We met at a dance on Feb. 2, 1974. I was 16. He was my dream come true. Together we had such good times—and that was only the beginning. Who knew after three kids, six grandchildren and 33 years of marriage I’d have to say good-bye so soon.
My 53 year-old husband, Gary, died of pancreatic cancer in our home surrounded by our kids, Shawn, Kevin and Katie, and me.
During Gary’s two-year battle, he fought, laughed, cried and endured so much. Sadly, when it was time, I whispered, “I love you. It’s time to go.” He took a few seconds, looked up to the ceiling and closed his eyes.
It’s never good-bye until it’s good-bye. That was it, and it hurt.
Years of memories. Hundreds of friends. A close-knit family. A life lived out loud—now gone. I remember the things Gary said as he neared the end, like how much he’d miss us, how bad he felt that he’d never see our grandson play baseball, and how rough his journey would be. It was. But thanks to Ridgeview Hospice, their above-and-beyond goodness and outstanding care helped us through it.
It wasn’t surprising. I’m a Ridgeview employee myself. But being on the other side is different. You don’t realize how vital these people are or how valuable their services are—until you experience it first-hand. What a joy it was to have the people I know and work with help take care of not only my husband, but the kids and me too. They alleviated worry from medication administration. And from thoughtful care baskets to mental strength, I am so grateful for what they did for me when I needed it most.
So many people I love lost their battle to cancer: Gary, his mom and dad, my sister and my mom. I don’t dwell on it, but I have found what gets you through it is compassion—the reason Ridgeview Medical Center positively touches so many.
Your support will help Ridgeview Hospice continue to offer services that Medicare fees and other insurer reimbursements won’t cover—for hospice patients and families like ours.
Please join the kids and me by making a gift to Ridgeview Hospice. Lives will be uplifted to the very end because of you.
So blessed and grateful,
A widow, mom, grandma, Ridgeview employee and advocate of Ridgeview Hospice
*With your gift of $35 or more, you will receive a handmade ornament
personalized with your loved one’s name.
Thank you for your generosity and compassion.