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Fulfilling a Patient’s Wish: Care Team Plans Wedding for Patient’s Daughter
When the care team at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton learned that one of their patients wanted to see his daughter married before he passed, they worked together to plan a beautiful wedding ceremony in the Great Room at the Hospice House.
Mark Kuruzovich, Jr., of New Carlisle, Ohio, was admitted to the Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton Hospice House in mid-July. When he and his wife, Hope, mentioned to Teri Carver, their hospice nurse, that their daughter Chelsea Kuruzovich, was getting married in North Carolina later in the month, Teri realized that Mark would not be well enough to make it to North Carolina for the wedding. So, Teri and the care team worked together with Hope to plan a wedding in two days.
Hope contacted Chelsea and her fiancée, Matt Lowe. When they learned that Mark’s condition had worsened and that the care team was planning a wedding for them, they drove through the night to get to Dayton.
“Mark’s goal was to walk Chelsea down the aisle,” Hope said. “This was his dying wish.”
Mark was diagnosed with lung cancer in October 2021, which had metastasized to the brain. Three weeks later, Mark started palliative care with Pure Healthcare. But when he fell and broke his back in July, he and his family learned that the cancer had spread to most of his vital organs and his spine. That’s when they made the decision to enter into hospice care. The Hospice House provided them with a welcoming place for family members to visit Mark. He even went fishing at the pond at the Hospice House with his granddaughters.
Hope has been very grateful for the care that Mark received at the Hospice House. “I am a nurse, and I did not know that Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton offered all of the services it does,” Hope said. “This is the best place to take care of Mark.”
The care team transformed the Great Room of the Hospice House into a beautiful wedding venue. Rose petals decorated the aisle. Flower arrangements were placed on the mantle of the fireplace in the Great Room. Chairs were set up for guests.
Jerri Hollis, hospitality manager, and her team made delicious hors d’oeuvres accompanied by sparkling grape juice. She also arranged for a wedding cake for the couple.
So, when Chelsea walked down the aisle in her wedding gown, she walked alongside her father, holding his hand, as one of her daughters, Annabell, pushed Mark down the aisle in his wheelchair.
John Eshelman, a chaplain with Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton, conducted the wedding ceremony for Chelsea and Matt.
Hope and Mark were grateful to the care team for all of their efforts to fulfill Mark’s wish.
“We couldn’t have done this without Teri and the care team,” Hope said. “This was very special for our family.”
Mark passed away on July 27, 2022, surrounded by his family. Our care team was honored and privileged to provide care to Mark and his family.