LEBANON, Mo. – A woman’s last wish before she lost her fight to cancer is giving hospice patients a gift of normalcy.
Her name was Janet Archibald and her last wish was for her family to begin a foundation providing gifts of comfort to all hospice patients. It’s called Janet’s Wish.
“We built a ramp so that she could go out to the front of her house in a wheelchair and it always made her cry, even though she was happy. It always made her sad,” said Gina Foster.
“When she was going to all these visits, she had with the doctors and all the treatments, she would see all the other people. She would be so concerned about them not having all of the things she had,” said Jo Ann Rosipal.
Janet’s mother Jo Ann Rosipal and her sister, Gina Foster said when Janet was in hospice it gave her a voice.
“She asked us to start a fund for items of comfort or to make people on hospice feel a little bit normal,” said Foster.
She wanted her family of seven siblings, her mother and her only daughter to help in the community.
“The family, it’s actually brought us closer together because we’re always thinking what can we do next and who are we going to be able to help next,” said Rosipal.
The family works with Mercy Hospice in five counties.
“We don’t want anyone to have to ask for something,” Foster said.
Chaplain David Roush’s job is to find what hospice patients need or want.
“I had a gentleman that kept rearranging his pillow in his recliner. I said is your back uncomfortable. He said no I’ve got a broken spring but he said I’m not going to live that long so I’m not going to buy a new one. We went out and bought him a new recliner,” said Roush.
They’ve given gifts ranging from a bouquet of flowers to a new stove so a hospice patient could have one last home-cooked Thanksgiving meal in honor of Janet’s last wish.
“She was laying there knowing she was dying and thinking about other people,” Roush said.
“She still is doing what she always did do thinking about other people,” Rosipal said.
For now, Janet’s Wish is in Pulaski, Laclede, Wright, Camden, and Webster Counties but it hopes to reach Greene County soon.