"The hospital isn't allowed to release her until she has a place to go," said her daughter Kristen. "It's just sad really, she feels like she's deteriorating. She was managing her health fine before all of this started."

Halls can not go back to her daughter Kim's home in Capreol where she had been staying, as Kim is out of town until Sept. 10, and Halls would require someone to care for her as she recovers from the surgery. spoke with Halls in the hospital. In spite of the considerable stress she's under — a flooded apartment, having to move her life's possession into a storage locker, living on a couch in her daughter's home, being rushed to hospital and having her gallbladder removed — Halls maintains a measure of sunny optimism.

"At least I have a bed to sleep in now," she said with a chuckle, still counting herself lucky.

"I have a daughter who lives close by my apartment and I had a place to stay; what about people who don't have that? Where would they go if this happened to them? I've been out of my home for four months and there's no end in sight, it's just so depressing."

Corrine Williamson, another of Halls' daughters, was at her mother's side at the hospital on Aug. 27 when interviewed her. It was also the day Halls' flooded apartment was (again) supposed to be move-in ready, a promise that's been made to Halls on more than a few occasions over the course of the ordeal.

"You'd think she would have been back home by now," said Williamson. "It seems like every time we talk to them it's two more weeks, then two more weeks and now we're going on four months here, I don't understand what the hold up is."

WINMAR Property Restoration has been contracted by the Coulson Court Senior Citizen Complex's board to fix Halls apartment, but the work has been slow going and more often than not, Halls said there just been one worker on the job.

The latest word is that the apartment should be ready by Sept. 5, but with the long weekend approaching, Halls says she's not very optimistic.

"My daughter went over there (Aug. 27) and they're still nowhere near done," Halls said.


Matt Durnan

About the Author: Matt Durnan

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