While we are all busy living, we often are not aware of some special things going on around us.

A blind, handicapped, diabetic vet requires regular visits to Hines Hospital. Neither he nor his wife drives, so they depend on PeopleCare, a group of volunteers who drive people to and from their appointments.

The vet’s wife works as a nurse’s assistant and visits and tends to seniors at home and in nursing homes. She either walks or takes public transportation to her destinations. Recently, she had a crown crack on an impacted tooth.

Having no dental insurance, she inquired with a few dentists and was floored by the possible expense — money she and her husband didn’t have.

One of the PeopleCare volunteers gave her the name of a dentist who is top quality but also works with the needy. This dentist did X-rays and confirmed the damage and recommended a quality surgeon. He charged her only for the X-rays.

She went to the oral surgeon and, by coincidence, her PeopleCare driver had been treated by this same surgeon six years earlier. The driver talked to the surgeon and explained the lady’s situation, and he asked the surgeon for a copy of the bill in the hope that the St. Vincent DePaul Society of a local church might help.

After a bit of reminiscing, the surgeon released a copy of the bill, but only after giving a big discount to help out.

The warmth of the original dentist and staff and the warmth of the surgeon and his staff (along with his hefty discount and sharing the bill) allowed the bill to be submitted to the St. Vincent group, which paid the balance.

An interested volunteer, two dentists and their staffs and the St Vincent DePaul Society were able to take care of a bad situation, and the problem and cost were taken care of.

Needless to say, the lady was brought to tears. A lot of us are not aware of the goodness out there, but it shows we can rally around a vet and his family who have given much to all of us.

Jim Zak

North Riverside