Wendy Schmitz, MD, HMD, FAAHPM, Earns Fellow Status from the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine
Wendy Schmitz, MD, HMD, FAAHPM, of Dayton, Ohio, recently earned the designation Fellow of the…
Madison Dox just celebrated her 18th birthday with the same friends and in the same location as the past three years. What’s unusual about that is the location is Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton. Madison brings her friends together on her birthday every year to share in a project of love and remembrance.
Madison parents divorced when she was young and her grandfather became the male role model in her life. The two were very close. Madison watched her grandfather’s struggle with cancer over four and half years She was present with him when he passed away at Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton. It was the first major loss of her life.
That was during her freshman year in high school. On every birthday since, Madison brings her friends together to celebrate her birthday and remember her grandfather by creating gifts and crafts for the patients and families served by Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton. Madison also volunteers in other hospice roles and highlighted her hospice experience in her college application essay, explaining how her hospice experience touched her life.
“The goal of the Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton is to help heal those mourning during and after tough times,” she wrote. “Their assistance guides families from the darkness of grief towards the light of closure and peace. The serene atmosphere at Hospice eased my insecurities and calmed my fears of the uncertainty of my grandfather’s condition; but, most significantly, the compassionate staff reassured me that I would overcome the heartache of the indescribable loss, while enlightening me to ways I could spread my grandfather’s legacy to others.”
Madison came back to the Hospice House and brought her friends three months later with a goal of comforting others in need. “I am a committed volunteer whose sole purpose Is to provide comfort and peace to those grieving as I so gratefully received during my darkest times.” Whether decorating seedling pots for families, holiday decorations or handing out Teddy Bears to patients, Madison seeks “to bright light to others.” Her generosity is a living tribute to her grandfather’s memory, and a deeply moving and appreciated gift to others traveling the pathway of loss.