;

With Help from His MSC, Hastings Resident Meets Mario Andretti

Roy Lowe meets racing legend Mario Andretti during Andretti's visit to Oswego.
Roy Lowe meets racing legend Mario Andretti during Andretti's visit to Oswego.

Oswego Industries, Inc. is a nonprofit which has been providing services to individuals with disabilities since 1968. Among the services it offers is Medicaid Service Coordination, in which a staff person works closely with an individual with developmental or other disabilities to determine life goals, access needed services and supports, and pursue recreational and career opportunities. The work an MSC does with his or her client can be as small as arranging a medical appointment – or, as happened recently for Roy Lowe of Hastings, it can be as huge as meeting racing legend Mario Andretti.

Roy Lowe has been receiving services from Oswego Industries, Inc., including day habilitation and pre-vocational services, since 1990. For the past 10 of those 19 years, he has worked with Jim LaRock as his Medicaid Service Coordinator. Among other things, Roy and Jim both share a love of racing, a passion which has led them to interesting pursuits over the years. With Jim’s encouragement, Roy has participated in social and recreational programs through ARC of Oswego County, the sister agency to Oswego Industries, including the ARC Race Club and regular trips to the Fulton and Oswego Speedways.

When news began to spread that Mario Andretti would be present at A&P Automotive’s 25th anniversary celebration, Jim immediately thought of Roy.

“Roy isn’t someone who asks for much,” said Jim. When Jim suggested they might make a trip to A&P Automotive to see the race cars, and see Andretti in person, Lowe was “all for it.”

At the big event, Roy joined hundreds of other race fans, looking at the cars on display and the racing memorabilia. The day was made perfect by receiving an autograph from Andretti and a photo of Mario, Roy, and Jim together.

Medicaid Service Coordinators assist individuals with disabilities in accessing services and supports in the community. As each individual’s needs and desires are different, that could range from helping a family apply for a summer camp scholarship, to finding someone who can give guitar lessons (to helping someone meet Mario Andretti). MSCs also help individuals and their families navigate the sometimes complex world of Medicaid regulations, medical services, and social supports.

Oswego Industries, Inc. is a private, not-for-profit Community Rehabilitation Program, offering pre-vocational and vocational training, day habilitation services, and Medicaid Service Coordination. Its mission is to be a partner in the development of comprehensive community services designed to improve the quality of life for all people, with the primary emphasis on those with disabilities, by providing the necessary support programs to enable individuals to grow with dignity and achieve their highest level of independence and self-fulfillment. Most recently, the organization was named winner of the Chamber of Commerce Not-For-Profit of the Year Award for 2009. Its sister agency, ARC of Oswego County, provides services to children and seniors with disabilities: together creating a comprehensive support system for Oswego County residents with disabilities.

Roy Lowe lives near the Brewerton Speedway and particularly loves dirt racing. One of his favorites is driver Bob McCreadie.