In January of 2017, she messaged me via Facebook and asked me to call her. I did and we talked for a while. I knew she was not doing well after battling Ovarian Cancer for several years. When she got around to why she asked me to call her, she said she wanted me to be the Keynote speaker for their conference in late April. The theme was, Rounding Up Your Passion for Case Management and she thought I would be a good person to speak on this topic. I told Pat I would love to speak, but only if she promised me she would be at the conference. Pat, true to her word, was there and looked great! We got to spend some time together and catch up. The next day, her daughter put a post on Facebook that Pat was admitted to the hospital and was on Hospice. She passed a week later with her entire family with her.
The main reason that this was important to me is that I wanted to be able to spend some time with one person, in particular, Jerry Okabe who is on the far right. He had contacted me a few months before and told me he was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer. When my plans to go to SLC were finalized, I called a friend who contacted the entire group to see who could make the dinner. Everyone knew Jerry was not doing well and wanted to come together so we had a good turnout! We had a great time and got to share some fun memories. I got to sit next to Jerry so we could talk and have a few laughs. I learned from his daughter via Facebook, a few weeks later that Jerry passed quietly with his family with him.
I remember when my father was dying of lung cancer, many of our family members called our home to see how my dad was. I always encouraged them to come and visit while he was alive versus attending his funeral. Many did and although it was hard, they were grateful for having that last visit.