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Local Organization Helps Families With Loved Ones In A Medical Crisis

HERMOSA BEACH ( — A local organization is helping families who have a loved one in a medical crisis.

Leilani O'Dell is the proud mom of 11-year-old Amy Mantell, a standout athlete and straight-A student.

Amy had an energetic life until last December.

"She fell down and said, 'Mom, I can't see,'" said O'Dell. "I had no idea what was really happening and it turns out she had a stroke."

Days later, Amy had a second stroke.

"She wasn't able to move. I mean, she slipped into a coma," said O'Dell.

Seven months after her brain was highly affected by the strokes, Amy is in recovery and has relearned how to speak and walk.

Amy's family, however, didn't know where to go for extra help until the Children's Hospital referred them to an organization called Here to Serve.

"Here to Serve is a non-medical support service for families who have a loved one in medical crisis," said founder Katie Quintas.

O'Dell's help staff, referred to as a care community, helps out with dishes, laundry, preparing meals, walking the dogs, and much more, so the mother can worry about Amy's recovery.

"What I tell my children is that things are never going to be the same, but we can create a great life," said O'Dell.

Amy, who is being home-schooled, is planning to go back to public school in September.

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