NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Christopher Bilik’s health problems have been there his whole life, but the real trouble started three years ago. A diabetic since he was three, Bilik had complications breathing.
“I was called by his mother telling me that Christopher was in critical condition in a hospital in New Jersey,” said his father, Joe Bilik.
In their Norfolk backyard, you’ll find father sitting with his son. Joe just brought Christopher back from his latest doctor’s appointment.
“He’s too good a person,” Joe said. “I’m not gonna see him lose.”
After that first hospital stay, Joe brought Christopher to Norfolk. Chris continues to deal with the usual diabetes issues, but since then his health has gotten worse.
“I have liver disease which caused cirrhosis. I have kidney disease, also kidney stones,” Chris listed his medical maladies.
“Some issues are going on with the gallbladder, I’ve had a heart attack.”
Chris has trouble walking or standing, let alone working.
Three years ago, father and son took the medical ailments to Social Security Administration, but the agency denied the benefits.
“That’s exactly what they said,” Christopher remembered. “I’m not healthy enough to do what I did, so I should go find something else to do.”
Since then the Biliks have applied several more times; denied each time.
All the while, the medical bills mount up. Joe Bilik has dipped heavily into his retirement to help pay.
“I want my son, like all fathers, to be happy and healthy,” he sighed. “But, what we need immediately for the short term is some type of medical plan.”
They applied again this year, this time through an attorney. In 10 months they’ve heard nothing.
You can see the frustration from a father worried for his son.
“Just look at the files, look at the medical records, you know, use your head,” he said.
It’s a battle one father refuses to let his son fight alone.
The Social Security Administration sent 10 On Your Side an email. A spokesperson wouldn’t comment on the specific case.
They said they offer disabilities for people who have a medical condition expected to last for at least a year.