Neighbor stories

Good Neighbor Spotlight: West Des Moines community supports neighbor during difficult time

Written by Nick Brinkerhoff

In honor of September being Good Neighbor Month, we will be showcasing incredible stories of how neighbors are using Nextdoor to go above and beyond in their local communities. Have a story of your own? Send us an email at

This summer, West Des Moines, IA neighbor Muriel Sheppard’s husband Ed was in a nursing home and was not doing too well. He began having trouble eating solid foods, and started drinking Ensure shakes as a way to get his necessary nutrition. Between the high cost of Ensure and the amount Ed needed to drink everyday, Muriel used Nextdoor to see if her neighbors had any coupons for Ensure laying around that she could use. She had seen them in the newspaper here and there and figured it didn’t hurt to ask her neighbors if they had any that they’d be willing to share.

Muriel did not get a single reply offering Ensure coupons, but received a response from her community that was even better: 100 bottles of Ensure! To her surprise, multiple neighbors had stopped by throughout the week to drop off boxes of the shakes.

Unfortunately, Ed passed away unexpectedly, and was unable to use all of the Ensure shakes that were gifted. Muriel donated the unopened drinks to local nursing homes and to West Des Moines Human Services.

When she shared the sad news about her husband on Nextdoor, Muriel received condolences from neighbors far and wide, most of whom she had not met prior to connecting on Nextdoor.

Muriel told us she felt a great connection to the community because of the love that was shown to her from neighbors during this difficult time in her life. She felt the outpouring of love from her neighbors and is forever thankful for their support.

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