Help Me Help My Cousin

I would like to do something I never do. I would like to ask you for money. Not me, but my cousin. You can read his story below. If you know anything about me, you know I don’t do these things lightly, and you know that I have been there. My family REALLY needs your help. Gary and his wife have a business they are unable to run at the moment. They need to move when Gary gets out f the hospital because he won’t be able to get up and down the stairs. There are so many other things.

It is horribly overwhelming. I know you don’t know my cousin, but you know me and you know that for me to do this, it must be important. No matter how little you can help, every dollar goes a bit more toward making their lives more bearable. Please, have a heart so Gary can get a heart.

And if you are interested, every person who donates to this fund, I will send you one of my eBooks as a thank you.

A lot of people have been asking what ways they can donate to help with Gary & Char’s expenses.

Cooks – Donations can be left at Cooks

Checks – Make payable to Char Baar and mail to Cooks at 6874 Hammond Ave SE, Dutton MI 49316.
Paypal – send payments to
Any amount donated – whether it be $5.00 or $500.00, in the end it all adds up.

A note from Gary’s son, Josh:

On Saturday, September 28th, our father Gary Baar suffered a heart attack and was taken to Meijer Heart Center in Grand Rapids. In the intensive care unit, he improved through the week then suffered cardiac arrest on September 30. After 11 minutes the amazing doctors and nurses were able to bring him back to life.

He is on life support and beginning to stabilize. He does not have insurance and too young to be on Medicare. He is a veteran and has coverage at VA hospitals. The short term procedure that needs to be done is a heart surgery to implant a VAD (ventricular assist device). Basically, it’s a pump that forces his heart to beat. Once his body stabilizes further he can proceed with a heart transplant. The road to recovery will be very long and minimum hospital stay of three weeks, possibly several months.

The VA hospital will not cover the procedure at Meijer Heart Center. They want him transferred to the VA in Madison, WI. The transfer is long and risky and we do not understand why the VA will not error on the side of caution and let Meijer Heart do the procedure. From what we’ve been told the VA does not want to pay another hospital for the procedure.

We are not asking for donations to assist with the procedure since we have an option to get it done in Wisconsin. However, accomodations for our family will be extensive.

Our family is seeking prayers and monetary support that can be offered to help us with travel and accommodations in Wisconsin. The hospital there does not offer anything for us.

Our mom and dad live in Grand Rapids. Dad, a military veteran, and retired from Steelcase, has been very involved in the community. He built a WW2 memorial in Dutton, MI for those who served and made the ultimate sacrifice but never recognized in the local community. His community outreach and involvement doesn’t stop there. He has been awarded the city’s person of the year for other generous donations and community help, and now is on the committee to select the person of the year.

We will update everyone on his condition and progress in the coming days and weeks. All donations will be used to offset uncovered medical expenses in Grand Rapids and ensure our family can remain by his side in Wisconsin to facilitate in his recovery. Any leftover funds will be donated to community programs my father was involved in. Thanks in advance for any help.

Also, if anyone knows or has any contacts at the VA hospital (Madison, WI) or at the State level we are trying to push them to cover the procedure at Meijer Heart. They are being difficult about that and want to do it at their hospital. The transfer is very risky and they can approve it to be done here but they keep saying no. We need someone there to give the approval to have it done here in Grand Rapids.


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