Valley residents gather for health expo

MERCEDES — Hundreds of seniors and family members poured into the Cooper Center at the Livestock Show grounds yesterday.

They were there to find available health care services and benefits information.

“I’ve got a 95-year-old mother who is in good health but she’s been lagging a little bit with her eyesight and hearing,” said Mario Garcia, a Mercedes resident. “We’re low-income so were trying to see if we can get some assistance.”

Garcia said hearing aids are very expensive so he came to the event to find out if there were any programs to help his mother obtain the hearing devices to help her and their budget.

“This event is very beneficial and I’m glad all the sponsors got together to put this together,” Garcia said.

Local TV station KRGV 5 organized the health care event called “The Heart of the Valley.” It drew 48 vendors in medical and health services from around the Valley to pass out information and provide health screenings.

Some of the vendors provide eye exams, blood pressure exams and hearing exams.

“Our seniors are very important and we’re all going to be there some day,” said Jerry Lee Berg, KRGV 5 community relations manager. “Not only seniors but the caregivers need to get prepared for taking care of their mom and dad.”

Mercedes resident Isabel Cervantes, 61, attended the event with her family and friends who wanted to find out what was new and what was available to them as senior citizens.

“I’m getting to that age,” Cervantes said. “I wanted to come to find out what doctors to go see.”

Cervantes also said the event was very beneficial and informative and he would like to see more events like it in the area.