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Jerry Budrick
06/06/2014 2:14 PM

Carla Sawyer

Sutter Creek

There was an obituary in the May 23 paper that marked the passing of a kind and generous lady. One line in that short notice read “...she was the founder of Hospice of Amador and was their director for ten years ... .” This brief statement could very easily have gone unnoticed. I would like to let this community know that only because of the dream and dedication of Pat Baney and her husband, Irv, that we have Hospice in Amador County.

In the early 80s, there were two people with an idea and dream of starting something virtually unheard of by most people in this community. A Hospice in Amador County was a dream of Pat and Irv Baney. They brought this dream into reality by dedication and a lot of hard work as well as recruiting a few friends to help start the Hospice that we have now. In the beginning, it was all volunteer: doctors, nurses, chaplains, Vince and Karen DeStigter of Western Health Care as well as locals willing to do whatever they could. The volunteers would meet in the Baneys’ living room, to figure out how to put together and organize the necessary people and supplies to care for those who were dying. Up to that point, there was no organized and coordinated care of this type available in our community. There was no paid clerical staff and no Hospice Thrift Store to support the things not covered by insurance or to cover the needs of people with no insurance.

Although the group had to improvise and learn as they went along, they were all very knowledgeable in their own fields and gave so much more than the needed physical care. I personally know this because while our Hopsice was still in the planning stages my father came home from the hospital with a diagnosis of terminal pancreatic cancer. A mutual friend let Pat Baney know and the group immediately went into action. I will be grateful to them forever.

Pat Baney has not lived in this community for many years but her dream, hard work, dedication and desire to help her fellow man lives on in Hospice of Amador.

Copyright © 2014 Amador Ledger Dispatch
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