Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Two Local Events Raise $1,500 For Corynna’s Wish Hospice-sponsored Program

Pictured, left to right front row, Ryan Gathard, Kristi Strawser and Mindy Stebbins, Director of Business Development for State of the Heart. Pictured behind, are State of the Heart Hospice Nurse Heather Bankson, who cared for Corynna, and Sean Strawser.
Corynna’s Wish, a wish granting program initiated by State of the Heart Hospice in memory of a local teenager who died while under hospice care, recently received a $1,500 donation from two fundraisers. The funds were raised with the events, Ladies Night Out, and the Shine on Corynna 5K.

Kristi Strawser, mother of Corynna who passed away last December, recently presented the check for $1,500 to State of the Heart Officials. She explained that the Ladies Night Out is an event organized by the All About You Therapeutic Massage. The event is an annual one, she said, and organizers chose to donate the funds to Corynna’s Wish. The 5K was held with 424 runners and was sponsored by the Shine on Corynna Committee. A gift of $750 from each event went to Corynna’s Wish.

Corynna Strawer, from Greenville, suffered from Mitochondrial Disease, a fatal disease for which there is no cure, and it is difficult to diagnose. Through her efforts to educate people about the disease which claimed her life, she inspired many not only locally, but throughout the United States and abroad. She had a strong belief in carrying it forward. State of the Heart established Corynna’s Wish in honor and in memory of Corynna. The program is for those patients who have a wish before they die, and they cannot physically or financially do it without financial assistance.

“Sean and I love the fact that Corynna’s Wish was established as Corynna was so lucky to have State of the Heart there to make the last months of her life amazing and everything she wanted it
to be,” Strawser said. “The staff at State of the Heart helped her live her final time here at home with us.”

Ryan Gathard, Fund Development Director for State of the Heart, stated, “We greatly appreciate the gift from the Ladies Night Out Event and the Shine on Corynna 5K. These are two additional local events held by a group or business that has donated funds to Corynna’s Wish. Absolute Hair recently did a fund raiser and donated to the wish program. These efforts are inspiring as it tells us that people remember Corynna with fondness and admiration for how she inspired others. Our hope at State of the Heart is that other fund raisers will be held, providing funding to make sure we are able to fulfill patient wishes.”

This past fall, an Indiana couple traveled to Florida, thanks to financial assistance from Corynna’s Wish. The patient was a man suffered from ALS (Lou Gehrig ’s disease). While he had seen the ocean many times in his life, his fiancé had not. His wish was to take her to Florida where they could see the sunrise and sunset together. Corynna’s Wish provided funds to help with food and local needs including transportation while in Florida.

State of the Heart is a nonprofit agency with offices in Greenville, Coldwater and Portland. The agency cares for patients and families in eastern Indiana and western Ohio who are confronting a life limiting illness.

“Corynna would be so very pleased that her legacy of paying it forward is continuing,” Strawser said. “I think she would be especially pleased that this is being done through State of the Heart as she adored the staff that helped give her amazing care. We are inspired by the fact that people continue to learn and adopt Corynna’s pay it forward attitude and feel she will ‘shine on’ through all of us. We are so glad that Corynna’s Wish is a program where that can happen for others and at the same time keep her wishes alive.”

Corynna’s Wish program relies on fund raisers and contributions to fulfill patients’ wishes. If you would like to contribute to the wish program, you can make your donation through any of the agency’s offices. When making a donation for the program, please specify that it is for Corynna’s Wish and send it to the office nearest you. Office locations are on the agency’s web site: www.stateoftheheartcare.org

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