Our program helps families navigate through unimaginable circumstances. A few of our families volunteered to share their story. We hope they will inspire someone else.
By a NetJets employee
My husband and I were married in 1997 and, of course, we wanted to start a family right away. After six years of trying to conceive, we had a perfect baby boy. Although I was hospitalized for five weeks prior to his arrival and he was eight weeks pre-mature, he is now a 12-year-old well-rounded young man. We could not be happier or more proud of him. Wanting to expand our family, we continued trying to have another child to no avail. And then in December 2012, to our surprise, I found out I was pregnant and due in September the following year. We were very excited and nervous at the same time, as I was 44 years old. The first five months were great, with no issues, and my doctor was very happy with how my pregnancy was progressing. And then on the early morning of May 8, 2013 at 5:00 a.m, I woke to find that my water had broke. We immediately rushed to the hospital, however, there was nothing that could be done. Knowing our son was not going to survive, it was just a waiting game at this point. As labor progressed throughout the day and into the next morning, I delivered our son at 2:07a.m. on May 9, 2013. He was with us for just a few minutes before he took his last breath. We were devastated.
When I found out the grant was approved, I was extremely grateful and appreciative. There is no type of life insurance offered for a situation like this. It all comes out of pocket and is extremely expensive. The NetJets Family Foundation (NJFF) helped our family during a very difficult time. Burying our son was the last thing we wanted to do, and to have the financial stress on top of it is exhausting. The NJFF took that burden from us.
I had heard about the NJFF through word of mouth. I formely worked in Owner Services and had heard bits and pieces about the program through the NJ Front Page and general conversation with co-workers. My initial thoughts before I even needed to use the program was that it sounded fantastic and was a great idea: I have never worked for a company that had a program solely for the purpose of helping their employees during difficult times.
By NetJets Flight Attendant Susie
When I was 15 years old, I was diagnosed with a Medulla Blastoma Brain Tumor. I underwent a year of chemo and radiation treatments, and survived this very deadly childhood condition. However, years later, when I was 28 years old, I found out I had another brain tumor called a meningioma. This type of brain tumor is caused by radiation treatments. I took five months off from flying to undergo surgery, and since that surgery, I was diagnosed with skin cancer. This is also due to the numerous radiation treatments. Furthermore, in 2014, doctors detected an additional brain tumor they are currently watching. No surgery is scheduled at this time.
As you can see, I have been through a lot. During all this, I obviously take time off work. This is either for treatment or to manage the stress I go through the week leading up to an MRI, wondering what results may change my life. I could go on and on, but I will stop. Ha.
I was on a trip and my pilots were asking about my recovery and welcoming me back to work. They were amazed at how fast I came back after treatment, and I spoke to them about the financial stress my family has been through. One of the pilots told me about the Foundation, which I knew nothing about. I was not interested for a while. You never want to ask for help. I have been fighting cancer since I was 15 years old, and I have learned to be incredibly strong. Asking for help is not something I do.
As I write this I have tears in my eyes. My parents don't even know my husband and I asked for help. I have too much pride, and for this reason, I'm always doing things on my own. Even while I have another brain tumor, I keep the stress to myself to show that it doesn't bother me and I don't need help. I can’t put into words how having our debt disappear made a world of difference. I need to focus my time on fighting this cancer to show my daughter how strong I am and not stressing over bills. My energy, thanks to this Foundation, goes towards my attitude and not bills.
Here come the waterworks again. If I can learn to ask for help anyone can. I've been fighting cancer for 21 years of my life: Everyone handles it differently. I’ve used laughter to get through all of my struggles, but what I have struggled with the most is asking for help. This Foundation showed me that it’s OK. I don't think people want to feel judged on their finances. I never felt that way. The Foundation helped me realize they are here to help and not judge.
I was in Columbus and the Foundation Manager sat down with me to tell me I was receiving the help I was hoping for. If you can tell by now I cry a lot. And yes, I was again a ball of mess. I was so happy and couldn't wait to call my husband.
A few years ago, I was forced to take a medical leave of absence due to conditions that left my physicians searching for answers. As time went on, my hope began to fade, and my medical bills began to pile up. I had exhausted all of my resources, and didn’t know how I would pay the bills in the months ahead.
These circumstances left me staying awake all night and in a constant state of worry all day. My appearance was disheveled, and eventually, I entered into a deep state of depression and had lost all hope. When I finally hit rock bottom, it became clear that I needed help.
Ashamed to ask for help, I contacted the NJFF manager. As we talked on the telephone, she quickly reassured me that NJFF fully understands and frequently assists NetJets employees who fall into urgent situations beyond their control.
In all honesty, I was holding back tears during that telephone call because I had long lost hope. After she explained the application process, which sounded entirely reasonable, I quickly gathered and mailed all of my financial documents. A few short weeks later, the Manager called me with great news. I was awarded a grant.
When the check arrived in the mail, my hands shook with humility and immense gratitude. I continued seeking medical help, and eventually found therapies to keep my medical condition from worsening. I could not have gotten through that stressful time without help from the NJFF.
Any person can quickly find themselves facing an unforeseen circumstance. Please do not wait until your stress is so bad that you are left feeling overwhelmed and worrying day in and day out. Our NJFF is here to help.