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WXXI Local Stories
7:47 am
Mon November 11, 2013

Local Program Pairs Veterans With Fellow Veterans in Hospice

Credit www.hospicecareteam.org

A local program is pairing military veterans nearing the end of their lives with veteran volunteers.

It's part of a national movement to provide quality care for veterans in hospice care.

Rose Fletcher is manager of volunteer services at Lifetime Care.  She says the connections the veterans make are often meaningful and emotional.  One volunteer recalled when he gave a veteran a certificate and pin acknowledging his service.  “He presented it to him and it was probably the third or fourth visit the two of them had together.  It was the first time he saw the veteran smile. He couldn’t speak because of the kind of cancer he had, but there were tears streaming down his face.”

Lifetime Care currently employs about a dozen volunteers who are veterans of the Vietnam, Korean and Gulf wars.  Fletcher says the bonds that are formed often help the veterans come to terms with some of the experiences they had in war and military life.

More veterans are needed to volunteer for the program in Monroe, Seneca and Wayne Counties.  Anyone interested can call 585-214-14-44 for more information.