I believe the true measure of a society is the way it treats its most vulnerable members. History is filled with examples of harsh and uncaring attitudes toward the sick and dying. I like to think most of that was a result of ignorance rather than malice. I like to think that, as time passes, we grow in understanding and compassion. And I also like to think that our modern hearts and minds more readily accept responsibility for the welfare of our friends and neighbors. In fact, I constantly see evidence of that here in the Adirondack North Country where there is a longstanding tradition of neighbor helping neighbor.
So, if you are concerned about a loved one or if you, yourself, are facing the challenge of a terminal diagnosis and don't know where to turn, the message here today is that you are not alone. There is a caring community of hospice professionals who have the skill, compassion and resources to help you and your family through this difficult time, regardless of your financial situation. There is also a caring and compassionate community of your North Country neighbors whose unselfish contributions make this possible. No, you are not alone.