Houstonians step up to help woman struggling to deal with $5,400 water bill

By Syan Rhodes - Anchor/Reporter

HOUSTON - Real answers and real help came Friday for a 74-year-old cancer patient battling the city of Houston over a $5,400 water bill.

Crews with the city's Department of Public Works visited Patsy Henry's home to try to figure out the problem.

"The Customer Account Services team checked the water meter and found the leak indicator moving. This indicates a constant flow of water through the meter," said Erin Jones, a spokesperson for the City of Houston's Department of Public Works.

READ: Water bill woes: Woman owes city $5,000 after what she calls a mistake

Henry's grandson, Devale Henry, told Channel 2 News he believes the leaks are coming from the kitchen and the bathroom.

The city told the Henrys they must make the needed plumbing repairs and then apply for an adjustment of the giant water bill.

"The grandson was also given a leak adjustment form. Customer Account Services will work directly with the Henry family to ensure a resolution to their bill concerns," Jones said in a statement to Channel 2 News.

But if the adjustment is approved, it would only take care of part of the bill.

"They say they’re going to try to take 50% of the cost and we’re gonna take care of the other 50%," Devale Henry said.

That still leaves a lot of money for Patsy Henry to come up with, but a KPRC viewer wants to help.

"Our heart went out to her when we heard her crying over the fact that despite her best efforts she was probably never going to get ahead of this and this was worrying her night and day," said John Quinlan, of Katy.

Quinlan met Patsy Henry, offering to pay whatever amount is needed to clear the bill.

Patsy Henry cried and laughed, overwhelmed by the news.

"Praise him! It's a blessing, I really appreciate it, thank you!" she said.

A local plumbing company has also offered to make the needed repairs to her pipes at no cost.

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