Hospice House Supports Whole Family
Annie Laurie Lewis grew up in Johnston County and lived a majority of her life in Smithfield. She lived to be 90 years old and spent some time at the SECU Hospice House visiting friends who were coming to the end of their lives. “She always told me that when she could no longer take care of herself, she wanted to go to the SECU Hospice House,” said her daughter, Cathy Leary.
Mom’s Time Arrived
Lewis later received a diagnosis of cancer. Leary said her mother was a very independent woman, but her family knew something was wrong when she started experiencing some balance problems. At that point, the cancer had spread to her brain, and the family decided to have her admitted to the SECU Hospice House.
Showered With Support
“From the minute we moved her in there, we were all surrounded by loving and caring nurses, staff, and volunteers. They showed so much concern for all of us and went out of their way to make sure all of our needs were met,” Leary said. She stayed the first night with her mother to help her settle in, and the staff ensured she had comfortable bedding and plenty of food and drink.
Lewis’ other daughter, Nancy Barry, said while they visited, they had two family meals, snacks, coffee, and an abundance of emotional and spiritual support. Barry said the pain medication and comfort care were very important.
In addition, the volunteers were willing and eager to help in any way they could. When her mother was having a hard time feeding herself, assistants or a volunteer would help feed her.
No Better Place for the End of Life
Leary and Barry were both deeply moved by the care their family and their mother received. So they decided to give back to the SECU Hospice House by having a pizza party for the nurses, staff, and volunteers.
“I can’t think of a better place for our mother to have been in the final days of her life,” said Leary.
Family of Annie Laurie Lewis