“They were like saviors to us.”
Carrie Novak is a grateful donor to Advocate Hospice—their exceptional care team walked with her family through the last days of her parents.
“I called them in the middle of the night. I called them early in the morning when my mom could not breathe. You can literally call 24 hours a day. It took away so much of the stress.” That’s what Carrie Novak says about her experience with the Advocate Hospice program.
In 2009 Carrie’s parents died of cancer within months of each other, and both had Advocate Hospice services—which helped Carrie and her family enormously. “I don’t know what we would have done without them,” she says. “They were like saviors to us.”
Carrie’s dad, Charles, had brain cancer, and her mom, Norma, was struck by ovarian cancer. When Charles came close to the end of his life, a hospital nurse recommended Advocate Hospice. Carrie researched other options, but she thought Advocate was the best. And her hunch proved right. “The whole hospice care team—volunteers, nurses, chaplains—they all helped so much,” she says.
Soon after her father’s passing, Carrie’s mom needed hospice care. She was so impressed with the team who cared for Charles that Norma asked for the exact same team—and she got them! By the time Norma died, these caregivers seemed part of the family—and they all came to her funeral. “That just blew me away,” Carrie says.
Out of genuine gratitude, Carrie requested that donations made in memory of both parents go to Advocate Hospice, forming the Charles and Norma Novak Tribute Fund. “I still support the Fund by adding to it on their birthdays and at Christmas,” Carrie says.
But Carrie didn’t stop there–she also became a hospice volunteer. She understood what hospice families were going through and found this “a wonderful way to give back.” Carrie also chose to remember Advocate Hospice in her will—to leave a lasting legacy of hope for those facing the end of life. “Philanthropic funds help provide bereavement counseling, complementary treatments and many services that extend comfort to loved ones whose last days are near,” she says. The Advocate Hospice community is grateful for Carrie’s support and her choice to give back amid her own sorrow.