Letters: Stolen Tubas, Uninsured Unemployed

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Melissa Block and Audie Cornish read emails from listeners on stolen tubas and the uninsured unemployed.


From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.


I'm Melissa Block and it's time now for your letters.

CORNISH: And this correction. Last week, we told you about a group of important people who had been somewhat overlooked throughout history - vice presidents. During our story, we said that John Adams was the first veep to ascend to the presidency with 14 others having gone on to the top job after him.

BLOCK: Sadly, we miscounted. Only 13 others, so 14 total, have become president.

CORNISH: Now to your letters. Yesterday, we wrapped up our Road Back to Work series. Our reporter, Tamara Keith, has been following six people in the area around St. Louis, Missouri. They began last year unemployed and searching for work. Yesterday, we heard how hard it's been for them to find affordable health insurance.

BLOCK: One of those people is Annica Trotter. As we reported yesterday, she had to go to an emergency room after having chest pains.

ANNICA TROTTER: Not only am I worried about the pain that I'm having and how frequent it's been over the last couple weeks, I'm worried about the money. I can't afford this. I cannot afford this today.

CORNISH: Well, those words stayed with David Pilkington(ph) of Grays Lake, Illinois, who writes, Ms. Trotter's story was exceptionally heart rending. Special thanks to Ms. Keith for this series and for the brave people who have allowed their struggles to be heard.

BLOCK: Well, among those brave people, Randy Howland, and we have an update about him. As we heard in our story, he has suffered from seizures, but without health insurance, he was unable to get regular blood tests and other monitoring. And, as Randy's wife Lisa told us, their situation, at times, has seemed out of their control.

LISA HOWLAND: There's nothing I can do about it. I just have to get up every day, say my prayers and hope that somebody's watching out for us.

CORNISH: Well, good news from Randy. Late last night, he emailed us this. Lisa and I have health insurance as of today. Huge deductible to save money, but we've got it.

BLOCK: Thanks to Randy and to our listeners for writing. You can reach us at NPR.org. Click on Contact Us at the bottom of the page.

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