VI. The Independent Living Movement 1970 to Present D. Continuing Struggles 2. Dana Watten: Challenge Rather Than Accept the Status Quo
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I was managing a new apartment for people with disabilities called Seward Square. I encouraged Dana to apply for the position. A few days before his interview he landed in Sr. Kenny Institute with a kidney stone. The property manager was not overly impressed with any of the other applicants, so I suggested that she go over to the hospital and interview Dana. She did, and Dana got the position. In July of 1980, Dana became resident manager of Seward Square Apartments, and in 1983 when I left Lewis Park Apartments, Dana became their manager, too. To this day he is managing both buildings. He has been gainfully employed for sixteen years! But there's more.

Dana has a new bed with a control box that he can use. This technology has cut down the PCA service hours Dana once required. Dana requires a PCA 11 hours a day now instead of 24 hours. Dana has a spend down of $538.00 a month so the PCA program pays approximately $1,800.00 a month to his attendant. This is the only subsidy Dana receives.

A year after Dana became gainfully employed, he dreamed of buying a van and learning to drive. He took lessons at Sister Kenny and got the down payment together for the van. Marie went with him to pick up the van. On his way home, as he drove around a curb, the device to secure him, having been improperly installed, came loose. He fell and lost control of the vehicle. The van was demolished, and Marie was injured. Six months later, after many hassles with the insurance company, the van was replaced, and he and Marie had a much better trip home.

In 1985, Dana met Rozanne. They made many trips together around the state. They also frequently went to Byerly's where Dana's mother Marie, who was over 80 years old, worked as a hostess.