Annual patient picnic yields rain and recognition

August 17, 2016  //  FOUND IN: News


Despite a downpour, 59 individuals attended the 21st annual Heart Transplant and VAD Patient and Family Picnic on Saturday, Aug. 13.

There were many new faces who endured the bad weather — and some familiar ones as well. Lots of food and fun were shared by all.

The transplant and VAD programs have provided “Olympic-style” medals for recipients for many years. And while their caregivers have always played an integral role in the process, this was the first year that they were officially recognized with a “caregiver” lapel pin. The pins were very well received and some tears were shed in tribute to these remarkable individuals.

The following was recited on behalf of he caregivers in attendance:

An Ode to Caregivers

By Angela Shaw

A bather, a baker, a yummy meal maker.

A caregiver is this and more.
Just how much does a caregiver do?
It’s impossible to try to keep score!

A caregiver is a chef.
They can cook almost anything.
But given the choice of homemade or not,
All agree that take-out is king!

A caregiver is a coach.
Who keeps you in the game.
Sometimes they may seem bossy,
But they love you just the same.

A caregiver is an EMT.
They can fix any cut, scrape or bruise.
They respond to every emergency,
As if they had something to lose.

A caregiver is a soldier.
They defend, protect, and serve.
A heartfelt smile is their greatest reward,
But a medal they really deserve!

A caregiver is a chauffeur.
To appointments through traffic they’ve fought.
Speed barriers they break to get there on time.
And somehow they never get caught!

But most of all…

A caregiver is a trusted friend.
Who’ll listen, encourage, console.
And caring for their loved one,
Is their honor and ultimate goal.

Next year’s picnic is scheduled for Saturday, Aug, 12, 2017 at Island Drive Park in Ann Arbor. We hope to see you there!