With local legislators and council members speaking out about keeping the Commonwealth's Center for Children and Adolescents open, one Valley woman's efforts to get her son the help he needs may be coming to fruition.
Staunton resident Julie Irvine has been working tirelessly for the past couple weeks to try to get the CCCA to stay open.
Her son, Gabe, has been treated there, but it was announced last month that the center would be closing in June. Since then, Irvine has sent letters to 450 people, including every Virginia legislator, trying to get that changed.
Irvine says, "I have emailed them all. I have faxed most of them. Some of them got all three. So I think it has been very effective on getting the word out there."
Her efforts may be paying off. Del. Chris Saxman made a personal phone call to Irvine and they talked about the future of the hospital.
She says, "He was very proactive in getting in contact with me."
With legislators on her side, Irvine says she has a new sense of hope knowing that the efforts to keep the hospital open aren't a lost cause.
She adds, "It makes me feel very hopeful for these kids. The problem is there are no services in play right now."
She says, while exposing her son's situation to the public isn't the way she would have preferred to get Gabe and the hospital help, she realizes it may continue to be the only way.
She says, "A John Doe story, when a parent doesn't want to come out with a name, doesn't quite mean as much. It doesn't really affect people."
The Augusta County Board of Supervisors is also learning more about the situation at the CCCA. They have decided to write a formal letter to the governor requesting information on what this could mean for children in the county.