In mid-2008, my mid-40s friend was laid off from his job as a union sheet metal worker, but his insurance continued until early 2009.

In late 2008, he was diagnosed with Type-II diabetes. When his coverage ended, he applied for MaineCare, only to be denied since his unemployment check put him above the allowable threshold.

So he was unable to afford to see his doctor, purchase medication or test strips for blood sugar monitoring. That basically left a potentially life-threatening situation go untreated.

He was angry, afraid and at a loss. He never dreamed something like that could happen. He was a veteran, owned his home and had been gainfully employed since he was 15, was working with the CareerCenter and attending Central Maine Community College in a degree program to make him more employable during a time when nobody could find work. He did everything society says he should do, yet that was not enough.

He finally found work with affordable insurance in 2012 which enabled him to deal with his medical condition.

That is a true story; he is me and that is why I am voting yes on the expansion of Medicaid in Maine in November. No one should be denied access to health care, even if it costs a few more dollars in taxes.

And for those who say “It could never happen to me” — just remember “never” is a very long time and no one’s present situation is guaranteed. Anyone could have an unexpected medical situation.

Joseph Mailey, Auburn

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