Honoring the Veterans in Our Community

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By Alaina Winkworth, Communications and Events Intern 

   Veterans in Niagara County hold a special place in our community and in the hearts of Niagara Hospice staff. Niagara Hospice is a partner in the We Honor Veterans program that was created by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) in collaboration with the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA). Many hospices across the United States are partners in this important initiative that recognizes Veteran patients and provides them with the specialized care and support they need. 
   By recognizing the unique needs of our Veterans and their families, health care providers like Niagara Hospice, in partnership with the Buffalo VA staff, help guide Niagara County veterans and their families through their life stories toward a more peaceful ending. Over the last two-and-a-half years, we have cared for nearly 900 Veteran patients, which represents about 30 percent of all patients under Niagara Hospice care.
   Our staff is dedicated to ensuring every Veteran patient receives access to high-quality hospice care when they have a prognosis of six months or less, and up to 12 months for Medicaid-only residents. The goal of the care teams is to enhance quality of life for each Veteran and his or her family by learning about their special needs, and their military history.
   We also offer trained Veteran volunteers who make one-on-one visits with Veteran patients to share the common bond of service and present them with a recognition plaque for each patient that is customized to their service branch. We are always looking for more Veteran volunteers to work with our staff to engage Veteran patients in the program's activities. Interested Veterans can call 716-439-4417 or apply here.

Service Persons Memorial Wall   
   In addition to the We Honor Veterans program, Niagara Hospice also honors Veterans with the Service Persons Memorial Wall at the entrance to the campus at 4675 Sunset Drive in Lockport. The memorial was established in June 2009 to give a unique opportunity for people to honor and remember those who have served in the army as well as fire and police professionals. The wall now has more than 115 Veteran names on it and stands as a lasting tribute to the legacies of loved ones. Anyone can make a contribution that places a permanent tribute to a loved one who served our country, worked in law enforcement or was a first responder in any of our communities. 

Memorial Gardens 
   The Service Persons Memorial Wall also serves as an entrance to the Memorial Gardens that features a brick walkway, gazebos, granite benches, a bridge, pond, pavilion and pergola. Many family members take advantage of the variety of memorial and naming opportunities available on the wall and throughout the gardens. These are wonderful ways for people to remember their loved ones while supporting the Niagara Hospice mission of providing expert care for every family. 

   

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