Honoring a Patient’s Pride

This is Alex’s story

50 years ago, Alex participated in the Stonewall Uprising. He was tired of being marginalized for who he is and who he loves. That’s why Alex was overjoyed to be able to attend this year’s Pride March to mark this special anniversary.

Alex was a part of so many defining generational moments. After serving honorably as a stateside medic during the Vietnam War, he protested at the Stonewall Uprising to fight for who he is and who he loves. Later, Alex witnessed his friends affected by the AIDS crisis. Though he felt the trauma of all these events, Alex filled his life with meaning and beauty. He worked in serology, clinical research and the pharmaceutical industry. He traveled the world, loved the opera and enjoyed watching PBS.

Years ago, Alex was diagnosed with an advancing illness and a failing heart that led to nearly 50 hospitalizations and numerous surgical interventions. His younger sister, Carol, became his primary caregiver. Alex recently chose MJHS Hospice for his comfort care. Now, our hospice nurse and social worker care for him at home, and necessary medical equipment is delivered to his home. Painful medical treatments are over; the focus is on peace and joy.

Alex was eager to go to this year’s NYC Pride March to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Stonewall Uprising that he was a part of years ago. He needed a portable oxygen tank to be able to attend though. And that’s where we stepped in.

When Alex and Carol learned a private donation was making it possible for them to attend the parade in person, Carol said, “it felt like the heavens opened up. It a wonderful extension of kindness.”

Carol shared her and Alex’s joyous experience: “Parade goers cleared a path for us, and so many people came over to shake Alex’s hand. None of that would’ve been possible without the discreet, portable oxygen tank. We spent 4 exhilarating hours with family, friends and a supportive city.”

These special moments are made possible thanks to generous donors like you. Thank you for helping us continue to create meaningful memories for our patients and their families.  

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“Every single day I thank MJHS doctors, nurses, social workers, as well as the chaplain and music therapist for their compassion, care and being our life saver.”

— Carmen Abruzzo