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Mary’s Party of a Lifetime

We are all familiar with birthdays, anniversaries, and family reunions as ways to gather together and #CelebrateLifesStories – but what if you sent out invites to your closest friends and family to celebrate your life and attend your own wake? “A-wake,” that is.

Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton patient Mary Lou Spangler’s wish was to have a celebration of her life with loved ones, and her dream came true. With the help of family and the hospice staff, Mary had the time of her life embracing old friends and new grandchildren at her party “Mary Lou’s Big A-Wake.”

Long time friends of 50 years celebrate Mary's life at her big a-wake.

Mary Lou Spangler, left, with best friend of over 50 years Darlynn.

“When I got sicker a few months ago, it got me thinking about the changes (in my condition),” Mary said. “In the back of my mind, I knew that this (celebration) was what I wanted. I didn’t like the idea of anyone partying without me!”

Mary shows off her customized wine glass for her special day, Big A-Wake

Mary shows off her customized wine glass for her special day.

While sipping out of her personalized wine glass, Mary was the star of the show and looked stunning while wearing a nametag that read “The Queen.”  With all the selfies she was getting, you would think she was a celebrity. She was that day.

Mary gets a selfie with her partner Charlie at her Big A-Wake.

Mary gets a selfie with her partner Charlie.

“I’ve always been a party girl,” Mary said with a grin. “It makes me laugh and it makes me cry to be with everyone today.”

Mary’s son, Ted Spangler, who according to his nametag is “Mom’s Favorite,” shared his joy with many at his mother’s party and talked about the difference Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton has made in their lives.

“Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton is everything,” Ted said. “They have gone above and beyond. This party would never work without their support.”

Ted’s brother Dean Spangler chimed in.

“Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton extended (Mary’s) life immensely,” he said. “I can’t say enough about it. It’s been a great experience. Everyone that’s taken care of her has been wonderful.”

Mary and friends enjoy looking at a slideshow of her favorite memories at her Big A-Wake.

Mary and friends enjoy looking at a slideshow of her favorite memories.

Ohio’s Hospice of Dayton is grateful for the honor and privilege of celebrating life with Mary and her loved ones. We are so glad the party was a hit!

How can we help your loved one celebrate life? Learn more about our services by clicking here or calling 937.256.4490.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. 10 Things to Know About Hospice & Palliative Care | Ohio's Hospice - October 13, 2017

    […] Once in hospice care, staff and volunteers focus on providing the best quality of care to the patient, and to celebrating life and the joys that every day brings. We #CelebrateLifesStories with our patients, finding unique ways to fulfill their wishes. Read Mary’s story and how she celebrated her life with friends and family by clicking here. […]

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