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Letter From the President – Best Friends Never Met

Dear Friends,

As the year draws to an end, it is only natural to reflect on both our blessings and the moments  that challenged us to rise above difficult times. Looking back at the many inspiring stories we have shared with you in Sweet Charity this year, I am humbled by the hope, courage and gratitude shown by our patients and residents as they face daunting obstacles that would put anyone to the test.

Some of our bravest patients are also among our youngest. I think of Luisiel Diaz, 6, who is triumphing over frightening brain seizures and has not lost his child’s spirit of play; Kaeli Pietraszkiewicz, 13, who is breaking the bonds of chronic pain from amplified musculoskeletal syndrome thanks to Good Shepherd’s pediatric pain management program; and Caia Moran, 16, who is overcoming physical and emotional difficulties with help from Good Shepherd’s pediatric neuropsychologist. 

Further along on the age spectrum, but no less courageous, is Paul Tetor, 68. As his wife Karen says, he is running a marathon, not a sprint, in his fight to recover from traumatic brain injury and stroke. This couple’s devotion to one another and Karen’s dogged determination to support her husband literally every step of the way shows us the healing power of love when paired with the expertise and compassion of Good Shepherd’s care givers.

No two people have the same story, but what they do have in common is Good Shepherd and behind the scenes, a cheering section of donors like you. Whether you give to the Year-End Matching Gift Challenge or Holiday Wish List benefiting our long-term care residents, pediatrics, neurorehabilitation, or your gift is unrestricted, every dollar matters. So, from Luisiel, Kaeli, Caia, Paul and Karen, and all of us at Good Shepherd, thank you. Sometimes the best friends are those we never meet, but we know them by their charitable hearts.

Gary Schmidt, MA
Chair, Board of Trustees
Interim President & CEO