Neighbors fight to keep Portland family in their home
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -
Neighbors are banding together in an effort to keep a local family from being forced out of their home in southwest Portland. Two members of the family are battling brain tumors.
Melissa Weiser-Lilly told FOX 12 that her family of six was served with a lease termination notice by their apartment complex's management company earlier this year. It was due to issues with cleanliness and damage to their home, she said. Weiser-Lilly said the issues were fixed, but her family is still being kicked out.
Wieser-Lilly's 11-year-old daughter, Alyssa, has been in and out of the hospital since she was a baby. She was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor, went through radiation and chemotherapy, four years of remission and now the tumor is back, Weiser-Lilly said.
To make matters worse, Alyssa's father was diagnosed with a brain tumor last fall, Weiser-Lilly said.
"Just after we found out about his, our insurance got canceled, and it took us forever to get that back," Weiser-Lilly said. "And then as soon as we got that back, we got the eviction notice. So we had to put all of his treatment on hold until this is settled."
Despite the family's efforts to address the cleanliness issues with their complex's management company, Weiser-Lilly told FOX 12 that they're being forced to move out of their home by May 31.
"Every time I close my eyes, I picture us sleeping in the van under a bridge, her getting an infection and Jeremy's brain tumor exploding," Weiser-Lilly said.
About a dozen of the family's neighbors signed a petition hoping to get the management company to reconsider and possibly buy them more time to find a new place to live.
"We understand they might have cause to evict. But, you know, there's legal reasons and there's moral reasons," said neighbor Lisa Mann, a blues musician who also helped organize a benefit that raised about $4,000 for the family. "And we should let this family stay while they're going through hell."
Weiser-Lilly told FOX 12 she's talked with friends and started moving some of her family's belongings into storage. So far, they have no place to go, she said.
Weiser-Lilly is hopeful the complex's management company will change its mind and let her family stay where they are.
"That would be really, really nice," she said.
On top of the petition, neighbors told FOX 12 they mailed a one-page letter to the complex's owner in Seattle on Wednesday in hopes that he'll intervene.
When asked by FOX 12, the complex's management company had no comment about the family's situation.
Copyright 2013 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.
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