Editor's note: Contact7 seeks out audience tips and feedback to help people in need, resolve problems and hold the powerful accountable. If you know of a community need our call center could address, or have a story idea for our investigative team to pursue, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (720) 462-7777. Find more Contact7 stories here.
FREDERICK, Colo. -- The couple from Frederick with the $1,600 toll bill will no longer have to worry about paying it, thanks to Contact7 and a generous Denver7 viewer.
Harold and Cynthia Vale drove the Northwest Parkway to get to doctors appointments for months without getting a bill. When it did come, it was more than $200. The couple, both sick and on Social Security, couldn’t pay.
“Finally they turned it into a collections agency, and the bill was $1,667,” Harold told Denver7.
The Vales called Contact7, and their story ran last week.
“Very quickly we got a call from the customer service manager,” Vale explained. “She said we’ll take all penalties off and well let you start at the original and pay 25 dollars a month.”
That was good news. But it still left the couple, on a fixed income and just a month away from the start of Harold’s chemotherapy, in a tough situation.
“We’re going through a lot of things with my cancer. Copays, medicine, copays, all that stuff, travel. It will be very, very difficult,” he said.
But after that original story aired, it wasn’t just the Parkway that responded. A Denver7 viewer volunteered to pay the remaining $247 balance.
The Vales were shocked.
“That’s fantastic. How about that dear? That’s great. That’s so good. Thank you,” they said.
It just so happened that the news was delivered as the couple was celebrating their 29th wedding anniversary.
“It restores my faith in mankind,” Cynthia Vale said through tears. “So whoever that is out there we thank you so much.”
The viewer who paid the bill did not want to be identified, and simply said in an email to Contact7 “now they can use the money elsewhere each month.”