Michael Jovan Ryg

Deaf AIDS Victim Needs Help


I am a deaf man. A little over a year ago I was diagnosed with AIDS. At that time, I was a big, healthy 230 pounds – energetic, and working hard to support myself. I was determined to maintain my health and keep a positive attitude. Suddenly, about three months ago, the AIDS virus attacked my immune system. Since then, I have been in and out of the hospital many times. I weigh about 150 pounds now, and am “tied” to an IV machine that dispenses medicine twice a day. When I am not in the hospital, I have to stay home all day and depend on my friends and family to take care of me.

This disease is, of course, very painful and has left me weak and dependent. The feeling of being a burden on my friends and loved ones is almost as painful as the disease. Every detail of my life has become an expensive chore, from taking a taxi to the clinic when I am too weak to take the bus; to buying protein drinks to keep my weight up to paying for an interpreter for doctor’s appointments or AIDS support group meeting. My SSI check goes so fast! Even paying my PG&E bills (it is getting harder and harder to keep warm) is difficult. The one bright spot is that I am lucky enough to have my experimental medicine paid for by MediCal. When the drug is finally approved by the government, MediCal will probably not pay for it and I will have to buy the expensive drug myself.

I am not telling your readers all of this so they will feel sorry for me. As a deaf man, I am well-acquainted with pity, and I sure don’t need that. The simple truth is that I am very much in need of financial help.

It is not easy to ask for donations. But my deaf community has always been part of my support system, and I feel they will understand and respond to my need. Whatever you can give will be greatly appreciated.

I thank you, in advance, for your help.

Sincerely, Jovan Ryg

Make checks payable to Jovan Ryg. Send to 584 Castro Street, Suite 102, San Francisco, CA 94114

Source: DCARA News via Darol Nance | Submitted by Meredith Peruzzi | Transcribed by Nanette Edwards


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