4830 Salem Ave | Dayton, OH 45416

Miss Me, But Let Me Go

Left to right: Amber kincer, Bob Speelman, and Charise Madden

November 13, 2019

NOTE: This was taken from the blog of Foundations Health Solutions leader Bob Speelman. Each week Bob works at one of our Foundations Health facilities in different roles. Whether working in housekeeping or as a nursing assistant, he sees firsthand how we embody the vision of our founder and nursing home developer, Brian Colleran, to be "A Culture of Care."

My journey yesterday took me back to Maria Joseph Care Center, our 280 bed, all private room, facility in Dayton. Nick Anderson is the administrator there and is doing a truly outstanding job building our Culture of Care. I worked on the Lourdes 2 Unit, which is the rehabilitation unit there at Maria Joseph. I had the honor of working with Charise Madden. Charise is 39 and has been an STNA since 2004. Before becoming an STNA, Charise helped take care of her great grandmother and grandmother. Charise is a natural caregiver and is doing what she is called to do. Her residents adore her, and the love and affection are definitely reciprocated by Charise.

We got on the subject of becoming so attached to the residents and how difficult it is when its time to be discharged or they are called home. Charise said that the first time she was with a resident when they passed, it was extremely difficult. The resident was alone, and Charise was holding her as she took her last breath. Charise said afterward as she was reflecting on the experience, she was so glad she was there and that the resident didn't pass away alone.  

As the years have gone by, Charise said she has realized that with some of her residents, she feels like at the very end, they need someone there who loves them and cares for them and can tell them it's ok to go.  

Charise shared with me how her grandmother was a foster parent to a lot of children. Charise was extremely close to one, in particular, and they were shot in the face. Charise had a tough time going to see him and saying goodbye. She finally worked up the courage and went with her mom. They sat next to his bed and played gospel songs and prayed. Charise finally walked up to the bed and told him she loved him, and it's ok to go.  

Charise said she remembered a poem that was read at her uncle's funeral that helped her through that time:

When I come to the end of the road,

 And the sun has set for me,

 I want no rites in a gloom-filled room

 Why cry for a soul set free?

 Miss me a little – but not for long.

 And not with your head bowed low.

 Remember the love that once we shared.

 Miss me, but let me go.

 For this is a journey, we must all take,

 And each must go alone.

 It's all part of the master plan,

 A step on the road to home.

 When you are lonely and sick at heart,

 Go to the friends we know,

 Laugh at all the things we used to do.

 Miss me, but let me go.



Charise – Thank you for sharing your day with me and your caregiver's story. The things in your life that you have experience have made you who you are. It is an honor and a privilege to have you on our team. You are the embodiment of our Culture of Care, and I couldn't be prouder to call you a friend.

I also want to thank Amber Kincer, another genuinely fantastic STNA on the unit, and the nurses and unit manager on Lourdes 2. Your team was remarkable, and the unity and respect you all have for each other and the love and care you showed the resident was nothing short of inspirational. You're doing GREAT WORK!!

Bob Speelman, STNA 

Each week, Bob Speelman visits a Foundations Health Solutions nursing home. He works alongside a variety of departments to ensure Foundations Health is excelling in the vision of founder Brian Colleran's "Culture of Care." Foundations Health continues to practice the principles nursing home developer Brian Colleran instilled, such as resident and family satisfaction, positive employee culture, and investment in the community. 

Bob's Blog

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Common Grief Reactions
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