Debbie's Story

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Caregiver Stories

Family stories share our passion

Read the details of how Hospice of the Panhandle has helped make lives more comfortable and fulfilling as told by different families.


A tale of total support for an entire family   

When Debbie Domenico’s mom had a stroke in 2020, she, along with her four brothers and a sister, recognized that she was going to need more help than they and her husband of 60+ plus years could provide. When a friend recommended hospice care, Debbie was a little concerned about what her mom’s reaction would be.

“We thought she would think that it was end of life (and she would be reluctant),” Debbie said.  

Helen Crowell, or Nanny, as her family called her, entered Hospice of the Panhandle care in January 2022 and died in November of that year.  

“Hospice of the Panhandle helped us as a family and gave my mom very good care in the last months of her life,” Debbie said. “The Hospice team not only provided physical care, they also provided emotional care for her. And they made us feel good as a family.”  

Debbie and her siblings also appreciated the Hospice team’s expertise in teaching family members how to care for their mom.  

“We were able to learn how to turn her in bed … anything that she needed, we were able to do that by just listening to them and following their advice. They took a lot of pressure off my family.” 

Although Debbie grew up in the Martinsburg area, she has lived in Georgia for years. Yet Hospice of the Panhandle always kept her in the loop regarding her mom’s care. “They were always communicating with me … they were my eyes and ears and helped tremendously.” 

Debbie called her mom’s passing “a beautiful, peaceful death,” one that the family attributes to the care that Hospice of the Panhandle provided. 

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“He was having medical issues. And he was grieving,” Debbie said. “After some coaxing, Daddy agreed to let Hospice come in again.”

Vincent continues to see his primary doctor at the VA Center, but also gets care from his entire Hospice team – nurses, aides, social workers and chaplains. “Hospice collaborates with the VA. But with the Hospice team coming to the house, they have cut our visits to the VA, almost by 90 percent.”

As a veteran, Vincent also received a veteran recognition ceremony and pin from a veteran volunteer, Ross Curtis.  

“It’s a huge load off of my brothers and sister,” Debbie said of her dad’s care as well as her mom’s. 

“My advice to any family that has a loved one who’s ill is to seek out Hospice of the Panhandle. Don’t hesitate to call them,” she added. “And it’s so worth it … it’s the total package. It’s not just the end of life.”   

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