ELYRIA — Jayden Hall has a new wheelchair ramp but still has transportation problems.
On June 11, sugar was found in the gas tank of the 2000 Ford Explorer Jayden’s family uses to drive him to frequent doctor visits, according to a police report. Three-year-old Jayden, who is blind, suffers from multiple birth defects.
Volunteers, including local Home Depot employees, built a handicapped ramp at Jayden’s home April 28. A local group donated $1,000 for supplies to build the ramp.
The Explorer is owned by Lisa Jones, Jayden’s great-aunt, who has taken care of him since 2010. Ollie Smith, Jones’ husband, said the vandalism came about a day after he scolded some neighborhood youths who were cursing a preacher who lives across the street from him in the Colonial Oaks mobile home park where Jayden lives. Smith said he told them they should be ashamed of themselves.
Smith, who said the Explorer won’t run since the incident, said he believes the vandalism was retaliation for defending the man. Smith, who said Jayden visits the doctor about three times per month, said the family arranged for a medical transportation service to take Jayden to his doctor’s appointment today. He hopes someone with a vehicle that can transport a person in a wheelchair will help out in the future.
Smith said he feels awful that the dispute may have made things harder for Jayden.
“When it comes to the baby, I’m all out,” Smith said Sunday. “He can’t help himself.”
Contact Evan Goodenow at 329-7129 at email@example.com.