Last Updated on December 4, 2017 by Seth Jeska
Patty has been a kindergarten teacher in the Spencer, Iowa school district for 16 years. She was diagnosed with ALS shortly after the birth of her second child at the age of 35. Friends talk about Patty’s determination to continue doing the job she has loved for so long. Patty, her husband Gary, and their two children Bethany and Trace live in Ruthven, Iowa. The family is assisted daily by Kindred Hospice to meet Patty’s needs so she can be home with her family.
Gary once wrote about the first time he met Patty, “The first night we met, I was playing guitar and singing cover songs to 300 people while standing on a shipping pallet, on a frozen lake, under a circus tent. She conned me into buying her a drink and things have only gotten more interesting from there; I love Patty!”
Katie Cook, from Kindred Hospice, says “ they are a truly amazing couple and they show their children what true love is and how love conquers all.”
Homes for Heroes Specialist, Erica Schultes presented Patty and her family with a $500 Christmas Miracle on behalf of Homes for Heroes. The family was overwhelmed with emotion at this gift and chose to purchase a gift card for Bethany to her favorite clothing store for $100, a gift card for Trace in the amount of $100, and a gift card for $300 to purchase a new family laptop to replace the one that broke months ago. When presented with his gift card, Trace, in his wonderful spirit talked about all the presents he would buy other people.
“Patty’s story immediately touched my heart. My own mother was on Hospice care at the same age that Patty is now. I understand the stresses and the rollercoaster of emotions that come when a loved one is no longer able to communicate or care for themselves or others as they once used to. Ultimately, I wish I was able to give the gift of complete healing, but I am extremely grateful to Homes for Heroes for making this gift of brightening their holiday possible – they are a wonderful family! A big shout out to the Hospice caregivers as well – they make ones wishes of being with family come true. It is clear that Patty and her family are grateful and in awe of this gift.” ~ Homes for Heroes Specialist, Erica Schultes