Trinity Hospice Ball

It’s more than just a night of dinner and dancing.

The 22nd annual Trinity Hospice Ball, set for Feb. 1 at the Best Western Starlite Village Inn and Suites, is meant to be an evening to both remember and celebrate the lives of those who have died.

“It’s about remembering those we have lost but also celebrating the fact that life goes on,” said Carol Grannon, development coordinator with the Trinity Health Foundation.

The Hospice Ball raises funds to help benefit the care of patients in Hospice at home, in a care facility or at the Paula J. Baber Hospice Home.

The ball will begin at 6 p.m. with a social hour, followed by dinner and a program and a dance featuring music from DJ Dean Vinchattle of In Your Ear Mobile Sound.

“We will have a short program which will include a memorial to all of those who have died in Hospice over the past year,” said Grannon.

Live and silent auctions will also take place throughout the evening, and a raffle drawing for a $500 Hy-Vee gift card and $100 Hy-Vee meat bundle, $400 Target gift card and $100 Casey’s General Stores gift card will be held at 10 p.m.

Raffle tickets are $20 each or three for $50. They are available through the Trinity Foundation, The Paula J. Baber Hospice Home or from any Hospice volunteer.

It will also be an opportunity to recognize those who work and volunteer for Hospice. One Hospice employee will be presented with the Compassionate Caregiver Award, which was established by the family of Debbie Hofbauer.

This year’s co-chairs for the event are Dr. Mark and RaeAnn Frey Marner, and Dr. James and Ann Meyer.

“Both couples have so supportive and very committed to the cause,” said Grannon. ‘They have both been at the bedside of Hospice patients and their passion is very genuine.”

James Meyer is the medical director for Trinity Hospice while the Marners served as co-chairs for the fundraising campaign to bring the Paula J. Baber Hospice Home to Fort Dodge. RaeAnn Frey Marner has also worked as a Hospice nurse and director of Hospice and is now a Hospice volunteer.

“Dr. Meyer is involved in Hospice on a daily basis,” said Grannon.

“Along with my husband and Jane Gibb, we co-chaired the very successful capital campaign for the Paula J. Baber Hospice Home,” said Frey Marner. “Since my retirement I have now become a Hospice volunteer. So I guess you could say that my involvement in the Hospice program has come full circle.”

Having been a direct caregiver, Frey Marner said her work with Hospice has been some of the most gratifying in her life.

‘The most satisfaction gained in my work in Hospice would have to be my role as a Hospice nurse,” She said. “From my first Hospice patient, it touched my soul; that feeling of care and compassion not only for the patient but for the families. I felt a great deal of satisfaction when I was able to see a patient through the death process peacefully. As a Hospice nurse you form an almost instant bond with the patient and family. They taught me to be more tolerant and to appreciate the smallest of life’s gifts.”

She said she appreciates all that working in Hospice does not only for the patients, but also for their families.

“Getting to know the patients and families and helping them through the toughest time of their lives has touched me personally,” said Frey Marner. “I don’t know of another career where you can do more for people. For the patient, the struggles, the pain, the heroics, the side effects of aggressive treatment are over. And the living that remains is real, stripped of all but the reality of relationships, family, friends; a touch, a laugh or a tear. It has been a honor for me over my Hospice career to share this journey with patients and families.”

Proceeds from the ball help fund Hospice in a variety of ways from music and massage therapy for Hospice patients, end of life care expenses, bereavement support, and “Angel Hands,” a plaster molding of the Hospice patient holding hands with a loved one.

“There are so many things we would not be able to do without these funds,” said Julie Junkman, clinical manager for Trinity Hospice. “It adds so much to the lives of the patients and their families.”

Tickets to the Hospice Ball are $40 for individuals through Jan. 27 or $50 after Jan.27; $300 for a reserved table for four and $600 for a table of eight. Payment and contact information may be sent to Trinity Foundation Attn: Hospice Ball 802 Kenyon Road, Fort Dodge.