Boston Marathon bombing victims Paul and JP Norden now have $1.2 million dollars each at their disposal thanks to The One Fund, an organization providing charitable assistance to the injured and their families. But the money comes as little consolation for their pain, and the brothers claim it could even worsen their financial situation.
Both men lost a leg in the attack, and received health care via Massachusetts’s program for needy patients before the checks came — now they don’t qualify for the program, and will need to pay out of pocket.
Said JP, "People will say stuff: 'Oh, you guys got $1.2 million. Did we? Because I know I've got to buy a leg for the rest of my life. I can't go out and buy a house."
The cost of a prosthetic limb over a lifespan may be greater than the amount of the check, according to some experts.
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As of now, the brothers are storing their checks in a drawer, confused on how they will spend them. They reportedly fear that spending the money now may set them up for a rocky future as medical costs mount and job prospects diminish.
The One Fund, however, reports that a second payment is slated, and says it will go over each victim’s individual needs before determining the next reward.
The One Fund has already distributed more than $60 million to victims, with the intention of helping to speed their recovery.
Patricia Watson, senior educational specialist at the National Center for PTSD, told the Washington Post that there is no way to predict who will move on and who will remain traumatized.
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Said Watson, “There is no simple algorithm as to why some people recover and some people don’t. Resources are a big positive protective factor for many people. In the same way, ongoing adversity does make it difficult for people to recover.”
According to The One Fund’s treasurer, "There’s no amount of money in the world that’s going to compensate people for losing a limb. We never proposed that it would."