Grants Pass couple battling cancer has power shut off

GRANTS PASS, Ore. – A Josephine County couple battling cancer has had their power shut off.

Doug Estes was born and raised in Grants Pass. Forty four years ago he married his wife, Kathy. Little did he know the medical struggles they would face.

“Ten years ago the wife had breast cancer, and then 10 years, pretty much close, she was diagnosed with throat cancer,” Estes told NBC5.

Estes and his wife have been fighting medical issues for a long time and his has been the only income for nearly 20 years because of it.

He says things really got tricky around 2020.

“She has a tracheotomy tube still in her throat, which requires oxygen at the house, a special mist machine that keeps her mucus thin,” he explained. “That heated moisture needs to be in there to keep it going so she can , so she can breathe.”

Estes says his wife has died and been resuscitated multiple times in the past.

With the amount of medical bills they have, along with other necessities like food and rent, the electric bills fell behind.

“It just got to a point where it was excessive enough, even with a medical note from a doctor, it still got shut off.”

Estes says this time his wife has been in the hospital since Friday. He hopes with some new equipment they won’t have to be back to the hospital for at least a little while.

He says for now he and his wife plan to stay with their daughter until they know what to do next.

He has one message for the community. “Just help. And thank everybody for what they have done and whatever else comes around. Just, bottom of my heart, thank you for everybody.”

The Estes have a gofundme page set up and they welcome any support they can get.

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NBC5 News Reporter Lauren Pretto grew up in Livermore, California and attended University of California, Santa Cruz, graduating with a double major in Film/Digital Media and Literature with a concentration in Creative Writing. Lauren is a lover of books, especially Agatha Christie and Gothic novels. When her nose isn't buried in a book, she knits, bakes, and writes.
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