In this month’s Kind Regards installment, we are humbled by Lorraine’s family, who took the time to write a letter sharing the touching details of the relationships the staff at Lake Minnetonka Shores - located in Spring Park, MN - built with their mother.
Lorraine’s family wrote:
We would like to say "Thank you" to several people at Lake Minnetonka Shores for going above and beyond their work assignments in the care of our Mother. She lived in the Court, The Villa, The Commons and the Gables for over 16 years. There are so many people in those areas who were so helpful to our Mother that we could not possibly name all of them, but we would like to highlight just a few that deserve special attention.
Greg Taylor, who helped build shelves in her apartments and storeroom, fixed her shower and closet doors and helped make her four apartments just the way she wanted them. He always accomplished this with a smile. Mom would say - "Let's call Greg - he can fix it."
Bobbie Garcia is just one of the staff at the Commons who went out of her way while Mom was in Assisted Living, helped in her morning and evening activities and made her feel secure in her move to Assisted Living - always with a smile and a giggle.
Ron Nyangera, who made our Mother smile with his teasing, with his friendly stops to visit, with his general attitude when working with our Mother - teasing her about "not getting skinny for him" when she started losing some weight. He was one of the last staff members to get a smile and a handshake out of her in one of her last days. Ron also remembered little things about Mom. After she was unable to communicate, he helped to put on her blankets so the sheets were loosely around her feet, like she wanted them.
Moses Regan, a delightful young server went out of his way to write a note to our Mother. He took the time out of his day to come share a note with the family during one of Lorraine's last days. He shared how much he enjoyed working with her and about how she had spent time talking with him when he was preparing for surgery. His note was one of the great comforts for the family during her last hours.
Gail Gachalian, the RN always helped us find solutions to the small and big problems that Mom was having. Her positive attitude about helping always made it easy for the entire family to feel comfortable asking for help. All of the nurses were great - Gail is just one of the nursing staff that Mom enjoyed.
Pastor Jackie Ziemer, who spent time with our Mother, especially at the end, bringing in her guitar and singing with Mother and several other family members hymns with a prayer, knowing this was a comfort for our Mom.
Florence Kerecha joined Pastor Jackie with a song that she often sang to our mother to help calm her in the evenings. Music was soothing to our Mother, and to have five of the staff from the center take time out of their day to sing for our Mother's funeral made it a very special day. Florence, Gblou Harris, Virginia Gakinya, Nancy Orina and Jane Onchieku came to sing a song, including a verse in Swahili, which was a wonderful addition to the service.
And finally, to the entire third floor staff at the Gables, who always made our Mom feel welcome and safe, helping her with the "Green Machine" that she disliked, making it at least bearable, helping her with her showers, with trivia, with various craft groups, and with other activities. Everyone on the staff always made sure she was included in activities and felt protected where she was, even as simple as asking her to come and "watch" if she didn't want to participate. We always felt confident that Mom was treated with respect and great care, especially after she was wheelchair bound. We always appreciated the calls that we received from the staff, continuing to keep us informed about her care.
Thank you - all of you at Lake Minnetonka Shores.
Kind Regards is a regular feature that shares the letters, hand written cards and emails we receive from those we serve. Beyond expressing appreciation, these letters remind us how important and needed our ministry is and inspire us to offer our best.