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Cedar Valley Hospice values our volunteers and has a variety of opportunities

Navy vets share camaraderie through hospice connection

Bob Dehart and Dave Cummings share a special bond. As Navy servicemen during the 1960s, they experienced the mixed bag of emotions that comes from enlisting.

Dubbing themselves “tin canners,” they faced the unknown and uncertainty of conflict and learned quickly the value of responsibility and respect.

“You did what you were told,” said Bob, looking at Dave, who is already nodding his head in agreement.

The two met unexpectedly a couple years ago on a Saturday night when the Evansdale AMVETS were having one of their Steak Nights. “Bob called up and asked, ‘Do you deliver?’” said Dave. “So I took him over a T-bone.”

Since then, they would chat a number of times...or at least when Bob ordered a steak. So when the opportunity presented itself that Bob could use some company from a Cedar Valley Hospice volunteer, Dave was the perfect fit.

As partners of the We Honor Veterans program, Cedar Valley Hospice helps connect patients who are vets with like comrades. For Dave, there’s nothing more rewarding than helping fellow veterans.

“I’m glad I can make them feel comforted and pay it forward,” Dave added. Since Bob came onto the hospice program, the two have met every other week or so. They talk, play cards, listen to music or whatever Bob wants to do.

“He’s like a lifeline for me,” said Bob. “When we talk, we understand each other... We have so much in common - it takes my mind off of everyday problems.”

At Cedar Valley Hospice, the job of our volunteers is just as important as that of our care teams. For trained patient/family volunteers like Dave, it’s very rewarding to be able to provide a sense of relief and comfort for people during difficult times in their lives. We are always looking for more veterans to volunteer so we can pair them with patients who are also veterans. 

There are also other volunteer opportunities, including: 

Grief Support: Volunteers function as sensitive listeners to family members after a loss. They stay in contact through phone calls or home visits and may accompany family members to grief support groups and social events.

Eucalyptus Tree: Children grieve differently than adults. The Eucalyptus Tree Program exists to help children who are grieving the death or terminal illness of someone special to them, this includes opportunities to appear as our mascot or serve as a mentor.

Friends of the Cedar Valley Hospice Committee: Work with the Advancement staff to promote a positive public image of Cedar Valley Hospice and raise needed funding for hospice care and programming. It includes helping with fundraising events. 

If you are interested in joining our team of volunteers, please call 800.617.1972.