Lancaster mom of child with cerebral palsy in need of wheelchair van

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Dayna Bennett, the mother of child with severe mental disabilities, is searching for help buying a wheelchair van. (KABC)

Dayna Bennett has been lifting her daughter Shellie Joy and her more than 100-pound wheelchair in and out of her minivan since adopting her five years ago. The 22-year-old has cerebral palsy and severe mental disabilities.

"I hurt my back sometimes and I have to just let it get better and I start over," Bennett said.

Bennett, who's raised four adopted children, says she cannot afford a wheelchair-equipped lift van.

"They're $60,000 new, and used about $30,000. We just don't have that kind of money," Bennett said.

Bennett said she was desperate to let the public know her struggles, so she contacted Eyewitness News with the #ABC7Eyewitness.

"I was just thinking, 'Well, I need to let people know what's going on, so we can get some help," Bennett said.

As lifting Joy's wheelchair into her minivan gets harder, Bennett is hoping to get help sooner rather than later.

"The reality is to care for her, I have to have a good back. I have to be able to maneuver her. If I can't maneuver her, she is stuck in bed for the rest of her life," Bennett said.

Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris found out about Bennett's hardship and decided to write a check for $2,000.

Parris and the city have also offered to co-sponsor a fundraiser for Bennett.

"I am so appreciative. That is just so kind," Bennett said.

Related Topics:
familywheelchair accessibledisabilitydisability issuesfundraiser#abc7eyewitnessLancasterLos Angeles County
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