As Walter Veal cared for residents at the Ludeman Developmental Center in suburban Chicago, he saw the potential future of his grandson, who has autism.
So he took it on himself not just to bathe and feed the residents, which was part of the job, but also to cut their hair, run to the store to buy their favorite body wash and barbecue for them on holidays.
“They were his second family,” said his wife, Carlene Veal.
Even after COVID-19 struck in mid-March and cases began spreading through the government-run facility, which serves nearly 350 adults with developmental disabilities, Walter was determined to go to work, Carlene said.
Staff members were struggling to acquire masks and other personal protective equipment at the time, many asking family members for donations and wearing rain ponchos sent by professional … Read the rest