EMPTY STOCKING: Widow finds help -- and helps -- at Silver Key

ELLIE COLE Updated: December 7, 2012 at 12:00 am • Published: December 7, 2012

This is one of a series of stories about the 15 nonprofit agencies that receive money from The Gazette/El Pomar Foundation Empty Stocking campaign that runs through the holidays.

When Erin’s second husband died about four and a half years ago, she didn’t know how she was going to support herself emotionally and monetarily.

One of her friends recommended Silver Key, and so she decided to give it a try.

As she walked up to the building, she noticed a sign saying they were looking for volunteers at Silver Key, and she signed up immediately — even before they offered her any services.

“I hate being alone,” said Erin, whose real names is not being used to protect her privacy.

Silver Key provides services and information to senior citizens in El Paso County.

The agency helped Erin with groceries and the emotional support she needed.

“The moral support is fabulous,” she said.

Six months after losing her husband, she lost a daughter, and she said Silver Key was incredible.

“I was just going through a terrible time,” she said. Not only did they help her pay for her groceries, but they also stood by her and were so kind during a very difficult period.

Erin, 74, worked until she had to retire at age 68 from selling manufactured homes six years ago because of an infection in her leg and lungs. Her husband died shortly after that.

Now Erin lives on social security and volunteers at Silver Key, making phone calls and greeting visitors.

“Today, I’m doing fabulous,” she said.

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