Meet Sandie, the winner of the next Giving Smiles, Creating Hope nomination!
We received multiple nominations to help her smile. Here’s an excerpt from one of them:
“I don’t know anyone more deserving to get their smile back than Sandie DeHamer. I have known Sandie for over 40 years. She is always the cheerleader for anyone needing encouragement, always the first to volunteer to help any way she can for someone in need. Now it is her time of need.
I am not sure how it happened since Sandie rarely talks about herself and never complains. But I notice she has been covering her mouth when she smiles and it looks like she has a broken tooth. I imagine she meant to get it fixed before her world started to turn upside down.
Being a Realtor the last several years has been difficult. I know. But for Sandie, the last few years has been one heartbreaking event after another. She lovingly cared for both her dad then her mom when they fell ill and one after another passed away within a few months. Shortly after, her husband was hospitalized with pneumonia and is now facing some major life health challenges himself. Sandie never complains. She is like an angel. The only way you knew what she was going thru was because she would ask for prayers for her loved ones facing the major life challenges. She has a faith so strong and love for God so deep, it is truly an inspiration.
Please help our angel get her smile back! She will take that smile and share it with the world, bringing hope to so many with that gift. It is just who she is.
All the best,
Jan Norton Fairchild”
Another nomination Sandie received:
“Dear Dr. Dykstra and Staff,
I am writing on behalf of the letter I received in the mail, 2013 Giving Smiles, Creating Hope. What a wonderful idea!
I am writing on behalf o my precious wife Sandie.
I can not think of anyone who is more deserving and in need of getting her smile back.
She came to your office last year for a teeth cleaning. It was the first time in over 2 years that she had been to the dentist. I brought her in, along with her mom for “moral” support since she has a fear of dental offices.
Her last 12 months have been full of taking care of her dad and mom, myself, my brother and her mom’s brother, who she has Power of Attorney for.
She received a phone call last year from her dad stating he and mom were in St. Mary’s Hosplital. Her mom had just had a massive stroke. It was touch and go for awhile, but her mom was stabilized and transferred a week later to Mary Free Bed for a long course of rehabilitation. She had lost the ability to walk and talk. Sandie’s family has a very strong faith. They were in this for the long haul. Sandie was a nurse for 22 years, so we the family relied on her heavily to advocate for her mom’s medical care and needs.
A week later while Sandie, myself and her dad were visiting her mom at Mary Free Bed, her dad started coughing and had a severe shortness of breath episode… he could hardly walk. Sandie ran to get a wheel chair for him. Being a former nurse, her first thought went to pneumonia since it was cold and flu season, and her dad had a history of getting pneumonia in the winter months. Against her dad’s objections, Sandie wheeled him over to St. Mary’s Emergency room from Mary Free Bed leaving a very worried mom behind who could not voice her fear. Long story short, he was admitted to the hospital that night with what they thought was a very bad case of pneumonia. Sandie asked for a secondary specialist she knew to come in and take a look at her dad. After reviewing the x-rays, a biopsy was suggested. The biopsy came back as Stage IV lung cancer with maybe 3-6 months for her dad to live. Devastating news! Her mom in Mary Free Bed with at least a year of rehab and her dad with terminal lung cancer.
Two weeks after that diagnosis, I got very sick and ended up being admitted to St. Mary’s for pneumonia. Now she had 3 loved ones in the hospital. 1 month after that my brother Pete was hospitalized for pneumonia… now she had 4 of us.
The rest of her year was equally as bad. Her dad ended up going home to Heaven March 16th. His one year anniversary is this Saturday. Her mom came to live with us for 8 weeks after being discharged from the hospital. She had another massive stroke and God called her home May 18th. I have been in the hospital 3 more times since last year for pneumonia and the flu virus.
She gave up working as a full time Realtor last January when her dad and mom were admitted to the hospital. We decided it was more important for her parents to have their daughter with them. She was in the hospital a total of 112 days last year with all of her loved ones, staying the night, going home long enough to get a change of clothes and shower. She was her mom’s BEST cheerleader at all of her therapy sessions, cheering her on for everyone else to hear. She even became other patient’s cheerleaders when they had no one there to encourage them. It was a blessed year for both her parents and her, since precious time was spent together before God took them Home.
The long and short of this letter is to nominate her for the Giving Smiles and Creating Hope.
Sandie has no health insurance or dental insurance being a Realtor. We do not have the funds for her to have either. She is a diabetic so I worry about that the most, but she takes good care of herself and checks her sugars daily.
She cracked her tooth last year and has not had the money to have it repaired. She did have one tooth pulled about 3 months ago because the pain was so bad. The office you referred us to was full of grace and mercy and charged her the minimum fee.
I want her to be able to smile again without being self conscious and covering her mouth. She has such a beautiful smile with her dimples.
Thank you for taking the time to read this and consider my wife for this incredible gift that you are giving.
Sandie will be receiving over $5000 in free dental work to give her back her smile!
Courtney is the winning patient of our first round of Giving Smiles, Creating Hope! Here’s the nomination we received from her aunt:
“My name is Susan and I am one of your current patients. I would like to nominate my niece Courtney for dental care who cannot afford it! Courtney is a young 26-year-old single widow whose husband passed away just over a year ago. Courtney is the mother of three children. Courtney has no home and is currently living with her parents, working on getting disability to this point, but no income, lost her medical insurance coverage, and went over a year ago to see a dentist who told her she has several cavities, but she had no way to pay for the dental repair to her teeth. Courtney has shared with me her teeth hurt really badly at times, but without any money, she cannot afford to have any dental work performed. Life has been so hard on my niece, she really deserves a break! Please have mercy on my niece, and seriously consider her for helping her and take some pain away from her life. Thanks for taking the time to read this note; Courtney could really use your help.”
Courtney has been in our office a couple of times now and we’ve started on her treatment! She will be receiving over $6000 in dental care to get her mouth back into fantastic shape. We’ll keep you posted as her treatment continues!
If you haven’t heard about our Giving Smiles, Creating Hope program, we encourage you to read about it below! You can also watch the YouTube video Dr. Dykstra made talking about it.
We have received tons of nominations already but are still accepting more!
Giving Smiles, Creating Hope
You HAVE to read this story! (But get a tissue first, because you just might cry!)
A few weeks ago, in mid-December, one of our wheelchair-bound patients came in to make a payment on his long-overdue bill. While he was about to pay, another patient of ours was waiting for her sons to finish their dental appointments. From the conversation between him and the receptionist, it was evident that he had had a few rough months between his car breaking down and other things that came up. She stepped up and paid his entire $151 bill! They didn’t know each other, and he first refused her help, but she simply said “Merry Christmas, I’ve got this.”
He shared this with us on our Facebook page later that day: “First time I almost cried at the dentist ….in a long time…and you know me…”the mayor of jibber jabber” first time I was speechless… your office is not only staffed and runby the nicest / understanding people in Gods wonderful world… you also have the kindest clients ever…ever…ever… if you can find it in your heart to put up with me..you have a loyal client for life.”
Needless to say, all of us became a bit teary-eyed when we were told about this wonderfully generous event that took place right in our office.
2013 Giving Smiles, Creating Hope
This also gives us a great way to introduce to you our 2013 Giving Smiles, Creating Hope mission. Starting in January, we are going to select a deserving patient to provide with free dental work! The goal will be to get one patient back to a healthy condition and then select another so we always have one ongoing.
BUT – In order to do this, WE NEED YOUR HELP!
We are asking you to nominate someone in need of dental care who simply cannot afford it for one reason or another and really deserves a break. This person could just need a cleaning, a filling, or a whole new smile! We ask you to share their story either by email, Facebook, or written letter. The best story will be selected and that patient will receive dental care by our office.
Feel free to share this opportunity with your friends, neighbors, coworkers, etc. All nominations will be accepted! You do not need to be a current patient to send in a nomination, or be a patient to be nominated!
The first round of nominations is due January 31, so send in your nomination immediately!
Please call us with any questions! 616-669-6600
How to Nominate Someone:
·Your nomination can be either written or on video.
·Send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
·Share on our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/HudsonvilleDentalAssociates