Skala Family

Campaign Created by: Jena Smith

The funds from this campaign will be received by Jena Smith.

Goal: USD $25,000
Raised: USD $ 35,385
Our beloved friends George and Fernanda need our help.

On 9/7/19, after working a night shift, George had a massive heart attack. He was rushed to the closest hospital and upon arrival they realized they could not treat the severity of his condition so he was transpoted  UMPC downtown Pittsburg where they performed heart surgery.  Following surgery he was bleeding,  causing another surgery and discovery of a heart aneurysm. 

The next morning he had considerable swelling of his head leading to yet another surgery, a Craniectomy (removal of part of the skull to relieve pressure). This was due to  a massive stroke.  There is some loss of brain function, but we do not know the extent as he not fully responsive. There are many other medical complications that are on hold because of the trama to his body. He will need other surgeries due to these complications, including surgery to reattach the part of the skull that was removed. He remains in ICU on life support.

He has had his loving wife Fernanda by his side tirelessly taking care of him. As of this month they will have minimal  to no income and as you can imagine medical bills are astronomical with no apparent end in sight.  He will need some kind of long term care and/or rehab. None of the details are clear as he is still in ICU.

We ask first for the most important gift, prayer. And  then please consider giving a financial gift to this family if you feel so led; whether it be a one time gift or a monthly donation. 

We will keep you informed on this page as we can. Thank you so much.



Update #10
October 20, 2021
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Hi Everyone, It's been a few months since I've updated you on George and Fernanda.

George is still home and Fernanda takes care of him 24/7. Since we last spoke George has had his feet amputated. 
We are now praying that his fingers auto-amputate. Yes, that is a thing. The reason we are praying for that is it is very difficult for George to undergo another surgery. Last time, he had another heart attack. Not to mention that he can not be put under anesthesia. He was awake last two surgeries and also for other procedures that we would be knocked out for.

It's impossible to move George from bed since he's been home. Not only because he's paralyzed but also because they are still living in a one room/efficiency apt with no room to be able to have help. We are praying that God opens a door for them to move into at least a one bedroom apt and have some help. I pray everyday for George to feel the sunlight on his face again someday; and for Fernanda to have help, a bed to sleep in, and a few minutes a day to sit and relax.

George still has a large part of his skull that has not been re-attached because his heart can not withstand that kind of surgery not to mention the risk of his body rejecting it. He is on MUCH medication daily and many hours in much pain.

The good news is that he still has much love for Jesus and his sense of humor. Fernanda rests in the Lord and depends on Him for everything, all day long. She loves her George and he still can make her laugh - my favorite thing that I have the priviledge to  see and hear.

I would ask you to please pray for these two precious people and if you feel so led, help as God leads you.

Thank you and God bless you

Update #9
December 22, 2020
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Hi Everyone, It's been a few months since I've updated you on George and Fernanda.

As you know this has been a tough year for all of us—but especially for those who need medical care.

George had to leave the nursing home several months ago because of complications that took him to the hospital. Due to Covid risk, once he left, he could not return. The only option was to go home. As hard as it was for Fernanda to take care of him on her own, she felt going home was blessing because of George's risk of virus infection. Plus if he remained in the nursing home, she could not get to him. 

He was recently hospitalized for more than 40 days because of another mild heart attack and infection in his foot. Due to the chance of further infection, the doctors decided to amputate his feet. We knew this was coming but because of  the virus risk and his body's ability to withstand surgery, they put it off until it became absolutely necessary. It's been a long and painful process. They are now back home—he's slowly recovering—it could take many months, possibly up to a year to heal from the amputation.

The challenges they both face are more than I could ever describe. I am awed by their faith as they fully depend on God in every area of their lives. We give Him all the glory for making a way for Fernanda to be with George while he was in the hospital and for protecting them both from the virus but especially for holding them up all these months.

Fernanda has asked me to let you know how extremely grateful they both are to all who have prayed, encouraged and financially supported them—especially in and through this difficult season we've all had to endure. Your kindness and generosity is appreciated beyond words.

Thank you and Merry Christmas from the Skala and Smith families! God bless you!

Update #8
June 23, 2020
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Hi Family,
Today is George's 60th Birthday. It is a victory and miracle that God has brought him to this 60th year. He has given George a peace that can only come from God Himself. He is living out the Joy of the Lord.
We have personally seen, and Fernanda has shared with us, many stories about George bringing a smile to all those that God brings before him. Whether it's friends, doctors, nurses or other patients.
He is an encourger in spite of his circumstances.
Both Fernanda and George wanted to say thank you for being a part this victory! Your prayers and financial help in their time of need is much appreciated and they are beyond grateful.
Thank you. Thank you. 

Update #7
March 24, 2020
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George is in bad shape. Fernanda had to leave the nursing home last Thursday because of the virus. This has been very  difficult for them. She was preparing to take him home this week but today they found him with his feet black due to no circulation. They are rushing him to the hospital. Please pray for him, for her (as she doesn't know it they will let her be with him) and protection from the virus. He is so compromised! Please pray!

Update #6
March 12, 2020
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URGENT PRAY REQUEST...The insurance company's final decision was to not renew George in the nursing home. The coverage ended on March 9th which means that they are going to have to pay themselves until Fernanda can make arrangements to take him home. And she is not even sure what that looks like as it will be a very difficult process to get things in place, not to mentiont the difficulties of taking care of him at home. 

Please pray!  And please give as you feel lead to help our friends.
Thank you.

Update #5
February 26, 2020
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Hi Friends,

As of today, George is still in the assisted living nursing home. He is the most popular guy in the place and finds it in him daily to put a smile on the faces of those around him. He is a blessing no matter how difficult things get! And the way Fernanda's leans into God is beautiful and more than I can express in words. 

The doctors feel that he is not yet strong enough to have the surgeries he needs. One of the biggest hurdles is the insurance company wavering on whether or not they will cover the facility. At this point, it's a week to week process. As you can imagine, this can be very stressful. He has been receiving physical therapy, as well as wheelchair and cognitive therapy, which is much needed.  If Fernanda has to take him home it will be very difficult to take care of him as he is paralyzed on his left side, not to mention his many other physical needs.

As I stated in my last  post, with insurance difficulties, lack of income and uncertain future medical needs,  the financial situation for George and Fernanda remains extremely difficult. Please continue to pray and consider any support you are lead to give. Even the smallest gift is appreciated. 

Thank you!

Update #4
December 20, 2019
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Hello Family and Friends,

George has been moved to an assisted facility. He will still need a number of surgeries (including the bone in his skull) and we are not sure when that will happen. In the meantime he had some significant complications.
With insurance difficulties, lack of income and uncertain future medical needs,  the financial situation for George and Fernanda remains extremely difficult. Please continue to pray and consider any support you are lead to give.
Even the smallest gift is appreciated. 

Thank You!

Update #3
December 3, 2019
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Hello Friends and Family,

George is fully awake and the trake has been removed. They still have not been able to put the bone back in his skull because the swelling remains and it's too dangerous. His left side is paralized, along with seveal other complications.
He is still, as of today, in the hospital rehab facility and making some progress but not hitting the milestones required by insurance. This is a big problem as it seems, due to this, it is  likely that they will stop coverage of this facility and move him to a place that has  much less care, staff  with no rehab at all. Fernanda is by his side taking care of him and his needs 24/7. Income has stopped.  Please keep praying for our beautiful friends for strength and pray that  God performs another miracle as they/we trust Him. Thank you!

Update #2 - 11/10/19
November 10, 2019
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To our Faithful Friends and Family,

We spoke to George today by phone and it was wonderful to hear his voice.  He was a little difficult to understand as he continues to have a trach tube installed.  We wanted to update you with his status.

George has been moved to a re-hab facility after being denied previously.  It was a complicated situation due to beaurocracy, insurance, and agreement of doctors on his eligiblity.  However, do to a miraculous turn of events, God touched one doctor's heart to approve him for rehab.  We are very hopeful for a continued recovery but at this time are not sure what that will look like.  The current situation indicates paralasis of his left side and additional surguries required.  This will be a very long road of therapy and recovery.

As of November 16, insurance that was covered through his work will be discontinued as his Job has been terminated.  As a result, he will need to change coverage to COBRA, a very expensve gap insurance, that will need to be paid 100% by George and Fernanda.  As previously shared, they have no source of income.

If you are so led, consider supporting them as you are able.  Thank you for your continued prayer and support of our friends.

Jeff and Jena Smith

Update #1
October 23, 2019
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To our Faithful Friends and Family,

We will have a detailed update soon, but I wanted to reach out and  thank each of you for being so generous and for your faithful prayers. 

George is having many complications and Fernanda has been by his side every waking moment. Please continue to be our prayer worriers and share this page with everyone you know as they are in need of prayer and financial support.

Thank you from our whole hearts


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