Benji Whitnall has lived in the Quad Cities for over 12 years. He has been out of work for the time being because he had emergency Open Heart Surgery in February. After not being able to pay his bills, he became homeless. Things went from bad to worse rather quickly after the surgery.
“I was homeless when I got back here and unable to pay my rent or even provide utilities or supplies for myself every month on hygiene products and stuff.” Said Whitnall. “So I wound up sleeping in a garage for two and a half weeks.”
Being homeless after the surgery led to Whitnall being entered into Christian Care in Rock Island, but despite the help he has received, it hasn’t gotten any easier as he suffered another set back.
“It’s been a real struggle even since I’ve been here.” Whitnall said. “I just recently went back to work and now I’m out of work because I had an abscess in my chest wall from Open Heart Surgery cause I went back to work too early so now I’m out of work the next six weeks.”
Whitnall has been staying strong despite the tough times, but he says it did look bleak for him at one point.
“It’s just been a roller coaster ride. I really thought I was gonna die a couple weeks ago.”
Whitnall says that he is being taken care of extremely well at Christian Care and appreciates everything that they have done for him.
“I got a place to call home basically.” Said Whitnall. “My mail comes here, I shower, eat three meals a day, wash my clothes. So I mean I’m being taken care of.”
Whitnall says he’s unsure of what’s next for him as he recovers for the next six weeks.