Valerie had been searching for years on how to bring her brother Larry home.
Larry, a Vietnam Veteran, was in a nursing home in Herkimer. Larry fell ill and was admitted to a Utica hospital where he received his hospice diagnosis. Valerie made what seemed like endless phone calls, until her search ended when she called VA Social Worker and VIST coordinator, Andrea Stephens, LMSW-C.
When Andrea received Valerie’s call, she knew she had to do something. Andrea reached out to VA Fire Chief Chad Powers who didn’t hesitate to put his team into action. Assistant Chief, William Kennedy Jr. assigned Captain Brad Feely, U.S. Navy Veteran, and Firefighter Jon Wilbur to assist with the transport. When asked about the commute, the two said, we are here around the clock, always ready to help, and we are grateful we were able to assist Larry.
Valerie is beyond appreciative of the actions of Andrea and the Canandaigua VA Fire Department. Larry was able to feel sun on his skin and breath fresh air which he hadn’t been allowed to do in over 2 years. Valerie states that thanks to Andrea and Chief Powers, her family is finally at peace and comfort, being able to see Larry’s smile and spend the last precious moments of life together.
Sometimes, it just takes one phone call to make a difference. Perhaps, you can be that one person to make a difference today.