Good People Doing Good Things — For Ronald Dembner

I was pondering yesterday afternoon about the Good People feature.  Some weeks, I consider skipping it altogether, but then I remember the comments from past good people posts, and I realize that this feature may well be the most important post I write all week.  I try to mix it up, sometimes featuring a single person who is helping others in a big way, other times featuring a number of people just like me and you, people who have nothing much more than their time and compassion to offer. Average Joes just like us, finding ways to help people, ways to be the person we all hope to find within ourselves. These people all inspire us, give us hope that good will win over the current evil we see everywhere we turn, and they maybe make us try to do just a little bit better in our own lives.  Today, I bring you a woman who inspired a community to help an elderly veteran.

Lauren-MulvihillLauren Mulvihill is a single mom and an Uber driver in the area of Stockbridge, Georgia.  She got the call last week to pick up an 89-year-old veteran named Ronald Dembner from the local Veteran’s hospital and take him to his home. Ronald Dembner-1But when Lauren arrived at Mr. Dembner’s home, she was aghast at the conditions in which he was living.  His home was a shambles, for Mr. Dembner has mobility problems and is not physically able to properly care for it.  Turns out, he was afraid that both his dog and his home would be taken from him if he asked for any sort of help.  He is a widower, both of his sons have died, and even the home care nurses had stopped coming to visit.

Well, Lauren Mulvihill may not have much money, but she has a heart of gold and she was not about to leave Mr. Dembner in those conditions!  She asked him if there was somebody … family or friend … that he could call to come help him, but the answer, sadly, was no.  Mr. Dembner was all alone except for his dog, King.  Lauren knew that with her own children to take care of, she couldn’t possibly clean and repair Mr. Dembner’s home by herself, so …

Helping Mr. RonaldWhat else could she do but post a call to arms on Facebook?  She created a public Facebook group  called Helping Mr. Ronald, and the response was overwhelming! Here are just a sampling of the responses …

  • Do you need flooring? My husband and I own a flooring company and would be happy to help.

  • Hello! Thank you for letting me join! I came across this beautiful story while browsing thru Life in Henry! You all are such an inspiration. I would love to volunteer my time in any way I can. I am a retired veteran, and I would like to share his story with a Veteran group here on Facebook. They may have some good info and resources available to Mr. Robert. Thank you all for what you are for this gentleman; there is an Army ethos from long ago….no fellow Soldier/man left behind…God bless Lauren Mulvihill for not leaving him behind!

  • I can’t drive but if there is laundry that needs to be done and caught up, if someone can bring to me in Jackson I will do it here at my home and get it all done. I also have a kennel that can be borrowed till fence is up to give King some outside time.

  • I have professional experience in cleaning and organizing. Let me know if I can help. I can make myself available whenever you need me.

Dozens of volunteers came forward and began to clean and help strip apart the house. In just a week’s time, they had already removed all of the garbage, the old furniture and the old carpet.


Volunteer Shaquin Thomas delivers Mr. Ronald food

The next step is painting the walls and putting in new floor. They’re also trying to get someone to come fix the mold situation  One husband/wife team provided free fencing, a vet saw to King’s rabies shots and flea treatment, another signed him up for Meals on Wheels, his home was cleaned top to bottom, someone else donated new flooring … and finally, the support was so overwhelming, Mr. Dembner couldn’t stop crying, and Lauren had to post …

Please no more visitors for Mr. Ronald unless you have spoke with me first. I think we are all forgetting he is still a person and has a lot going on right now. If you wish to stop or bring him anything just message me and I will work some time in for you!! Thank you so much everyone 😘😘😘

Dembner-MulvihillWow, huh?  Just wow.

This story isn’t about just one good people, though kudos and hats off to Ms. Lauren Mulvihill for having such a big heart and for getting this ball rolling, but this is about so many good people coming out in support of a man who served his country and now needs a helping hand.  These are the good people, my friends … these are the real people, the real heroes in this world.Helping-people-reason-quote.jpg

35 thoughts on “Good People Doing Good Things — For Ronald Dembner

    • Thanks Mary! Yes, of late I’ve felt myself giving in to despair, and I think you have to. It’s easy to do, but … when I see people coming together like this, I think maybe … just maybe there’s hope after all.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Jill, what a wonderful. Not only did Mulvihill garner help, she made sure it did not overwhelm him. That is also important. A friend who has been led efforts in helping disadvantage calls this a tendency to offer a “disproportionate response” to one to atone for the many. She understood this. Keith

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Keith! I’m glad you liked this. Like most people, I would not have thought about the help being overwhelming for Mr. Dembner, so it was certainly an astute observation on Ms. Mulvihill’s part! So much caring among these people. It warms the heart.


      • Jill, she is very astute. Usually, when we see it is a group of people adopt one family or person and they over give. In these circumstances, you have to guard against taking away someone’s dignity. My friend was the founding Executive Director for a non-profit group that helps homeless working families climb a ladder to self-sustaining housing. We helped them, but they did the climbing.

        There is an excellent book on the subject called “Toxic Charity” by Bob Gupton. His premise is charity should be reserved for emergencies. We better serve people in need by helping them help themselves. It maintains their dignity and helps them make sustainable change. Keith

        Liked by 1 person

        • Something you just said really struck a chord and the lightbulb came on for me. You said, “you have to guard against taking away someone’s dignity”. Remember before I had my eye surgeries and I was very nearly blind? My daughter would try to do things for me, and I would be either hurt or angry, for I felt she was taking away my autonomy. So yes, now I understand perfectly!

          I can agree with that premise that ‘charity should be reserved for emergencies’, with one caveat … where there are children involved. I never want to see a child go to bed hungry at night, and if my helping offends the parents … oh well, sorry.


  2. This actually brought tears to my eyes. Yes, there are lots of good people in the world. And kindness and caring will win the day.

    I have restarted a meditation routine and on social media am joining in with a group doing the same. I have seen some really sad stories there, but at the same time, have seen great support, caring and cooperation in that same space, to give comfort.

    We can use every tool (physical, mental, and emotional) to do good or bad, positive or negative. When our radar is set to positive, and doing good, we can change the world. When it is set the other way, we disempower ourselves, live in despair and allow in the bullies.

    I am trying now, to focus on the good. I need to be positive (glass half full) for my own sanity and so I can be a help to others. Focusing on what I can’t do, is pointless, and so is moaning about it. If we all pull together, we can change the world. The Uber Driver did a small, kind thing but look how that escalated into a new life for an old, tired, lonely man. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

      • Sorry it was a short comment Jill but WP has taken to randomly not posting my comments. They are intimating it’s folk blocking me, which since this would be Keith and Jerry to name but two is a co-op. I’m collecting info on it.
        In the meantime I have to write short comments….imagine the frustration of spending 5 mins crafting something and fining WP can’t be bothered! 🤬

        Liked by 1 person

        • I was having the same problem, but I found how to work around it. If it says, “This comment cannot be posted …”, go back one step, click “reply” and it will bring your comment back up. Highlight the text of your comment, click “copy”, then use the refresh button to refresh the screen. Hit “reply” again, paste the text you copied, hit “post comment”, then it should work. Yes, I agree, it is VERY frustrating to type a 100 word comment only to have it disappear into cyber-space! Try it and see if it works for you next time.

          Liked by 1 person

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