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St Lukes Hospice Bike Ride

St. Luke’s Hospice Bike Ride Holds Special Meaning For Bethlehem Family

Bethlehem, PA. (4/24/2014) –  Victor Yanega of Bethlehem had a long life that he enjoyed, said his son Tim.  And when he became so ill that the doctors couldn’t do anything more to prolong his life, the 81 year old asked to go home. 

Victor’s care team at St. Luke’s University Hospital – Bethlehem supported the decision and worked with the Palliative Care team headed by Dr. Ric Baxter and the St. Luke’s Hospice to provide compassionate end-of-life care. The philosophy of hospice services is to the focus on care, not cure and on the quality and value of life. St. Luke’s Hospice’s team of professionals is dedicated to meeting the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the patient and family.

Victor’s nurse, Helena Heinick, RN, St. Luke’s Hospice, said, “Victor was treated as a dignified person and was involved in his own care decisions.  We supported the family’s needs and ensured Victor was comfortable in the home he loved near the people he loved.”

Victor’s wife Patricia also engaged the services of a night health care aide so that she could sleep at night to be at her best for her husband during the day. 

Tim’s siblings and Victor’s grandchildren visited during the month to say final goodbyes before Victor’s death.  He passed away at home with his wife holding his hand at his bedside.

“My dad’s care was overwhelming at first,” said Tim.  “We were very grateful to have the home hospice care through the St. Luke’s Hospice and the night home health aide to relieve my mom and to be there for us through this process.”

As a way to support and thank the St. Luke’s Hospice team, Tim and his wife Jane will ride 36 miles in the St. Luke’s Hospice 4th Annual Charity Bike Ride scheduled for 10 am on Saturday, May 3. 

“St. Luke’s Hospice relies on community support to ensure continued, high-quality, compassionate care for families and patients,” said Linda Moller, Director of Hospice, St. Luke’s University Health Network.  “Funds raised by the event’s registration fees will support patients and families currently receiving hospice care and will provide hope and peace to them during a time of great uncertainty.”

Bike enthusiasts at all levels of ability will be able to participate in either the 18 mile or 36 mile trail ride, which begins on the D&L National Heritage Trail, Lehighton Trailhead, 200 North Main Lane, Lehighton, PA 18235.  

The 18 mile option is a one-way ride that begins in Lehighton, heads south and ends with a shuttle ride, provided by Pocono Biking, back to your starting point.  The 36 mile ride is a round trip beginning and ending at the Lehighton Trailhead.  Both rides begin south of Jim Thorpe and traverse by riverbeds, the canal towpath and some paved sections.  Museums, the Appalachian Trail crossing, environmental center and beautiful views of the Blue Mountains, Appalachian Trail and Lehigh Gap will be seen.

The cost of the ride is $40, which includes a participation kit, shirt, bike loan from Pocono Biking (if needed) and shuttle service (for the 18 mile riders and bikes).  All proceeds benefit the St. Luke’s Hospice program.  Registration for the ride is required at www.active.com.  Online registration closes at 10 pm on Wednesday, April 30.  Event registration is also available the morning of the event from 8:30 – 9:45 am at the Lehighton Trail head.

St. Luke’s University Health Network and Delaware and Lehigh National Corridor encourage you to get active – sign up at www.tailonthetrail.org.  The Get Your Tail on the Trail program is free and when you log the miles you walk, run or bike, you’ll earn prizes! The 4th Annual Charity Bike Ride miles count toward your miles for the Get Your Tail on the Trail program. Join today and help us build a healthy community… one mile at a time!

For more information about Pocono biking, please see www.poconobiking.com.