Lavonne Fedoronczuk never thought she’d have to worry about finding a new home ever again. For the past 32 years, the 73-year-old woman and her husband have lived in the same home in Oak Park, California.
Living on a fixed income, they were comfortable where they were. But after three decades, they’d never imagined they would be forced to move.
But that’s the situation the Fedoronczuks found themselves in when their landlord announced he was going to sell the property—and they only had 30 days to vacate.
The announcement sent Lavonne into turmoil—she had no idea where they would go or what they would do. Not only was it last minute, they had very little resources to buy a new home. They were seriously facing potential homelessness.
“I was afraid we were going to have to put everything in storage and go live in our car,” Fedoronczuk told CBS13.
Lavonne was stressed out and feeling hopeless—things got so bad that she started having suicidal thoughts. During a phone call with Sacramento Self-Help Housing, she couldn’t hold back her emotions.
“I started crying, and I said, ‘You know, if this keeps up, I may as well go to the kitchen, blow the pilot lights out of the gas stove, and just turn everything on.'”
The operator took Lavonne’s dark thoughts seriously and called the police. Twenty minutes after their call, Officer Beth Glynn, from the Sacramento Police Department’s Impact Team, a mental health outreach service, arrived at the Fedoronczuks’s door.
Glynn sat down with Fedoronczuk and learned her story. Seeing this woman, at her age, go through such turmoil hit close to home for Glynn.
“When I knocked on the door and I spoke with her—this woman, she’s my mom’s age,” Glynn told KCRA.
“And I’m thinking this could be my mom, your mom, anybody’s mom,” she added to CBS13.
Glynn knew she had to help the Fedoronczuks, but wasn’t sure how. So she enlisted the help of one of her fellow officers, Det. Tina Mortenson, who was equally affected by the story and agreed to help out.
“It’s a situation you never want to be in,” Mortenson told CBS13.
Mortenson then realized she knew another officer, Det. Sgt. Lisa Maneggie, who had a close contact with a local real estate company.
She agreed to help find the couple a new home.
“We really just wanted to help these people find a nice place to live,” Maneggie told KCRA.
Together, the officers got a great deal on a house—one the Fedoronczuks could move into in only a week.
It was the perfect last-minute solution. But the officers didn’t end there.
Instead of leaving the septuagenarians to pack up and move on their own, the officers decided to take care of that, too. Half a dozen police officers and their families volunteered—on their day off—to show up and move boxes for the Fedoronczuks.
“I think there was about six or eight other people and they all showed up with their pickup trucks and trailers,” Fedoronczuk told KCRA.
“And they moved in like a cyclone: Everything was out, everything was here in three hours.”
Fedoronczuk was blown away by the officers’ kindness.
“What can I say but thank you,” she told CBS13.
“They’re good Samaritans. I feel they should get all the recognition in the world.”
Fedoronczuk even credits Glynn with saving her life. But the officers have remained modest about their help.
“It’s what we like to do,” Mortenson told KCRA. “That’s why we’re here. We don’t do it for any other reason other than to help people.”
“I just hope that they can live the rest of our lives nice and comfortably and not have to worry about something like this again,” she told CBS13.