A Summer Blessing

August 30, 2016

On any given day at the Hospice of the Foothills campus, you may see 2 or 3 people slowly navigating the walkways, stopping frequently, and always looking intently at the ground. It may be puzzling to some, but the explanation is simple and quite touching. Most of the walkways and adjacent planting areas are lined with commemorative bricks engraved with personalized messages. Our ‘slow walking’ visitors are often here to find or visit their brick, and generally take time to read the tributes on some of the surrounding bricks.

From left: Joe Grande, Greg Snyder, Gil Mathew, Marilyn Streseman, Ron Keeling, Suzanne Reese, Rich Ramey, Mike Brown, Greg Gulizia, Rocco Gulizia.

From left: Joe Grande, Greg Snyder, Gil Mathew, Marilyn Streseman, Ron Keeling, Suzanne Reese, Rich Ramey, Mike Brown, Greg Gulizia, Rocco Gulizia.

The Pave the Way program started in 2008 as a Friends of Hospice fundraiser for the Hospice of the Foothills capital campaign. Over the years, the bricks have continued to be a popular commemorative program. While the majority of bricks are memorials to friends and loved ones, there are many that pay homage to special people, events, or other noteworthy occasions.

After many years of working with a Sacramento area mason who installed the bricks, Pave the Way co-chairs Suzanne Reese and Marilyn Streseman learned it was increasingly difficult for him take time away from his rapidly growing business. The time had come to find a local resource. This last June, Suzanne Reese was discussing the program needs with Joe Grande of Grande Wood Designs. When told of the challenge with the brick installation, he offered to help find a solution.

Joe Grande is a member of Twin Cities Church and belongs to a Men’s bible study group that meets every Friday morning at 6:30am. He shared the Friends of Hospice need and proposed installing the bricks as one of their community projects. Study group member, Rich Ramey, is the owner of Ramey Tile Company, so the team had the expertise to take on the job. Needless to say, the men embraced the project, seeing it as a wonderful way to express their heartfelt thanks to Hospice of the Foothills for the loving and compassionate care provided to several of their parents and loved ones.

Mike Brown and Rich Ramey set the bricks.

Mike Brown and Rich Ramey set the bricks.

Bright and early on a beautiful August morning, Joe Grande, Rich Ramey, Gil Mathew, Mike Brown, Greg Snyder, Ron Keeling, Greg Gulizia (along with his young son Rocco) arrived, making quick and joyful work of the installation. We are deeply appreciative and blessed by the kindness and generosity of this wonderful group of men. Time and again, our community members rise up and demonstrate the ‘golden spirit’ that lives in our beautiful foothills. This spirit allows Hospice of the Foothills to provide comfort and high quality end-of-life care for our patients, their families, and our community.

Hospice of the Foothills relies on the community to help support our programs and services. Please consider buying a commemorative brick or making a donation today to help bridge the growing gap between reimbursements and the actual cost of comprehensive, whole family care.

 

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