Meals on Wheels volunteer comes to rescue of elderly man stuck in sweltering Minnesota heat

The heatwave in Minnesota has been brutal for everyone, especially those without air conditioning.

For seniors, the consistently hot weather can be dangerous. That’s why it’s important to check on your older loved ones on a regular basis. But for many seniors, Meals on Wheels is their lifeline to the outside world, and rarely has that been more important than during our current heatwave.

"It feels really good to be able to help someone who is in a tight spot," said Mo Perry with Meals on Wheels.

Perry was delivering meals with her husband in Fridley Thursday morning when they came across one of their 94-year-old regulars struggling in sweltering heat inside his house.

The man told her his air conditioning was broken, he didn't have a fan, and he couldn't see well enough to dial the phone to call his daughter.

"He was there looking very disheveled and his shirt was open and he was just kind of hot and bothered," she explained. "He was saying how hot he was. He said his air conditioning had gone out and he was hot and disoriented."

Metro Meals on Wheels says it encourages its volunteer drivers to check in with their clients to make sure they are doing ok in the heat and see if they need anything other than a meal.

If they don't have air conditioning, the non-profit gives out 50 to 100 fans every year to help them stay cool.

"For them, the delivery volunteer is the only person they see in a day so, for them, it's their only touchpoint to check in on them and see if they are alright," Meals on Wheels coordinator Nikki Blue said.

Perry was able to reach her client's daughter who was able to get his air conditioning fixed. But she believes what happened to him shows how important it is to check in on elderly neighbors on days like this.

"Grateful he's not going to be sitting in that sweltering heat until his daughter happens to come by next week sometime," concluded Mo.