Mary was 4 months short of her 100th birthday when she arrived. She was a great leader in the Hispanic community and was revered by everyone who met her. She was the matriarch of a large family that was appreciative of her for one reason or another. All they could say was “She was an incarnation of love and gave so much of herself to us and to the community."
Although the family was large, no one was available who could give her the 24-hour care she needed. She came to us from the nursing home with compression fractures and barely able to eat or drink. ABODE staff and volunteers fed and spiritually nourished the many family members that came by everyday to see her. Wonderful stories and memories of her life were shared and emotional support freely given and received. One evening, after several days of being non-responsive, Mary opened her eyes to the ABODE caregiver and said. “Heaven is so beautiful”! One night soon thereafter, the night Mary chose to go to Heaven, there were friends of ABODE visiting the home who wanted to sing Christmas carols. We asked the family, who were with her, if that would be a disturbance. They said, “No, please come sing outside her door.” Mary took her last breath just before we all began to sing all 3 verses of “Silent Night.” Maybe Mary knew that the singing would bring comfort to those she loved and had to leave behind.
Video by Love Made Me Do It Productions