Union Pays Elderly Residents Over $4,000 Bill

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(Memphis) A 87 year-old Memphis woman was the recipient of a over $4,000 check Wednesday.

Velma Massey had received a cut-off notice from MLGW this month because of a outstanding $4,251.66 bill.

“Well I had a water leak and then everybody knows my gas was $300 per month that’s just entirely too much. Something is wrong somewhere,” said Massey.

“She made substantial payments every month but her water leak was beyond what she could make payments on,” said MLGW CEO Jerry Collins.

On top of the water leak, Massey had a gas leak. When IBEW Local 1288 heard Massey’s story, they stepped in a big way and paid the bill in full.

“Our members dues are taken out of our members check every two weeks to go to this foundation to take care of situations like this,” said Rick Thompson with IBEW 1288.

“She may have gone without utilities which would’ve been a tragedy,” said Thompson.

Collins said there were 4 other MLGW customers with outstanding bills over $4,000.

“In all 4 of those cases there is illness involved of a substantial nature,” said Collins.

Massey was prepared to pack up and leave the house she has been in since the 1960s, but is thankful she can stay.

“I wish I could hug them all. I’m crying but these are tears of joy,” said Massey.