7 On Your Side helps 'lift' centenarian when elevator repair gets stalled

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- A disabled grandmother who just celebrated her 100th birthday has been stranded in her apartment -- six flights up -- since January because her building's only elevator was broken.

Lydia Cintron has only been able to get out of her building to see the doctor and she needs a team of paramedics to perform the back-breaking task of carrying her in a wheelchair down and back up the six flights of stairs.

"I suffer a lot, those stairs are horrible," Cintron said.

Her son Nelson calls the situation "a nightmare." The only elevator in his mom's seven-floor building has been out since January for repairs and all the tenants have to hoof it.

Cintron has diabetes and asthma and her legs need to be operated on this month. She lives in fear of not escaping her apartment in an emergency.

"I'm scared and I'm uncomfortable, it's a lot," Cintron said.

The building's management said a brand-new elevator was finished a few weeks ago and just needed Verizon to hook up the emergency phone to start running again.

Verizon said it had not been made aware of any delays, but as soon as 7 On Your Side alerted them, Verizon workers went to the Morris Avenue building and finished the job, Instead of waiting up to two weeks for city inspection, we got them to the top of the DOB's list.

The elevator was tested and Cintron and her family are delighted she won't have to endure being carried up and down again.

"I really appreciate all of your concern, you did everything you said you were gonna do, I'm very grateful," Nelson said.

"Que bueno, gracias gracias," Cintron said.

Verizon's representative said it only learned of the problem last Friday -- the day we called them. They worked quickly to install a temporary solution that will be made permanent later this week.


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