Local veteran left without heat during bitter temperatures - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM


Local veteran left without heat during bitter temperatures

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During some of the coldest days of the year, a local veteran in West Springfield is without a working furnace.

He told Western Mass News he's been without heat since February of last year.

He's in his eighties and has been sleeping on the couch in his living room for months using an electric heater to try and keep warm.

Navy Veteran Raymond A. Benoit would like a warm home to live in.

Last February, Raymond discovered a broken furnace in his mobile home.

He called 'Valley Opportunity Council' for fuel assistance and said they told him they'd get him a new furnace.

Western Mass News reached out the organization, but to no avail.

And Raymond is still waiting too. He told Western Mass News how he tries to keep warm in this arctic weather.

"With the electric heater in my living room. I've been sleeping on the sofa."

Raymond's sister Lorraine Pickard told Western Mass News that her brother stays positive, warming his home with two electric heaters.

Raymond leaves his faucets running to avoid frozen pipes and keeping his water heater warm by leaving the closet door open.

As for now, he waits for the call that his furnace is ready.

"He sits home all the time. He can't go out. Afraid to miss the phone call," said Lorraine.

We also spoke to West Springfield Veterans Services, who told us they are hoping to pay for Raymond's electric bill, which has been very high, because he's been running those two electric heaters for months.

Copyright 2018 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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