Seattle resident Marsha Partee heard about IAM District 751’s Machinists Volunteer Program (MVP) from a friend and reached out to them for assistance with a wheelchair ramp for her mother, Zelda Kelly-Baldwin.
“You’ve given my mom a much better life,” said Partee.
Kelly-Baldwin was housebound since December 22, 2016, when she returned home from the hospital. In her wheelchair, even with assistance, she was unable to navigate her home’s steps.
MVP Chair Princie Stewart met with mother and daughter a few times to work out the details prior to the volunteer crew’s arrival.
“This was one of the more difficult ramps we have built because of the steep pitch of the stairs and the limited turnaround space at the bottom,” said District 751 Steward Coordinator Ed Lutgen.
Using their experience of building more than 350 ramps throughout the Seattle region over the past 20 years, MVP volunteers were able to prefabricate sections of the ramp to expedite installation.
As Kelly-Baldwin was rolled onto the ramp for the first time, she was overcome with tears of joy. District 751 retiree and MVP committee member Jim Hutchins was particularly touched.
“This was one ramp-build that really made you feel good when it was completed,” said Hutchins.
Check out more about MVP volunteer work in the latest edition of District 751’s Aero Mechanic newsletter.
“It is so rewarding to know your efforts made a difference in someone’s life,” said Stewart.