Hospice Testimonials

Family Members Share Their Personal Experience With Ascend Hospice

Ascend Hospice cherishes the personal and appreciative hospice stories from families and friends who have lost a loved one to a terminal illness. We deeply understand how hard it is to make the decision to use end-of-life care and thank the families below who felt it was important to share their individual journeys.


New Jersey
September 2018

Dear Sir/Madam:

 

I am writing on behalf of my entire family to thank Ascend Hospice and all of their employees for the care administered by them to my Uncle during his time under their care while an inpatient.

From the start, the attention and service we received went above and beyond their call of duty and I truly believe it was a calling.

Unfortunately I cannot remember all of the names of all of the wonderful staff from Ascend that took part in his care from the beginning. The case manager, primary attending physician, registered nurses, his aides, the Chaplin, social worker and case manager were all wonderful, caring and devoted to his every need. A special heartfelt thank you to Matthew and Beth. The professionalism and kindness they extended to us each and every day are very appreciated.

I will never forget the support and genuine goodness exhibited by the entire Ascend staff during a most difficult time.

Saying thank you seems so trivial but those words are all I have. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for all you did for my uncle and his extended family/

God Bless you all and be assured I will highly recommend Ascend Hospice to anyone I know in a similar situation.

Anonymous


New Jersey
September 2018

I’m writing on behalf of myself, my eight siblings and my mom.  My mom passed away last Sunday, September 16th.  She had been battling several physical ailments since 2015, which rendered her confined to a wheelchair.  Her condition eventually made it so that she required two people to assist her with any kind of movement (transfer to the bed, chair, bathroom, etc.).  After attempting to care for her at home and then at an Assistant Living Facility, I had to make the difficult decision of moving her to a long term care facility.

The staff  were incredible and I will write to them as well.  However, a couple of months ago I had to make the decision to put my mom on Hospice Care, because her dementia was worsening.  Not only was this a difficult decision for me personally, but as you can imagine, it was painful for my siblings to hear.  Many of them felt as though this decision meant we were giving up on my mom or that hospice would somehow expedite her death. We were all feeling the same pain, but because I was her Power of Attorney, I often felt alone when it came time to make a decision.

However, that all changed when I met Sonny our case manager and Joe our social worker.  When the facility said that they recommend Ascend for hospice care, I remember responding:  “Sure, what difference does it make what hospice place we use”?   But I know now that it makes all the difference in the world.  Sonny was excellent at explaining what to expect.  She was always easily accessible and throughout the process she would sit with my family members and explain how things were progressing.  My sister would visit my mom the most and she was so touched that Sonny called to check in on her after my mom passed.  And Joe was wonderful, too.  He would call me to check in and see how I was doing.  He also helped me understand that I made the right decision for my mom, because so many people wait too long to put their loved one on hospice, and as a result, they don’t get the full benefits of extra care and comfort.  Joe and Sonny made me feel like I finally had people that supported my difficult decisions.  I no longer felt alone and Joe often helped me vent and also helped me properly articulate the discussions with my sibling, and for that I’m grateful to have chosen Ascend and I’m grateful to Sonny and Joe.

The scary part of putting my mom in a facility was that I felt no one would care for my mom like her family would.  That was until I met Mia.  She was an absolute angel with my mom!  She cared for her better than any of us could have and did so with her smile, quick wit and the patience of a saint.  She would often point out how my mom had big blue eyes and how she loved my mom’s smile.  Mia had this incredible ability to make each person in the Day Room feel like she was their own personal care taker while still helping multiple residents at the same time.  It wasn’t just the residents on hospice.  Mia lights up a room and makes EVERYONE feel better, the residents and their family members alike.  She assured us on the Friday before my mom passed that my mom would never be left alone.  If we needed to take a break, she would be there with my mom.  And she told us that there would be someone there for daily visits on the weekend.  The people that arrived on the weekend were wonderful—everyone from Ascend was wonderful!  Please forgive me for not remembering all of their names, because they were all great to my family and me.  I will never forget Joe and Sonny and the support they provided for me, and I will never forget the way Mia cared for my mother as if she were her own mom.

I’m so glad I listened to the staff when they suggested I used Ascend.  In addition, I will always be grateful to the angels from Ascend, especially Sonny, Joe and most all Mia who treated my mom like she was her own.

From the bottom of my heart I want to thank them for all they have done and all they will continue to do for those in need.

Anonymous


New Jersey
September 2018

Dear Chaplin John,

Just wanted to thank you for being with my mom in the final hours. Thank you for giving her the sacraments and anointing her before she passed. It means a lot to my family.

May she rest in peace.

Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2018

It has been a pleasure working with everyone at Ascend Hospice.  I was fortunate enough to meet the RN’s watching over my mother.  I also met 3 of the aides that were helping her during the day. I was always kept updated on my mother and was kind enough to take her outside to visit with her.  I have been watching over my mother since 2007 and it was wonderful to have the extra care and attention at the end.  I know she is at peace and will be her husband of 66 years.

Thank you to everyone who helped my mother and my family,

Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2018

I just wanted Ascend Health to know how very grateful I am for all the members of your exceptional Hospice Team who comforted and cared for my dear wife.  My family and I will not forget how loving and dignified it was for their Mother to be in a home setting as this was always her wish.

A special thanks to her doctor, who has cared for my wife for over 15 years, offered all available care and services that he knew my wife would need on her final journey.

Our Social Worker offered advise and aid for both myself and my wife. Kathleen, who headed the team, visited and monitored all aspects of her health and care during and even after her peaceful passing.  Misty, along with our special aids, Jennifer and Maggie, saw to the daily physical and emotional care.

May God bless all of you for the work you do everyday for our loved ones.

Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2018

A tiny note to tell you how wonderful you are. She had love around her when she left this world. But you put her at ease. Making the transition from this world to the next special for her and the family. Knowing you were keeping an eye on her care made it easier to go home.

Thank you for all you do.
Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2018

Dear Ascend Team,

On behalf of my family I would like to thank you for the care you gave my mother. Ashley, I never even spoke to you but thanks for the time and care you gave to my mom.
Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2018

To the Ascend Hospice Team,

Just a note to express my gratitude to all of your nurses and aides who attended to my mother! You all treated her with love and respect and for that, we are grateful. Grace and Peace extended to each of your staff and their families.
Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2018

I wanted to take a moment to thank Ascend Hospice staff for their guidance and support in the caring for my mother during the last days of her life. In particular, I would like to recognize the nurse who managed my mother’s case. She went out of her way to explain the services and care plan in a clear and thorough manner, while being compassionate and kind. She went our of her way to make sure my mother was comfortable and made repeat visits to ensure the care plan was carried out in accordance to my mother’s final wishes. She is an asset to your company and a blessing to your patients and their families.
Anonymous


New Jersey
July 2018

Dear Ascend Hospice,

I am writing to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation for your care of my late mother. From the beginning of her care, you showed my mother and I nothing but respect and kindness. I would also like to take this opportunity to single out a couple of individuals who were especially helpful during my mother’s time in your care.

The on-call nurse was the first person I met at Care One Center. She carefully explained the hospice care and I am grateful to her for that. Thank you to the Care provider that took care of my mother during the day. And a very special thank you to the nurse assigned to my mother. She was very professional and caring I appreciated that she gave me her personal cell number to contact her whenever I needed to. I am also grateful to her and all the other nurses who showed such wonderful compassion towards my mother.

So on behalf of myself and my entire family, we thank you so much for the fine service and care you provided her. We will always remember what you did.
Anonymous


New Jersey
July 2018

My mother and I would like to thank the nurses, aides, doctors, hospice and everyone else who had helped my father from July 9 to July 19, when he died. Please know that my mother and I are grateful to everyone who helped to make my fathers final days peaceful and comfortable as possible.
Anonymous


New Jersey
July 2018

I wanted to make you aware of a situation that I recently experienced.  This took place a couple of days ago and am not sure the exact time frame but I do know the nurse in question is named Mike.  The business relationship between myself and Ascend is new and fairly untested but Mike demonstrated through action qualities that I very much appreciate. Mike was here working with the one resident you currently have with us and went out of his way to find me to ask permission to review the chart of the resident in question.  If the rest of the nurses you have on your team are like Mike then I can see our relationship flourishing. I just wanted to make you aware that Mikes actions have had a direct and favorable influence on my opinion of the company as a whole.

Anonymous


New Jersey
June 2018

Dear Erin and Staff,

A very special thank you for the great care that you gave my husband. It was very comforting to know that he was in great hands and for me so reassuring that help was on the way. Again, thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Anonymous


New Jersey
May 2018

I just wanted to let you know what a fine job my aide and RN do here for my mother.

My aide is just the best … she is caring and concerned and treats my mother with loving care 7 days a week! She knows exactly how to speak with her and give her the help she needs as a dementia/Parkinson’s patient. Debbie is always kind and patient with her and treats her so respectfully.

Our RN is also very professional and giving of her time and energy to visit with us and keep us informed of all that’s going on. She is extremely thorough and informative plus takes her time in discussing medications and care.

I really appreciate these 2 women and the wonderful service they provide, just wanted you to know they are absolutely the best and make my life so much easier!

Thank you very much, I also wanted to mention how much I like our social worker, Chaplain and our LPN who are all very comforting and kind!
Anonymous


New Jersey
May 2018

To Ascend Caregivers,

We wanted to thank everyone who’s helping with caring for our mom. Thanks for all your help. It means so much.
Anonymous


New Jersey
May 2018

Dear Hospice Staff,

Thank you for all of the kindness you showed my dad and my family. We are very grateful.
Anonymous


New Jersey
November 2017

Thank you so much for the help and kindness shown to my dad in his last few weeks. A special thank you to his aide Desiree. In one of his last lucid moments he said she was sweet. I can’t think of a better complement and a testament to the wonderful job she did.

Thank you to all the folks at Ascend Hospice.
Anonymous


New Jersey
October 2017

Our heartfelt thanks to you and your staff for the compassionate care you gave to Vincent during his final hours. As you know our only request was that he was made as comfortable as possible and we know everyone did their best fulfilling our request.

Anonymous


New Jersey
September 2017

The professional and caring services that your organization provided for our loved one at the Care One of Evesham facilities will never be forgotten. The book that you provided helped the family understand the full process of transitioning, it was very comforting. Each day you kept him clean and made the end of his life a comforting experience.

We were kept informed throughout the various stages of transition, so that we knew what to expect next and what signs to look for. Please express to the staff that we thank them for comforting the family in so many ways, as we approached the final day when he would go home to be with the lord. That day came on his 64th birthday August 11, 2017. To God Be The Glory.
Anonymous


New Jersey
September 2017

I know your staff did not spend much time with my father but I wanted to say thank you for everything you did in such a short period of time. It was greatly appreciated.
Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2017

I wanted to take this opportunity to tell you how wonderful Ana has been to my mother. Everyday she arrives at my dads house with a smile on her face. She has been with my mom since the beginning of her hospice in July 2016. As a family member with a loved one on hospice it is so difficult to realize your family member is declining. Ana makes it a bit easier everyday she is with my mom. She is not just an aide,she is a friend who talks with and comforts mom each day. I could not ask for a better person to show up everyday at our house.

Everyday is a blessing having mom still with us. I know someday that we will have to say goodbye but I wanted to send this letter before we have to part ways to tell you how very much she means to my mom and to our family. She is a wonder person sent to us from heaven to help with this sad time. God Bless.
Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2017

We wish to extend our sincere thank you for all the time you spent visiting our mom and us during a very difficult time. It’s the caring staff that help us through our sadness.

Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2017

Kimberly is my moms hospice nurse. I can not tell you how much Kimberly means not only to my mom, but to our family. It is so difficult to hear the words “decline” it rips your heart out. My mom and me are very close, being the only daughter I have to hear a lot of words that no one wants to hear about you love ones decline. Kimberly makes it a bit easier each time she visits with kind words and comfort. I know as a nurse it is not easy for her to see the tears in my eyes or the sadness I feel. When she arrives she always makes my mom smile and Kimberly smiles with her.I could not ask for a better nurse to care for my mom at this stage of her life.

As time goes by I know someday I will hear those words that no family member ever wants to hear, but knowing Kimberly is going to be there for all os us, I so hope will make it a tiny bit easier to say goodbye. God bless.
Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2017

Dear Ascend Hospice Management & Staff,

I am writing to express our thanks to Ascend Staff, especially your RN’s Kim and Joan and most especially, your aide Sarah, from my brothers and myself, for the steady support and care we and our Mother are receiving from them. We know your people are in our corner as we see mother through her days and weeks of increasing dementia.

Highly Skilled; endlessly patient, our Ascend Hospice Aide Sarah is able to communicate more effectively with our mother than anyone else we know, including ourselves. Evan at her worst moments I have seen her respond to Sarah when she completely ignored everyone else’ efforts to comfort her and communicate with her.

We are offering up endless prayers of thanksgiving for Sarah’s wisdom, honesty and gentle kindness. She takes the time not only to care for mother but to extend her caring and support to my brothers and me as do both Kim and Joan.

Gene & Jim join me and our Mother, whom I heard saying to Sarah just a couple of days ago, even in the midst of her tears and anguish, ” anyone who can do like you do; it means everything!”

Anonymous


New Jersey
August 2017

Thank you. Our family acknowledges with deep appreciation the kindness and comfort shown during our bereavement. May God bless you for your thoughtfulness.

Anonymous


New Jersey
July 2017

To all members of Ascend who assisted my mom. Thank you all for your compassion and kindness to my mom and myself during the last hours of her life. I will always remember your kind words to me. You are a wonderful group, Ascend Hospice.

Anonymous



New Jersey
June 2017

The Ascend Hospice Staff was so kind and compassionate during my aunts last days. Thank you for making her transition smooth and painless. I am forever grateful.

Anonymous



New Jersey
June 2017

To Everyone at Ascend,
What can I say to each and everyone that helped to care for Russ. He was a special man and my best friend for over 64 years. Your group was very special and I will never forget you. I would tell anyone your group is the best, very caring and kind to their patients.

Anonymous



New Jersey
May 2017

To the Ascend Hospice Management and Staff,
Please accept this heartfelt thank you for all the expertise, caring and professional support provided during the 2 months prior to my mother’s passing. We were so pleased that she died peacefully at home, made possible by all of you.

Anonymous



Massachusetts
May 2017

Thank you for sharing your gift of music with Dad during his final days and today honoring him. We cannot thank you enough for your sympathy and caring. We have all been blessed in knowing you as you share you gift with us.

Anonymous


New Jersey
March 2017

Thank you for all the care that you gave my dad. The family had such relief to know that when we couldn’t be there with my dad that Ascend Hospice was.

Also Ascend Hospice treated other family members with care, like when my mom wasn’t understanding or handling what was happening to my dad. Ascend still continued to be there for my mother by giving her support by talking to her while at the care one facility. You have been so helpful.

Thank you for all your kindness, compassion and professionalism toward my whole family

Anonymous



New Jersey
January 2017

From one of our nurses in New Jersey, during a meeting it was made known to Ascend, that the daughter of our patient (who was declining) never wanted to leave her Mother’s side. This daughter was afraid that her Mom was going to die alone if she left.
That night, I reached out to the team, to see who would volunteer with me to sit vigil during the night hours. With that being said, the offers came in pretty much as soon as I hit Send on the email!
10 pm that night I emailed the facility with a schedule we came up with to help out.
Our patient did pass Friday morning, but NOT alone.
Our hospice aide identified that our patient was near the end.

Anonymous


Missouri
November 2016

I wanted to thank you for the care that you provide to my dad. It was so comforting to know that you were there for not only dad but mom and I as well. We appreciate your efforts in his care as well as helping mom and I through those difficult times. Thanks again.

Anonymous


Kansas
November 2016

To Everyone at Ascend. Thank you for the card. I really want to express my gratitude to everyone who I met. For your support and comfort and for keeping me informed and “smiling” during a stressful time.
Anonymous


Virginia
October 2016

What a nice, warm, and understanding card I just received. Thank you for your kind words.I have wondered if I can make it without Bertie at my side but with God and people like you on my side, how can I not? God bless you.


Virginia
September 2016

I just wanted to thank you for your support and encouragement during daddy’s illness and since his passing. I appreciate your calls and helping me through this very difficult time. Thank you.


New Jersey
May 2016

To the Amazing Staff at Ascend Hospice,

Thank you so much for all you did for care for our mom during the last months of her life. Your emotional support was phenomenal and you were always there for us anytime of the day or night. We appreciate all you did for us and for our mom.

Anonymous


New Jersey
April 2016

Thank you for the support and comfort your team provided. I appreciate having your staff with me during the difficult time in my life with my mother. They are the BEST I seen in sorrow times. They are very professional of their work.

Anonymous


New Jersey
May 2016

Thank you for everyone who helped my lovely husband in his fast few weeks.
You’re the best.

Anonymous


New Jersey
May 2016

Just a note of thanks and appreciation for the care and concern you showed for my mom (and our family) while she was at Bridgeway Care Center. I wish you could have known my mom when she was well. She would have been so grateful fro all you did for her.

Anonymous


New Jersey
May 2016

Thank you for your love and care you gave my mom during these past few months. It was very comforting to know what you and the nurses were at mom’s facility watching over her. Everyone that visited mom was very loving and caring. Thank you again.

Anonymous


Massachusetts
June 2014

My hospice story is personal. My dad was with the VNA hospice 20 years ago. His nurse was a RN and also a retired nun who served in the Vietnam War. My oldest son was 4 months old at the time. My dad’s nurse told me even though my dad was in a coma from the cancer he could still hear us. My dad opened his eyes and whispered good night to Paul before my husband took him home that night. Miraculous things can happen at the end stages. My dad’s nurse was right. I got to say goodbye and I love you once again.

I have had similar unexplained beautiful moments with my hospice patients, even now right before they pass. I never forgot the magic and love my dad’s nurse shared with me and my family. Maybe that’s why I am a hospice nurse today.

Thank you.

Maria


California
May 2014

To the staff of Ascend Hospice, formerly Care Alternatives,

Thank you for the recent letter. I really appreciate your empathy and compassion.

I lost my father, Richard, months ago and through the process, I’m so blessed to be able to have the time I did with him to reconnect and bond. My daughter Sarai and myself have spent many a moments reminiscing about the weekends we drove nine hours each way to stay with dad and spend time with him before his last moments. It was so wonderful to have him at home for most of it and “Lisa” on your staff is absolutely amazing. I myself am a specialty RN and work with many different nurses and medical professionals, but among all of them, Lisa I hold in high esteem. My father was difficult and she connected with him. He trusted her, she knew what she was doing and did it with grace, going above and beyond. Your pastor is so appreciated for his tenacity, and he gave my father peace and hope – the funeral was amazing.

Thank you.

Elizabeth


Pennsylvania
March 2014

Dear Dr. Parke,

I’ve wanted to send this note for a long time and finally am doing it. As I remember, you were the person who received my request for hospice for my mother, Elizabeth, a patient of Dr. Shearer’s.

I want you to know how much I appreciated your quick response in putting me in touch with Ascend Hospice, formerly Care Alternatives. I can’t say enough about the special people that took care of my mom in her last months. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your help and direction.

Sincerely,
Betsy


New Jersey
January 2014

Dear Mr. Anthony Spero (President of Ascend Hospice),

I am writing to you regarding my mother, Elizabeth, who had been under care of the following staff for about a year and a half. She passed away just this past Thursday and this seemed to be a good thing, considering her condition.

The staff who worked with her on an ongoing basis were Gusta RN; Rontoya CHHA and Chaplain Joe. All of these people did an excellent job taking care of her and my mother certainly did appreciate their friendship. Each and every one of these people did everything that could be done for “mom”.

As an only child of my mother, I want to say that it was a pleasure dealing with this group of people and when I wasn’t available, my wife had contact with this group, each of which were very responsive to my wife and myself.

The purpose of this letter is to bring these people to your attention and to assure you that if your firm should require any recommendation from someone who had used your services, you may count on us.

Sincerely,

John and Glenda


New Jersey
April 2014

Dear Anthony Spero (President of Ascend Hospice),
I have been a volunteer for Ascend Hospice, formerly Care Alternatives, for some time now (six, eight years or more, I cannot keep track) and have had several experiences when I was not only the volunteer, but a close friend of the family. During the first two experiences, Chris, the chaplain at the time, and the social worker always treated me with great respect and concern. Recently I experienced this again as a family member was on Ascend Hospice for a short period of time. Although I never saw Chris the chaplain personally in that time, a short phone call from her with just the right words helped me through. I cannot thank her enough for that. And Chaplain Nick also, through a short phone conversation, gave me just the right words to keep this volunteer on the right path. Again, I cannot thank Nick enough for knowing what to say. The kind and professional way you both treat patients, families and fellow staff is why I continue to recommend AH to family and friends.

Immediately, on the heels of the funeral of my family member, I spoke to Chris about a close friend’s mother and two days later everything was in place. Just like that. In my time as a volunteer, family and friends have said, “How can you do that?” “It must be so hard.” I usually reply, “How can I not?” I feel sure that the family of the present hospice patient has experienced the answer to that question and is very grateful to AH and the very special people that work for them.

Last, but not least, my thanks goes to Marina for always being there and for passing my messages along to the right people.

I am happy to be a part of Ascend Hospice. Thank you for the opportunity and for a very caring and knowledgeable staff. I am most happy when I am visiting “my people”.

Namaste, Lynne


Pennsylvania
May 2014

My wife, who has been your patient for almost a year, passed this last Friday morning. I want to thank you and your dedicated staff for your loving care of Loretta during this difficult time.

Loretta had dementia resulting from strokes over many years. She had been a resident at Sunrise of Granite Run for four and a half years. Among her many needs and limitations, Loretta had a Foley catheter that would need replacing at unpredictable times. Your nurses would respond at all hours to provide comfort to her. During periods of sickness, they would make recommendations to me for her care. They also contacted Loretta’s doctor to provide diagnoses and suggest medications. Your nurses were very professional, but at the same time, very personal and gentle.

During her final days, they were at her side doing all they could to give her peace. Your nurses helped me through these difficult days as well. Her nurses explained what was going to happen so I was prepared. I don’t know how I would have handled Loretta’s death without your staff being there.

There are a few nurses and aides I would like to recognize for exceptional service.

Aides Mirtha and Pauline would help Loretta with meals during their daily visits. They would tend to her personal hygiene so that she was fresh. They ordered supplies when needed. And they would keep me informed of Loretta’s wellness when I was not there.

Nurse Margo, Roe, and especially Jen were so gentle and kind. They spoke to Loretta and told her what they were going to do during each visit, even though we were not sure what she understood. They were at her side for many hours during her final days comforting both Loretta and me.

This was my first experience with hospice, and I am so thankful that you found me. I will highly recommend Ascend Hospice to anyone that has a loved one that is terminally ill.

Thank you so much.


Massachusetts
June 2014

A 44 year old male with 3 children age 16,10 & 5 had multiple myeloma with brain mets. He was an avid motorcycle rider, loved Christmas and mostly loved being with his children.

We had many conversations regarding the things he would like to do before he died, creating his own “bucket list”. We involved his 3 children as well. One day shortly after that conversation I arrived at the house, the children were so excited to show me what they did….they produced this gallon bucket all decorated with a sign on it that said “Our Dad’s and Our Family’s Bucket List”. It was filled with little folded notes. Every day they would pick something out of the bucket and do it. Mind you they were not big things…just little things like “pajama party on Dad’s bed”, “breakfast for supper”,”go to Dad’s favorite park”. I could go on but you understand…it is the little things that count.

When he died he was surrounded by his family and the “Bucket”. They buried the bucket with him with one additional note that read “when we meet in heaven, hugs and kisses all over Dad, and dad we love you”.

Patricia A Brown RN CHPN