‘We need help:’ Lexington assisted living home to close soon, leaving some residents homeless

‘We need help:’ Lexington assisted living home to close soon, leaving some residents homeless
Published: Jul. 14, 2022 at 10:39 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - A Lexington assisted living facility is on the verge of shutting down, leaving a dozen people with no place to go.

The Messner Home is off Versailles Road and has been around for decades. The owners said 23 people are in care there, and now some of them are scrambling to find a new place to call home before time runs out.

Vicky Holbrook said her brother, Billy Johnson, has stayed at the Messner Home for 12 years. She said her brother was told he had until August 1 to move out, or he would have to move out onto the street.

Holbrook said the homes were at one time a wonderful place for Johnson, who’s suffered from mental illness since he was 18.

“My brother loves it here because he socializes with these guys. They connect. They understand one another,” Holbrook said.

The home offered Johnson shelter, food and around-the-clock care. But Holbrook said the condition has deteriorated and that security blanket was suddenly snatched away from him and 22 others.

“I’m his guardian. I never received a letter. I never got a phone call from the owner. Nothing,” Holbrook said.

While some can relocate with family, to the VA, or elsewhere, owner Martha Bell said Johnson is among a dozen people with no new home right now.

“There’s no option right now, there’s nothing and that’s heartbreaking,” Holbrook said.

Bell acknowledged that many of them not only don’t have a place to relocate, they also have no guardians like Vicky to help them through this.

“There’s an older gentleman here. His name is Jack and he told me that this is his home. He’s been here for 32 years and this is his home, and when the doors close he said he guesses they’d have to lock him in here,” Holbrook said.

“We need places for these men to go to get the proper care, that they deserve to have, so that they can live the best life they can live. We need help,” Holbrook said.

Charlie Lanter with Lexington’s Housing Advocacy and Community Development Department confirmed there will be some who won’t have that home by August 1. But he said the city is working with various partners to find temporary housing that will offer the shelter, food and care that is needed in the interim while they search for new permanent homes.

“We had always feared the day would come when Messner’s Home closed,” said Ginny Ramsey with the Catholic Action Center.

Ramsey said the Catholic Action Center is working to relocate these people who will soon be displaced. She said as a community, they’re going to try to make sure these people are taken care of.

Get the WKYT News app on ROKU, Apple TV and Amazon Fire.
Get the WKYT News app on ROKU, Apple TV and Amazon Fire.(WKYT)

Copyright 2022 WKYT. All rights reserved.