Walking to Honor Mom

For those who participate in Angela Hospice’s annual Walk of Remembrance, those 2.3 miles are about so much more than just getting some exercise.

“My mom is the main reason why we’re walking,” said Redford resident Wendy Martin.

Last year was the first time Wendy decided to take part in the Walk of Remembrance, which she did with her two children. It had been a little over a year since her mom, Suzanne, received Angela Hospice care. Suzanne was in the Angela Hospice Care Center for three months before passing in March 2013.

“I’m not going to lie, it was really emotional,” Wendy said. “I don’t know if it’s Angela [Hospice], or the community, or whatever it was, but I felt like, what a blessing this place is.”

Wendy's children, Zachary and Emma Jane, loved
walking for their grandmother at the walk last year.
While the walk proved to be an emotional day for Wendy and her kids she also said it was really nice. Her kids loved it so much that when they began discussing participating again they were very excited to do it, saying the walk was a special thing to do for grandma.

This year Wendy is forming a walk team and is expecting at least 15 people to be members. She said they haven’t completely decided on a name yet but they are leaning towards Suzanne’s Angels, in honor of her mom.

“I wanted to get the rest of my family involved,” she said. “I felt like it would be a nice way to honor my mom, and a way to give back to Angela Hospice because they were amazing to us and my mom.”

Before placing her in Angela Hospice, Wendy and her siblings were all taking turns having Suzanne live with them. Wendy said that went on for about nine months before getting to the point where it was just too hard because Suzanne needed more care than they could provide. Suzanne learned she had cancer in March 2012, then had surgery and chemo, before entering the Care Center in December.

“We didn’t really know how we were going to take care of her,” Wendy said. “None of us could really stay home and leave our jobs because we all have young families and we kind of need both paychecks.”

Suzanne’s doctors told them that hospice was  the only thing they would be able to do for her so the search began. They wanted to find a place that was close enough so someone could be with Suzanne every day or every other day.

Wendy and her siblings all grew up in Livonia so they knew about Angela Hospice. Plus, her grandparents both received Angela Hospice care while at St. Mary Mercy Livonia. She also had some friends that had used Angela Hospice for their loved ones.

“My mom was pretty young, so my brother, sister, and I all thought, ‘Oh, 20 years from now we’ll be dealing with mom passing away,’” Wendy said. “We never thought in our late 30s and early 40s that we’d be dealing with that.”

Wendy said the nurses and staff went out of their way to see how they were handling it all, and were more than willing to sit and answer all of their questions about Suzanne’s health.

“Even though it’s such a hard decision to make…it just kind of met all of our needs,” Wendy said. “It was a huge blessing.”

Walk of Remembrance
Saturday, September 19
Registration 9 a.m., Opening Ceremony 10 a.m.
Beginning at Madonna University
$35 for adults; $15 for ages 6-12; free for 5 & under
Register at AskForAngela.com or call (734) 464-7810

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