ORLANDO, Fla. – Angela Soehnlein is a self-described “older mom” with 15-year-old twins and a moment that created a twist of fate that led to an offer of help to a single mom of triplets struggling without a paycheck or unemployment benefits.
“I’ve made it a point to catch those moments that you’ve been covering,” Soehnlein told News 6 Wednesday. “I kind of stopped what I was doing when I heard her mention that she was a single mom of triplets.”
Sylvia Mangsen’s story of a frazzled unemployment system is just one of dozens News 6 has reported on since the COVID-19 pandemic created a backlog on the Department of Economic Opportunity’s website.
“I’ve had hard times in the past," Soehnlein said. “I know what it’s like to be there.”
Mangsen’s sons are in a high school ROTC program while her daughter, Angelina, a special needs child, needs constant care because of medical concerns.
Soehnlein is a retired military vet diagnosed with multiple sclerosis 20 years ago. She told News 6 she wanted to help and sent Mangsen $300 through the News 6 account opened with Addition Financial.
She said when she saw the story of Mangsen, she knew she wanted to offer some financial help.
“I’m at a point that I’m able to help someone," she told News 6. “And I was moved to do that for Sylvia.”
In a Zoom interview with Mangsen and her children Wednesday, the furloughed hotel employee fought back tears when told of Soehnlein’s kindness.
“I hope I can meet her one day and say thank you,” she said. “ From the bottom of my heart and my triplets we say thank you very much to everybody and to have faith and pay it forward, that’s what the whole message is about.”
As of Wednesday, News 6 viewers gifted $910 dollars to Mangsen and her family.
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