South Gate Cancer Patient Fights Foreclosure Eviction

Contrary to what the bank claims, Ana Casas says she was never given an option to modify her loan.

By John Cadiz Klemack and James Hourani
|  Tuesday, Oct 23, 2012  |  Updated 9:29 PM PDT
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Ana Casas has cerebral palsy and not only is she battling stage-four breast cancer, she and her family are also fighting to keep their home of 40 years. Community activists have pitched tents at the home in hopes to thwart Tuesday night's scheduled eviction. John Cádiz Klemack reports from South Gate for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Oct. 23, 2012.

John Cádiz Klemack

Ana Casas has cerebral palsy and not only is she battling stage-four breast cancer, she and her family are also fighting to keep their home of 40 years. Community activists have pitched tents at the home in hopes to thwart Tuesday night's scheduled eviction. John Cádiz Klemack reports from South Gate for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on Oct. 23, 2012.

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Sheriff’s deputies were scheduled to evict Ana Casas from her South Gate home on Tuesday night, but the stage-four cancer patient said she won’t leave.

“I cannot see myself handing this over to them,” she said.

Spurred by community activists' attempts to thwart, or at least stall, the foreclosure, the City Council decided Tuesday night to support Casas' attempt to stay in her home. The council announced it would ask the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department to give Casas more time to settle her differences with the bank, which the council said it would contact.

Casas is battling breast cancer and has cerebral palsy. She’s lived in the home for 40 years and refinanced in 2008, just before she received a terminal diagnosis.

“It’s bad,” she said. “I had to go back on chemo.”

Mortgage payments went instead to pay mounting medical bills.

In a statement to NBC4, Wells Fargo said it will proceed with the foreclosure:

“We provided loan modifications on two separate occasions and both offers were declined. We also have offered financial relocation assistance to help transition them to a new residence. Those offers were turned down,” the statement read.

Casas claims she was never offered a loan modification, but continues to plead for the option.

So in a last-ditch effort and against her doctor’s orders to stay in bed, she presented the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department with a letter and a plea not to force her out come Tuesday night’s deadline.

Beverly Roberts with the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment supports Casas’ efforts.

"Look at her, in that condition. Why is it they won't work with her?" Roberts said.

Community activists have taken on Casas’ plight, too, arguing that the bank is putting profit over people.

"That's greed, and we will not stand in this country for greed,” said Rev. Rob Roberts with Service Employees International Union.

Casas said she now has the ability to make modified payments, but can’t get Wells Fargo to agree. And after four decades her home, she’s not ready to let go.

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