Recently, Harriet Goode donated a painting to be auctioned off as part of a silent auction at her artist talk on the Hospice & Community Care campus. Harriet not only shared her work but her hospice story as part of the event.
“Hospice entered my life in the early 1980s, the day Dr. Rion Rutledge called me and said, “Sister, your Mother is not doing well, but I have a suggestion that might be helpful.” I knew Mother was not doing well. As Rion’s patient, she was diagnosed with throat cancer about two years prior. She had surgery and radiation, and after a few months, she declared, “If I’d known I’d be left with this, I would not have chosen surgery,” shared Harriet.
“But in the early ‘80s, people didn’t feel like they had the choice to declare NO SURGERY. People of that generation didn’t question their doctors. They simply followed orders. And there were no alternatives, no palliative or hospice care in this area,” said Harriet. “The day Rion called, he told me Dr. Luke Lentz had determined there was a need for hospice care in Rock Hill, and he was initiating that effort. Rion asked my permission to bring Dr. Lentz into Mother’s care, which I accepted with gratitude and open arms. Luke met with Mother and me one afternoon at Mom’s house on Sumter Avenue, and explained that he’d hired a hospice-trained nurse and rented an office on Saluda Street, and although he was not officially ready to provide in-home hospice care, he agreed to have my mother as his first patient.”
“The nurse visited almost every day. Luke visited a couple of times a week, usually at the end of the day, when he and Mother would enjoy a sip of bourbon and regale each other with jokes. In 1984 my mother died “in the arms of Morpheus,” so to speak. Luke made certain she was equipped with good drugs to keep her comfortable, pain-free. We were all so deeply grateful for his and Rion Rutledge’s care.”
“Years lapsed, and in-home hospice care grew in this area. About 12 years ago, we learned of the intention to establish a residential facility in Rock Hill, and after firm plans were made, Jane Armstrong called me and said The Wayne Patrick Hospice House would have an art gallery that would be named in Mother’s memory. It pleased me and my siblings, Genie, Betsy, Sophie, and Steve, that Harriet Moore Marshall would have this unique memorial,” shared Harriet. “I assisted in creating a collection for the art gallery at Patrick House. Several years later, Steve McCrae Jr. led the effort to have art donated for each patient room, in memory of his parents, Steve and Miriam McCrae. Most of these paintings were donated by Big Steve’s art buddies.”
“Many patients’ family members who spent time at Patrick House have commented to me that the art was deeply meaningful to them and their resident patients. Looking at art can give one pause for thought and meditation. We know art education isn’t necessary in order to reap the benefits from gazing at a painting. One can find peace……just in the looking. One can evoke beautiful memories……just in the looking. The paintings in the Patrick House gallery (and a few of them are assembled here) were chosen specifically for their content, which we believed would be appropriate for those passing through these halls.”
“Art is not a luxury,” explained Harriet. “Art is one of life’s necessities. Visual and performing……life is immeasurably enriched with art. Now, I am happy to announce Hospice & Community Care will soon have a path to bring another level of art for support groups, patients, and families, who will benefit from visiting musicians, poets, and painters.”
“And did you know there is space here for your club meetings? My chair yoga class is held on Wednesdays in the children’s studio. There are spaces here to accommodate almost any kind of activity. Call to find out if a space can fit your needs.”
“As an aside, I’ll tell you that interest in and devotion to hospice care runs deep in our family,” Harriet confided. “Our daughter, Mary Marshall Hentz, is a Hospice nurse in Mt Pleasant, and there is an art gallery there. She has told me she gets beautiful letters of appreciation from her patients’ families. She was offered a management position, which she declined because her love and greatest joy belongs to caring for patients at their bedsides. Our daughter Harriet Karro has a flower ministry in Nashville. She and volunteers accept flowers from weddings and other occasions, which are rearranged and delivered to patients in hospice care. She also served on the board of Hospice in Nashville, and was chairman the last year of her term.”
“I want you to know how meaningful Hospice and Community Care is to families in this area, and I believe every family member has found a level of peace and serenity through the art, which is dispersed throughout Patrick House. I’m grateful for the opportunity to have played a small role in creating the Harriet Moore Marshall Gallery.”