American Medical Response (AMR) recently helped grant a wish for a San Diego hospice patient by taking him on a “Sentimental Journey.”
Calvin Witt, 86, a San Diego resident and proud veteran, sporting his 101 Airborne Division Screaming Eagles cap, enjoyed a day of baseball with loved ones at Petco Park last month. Before the game, AMR took him onto the baseball field for the national anthem, before the San Diego Padres invited the Witt family up to the Padres box suite to enjoy the game from some of the best seats in the house. Witt is an avid baseball fan, but it has been several years since he has been to a ballgame.
AMR EMTs transport hospice patient Calvin Witt to a baseball game, which he hasn’t been able to enjoy for several years due to his lack of mobility.
“He enjoys baseball and we’ve come to a couple of games in the past, but I can’t get him up and move him around anymore,” said Janie Dillard, Witt’s daughter, who attended the game with him along with her husband. “When AMR asked him (Witt) where he wanted to go, a Padres game was the thing that he really wanted to do.”
For more than two decades, AMR has been helping grant the wishes of hospice patients through a goodwill program called Sentimental Journey, in which ambulance crews pick up patients from hospice and transport them to visit a place they can no longer access on their own as their illnesses progress. During this special trip, AMR partnered with the San Diego Padres.
Hospice patient Calvin Witt enjoys the national anthem from the field of Petco Park prior to the Padres game.
Mary McAdams, account executive for AMR San Diego, helped facilitate the event. She said what is most touching about the Sentimental Journey program is that patients don’t typically ask for anything extravagant. They ask for simple outings—the types of things healthy people take for granted, things like a trip to the store or a ballgame.
EMTs Adrian Contizano, Amanda Hong and Isabel Mota were the BLS crew who picked up Witt and transported him to the game. For them, the opportunity was meaningful.
San Diego Padres mascot “the Swinging Friar” pays a special visit to hospic patient Calvin Witt and the dedicated AMR EMTs who transported him so he could enjoy the game.
“It’s really cool,” said Mota, who joined AMR just a week prior. “I feel like I go above and beyond with my patients anyways, and it’s even better when I get to have an extended period of time with one person and learn their story.”
The experience was a very special gift to a man who was longing to take in a game and watch the Padres play ball.