SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — A former San Diego police officer battling a life-threatening disease is also battling with his bank, so Team 10 stepped in to help.
Alan Alvarez has been in and out of the hospital over the last several months. He suffers from progressive muscular atrophy, a rare motor neuron disease in the ALS family.
In November, he told Team 10's Melissa Mecija that his outlook has helped him get through the difficult days.
"Keep praying, have a positive attitude, and move forward," Alvarez said via FaceTime.
He's now bedridden and no longer able to use his hands.
"Watching Alan deteriorate, it's hurtful… I wouldn't wish this disease on anybody," said La Mesa police officer Colin Atwood, Alvarez's good friend.
Atwood became Alvarez's power of attorney and took over the job of applying for a home modification loan with U.S. Bank to lower payments for Alvarez's house. Atwood said what should have been a straightforward process—that started in May of last year—turned into one headache after another.
"I get conflicting answers from the representatives," Atwood said. "I've called 23 times. I've talked to 23 different people."
The modification loan would lower Alvarez's monthly house payments by hundreds of dollars.
"I can't imagine the amount of stress that they're dealing with… This just adds piles on to what they're already dealing with him," Atwood said.
Team 10 contacted U.S. Bank on January 31st, asking why their customer could not get the answers to his questions.
After Team 10 got involved, Atwood said the bank started being more responsive.
A few days after Team 10's inquiry, the manager at the customer advocacy department reached out to Atwood. About a week and a half after the initial contact, Atwood said he was told the paperwork was being approved to lower the payments.
The process was finally moving forward after multiple delays.
A spokesperson for U.S. Bank told Team 10:
"Each individual situation is unique and requirements toward completion of a modification may include steps outside of our control. While we regret that in this particular instance the process has created frustration and concern, we remain committed to working with the customers in good faith to help reach a positive resolution."
It was a frustrating process, but Atwood said it is something his friend needs during this difficult time.
"He has given so much of his life to everybody else that I just can't imagine not being there to do this for him," Atwood said.
Alvarez still deals with increasing bills because of his medical care. If you would like to help, you can click on this link.