Thanksgiving supplies arranged for resident with COVID

By: Eric Czarnik | Sterling Heights Sentry | Published December 4, 2020

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STERLING HEIGHTS — As with many metro Detroit families this year, Michigan state Rep. Nate Shannon scaled back his Thanksgiving traditions due to COVID-19. But the circumstances also led to a chance to serve someone outside his immediate family.  

Shannon said he was working from home Nov. 25, the day before Thanksgiving, when he received a call around 3 p.m. from Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel about one of his constituents: Kristin Feuz, from Sterling Heights.

“(Nessel) had received a message from a Sterling Heights resident that was in desperate need of food and medical supplies,” Shannon explained.

After getting in touch with Sterling Heights Mayor Michael Taylor, Shannon called the Macomb Food Program. He said it was almost ready to close, but it still had supplies left, if he hurried. So he hurried to pick up the supplies.

“There was pounds and pounds of food,” he explained. “I was able to bring that over to the Sterling Heights resident’s home. Both she and her partner have COVID. They weren’t able to leave the home to get their own supplies.”

Shannon said he was also able to arrange a supply of face masks that came from a Ford Motor Co. donation, and Sterling Heights City Manager Mark Vanderpool helped deliver those later that evening. Shannon said he also got a thermometer from Walgreens.

The next day, on Thanksgiving, he got even more ideas. He still didn’t know what was sealed up in the supply boxes he’d delivered, so he started to look around on Facebook for how to get a turkey dinner delivered to the home. He was able to get a premade one through the local Rotary Club, which had one more left. He said it got to Feuz’s home by around 1 p.m.

On the day before Thanksgiving, Nessel posted on Twitter about what happened.

“Last night my wife noticed a comment on FB from a disabled woman suffering from Covid desperate for help in procuring food & medical supplies,” Nessel said. “I noticed she lived in @RepNateShannon’s district and contacted him. An hour later he personally delivered her the supplies. Thanks Nate!”

Shannon noted that Nessel’s tweet about Feuz’s situation went viral on Twitter, getting over 5,300 likes. But Shannon said he didn’t retweet her comments on his own Twitter account.

“I don’t need the accolades,” he said. “I’ve always had a strong sense of wanting to help people out. ... That’s what public service is: to serve the public. Whatever ability you have to make people’s lives easier or better, I do it.”

In a text message, Feuz explained that she is disabled, new to Michigan and doesn’t have family locally. When she needed help after falling ill with COVID-19, she sought guidance on Nessel’s Facebook site.

Feuz added that she was “completely humbled” by the help she received from complete strangers, including Nessel and Shannon. She said Nessel’s wife, Alanna Maguire, and state Sen. Dayna Polehanki also contributed.

Feuz forwarded a thank-you response she wrote.

“Honestly, there are no words to describe how these amazing, selfless people saved me,” the message said. “They just didn’t save me with food or supplies. They saved me from feeling alone, in a new state, with a virus that could end my life, like it has to so many others. Dana, Alanna, Dayna and Nate are the real deal.”

Shannon, D-Sterling Heights, represents parts of Sterling Heights and Warren in the 25th state House district. Find out more about him by visiting housedems.com/nate-shannon.

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