By Rosemary Pollock
San Jose Mugging Victim Gets Donated Van
SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA -- The Battered Women's Alliance of Santa Clara
County delivered a teal blue 1985 VW Vanagon, complete with a
wheelchair lift, to Janie Welton-Parham who was attacked on September
7 by a man who stole her purse and in the process broke her only good
arm. "I can't cry," the mother of three said, her eyes welling over
with tears. "I can't wipe my eyes or nose myself."
The 38-year-old San Jose woman has been disabled for 26 years due to
a crippling form of rheumatoid arthritis. The disease has attacked
all of her
body except her good left arm. Janie had long held the dream of
owning a specialized van, but knew that she and her husband Carlos
could never afford one.
Janie had vented her anger and frustration recently while on the
Internet, telling of the mugging that left her and her 12-year-old
daughter helpless to the attacks of the man who ran by her chair,
grabbing her purse and breaking the arm that held the purse in place.
LDS church members in Washington state responded to her needs and
today the San Jose Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day
Saints along with the Catholic parish that Janie belongs to bring in
meals and help with the families needs.
Rita Smith, Women's Alliance Executive Administrator and Victor
Dillon, Executive Director responded to Welton-Parham's need when
they read about her fateful story in the Mercury News. They had just
received a donation of a 1985 VW Vanagon with little more than a
160,000 miles and a showroom sharp look. "A man on the Peninsula
gave it to us," Smith said. "He said his late mother had used it."
Joey Parham, Janie's 3-year-old son, raised and lowered himself after
watching his mother operate the controls. "Where shall we go first in
our van?" Janie asked her children. They all agreed on a trip to the
nearest mall. "And the whole family can go now at the same time with
all the baby's stuff," she added. "I can't thank people enough."
Gift of van brings joy to disabled mom
San Gabriel CA Valley Tribune 12Nov00 D1
By Betty Barnacle: Knight Ridder Newspapers
Women's alliance donates vehicle after hearing of family's plight
LDS Stake Assists Mugging Victim