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Furnace donated to West Kelowna man who’s lived without heat for past two years

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West Kelowna senior and his family receive new furnace with help from the community – Dec 5, 2019

An 80-year-old West Kelowna man has not been able to pay to fix his broken furnace for over two years.

Kenneth Larden has suffered from multiple strokes, making him susceptible to cold weather.

Larden lives with his daughter and two grandchildren, who have been without central heating. He said that every night last winter, the four of them were forced to bundle up in multiple layers.

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“A lot of the time we were in winter clothes, wrapped up in blankets and we just made it through,” said Larden.

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When Larden told his friend, Paul Jackson, about the situation, everything changed for him and his family.

Jackson brought the issue to Braintrust Canada, a non-profit brain injury organization.

With the help of the community, Braintrust Canada was able to raise more than $6,000.

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Braintrust also reached out to Blair Plumbing, Heating and Cooling for an assessment of the old furnace. Once CEO Blair Husak heard of Larden’s situation, he took matters into his own hands.

“We did an assessment, sent one of technicians out. They needed a new furnace at the end of the day,” said Husak.

“(Then) . . . it just grew from there, let’s just wrap the package up and do the whole thing for them.”

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The new donated furnace will be installed on Friday. Larden says he couldn’t be more grateful.

“I want to say I’m very grateful. I want to say thank you very much to everyone that has donated,” said Larden.

“It shows to me that this whole West Kelowna and Kelowna people are beautiful.”

Larden says he will be using recent online funding to pay for other necessities, such as utilities and food.