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Andy Nowicki: 90-Year-Old WWII Veteran To Be Evicted For Smoking

Andy Nowicki

Andy Nowicki, a 90-year-old World War II veteran, is in the process of being evicted from his home in Newington, Connecticut for smoking.

According to CBS Connecticut, the veteran has been smoking for 70 years. He picked up the habit while fighting in World War II during an era when the Army handed out free cigarettes. The veteran has two Purple Hearts — his first received during the bloody invasion of Anzio, Italy.

Andy Nowicki and his wife, who suffers from Alzheimers disease, have lived in the apartment for 20 years. He himself is alert. However, his age combined with his war wounds means that he has trouble walking.

According to an extended report in the Hartford Courant, about 18 months ago the housing authority passed a rule requiring all tenants to smoke at least 10 feet away from the building.

Andy Nowicki can’t quit the habit, or it would have happened a long time before 70 years had passed. “Are you kidding?” he told the Courant. “I got the best doctor in the world. He gave me gum. He gave me the patch.”

But it didn’t work.

Nor can Andy Nowicki walk 10 feet away from the building every time he smokes a cigarette. So he has been smoking in the breezeway.

Apparently, that isn’t good enough, since the couple will have to appear in Hartford Housing Court on September 3 for an eviction hearing.

Paul Doyle, a state senator, is representing the Nowickis. Even Newington’s mayor Stephen Woods has asked the housing authorities why they can’t compromise to keep the couple in their home.

But the housing authority chairman Stephen Karp has said that they won’t make exceptions to the rule.

I have to confess that I’m puzzled why they wouldn’t just allow a 90-year-old World War II veteran who can barely walk to smoke inside of his own home. Do they really think it’s a good idea for a man who has trouble walking and must care for a wife with Alzheimers to struggle to walk a long distance away from her several times a day?

After two decades in a place, shouldn’t Nowicki be grandfathered in against radical changes in the rules? Wouldn’t that be normal policy in most cases like this?

Is it impossible that the new non-smoking rule was actually cooked up to get a person with Alzheimers out of the building without openly violating the Americans with Disabilities Act?

My spidey sense is telling me that there’s probably something wrong here. I’d love to hear what other people make of the Andy Nowicki smoking eviction case.

[photo by Nomad Soul via Shutterstock]

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3 Responses to “Andy Nowicki: 90-Year-Old WWII Veteran To Be Evicted For Smoking”

  1. Cletius Parish

    leave that man alone 90 years old? he must be doing something right let him smoke and the housing people keep their traps shut.

  2. Karen Ross

    What I have just read has got to be the most disgusting act and totally a step to far……This poor elderly gentleman should sue the council for the stress they are inflicting on him. How can they do this? repossess his home for smoking… I have heard it all Now. What on earth is this world coming too. If I had plenty of money, I would personally buy you and your wife a lovely home. Please if there is a good law firm out there, please help this man and his wife for free….God will reward you.

  3. Arlene Echols

    It's getting pretty bad when you are not allowed to smoke in your own home. We have Nursing homes who have initiated no smoking for even out doors, but have grandfathered the patients/residents to still be able to smoke outside and they are rolled out if they are un-able to walk. But that's nursing homes. To EVICT any one out of their own home, especially a War Hero, is not the actions of the Land of the Free. By the way. What ARE our rights anymore! We are losing more and more of them every day and no one seems to be noticing that it is what is happening. Hello Hitler! Hello Commies.