A legacy of service
Bruce and Carol Ewald first became involved with Northern Illinois Hospice in the early 1980s when a staff nurse approached Bruce, a pharmacist, about volunteering to be on call 24/7 to fill patient prescriptions. Bruce accepted this offer and began learning the impact of Northern Illinois Hospice’s care. Bruce shared, “It was interesting to discover that there didn’t need to be intolerable pain [at the end of life].”
Bruce quickly recognized that the services Northern Illinois Hospice provided were invaluable and became committed to the mission. Carol recalls the many nights the phone would ring and a nurse would be on the other end of the line asking Bruce to fill a prescription. “This is the kind of organization he flourishes in,” Carol shared.
Bruce became a member of the Northern Illinois Hospice Operating Board and retired after 35 years of service, including three terms as president. Bruce and Carol also joined the Legacy Society by remembering Northern Illinois Hospice in their estate plans. As the couple reflects on the time and energy they have given and continue to give Northern Illinois Hospice, Bruce said, “We’ve gotten more back than we gave.”
Bruce died on January 22, 2020, shortly after he and Carol were interviewed. “He models service at its finest, so much that we honored him by naming our highest service award ‘The Bruce Ewald Service Award,’” said Lisa Novak, chief executive officer. “Carol Ewald shared Bruce with Northern Illinois Hospice for decades. We are forever grateful to both of them for their incredible, long-standing support of our mission.”