Southern California Stories

Fall 2017

Confiding with a king

Production Credit: Tomorrow’s Event Productions

Jay Hess, donor relations coordinator for the TrinityCare Hospice Foundation, shares with colleague Chloe Medrano his career shift from building custom cars to raising money for children in hospice care. He also reveals his approach in asking for donations – molded by nuggets of wisdom he collected from the king of Bahrain.

Spring 2017

Lungs filled with tumors, hearts filled with love

Production Credit: Tomorrow’s Event Productions

Days before his mother’s birthday, Bryce Fisher, then 21-years old, received heartbreaking news that he had a rare form of cancer. He and his mother, Nancy, sit down to recount those sobering days following the diagnosis, acknowledge the triumphs and miracles in the challenging times since, and speak about the ongoing journey that continues to bring them closer to one another.

A nurse goes in for open-heart surgery

Production Credit: StoryCorps

Lindsey Burrell and her mother, Julie Baker, both ICU nurses at Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center in Torrance, Calif., talk about Lindsey’s recent open heart surgery and how the experience has fundamentally changed their approach to nursing.

Touch becomes sacred

Production Credit: Tomorrow’s Event Productions

Ahmed Pierstorff is a Muslim, and social touch of the opposite sex is prohibited. Yet, his job as a registered nurse often necessitates physical contact with the opposite sex. Here he shares with his mentor, Coleen Dumenjich, how he navigates his professional duties with his religious devotion.

How can you take care of dying children?

Production Credit: Addis Media Group

Dr. Glen Komatsu, CMO of Providence TrinityCare Hospice & Regional Palliative Care, reflects on the clinical skill and emotional resilience required to care for dying children. He shares the story of 6-year-old Maddox, who faced death with insight and courage.

The hardest conversation I’ve ever had

Production Credit: StoryCorps

Mary Kingston, chief executive of Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Centers in Torrance and San Pedro in Southern California, shares with Michael Jongsma, chief nursing officer, the anguish of honoring her father’s wishes to be removed from a respirator, and why having an advance directive is a profound gift for our loved ones.

'You had a heart transplant?'

 You had a heart transplant?’
Production Credit: Tomorrow's Event Productions

Pat Aidem's husband, Richard, received a donated heart from a 20-year-old. Richard tells the story of meeting the young man's mother one day, and how she wanted to listen to her son’s beating heart again.

Winter 2016

Encountering Eddie Van Halen

Production Credit: Michael Addis

Providence’s Mike Drummond talks with film composer Roger Neill about their departed friend, Eric, and his unreal encounter with rock guitar legend Eddie Van Halen.

Cancer – best thing that ever happened to me

Production Credit: Mindy Fortune

Providence’s Tue Nguyen shares with mentor Jennifer Kozakowski how his bout with tongue cancer taught him to savor life and cherish what matters most.

I call this a gift

Production Credit: Mindy Fortune

James Raspe, an outdoors enthusiast and a patient at Providence, shares with Chaplain Stephanie Ryu how his struggle with renal failure has given him the gift of empathy and a purpose to help others.

The secret to life

Production Credit: StoryCorps

Dr. Ira Byock, founder and chief medical officer of the Providence Institute for Human Caring, and Dr. BJ Miller, a palliative care physician at UCSF Medical Center, share thoughts on being in the moment, caring for the seriously ill, caring for yourself, and the secret to life.

I’m not ready for palliative care!

Production Credit: StoryCorps

Rebekah Riemer’s grandmother died shortly after being diagnosed with a form of leukemia. Nine months later, Rebekah was diagnosed with a similar disease. Now a nurse, she shares with Dr. Colin Scibetta her healing journey with the same palliative team that cared for her grandmother and the impact that’s had on her work.

She joined the team that cared for her aunt

Production Credit: StoryCorps

Salve Bautista’s aunt received palliative care through Providence, which awoke a passion in Salve for this field of medicine. The palliative staff at Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center Torrance were surprised and delighted when Salve re-entered their lives – this time not as a family member of a patient, but as a job applicant.