RN, Hospice Case Manager
“A Hospice Case Manager for Life Choice Hospice, I'm a point person in a very important partnership. Our hospice, in coordination with Life Line Ambulance Service, provides an uncommon level of care to augment the wonderful services already offered at Wayland Nursing & Rehabilitation Center. We coordinate the full range of support options for hospice patients and their families and recommend additional comforts that enhance dignity and quality of life. Because we work as a team, with the patient right in the center at all times, we can do some pretty amazing things. We recently collaborated on a “final wish” experience for a resident, bringing him into Waltham to attend his sister's funeral and later, to go on a Boston Duck Boat excursion. Each care plan we develop is entirely customized to the needs and wishes of the patient. We're available continually, without hesitation and with no limits, and we see how much it means to the wonderful people in our care.”
Hilda Lonergan was part of the care team that coordinated a “final wish” experience for Wayland resident, Henry Ciarletta. To read more about Mr. Ciarletta's day in Boston and view a short video, click here.
Wayland Meets Magoo
The Incredible Journey of Magoo: From Hunting Dog to Wayland Nursing Mascot
Magoo has come a long way, figuratively and literally, from his days as a hunting dog in Tennessee.
Photos Credit Brooklyn Lowery
His owner Sandy Guidrey, however, would tell you it's been worth it.
As Magoo lies on his side at Guidrey's feet, the reality of his rough past is apparent. The jagged scar where Magoo's right eye should be elicits feelings of sympathy for the yellow Labrador. But as his story unfolds, that scar becomes a mark of his redemption.
Today, Magoo is a healthy, well-fed fixture at Wayland Nursing and Rehabilitation, which Guidrey and her husband have owned and operated for more than a decade.
Guidrey rescued Magoo, a yellow lab, from a Tennessee shelter two years ago after a run-in with a barbed wire fence left him with one eye and that lasting facial scar.
"I guess a one-eyed hunting dog isn't ideal," Guidrey said. She explained that a shelter, which she found via LuckyLab.com, had taken in Magoo -- then named Buddy -- after the previous owner had given the injured dog to a veterinarian for euthanization.
Originally, Guidrey went looking for a new dog with the goal of certifying her pet as a therapy dog that could work with the 40 residents at Wayland Nursing and Rehabilitation.
Unfortunately, Magoo's scars weren't just physical. Guidrey said it was obvious Magoo had been well trained; he never had accidents in the house, didn't chew on shoes or furniture and responded to Guidrey's every command.
He also, however, showcased a fear of strangers and, in particular, men. The fear was debilitating at first and led Guidrey to leave Magoo at home or bring him to work only occasionally.
What Guidrey found was that Magoo didn't have a problem with the patients in wheelchairs -- she assumes it is because they are lower to the ground -- but he was uncomfortable with visitors walking toward him.
Even now, two years since coming to live with Guidrey and beginning his visits to Wayland Nursing, Magoo barks suspiciously when anyone walks into her office at the facility.
Guidrey is pleased with his progress and a trip into the common area with Magoo proves the residents are pleased with his very presence.
"The patients love him," Guidrey said. "Patients light up when they see him. It really brings out their best. As animals do with the elderly, he brings out memories of their younger years. It's a normalcy that makes them feel like it's home."
Animals, in fact, are pretty common at Wayland Nursing and Rehabilitation. Guidrey's son sometimes brings his own dog Percy, an English lab puppy, to visit, and Guidrey's husband, Alan, recently adopted Junie, an Alaskan malamut that also likes to stop by.
Luckily, Magoo isn't territorial with other dogs. Guidrey said he gets along quite well with four-legged "strangers," which means that visitors coming to see family members are also welcome to bring dogs to visit.
"We like dogs around here," Guidrey said.
As long as Magoo is near Guidrey, he's happy, Guidrey said.
"For a dog that has gone through a lot, he should probably have more issues than he does," Guidrey said. "He's very sweet. He likes his life here. He loves coming to visit."
Guidrey said she heard in a movie that a person will own seven great dogs in their lifetime. Magoo, Guidrey said, is definitely one of her seven.
Making Dreams Come True
Wayland Nursing and Rehabilitation Center has yet again teamed up with our Hospice Company, Life Choice Hospice and our Ambulance Company, LifeLine Ambulance to make one of our hospice patients final dreams come true. But this time, we got a little more help from Long's Jewelers in Natick.
Everett Potter is 97 years old, he has always been one of our more recognizable patients mostly noted for his wit and sense of humor. Well, Pop was recently enrolled in Hospice and we were excited to be able to offer him a trip. So we asked him what he wanted to do and the only thing he could say was he wanted to do something that made Betty ( His wife) Happy. Yes, that is very sweet. So what did we come up with together? We decided to make his biggest wish in life come true while resolving his biggest regret .
Pop and Betty were married in 1945 and at that time Pop had the future on his mind and wanted to make sure his children had the education he thought they would deserve, so he saved his money and did not get Betty a real diamond ring. This to him, was his biggest regret. So Wayland Nursing and Rehabilitation Center and Life Choice Hospice started looking around for a ring and we walked into Long's Jewelers and met Paul. We knew Paul would be able to help us out because he too used to be a social worker in a nursing home in New York. He was able to get us an amazing deal on a Diamond Solitare and from that point Pops dream really took off. We then located the church where they were married 65 years ago in Milford New Hampshire and called the Pastor up there, Pastor Tom who was more than willing to help us out. Next we were onto LifeLine who provided us a 14 passenger bus which took Pop and Betty on a day they would never forget.
Once the Boston Globe got word of our gift to Pop they were interested as well....below you will find their article with the most amazing video which depict Pop and Betty exactly how we get to see them everyday!
Thanks to the Boston Globe taking an interest in Pops and Betty's story, we got quite the buzz going around. On the trip to New Hampshire we were accompanied also by Metrowest Daily News, Fox25 Boston and NBC Boston News Stations. Below you will find both reports from Fox25 and NBC:
Our first stop was at Long's to pick up the ring. Paul and the owner of Long's were there to present Pop with his diamond solitare ring as well as 2 wedding bands that Long's so graciously donated to the couple. Both were later engraved to say "11/10/1945 - I love you - 4/4/2011". They also donated a bouquet of flowers and champagne for the event.
After Long's we loaded the bus again, Pop and Betty were all bundled up warm on the bus together singing songs the whole day. When we got to the church, after meeting with Pastor Tom, Pop wanted to give his blushing bride her first diamond. Betty was so happy she did not even know what to say...so Pop wanted to put the ring on her finger, because of his lack of eye sight he asked :Betty, where's your finger" to which Betty answered, "On my hand".
(Photo compliments of Metrowest Daily News)
Betty could not stop looking at the ring, she was so happy.
(Photo compliments of Metrowest Daily News)
We proceded to walk them down the isle where they were met by Pastor Tom to re-new their vows. He Started the ceremony with a letter both Betty and Pop wrote to each other.
Pop read: "Dear Betty, I'd be lost without you. The only reason I am here is because of you. You kept me going and kept me young. I remember the times we used to dance around the kitchen and how good cook of a cook you used to be, I remember our walks home from my fathers farm and most of all what nice legs you had. I can not be happier that fate stepped in and brought you to me because as you know I did not plan to get married, but you stole my heart and my life changed forever.
It was because if you, you gave me our son and kept the Potter name going, which is the greatest gift you ever gave me. You kept me alive for the last 65 years, I would be proud to marry you again today and a million more times. I thank you for making me into the man I am today, and although I could say it better if I had all my teeth, I love you forever."
Then it was Betty's turn: "Pop, I love you very much, I remember how nervous I was when we got married. I don't know who was shaking more, you or me, but we made it through. I remember dancing with you, we would go ALL around the floor. We had a good life and a good family. I am very happy to marry you again, I love you Pops."
Pop and Betty then repeated their vows to eachother, which they did so well...at the end of Betty's vow she turned to Pop and ended her vows with: "This is my solemn vow". Very romantic. Pop then turned to Betty and said "kiss me Betty" but was quickly corrected that it was time for a prayer. When the prayer was over he said to Betty again, "Kiss me Betty" again the Pastor went on with the ceremony. Finally the words he had been waiting all day to hear, "Pop you may kiss your bride"
(Photo compliments of Metrowest Daily News)The day was just perfect and everyone here at Wayland Nursing and Rehab, Life Choice Hospice and Lifeline Ambulance Service are so proud that we could give Pop his last wish and that we could help finally get Betty the diamond ring Pop always knew she deserved.
Announcing Unique Partnership with Brookhaven Hospice and Lifeline Ambulance Service
Wayland Nursing & Rehabilitation Center has recently teamed up with Brookhaven Hospice and Lifeline Ambulance Service to offer hospice patients the opportunity to fullfill their final wish. The program was conceived after a hospice patient expressed a wish to go to Castle Island one more time before she passed. Lifeline Ambulance provided a 28-passenger bus for the trip, and, with the help of Wayland staff and Brookhaven Hospice, the patient and her entire family were able to spend a whole day together on Castle Island one last time.
Our second hospice patient had worked in Boston his entire life but had not been back in the city for 25 years. He had expressed his wish to see the changes that had come about in the years he has been away. Again, the staff at Wayland Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, Brookhaven Hospice and Lifeline Ambulance made his final wish come true. The Metro West Daily News covered this heartfelt event in an article entitled "Wayland man's dying wish fulfilled on a Duck Boat." Click here to read it.
At Wayland Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, we strive to provide joy and quality of life even in life's last moments. For more information, please call us at 508-653-8500