Lucille Hiteshew, a longtime fan of the Indiana Pacers, recently had her wish to see a game in person granted, thanks to our Zionsville, Indiana chapter. Lucille had an amazing time, thanks to the generosity of the Pacers!
Dorothy Potts, a resident of Dravosburg, Pennsylvania, had her wish to have her whole family together again granted, thanks to our Allegheny County chapter. Potts, who is 82, has three daughters, five grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Two of her grandchildren live in California and she has not seen them in over two and a half years. Potts’ health is declining and she is now bedridden so having her wish to see her whole family together is very important to her. The Allegheny County chapter arranged to have her two grandchildren fly in from California and spend several days, including Easter weekend, with Potts and the rest of her family.
Ken Harris, a resident of the Abramson Residence in North Wales, PA, had his wish for a new power chair granted, thanks to funding received from the Volpe & Koenig I Promise Charitable Giving Fund. Harris, 70, served in the Navy during the Vietnam War. His old power chair broke a few months ago and was beyond repair. Because he lives on a fixed income, Harris could not afford to replace it on his own. Having his wish granted will enable Harris to maintain his independence and not rely on others to get around his facility.
Judith Partridge, a resident of St. Joseph's Residence in Enfield, CT, had her wish for a power wheelchair granted, thanks to our Long Island, NY chapter. Partridge has several medical conditions and is wheelchair bound. Her only method of getting around was using a manual wheelchair so she either had to rely on others to push her around or had to use her feet to push the chair herself. Partridge served in the Medical Corps of the U.S. Army as a medical specialist working in physical therapy. After her discharge, she belonged to the American Legion and was involved in supporting other veterans. A generous donor bought the chair for her and James Ciervo, our Long Island, NY chapter director delivered it on Thursday, March 10th.
Faye Hanson, a resident of Pittsburgh, had her wish to receive an honorary degree from the University of Mount Union granted, thanks to the Allegheny County chapter of Twilight Wish Foundation. Hanson attended Mount Union in the 1950s and was in her senior year, studying pre-med when experienced several tragic life-altering events. Because of this, she was forced to leave school and never completed her degree. Now 76, Hanson still talks about her college days and regrets not finishing her degree. Her wish to receive an honorary degree from Mount Union was granted on Wednesday, March 9th during a ceremony honoring her at her nursing facility in Pittsburgh.
Angela Brindley, a resident of Oak Harbor, Ohio, was recently surprised by a visit from McDonald’s icon, Ronald McDonald, thanks to Twilight Wish and the Humbard family, owner of the local McDonald’s. Brindley, 96, was recently diagnosed with cancer and has very little appetite. In trying to find foods that she would eat, her family discovered that she loves McDonald’s Sausage McMuffins. She eats half in the morning and the other half later in the day. With her recent cancer diagnosis, her family thought it would lift her spirits to surprise her with a visit from Ronald McDonald and they contacted us.
When they heard of the Brindleys’ request, the Humbard family immediately responded and set up a visit from Ronald. On Friday, February 26th, Ronald McDonald and the Humbard family surprised Brindley with breakfast, a gift basket and a $500 check to help with her medical expenses. Brindley truly enjoyed this special visit and it definitely lifted her spirits.
Huge Penguins' fan Betty Cummings, 91, her wish to watch them play in person granted, thanks to the Allegheny County chapter of Twilight Wish and the Pittsburgh Penguins. Cummings is a huge sports fan and loves to watch the Penguins play on her little television, cheering on her favorite player, Sidney Crosby! Widowed 12 years ago, Cummings has five daughters, 13 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren. She is known for her amazing attitude and giving nature. Cummings volunteered for over 20 years for Meals on Wheels, retiring at the age of 90. She is also very involved in her church: she sings in the choir, is an officer in the Christian Women’s Guild, visits shut-ins, works at church festivals, attends daily Mass and is a lector, cantor and Eucharistic minister. This deserving woman’s wish came true thanks to the Pittsburgh Penguins who went above and beyond to make her wish so amazing. They donated suite tickets and refreshments and made sure that Betty was visited by her seven family members who also attended the game.
Samuel Cree, 72, was born and raised in Washington County. Cree took care of his mother until she passed away and now lives on his own. He recently had a stroke and is no longer able to work or keep up with repairs around his home. He is in desperate need of a new washing machine but cannot afford one on his fixed income. Cree was active in the community throughout his life, including working on Saturdays in the township recycling department. His simple wish for a new washing machine was granted thanks to the Washington County chapter of Twilight Wish. Cree was presented with a certificate honoring him for all he has done for others throughout his life on Tuesday, February 2, 2016 at a special disco-themed luncheon. Cree is a huge disco fan!! Thank you to Bridgeville Appliances for discounting the cost of the washing machine and providing free delivery and set up. Also, thanks to the following chapter volunteers for their hard work in granting this wish: Marie Guarascio, Activity Director of Transitions Healthcare; DeAnna Naumann, Marketing Representative of Sunny Days In Home Care; and Christine McGuire, Director of Admissions, Consulate Healthcare.
Phyllis Lakin, 85, a resident of Greensburg, PA, had her simple wish for hearing aids granted, thanks to the Westmoreland County chapter of Twilight Wish. Lakin had severe hearing loss and struggled to take part in conversations. She could not longer hear her family when they called her and couldn't take part in social activities at her community. Thanks to Emerson Fazekis and Miracle Ear of Greensburg who greatly discounted her hearing aids, her wish was granted. A special thanks also to Bill Bernard owner of The Boulevard Restaurant in Greensburg for treating Lakin to a delicious lunch as part of her wish granting. Finally, a big thank you to Christy Stahl from The Thorne Group for her hard work on this wish.
Frank McCole, a resident of Coatesville, PA, had his wish to fly over his hometown of Bristol, as well as Newtown Square and his current home of Coatesville, granted on Sunday, January 17th, thanks to national nonprofit Twilight Wish Foundation. McCole, 82, wanted to reminisce about his life, starting with his childhood in Bristol and ending with his current home in Coatesville. He is a Korean War veteran who served in the Navy as a service electrician’s mate on the U.S.S. LSM 398. In addition, McCole, a father of five children, volunteered as a softball coach for his three daughters for 10 years. Thanks to pilots from the Warrington Flight Club who are donating their time to fly McCole, his wish was granted. His flight was originally scheduled for December 27th, but inclement weather postponed it until January 17th.
Harry Eney, known to his friends and family as Woody, had his wish to talk to actor Henry Winkler granted on January 11, 2016. Eney has been an actor his entire adult life and guest starred in many television series including Family Ties, Mork and Mindy and Happy Days, to name a few. Unfortunately, Eney has advanced Parkinson's Disease and now lives in a nursing facility as his wife could no longer care for him. He was nominated by his cousin to have this wish granted in the hopes that this would lift his spirits. She asked him which actor he would like to see again and he said Henry Winkler because he remembers him being so kind and gracious to him on the set. Because Eney lives in Richmond, it was not possible for Winkler to visit him in person, but Twilight Wish was able to arrange for them to Skype together!
Adolfo Saucedo, a resident of Tucson, Arizona, recently had his wish to travel to Dallas to see his grandson retire from the military granted. Saucedo himself is a Korean War veteran who received both the Purple Heart and Bronze Star for his bravery and service. His family is very important to him and he did not want to miss this milestone in his grandson's life, but couldn't afford the cost of the flight on his fixed income. Thanks to our Tucson, Arizona chapter, his wish was granted in December.
Edwin Shapiro is a World War II veteran who served on the USS San Diego (CL 53) in the Pacific theatre during the war. Shapiro, who turned 90 on December 9th, lives on his own in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. He is very proud of his time on the USS San Diego and, according to his daughter-in-law who nominated him, still talks about his service frequently. Shapiro knows there is a memorial honoring the crew of the San Diego in California, but he is too frail to make the trip to see the memorial. His daughter-in-law, Christine Shapiro, thought that seeing a photo of the memorial and the engraving of his name would be a wonderful surprise for his recent birthday. Twilight Wish staff member Mary Farrell has family who live in San Diego who offered to visit the memorial and take photos and a video of it. Twilight Wish staff presented Shapiro with a photo collage and album of the memorial in early December.
Eleanor Mokula, a resident of a local skilled nursing facility in Girard, PA recently had her wish granted by our Erie, PA chapter. Eleanor, 85, spent time thinking about what she would wish for and after many ideas, decided upon a gift card to Barnes and Noble. She is an avid reader and wanted to purchase a book about Tiger Woods or the movie directed by Jon Stewart. Eleanor used to bake cookies for residents at local nursing homes. She was also worked as a volunteer knitting hats for local community shelters.
Two Pittsburgh seniors who share a friendly NFL rivalry had their wish to attend the recent Steelers vs. Browns game granted, thanks to the Allegheny County chapter of Twilight Wish Foundation. Phyllis Varga, 86, loves the Pittsburgh Steelers and John Swidarski, 77, is a lifelong Cleveland Browns fan. Both are residents of Sheptytsky Arms, a low-income housing facility for seniors in Pittsburgh. Neither Varga or Swidarski have ever seen their favorite teams play in person and cannot afford it on their own. Swidarski, an Army veteran, is very active in his church and helps make pierogis every week. He is also active in his community, serving as Vice President of the Sheptytsky Arms Resident Council. Varga is also very active in the community, volunteering at her church and with Meals on Wheels. They had a great time at the Steelers – Browns game on Sunday, November 15th.
Dale Coates, 70, a resident of Erie, PA, recently had his wish for an adjustable bed granted by our Erie, PA chapter. Dale has a long history of back pain that was not totally relieved with surgery. He needed an adjustable bed, but could not afford one on his fixed income. Dale was a single father after his wife died. He also volunteeered in the community in the Elk and Moose clubs in his home town. Thanks to a generous anonymous donor, Dale received his adjustable bed!
Ida Denitti, a resident of Smithon, Pennsylvania, had her wish for a stairlift granted, thanks to the Westmoreland County chapter of Twilight Wish and A+ Stairlifts of Pittsburgh. Denitti, 85, has lived her life giving of herself to others. She volunteered at Excela Health Frick Hospital for over 30 years. In addition to her years at the hospital, she was a volunteer with the Smithon Ambulance Service, serving as treasurer, committee chairperson, ambulance attendant and dispatcher. Denitti also enjoys crocheting and puts this talent to good use making tiny blankets to accompany stuffed animals that are delivered to shut-ins and others who are ill to bring them comfort and cheer. She also crochets lap pads for nursing home residents and sends items to soldiers overseas. Denitti has had six surgeries on her knees and it has become very difficult for her to go up and down the stairs. Because her bathroom and bedroom are on the second floor, a stairlift will greatly improve her quality of life. A huge thank you to Carl D'Alicandro, owner of A+ Stairlifts for donating both the lift and his time installing it.
Linda Gorelik, 78, a resident of New York City, had her simple wish for a new television granted, thanks to the New York chapter of national nonprofit Twilight Wish Foundation. Gorelik is housebound because of several medical issues and lives alone with her cat who she rescued as a kitten, finding her on the street shortly after the September 11th attack. With no family or friends near her, Gorelik relies on her favorite shows and movies for entertainment. Her old television no longer works and, because she lives on a fixed income, Gorelik couldn’t afford to replace it on her own. She worked for years in advertising, creating several public service campaigns, including one for The International Center in New York. Her wish for a new television was granted on October 28, 2015.
Hermine Nelson, 85, a resident of Queens Village, NY, recently had her simple wish for a new stove granted, thanks to our Long Island, NY chapter. Hermine, a widow, lives on her own in the house she and her husband bought 51 years ago. She has been without a stove since April when her 51-year-old stove finally stopped working. Hermine has been using a microwave to cook her meals, but she loves to cook and misses having a stove. Because she lives on a fixed income, she could not afford to replace it on her own. Chapter director James Ciervo delivered her new stove which was donated by a generous donor.
Lillian Buchanan, a resident of Birmingham, Alabama, will have her simple wish for a lift chair granted, thanks to our Alabama chapter. Buchanan, 74, has several medical issues including heart and pulmonary problems and rheumatoid arthritis and has great difficulty getting up from a regular chair. A lift chair would greatly improve her quality of life, reducing the amount of pain she has to endure just getting up from a sitting position. For over 25 years, Buchanan was the housekeeping supervisor for a local senior living community with 240 units. Although she is retired, she still worries about the residents living there and keeps in touch with many of them. Her nominator, friend and past co-worker Judy Murphree, wrote about her: “Lil has been a true inspiration in my life, not only as a co-worker, but as a true friend. Even though she is now disabled, she still checks on some of the residents where she worked. She deserves so much for giving of herself, unselfishly, then and now.” Her wish for a lift chair was granted on Thursday, October 15th. This is the first wish granted by the Alabama chapter.