In November, 88-year-old Terry Stump was taken to the Franciscan Health Michigan City hospital with COVID-19.
Within 12 hours, his daughter Tamara Stump also was taken to the hospital to be treated for the coronavirus.
“Within one day’s time, we have my dad and my sister both fighting for their lives,” said Indiana state Rep. Wendy McNamara, a LaPorte native who now represents Evansville.
During his stay at the hospital, Terry Stump called McNamara and told her she "needed to honor these health care workers who are helping me.”
He ultimately died.
But he didn't suffer.
“My dad was awake," McNamara said. "He was alert. He got to say goodbye to everybody.”
He was surrounded by family.
“When my husband passed away, I was right by his side holding his hand," said his wife, Mayme Stump.
McNamara got a resolution passed at the Indiana House of Representatives to honor the health care workers at Franciscan Health Michigan City who cared for her father and her sister, who survived her bout with coronavirus. McNamara and Rep. Jim Presse, who lost his sister-in-law to COVID-19, recently visited the hospital just off Interstate 94 in Michigan City to deliver the resolution.
“The work that you guys do will never go unnoticed," he said. "But this is to make sure it never gets forgotten.”
While flanked by health care workers in the hospital lobby, McNamara presented certificates to Patient Care Coordinator Jennifer McWhirter Mrozinski, Risk Management Director Mandi Eggert and registered nurses Dan Sables and Selase Foster, who cared for her family.
“Today is more about a celebration of you guys putting your lives on the line to protect those people and get them through the worst times of their lives,” she said. “Today is a thank you personally from me. It’s a thank you from the state Legislature, and more importantly, it’s a thank you for my dad.”
Franciscan Health Michigan City President and CEO Dean Mazzoni said health care workers at the hospital have been working tirelessly to help patients over the course of the coronavirus pandemic that started last March.
“I’m just so proud of the work this team does every day, and it’s so nice to be honored this way," he said.