After 70 years on Earth one would think things get easier, but Jeanne Breland has just hit one of the roughest patches she's ever known.
For the past 13 years Breland has lived on a chunk of desert in Silver Springs. She thought she'd live there the rest of her life. She said the owners told her as much.
In September she got notice to move.
"They said that I had first option of buying it for $52,500. I couldn't get $500, let alone $52,000. I told him there's no way I could afford it," she said. "I'm too old anyway with my health the way it is."
Since her husband died five years ago, Breland has been existing on Social Security, doling out $180 a month to keep her 1984 pink single-wide mobile home parked on Ardmore Street.
"With my income I can't do nothing, really."
She lives there with her three dogs, Mugsy, Brutus and Buddy. She doesn't bother anyone. The notice to move was almost too much.
"Upset isn't the word for it. I get crying spells, but ain't nothing I can do about it," she said.
Enter Tom Blomquist.
One of the things Breland has going for her is she's an animal lover.
Blomquist, the founder of the Silver Springs Spay and Neuter Project, is probably one of the biggest animal lovers in Lyon County.
Breland has three dogs. Blomquist gives dog food to people who neuter their pets.
On the day she got notice to move, he called to see if she needed anything.
"I guess he caught me when I was crying," she said. "I mentioned it to him and he said he was going to see what he could do."
Blomquist and friend Michael Cartwright had been pondering the purchase of some nearby land. The thought was to buy it as an investment, plop a trailer on there and become landlords. Breland's plight cemented their plan.
But there's one catch. Moving Breland's trailer is spendy. And the land isn't developed. No sewer, no phone, no electricity.
The Spay and Neuter Project is nonprofit. Blomquist does all his own fund-raising in addition to working as a banquet waiter and other odd jobs to make ends meet.
Cartwright earns his living as a sergeant in the Army National Guard. His unit is one slated for deployment soon.
Neither is a wealthy man.
"All together what this will cost us is about $2,000," Blomquist said.
He called Champions Manufactured Housing and general manager Steve Rose has agreed to help them move the trailer at rock-bottom prices.
The Moonlite Bunnyranch also anted up $500 they collected in a charity box that sits in the parlor.
Blomquist is hoping the public will come up with the rest.
Breland is embarrassed by the charity. She forgets what a soft touch Blomquist is.
"I never asked nobody for nothing and I never asked Tom, but he came up to try to help me," she said. "I just feel funny anybody helping me. But they say there's a time everybody has to have help. I just wanna be with my doggies. That's about the only thing I got."
With this move, Blomquist's and Cartwright's dreams of finding financial independence through real estate have gone up in dust. Yet, the duo is happy to help.
"We are just giving her a place where she and her dogs can live out their days in peace," Blomquist said. "Besides, I've always liked the idea of having a pink trailer on the lot next to me."
You can help
Donations may be made to the Silver Springs Spay-Neuter Project at P.O. Box 403 Silver Springs, 89429. For more information call 577-3518.
- Contact reporter F.T. Norton at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1213.