By Jamie Leary
DENVER (CBS4)– After losing her husband to carbon monoxide poisoning, Patricia Chapman’s grief was compounded by the fact that she couldn’t stay in her own home.
A faulty furnace was to blame. When Bob Champan turned it on, carbon monoxide poured into the home. Patricia survived only because she was breathing through an oxygen tube. She is in remission from lung cancer.
“While she was breathing the oxygen from the oxygen concentrator, he was breathing the carbon monoxide and it unfortunately it took one life but another was spared in the process.” Said Alan White, Patricia and Bob Champan’s son-in-law.
After sharing their story with CBS4 on Monday, the reaction from the community was instant. Emails poured in with requests to help.
Brothers Redevelopment and Daniels Fund helped provide the funds for the new furnace. Trade winds heating and cooling stepped up to install it. Altitude Comfort said it would volunteer to be the backup company if anything else was needed.
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The home, located in the historic San Rafael neighborhood, was built in the late 1800’s. The amount of work required to bring it to code and get Patricia home was extensive.
Aside from a new furnace, there was asbestos, electric and duct work that needed to be done. The cost was upwards of $10,000. Brother’s Redevelopment, a Denver non-profit, made a donation and Trade Winds had the massive project done in one day.
“The humanity, the kindness… the outpouring of support from complete strangers… ya know if there is ever a way to pay things forward, do it. We just could not be more overwhelmed with the love and support we’ve received from the community,” said White.
The generosity didn’t stop there. The Urban League of Metropolitan Denver donated $500 to the family and Denver Councilman Albus Brooks matched it. That money will go towards getting Patricia a lift to get up the stairs.
The Urban League decided to go one step further. It has purchased $1,000 worth of carbon monoxide detectors to give out to anyone who needs a detector. All you have to do is stop by its headquarters.
Neighbors have started a GoFundMe page to help Patricia.
Jamie Leary joined the CBS4 team in 2015 and currently works as a reporter for CBS4 News at 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. She couldn’t imagine a better place to live and work and will stop at nothing to find the next great story. Jamie loves learning about and hearing from her fellow community members, so connect with her on Facebook or Twitter @JamieALeary.