Aultman Alliance Community Hospital to Host Annual ‘Steppin’ Out for Hospice 5K’
On Saturday, Aug. 24, Aultman Alliance Community Hospital will host the annual “Steppin’ Out for Hospice 5K.” A kids 1K fun run for children ages 10 and under starts at 7 p.m., followed by the 5K run/walk at 7:45 p.m.
In addition to providing families with help during one of life’s most difficult times, hospice also provides patients with high-quality care, as well as emotional and spiritual support.
When Alliance resident Doug Williams faced cancer for the second time in three years, his wife Linda knew their journey would be different. Diagnosed with colorectal cancer in 2017, after beating prostate cancer in 2014, the couple spent time traveling to Cleveland for the initial treatments.
“Doug didn’t want to put me through the toll of traveling and long hours away from home, so we choose to return to Alliance for care,” said Linda.
It was through treatments at the Aultman Cancer Center of Alliance where Dr. Amir Iqbal referred Doug to the Aultman Alliance Community Hospital’s Palliative Care department. Linda said that the palliative department helped to give the Williams family a better quality of life while continuing treatments with the cancer team.
When it was evident that Doug’s health was declining and that the cancer had continued to spread, the couple inquired about turning to Aultman Hospice at Alliance for care.
“Dr. Debra Lehrer was wonderful. She made the transition from treatment to comfort care seem absolutely seamless,” said Linda.
As a hospice patient for six months, Doug and Linda became very close to Doug’s nurse, Kendra Carpenter, RN. Linda shared that Carpenter was such a blessing to the couple during their most difficult times. She said that the team quickly assessed Doug’s needs and took care of everything, from equipment they needed in the home to colostomy care and more.
“There was never a time that when I needed them, they weren’t there for me. They always made sure Doug was comfortable and were always willing to help out in those tough situations,” she said.
When Doug suffered from a fall in their home, Linda was nervous that it would mean he would need to be transferred to a facility for care. Instead, she shared that Carpenter knew staying in the home was of utmost important to Doug.
“Kendra worked with me to make necessary changes in our home and in our lives to ensure Doug’s safety so that his last wish to pass away at home might be a reality,” said Linda.
On May 26, Doug passed away in his home, just like he had wanted. Linda credits the Aultman Hospice at Alliance team for giving the couple peace in those final months.
The Aultman Hospice at Alliance offers a variety of other services such as chaplain visits, volunteer visits and caretaker bereavement groups once the patient has passed away. In addition to home care visits, the team also provides care to patients in nursing facilities as well as inpatient settings for those who qualify.
Participants can register for the upcoming 5K online at www.aultman.com/AACH-5K or on Friday, Aug. 23, from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the hospital. Registration is $20 for the 5K and $10 for the kids 1K.
Registration will re-open on race day at 4 p.m. with a price increase to $25 for the 5K and $15 for the 1K. Hospice will also hold its annual pasta dinner in the AACH Café from 11 a.m. – 1:45 p.m., and again from 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 23. Dinner will include penne pasta and meatballs, tossed salad, a 12 oz. drink, a roll and cookies. Tickets are available for $7.50 and carry-out is available. All proceeds from the event will benefit local hospice patient care and assist the team in its mission of providing help to families in their time of need, regardless of an inability to pay.
The hospice team would like to thank Altercare of Alliance, Cassaday Turkle Christian, Dr. Richard and Dr. Debra Lehrer, The Alliance Review, The Joseph A. Jeffries, Co, Aultcare’s PrimeTime Health Plan, Krugliak, Wilkins, Griffiths and Dougherty Co, LPA, Fisher Power and Electric, Bonfert Glass, Copeland Oaks, White Physical Therapy, Gionino’s Pizza and Second Sole of Canton.
For more information on the event, please call the Aultman Alliance Community Hospital Public Relations office at 330-596-7516. For information on services provided by Aultman Hospice in Alliance, please call 330-596-7480.