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Friends of Hospice

I just had the best day!

I had the honor of spending time today with one of our Heroes of Hospice. Vern is a delightful 94-years young Hospice of Anchorage patient who has received our support for the past 16 months.

We are tickled to know Vern and are lucky that his household was in receipt of one of our flyers several years ago announcing what services we bring to the community.

It all began with a phone call from Vern to us about his beloved wife who was struggling. He simply felt that he needed a little support and maybe friendship throughout this journey.

Hospice was delighted to help the family through Noreen’s dying process, but the story continues. Vern himself falls into the growing group of Americans who has serious life-limiting illnesses and needs support, but he does not qualify for the support of Medicare hospice.

Due to you and your fellow donors, Hospice of Anchorage has been able to support Vern and hundreds other Alaskans since 1980.

We anxiously await our Wednesday mornings because this is the time we expect our regular call with Vern, who by each Wednesday has prepared a song to sing to us each week. He is an extremely accomplished American; he is a career Naval Aviator, an opera singer, and a devoted family man.

Vern is proud to report that his 5 beautiful children blessed Noreen and him with 25 grandchildren and 35 great grandchildren. He exudes joy and we are so lucky to know him. Vern brightens our every week.

Western society has given its all to push death and dying out of our minds, out of our sight and out of our conversations.

As a result, care of the dying has been outsourced to medical professionals. What has been lost, is the privilege of being able to truly know the people we care for, what makes them tick, and our ability to honor the path each patient chooses to take as they face the dying process.

Hospice of Anchorage is proud to support and guide patients and their families through this process in a way that honors and engages the richness of their lives, oftentimes yielding a more peaceful death.

We focus our efforts on a spirit of service as we work to help people negotiate the unknowns of this chapter of life while we offer resources to help better care for loved ones when they face death.

Will you join us as we shepherd great people like Vern’s wife across the threshold, celebrating their lives and reaffirming our communal understanding of this profound life experience?

Any donation you make to our 501 (c) (3) is tax deductible. We thank you in advance for growing our community and helping us provide such an invaluable service to our fellow Alaskans as they transition from this life. And, as Vern says best when asked about the value of Hospice of Anchorage in his life, “I feel loved.” In the end folks, isn’t this what life is all about? Thank you for enriching our lives, Vern! Funny how it is supposed to be the other way around…

“Dying isn’t a medical event. It is a human one.”
Author Unknown

Suzie Smith

Suzie Smith, Hospice volunteer

Donations can be made online by clicking here or by mailing a check to:
Hospice of Anchorage, 2612 E Northern Lights Blvd, Anchorage, AK 99508.
Thank you for your ongoing support. Our staff is passionate about the work we do, and we look forward to the opportunity to help as many people in our community who need our services.