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A New Tour of Duty: Army Vet Still Serves

Veteran Kenny Spruill could have kicked back after retiring from the U.S. Army. Instead, he gives back in one of the toughest jobs a volunteer will ever love: hospice visitor.

Kenny is one of the extraordinary volunteers who give thousands of hours a year to help hospice patients and their families. Many serve to pay a debt of gratitude for a loved one’s care. For others like Kenny, volunteerism is the latest chapter in a life devoted to service.

Community Healthcare of Texas created the Essential Piece volunteer awards to honor them all and turn the spotlight on volunteers who embody values that guide our care. Kenny earned the Compassion award with his gift for connecting with patients and families. He appreciates the recognition but said the rich life stories and wisdom patients share with him are the greatest rewards.

”Most of the things I’ve learned are from the patients,” he explained, remembering wise words many have shared. “Like pursue your passion in life. It’s never too late to make a difference in someone else’s life. Be grateful for the smallest things in life. It’s a journey, not a destination. Always forgive.”

Kenny, whose military career included a stint in recruiting, knows exactly what it takes to be a hospice volunteer.

“You’ve got to have some great communication skills, commitment, compassion, teamwork, time management, and a work ethic,” he said. “The more I give, the happier I feel.”

The COVID-19 pandemic put many of their usual activities on hold, but Community Healthcare of Texas volunteers have eagerly accepted new assignments. Volunteers can contact families by telephone and mail. Others sew face masks, craft memorial gifts to comfort families or cheer on nurses and other frontline caregivers serving in the pandemic.

If you would like to join volunteers like Kenny, consider giving of yourself in one of the assignments available now. Contact Community Healthcare of Texas Volunteer Coordinator Ashley Winfield at awinfield@chot.org to learn more.

 

 

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