J.D. Lawson has survived two heart attacks. But he says the heat wave may give him another one.
"Dying, having a stroke, a heat stroke or something and dying, that's why I stay out of here as much as I can, waiting on the cool weather to come," Lawson says.
But as of Thursday, he doesn't have to rely on just a small fan any more. The CAC gave him an air conditioner. They even installed it and turned it on.
"That feels so good. Thank you, Jesus," Lawson says as he sits in the cool breeze.
The CAC will help as many people as it can, starting with the sick and elderly.
"A lot of families have to make sacrifices between utility bills and food and medicine," says the CAC's Cecelia Waters.
Most of the families in low income neighborhoods like Western Heights don't have air conditioning. For them, it's actually cooler outside than inside.
For instance, Barkeashi Gourley says she spends a lot of time on her front steps. At least there's a breeze every now and again.
Gourley says buying an air conditioner just isn't an option right now. "I've thought about it but I can't right now because bills have to be paid some kind of way and there is not a lot of extra money around."
On Thursday, most Western Heights residents were feeling the heat and looking for shade.
J.D. Lawson says he has no plans to give up his new spot. "If I gotta leave this old world, I'll leave it from here under this air conditioner."
CAC tells 6 News the need for air conditioners and other help for residents is far greater than it can provide. Although, it plans to give out at least 40 air conditioners to the people most in need.
To find out more about CAC and its assistance programs, click here or call (865)-546-3500.