Stories from Chaffee, Custer, Fremont & Lake Counties

This page features stories from Chaffee, Custer, Fremont & Lake Counties. Listen to these stories, visit our Featured Stories page, or search for stories by topic or by location.


Nancy – Salida, CO

Nancy_SquareNancy, a resident of Salida, CO, shares her story of developing and receiving treatment for Guillain–Barré syndrome. Within days, Nancy went from leading an active lifestyle to being completely paralyzed.  She describes her emotional experience on the road to recovery.

“When I was at the first hospital it was like a nice big round room and all glass windows and I could see the nurses’ station and I was comfortable there…But then, at the second hospital it was more private and the doors were closed and I could see anybody and I was afraid and I was upset and I was depressed.  I just couldn’t understand what was going on.”


Julie – Salida, CO

JulieD_SquareJulie works at an oral health program in Chaffee County.  She shares the story of the impact of oral health on one local woman’s life.

“Part of it was because she worked in the restaurant business, had been for a long time…and as her teeth got worse she was pulled out of the public’s eye and she became a dishwasher and made less money. And so, she was really wanting to get her teeth back so she could have a higher paying job.”


John – Chaffee County

John_SquareJohn, a resident of Chaffee County, discusses his son’s lifelong condition of cystic fibrosis.  He explains that while his son has not been able to receive a lung transplant he has been able to lead a fulfilling and active life.

“He has surprised [the doctors] a whole lot of times because he’ll get way down and then he’ll snap back up.  So, we’re hoping that that rubber band keeps on working and he stays alive for longer than the next year.”


Cheryl – Chaffee County

Cheryl describes Cheryl_Squareher experience working with her two siblings to identify a quality long term health care facility for their mother who has dementia.  While there was information available to assist them, Cheryl and her siblings found themselves in a very demanding situation.

“What I think was sad about that, though, was that we were so inundated with the practical matters that it was difficult to deal with what was going on in our family, the dynamic of our family.  You know, our mother was, for all intents and purposes, gone.”

Carolyn and William

Carolyn & William – Chaffee County

Carolyn_William_SqaureCarolyn, a resident of Chaffee County, was in need of finding a provider that could help rehabilitate her body.   She is referred to William, a massage therapist in Chaffee County, and not only does she begin to regain physical mobility but she experiences personal growth.

William: “One day Carolyn said to me, ‘William, why do you work so hard on me?’…and I said, ‘Carolyn, I believe in you!’ And she came back with the zinger…
Carolyn: “My response was, ‘Well, you’re making me start to believe in myself.”


Angela – Chaffee County

AngelaAngela, a young woman living in Salida, had been experiencing a number of chronic symptoms including pain and nausea for a long period of time but was unable to access appropriate care because of lack of insurance and affordability.  Due to recent changes in eligibility she was able to enroll in Colorado’s Adults without Dependent Children Medicaid Program, connect to a primary care provider and see a specialist who was ultimately able to make an accurate diagnosis.

“I would go in and out of the hospitals…and it would just be like take an ibuprofen, this will pass it’s just migraines, you know, nothing’s wrong.  And after a while I began to believe it, maybe I was just making things up or they were right.”