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  • Upper East Tennessee Human Development Agency

81 – Going On 21: Helping Mrs. Miller in her time of need

If anyone has had the opportunity to meet Ms. Juanita Miller, then they have had an opportunity of a lifetime. Seriously, this spry 81-year-old lady is just full of spunk and joy! Ms. Miller is one of the best advocates for our programs as she has not only been a participant in our programs, but also as a volunteer. Ms. Miller has utilized our energy and fuel assistance program and our commodities for years but did not know about our other programs until recently.

Destruction fell on Ms. Miller’s home in May, 2021 when storm-packing, straight-line winds hit her home with downed trees and power lines. She had to be assisted from her home by the Hampton Volunteer Fire Department (photo below). They took Ms. Miller to a local hotel, where she is still residing until her home is repaired.

Ms. Miller’s only vehicle was totaled by downed trees from the storm. Ms. Miller reached out to Crystal Dugger at the Neighborhood Service Center in Elizabethton. That is when the wheels starting rolling. Crystal introduced her to our vehicle purchase program. Needless to say, she had no transportation to be able to go to doctor’s appointments, grocery store, etc.

Through the Community Services Vehicle Purchase Program, our agency was able to pay $3,000 toward the purchase of a car and Ms. Miller’s insurance paid the remainder.

Ms. Miller stated, “I went to the car lot to pick up the car and they had the windows down and I didn’t know how to put them up!” “I definitely got an upgrade from my old Buick to a newer model.” She said, “thanks to everyone at the agency and for all of the help and God bless each and every one.” She also said she will continue to volunteer because she is a witness to what Upper East Tennessee Human Development Agency has done for her and it is her way to give back. With Ms. Miller’s energy level, she really is 81, but going on 21!

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