July 24, 2016

Partly cloudy

Josie’s streak of luck


Staff Writer

MONTVILLE TWP. — Karma from helping others in the past seems to have caught up with Josie Denham.

Denham, who lives at 6709 Wadsworth Road, must move out of her house because of plans by the township to raze it, which it owns along with a neighboring house.

Once demolished, the land will become greenspace and make room for expanding Poe Cemetery, which is almost full, township Trustee Jeff Brandon has said. Taking down the houses also will increase visibility at the Poe-Wadsworth Road (state Route 57) intersection, which is considered dangerous, he said.

Denham, who has a 3-year-old son, Michael, works two jobs while going to school to become a licensed practical nurse.

Though she understands the township owns her home, which she rents on a month-to-month basis, she said she was stressed about finding a place and getting all her belongings out of the house.

“I’m on a fixed income and I have no problem making payments, but I just can’t afford coming up with all the money all at once, especially on such short notice,” Denham said.

Denham had roughly 30 days to find a place according to the terms of her lease, Brandon has said, but noted she could have longer if needed.

Luckily, a friend of Denham’s talked to a manager at the Marathon gas station, 8775 Wadsworth Road, about Denham’s situation and about a previous story in The Gazette, and he offered to lend her his U-Haul truck, Denham said.

“I just have to pay for the gas,” she added. “I was very excited and happy and almost started crying that somebody was able to help. That was my biggest fear — that I wouldn’t get out in time.”

The streak seemed to continue when Denham spoke to a landlord of a house in Rittman who offered to work out a payment plan for her security deposit.

“He worked out a deposit plan with me because of my situation … to pay it in like three payments instead of all at once,” she said. “Now I do have a home … and he allowed me to have my pets. That made it perfect.”

Denham has a cat and two dogs.

On a whim, Denham also decided to ask a co-worker she only met a short while ago if he could help her move some of the smaller stuff with his pickup truck.

“He said, ‘No problem at all, I can do that,’ and I just thought that was really sweet,” Denham said, adding it’s rare nowadays for people to help others out.

“If you do help somebody, they look at you like, ‘OK, what are you going to rob off of me?’ ” she said.

Just the same, Denham said she still tries to aid others, even if it’s just by offering to carry an elderly person’s groceries or help someone short of change in line at a store.

She added: “If everybody just helped somebody, God, this world would be such a wonderful place.”

Shofar may be reached at 330-721-4044 or cshofar@ohio.net.