SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Rick Norris became a familiar face during the COVID-19 briefings in Sioux Falls.
The sign language interpreter delivered important information to the deaf community during the pandemic.
Over the decades, he’s even signed for national leaders.
“I’ve interpreted for Barack Obama and Bill Clinton and both of the Bushes,” Rick Norris said.
These days, it’s the community that is sharing a sign of support for Norris.
In January, Rick was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer.
“It was kind of a surprise, but we just jumped right in,” Norris said.
He’d been doing chemotherapy.
He had to shut down his interpreting agency earlier this year.
“I’m just too tired. I can’t commit to anything because I never know how I’m going to feel that day, if I’m going to be able to do what I need to do,” Norris said.
He doesn’t have health insurance at the moment, and the family is living off of his wife’s teaching salary.
“It’s been a long haul, but every time we think we’re not going to make it, God comes through with a God wink and something is given to us or donated to us,” Rick’s wife Lisa Norris said.
Just recently, more kindness came their way.
Lisa’s co-workers Roxanne Bicknase and Roxanne’s daughter started a GoFundMe for the family.
“Because they would be the first to help anybody else,” Lisa’s co-worker Roxanne Bicknase said.
The money will help the the family as they try to catch up on bills.
“This money is such a blessing. I honestly can’t tell you…there are so many things. Payments we’re behind on, medical bills, other things we need to pay because we weren’t having enough every month,” Lisa Norris said.
“That is such a godsend,” Rick Norris said.
Rick hopes he can start collecting disability payments early next year.