Thompson Family Finds Comfort at Hale Makua for 15 Years
For 15 years, Kitty Thompson lived at Hale Makua Kahului's West Neighborhood before her passing in December last year. Her only son, Rick Thompson, believes that bringing his mom to Hale Makua to live 15 years ago was one of the best decisions he’s ever made. “The second she moved into Hale Makua, a huge burden felt like it was lifted off of me. In that moment, I knew I was getting her the best possible care and that’s what she deserved. The staff showed both my mom and my family nothing but compassion and love the entire time mom lived there. They kept me well informed about anything and everything that was going on. It really put me at ease.”
The care wasn’t the only thing the Thompson’s were fond of, Rick also said that while his mom was still well enough, she loved going on outings, playing bingo and participating in other activities including the Maui Special Fair Day. “Mom loved the Special Fair Day, and I took her with the Activities team until she wasn’t well enough to go anymore. We never missed a year.”
“Before deciding on Hale Makua, I had tried everything to care for my mom on my own. I left my family in south Maui and moved upcountry to Pukalani where my mom lived to care for her. It was then that I realized how bad her Alzheimer’s disease really was, and that she was going to need a tremendous amount of support.” When deciding what his next steps would be as far as care for his mom, Rick recalled that his father once stayed at Hale Makua for a short time and he was really appreciative of the services. “I spoke with Margie (Albete) in Admissions, and felt really confident that we were making the right decision. I have been very pleased ever since”.
Care partners, reflected on special times they shared with her. “Kitty was very active and independent, she loved being social, singing and participating in whatever was going on”, said Ella Rosetes, the Clerk who worked on Kitty's neighborhood the entire time Kitty was there. “One of my favorite memories of Kitty, was when she participated in the first Miss Hale Makua Valentine Pageant. Her son bought her a beautiful red gown and we did her make-up. She looked beautiful and was so happy!” Other care partners shared their memories of her fondly talking about her love for the color blue, her hometown in Durham, North Carolina and the Duke Basketball team. “Kitty loved singing, especially “You Are My Sunshine" and "Let Me Call You Sweetheart". As her cognitive impairment worsened, you could always connect with her by singing one of those songs”, Ella shared.
Rick was fond of the staff for the care his mom received, but mostly for their patience and understanding. “My mom was a tough cookie, and definitely gave the staff and nurses a run for their money, especially as her Alzheimer’s worsened, but they were always patient and kind and took really great care of her.”
Its stories like this that long time family members share that remind us of the importance of the work we do here at Hale Makua. You make it possible to have a team of tremendously caring and compassionate individuals who strive to provide the best care for our kupuna.