CHERAW, S.C. — In January 2017, McLeod Hospice began honoring its patients who are veterans through the “We Honor Veterans” program, a nationally sponsored Hospice Veteran Partnership. When the Hospice team learns that a patient is a veteran they arrange a “Veteran to Veteran” pinning ceremony at the patient’s home or in the McLeod Hospice House to thank them for the sacrifices they have made and the courage it takes to defend honor, duty and country. The program has been well received and to date more than 75 McLeod Hospice patients have been pinned.
On Thanksgiving Day 2017, representatives of McLeod Hospice in Cheraw had the honor of pinning their first veteran patient during a special ceremony. Chesterfield County resident William “Bill” VanDerpoel, a veteran of the United States Navy, was surrounded by family and friends at his family home in Teals Mill, as he was pinned by Louise Talbert, RN, patient care coordinator for McLeod Hospice in Cheraw.
All volunteers who participate in the ceremonial pinning ceremonies must be a veteran of the armed forces. Talbert, a United States Army veteran, was honored to have the opportunity to participate in this memorable event for the Vanderpoel family.
“It means so much to me to have been a part of their special day,” said Talbert. “This ceremony holds such significance, especially coming from one fellow veteran to another. We have experienced many of the same things and I am thankful that we were able to show him the respect and dignity that every veteran deserves.”