Beacon Newsletter- Spring 2020

Posted - March 14, 2020

Harbor House Welcomes and

Thanks Its Newest Board Members

Amy James

Harbor House has been very lucky throughout these past ten years because of the dedicated and passionate people who have sat on our board of directors. This year, we’ve had four additions to our board, and each one of them makes me so excited and hopeful about the future of the Harbor House.

Scott Anthony

We are so pleased that Amy James and Scott Anthony joined the board in the Spring of 2019. They were quickly followed by another amazing addition – Marie Laryea, MD. After our Fall fundraiser, we were again pleased and excited to hear that Scott Hetsko would also be joining the ranks of the Harbor House as a board member. We’re very happy to have such strong support from the Rochester community.

Amy James is a former employee of the Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network. We have worked side by side with Amy on many occasions. She is well acquainted with our mission and brings a lot of knowledge to her new position at Harbor House.

Scott Anthony and Anthony’s Funeral Home have been loyal supporters of the Harbor House for years. When Scott retired, he decided to join us, and we feel truly blessed that he wants to give us some of his time.

Marie Laryea

Marie Laryea is a physician at the University of Rochester Medical Center, specializing in gastroenterology, hepatology and organ transplantation. The mission of the Harbor House fits well into her own personal way of caring for patients and their families. Her warm-heartedness, enthusiasm and insightfulness are such valuable gifts, and we are thrilled that she is ready and willing to share them with us.

Scott Hetsko

Just about everyone in our city has heard of Scott Hetsko, since he has been a beloved meteorologist in the Rochester area for many years. He also knows first hand what it’s like to go through a serious medical situation, and how tough it can be on family members. Scott is ready to help us create more community awareness.

We look forward to having these amazing new board members help us assist families when they need it most. Welcome to all of you!

Thoughts from a House Guest

by Laurie Hagen

I took my husband to the emergency room in our town for what we thought was a respiratory infection of some sort. Two hours later he was taken to CV/ ICU, and three days later, he was transferred by ambulance to Strong Memorial Hospital.

Traveling back and forth to West Seneca was not an option and financially, staying at a motel for the next several weeks was impossible. For the next week I slept in my clothes in the waiting room and washed up in the ladies room. Uncomfortable!

Thank you, Harbor House, for my own bed and bathroom, for a kitchen, laundry facility and living room., and for the hot meals that volunteers sometimes drop off for guests at the House!

But Harbor House is so much more – it’s like a family. We talk, cry, laugh and hug. Being able to start and end each day in this way creates an environment of love and caring. The House is a safe harbor in a sea of uncertainty, a place where our needs are met with kindness and well wishing while we adjust to a very stressful situation.

Comedy at the Carlson – A Seriously Good Time !

Youngman (L), Sands (R)

On February 16, 2020, many of our friends and supporters took advantage of our first venture into hosting a comedy club party and fundraiser. It was a great chance to enjoy an afternoon of laughter, good food and drinks, and of course, simply to get out of the house after several cold and snowy Rochester winter months.

Comedy at the Carlson – A Seriously Good Time ! As people first stepped into the building, they felt the warmth of Comedy at the Carlson. The large bar area would offer plenty of space for conversing with friends and buying raffle tickets for a variety of prizes, like Tops Gift Cards, an air purifier, and even a special basket from the Comedy at the Carlson venue itself. As the the room began to fill with people, the energy grew in anticipation of the upcoming performances.

Comedians Todd Youngman and Sky Sands made the afternoon a huge success. It was clear that they were both fun-loving people who wanted to have a good time. The crowd was made up of people of all ages, yet nobody left the room without cracking a smile and perhaps even cracking a rib or two over the real-world story telling style of Todd Youngman.

And Sky’s “magic show” was hysterical, yet oddly enough, it left us all completely amazed. It was clear that both of these guys are just plain funny to the core.

I would like to send out a huge thank you to my sisters from the Alpha Kappa Phi sorority from SUNY Geneseo who came to help us sell raffle tickets. Even though it’s been forty years since I was an active sister, I still felt the love and camaraderie from this group as if no time had passed at all! We all had so much fun that we hardly realized we were fundraising!

Thanks so much to Todd Youngman, Sky Sands, Mark Ippolito and the entire crew at Comedy at the Carlson for making our event a spectacular winter outing. This was definitely a gathering worth repeating. Stay tuned—you’ll want to put this on your calendar for next year as soon as we publish the 2021 date!

In Memoriam

Timothy Yelder

Timothy Yelder began volunteering for the Harbor House in 2015. I was introduced to Tim by mutual friends, Dana and Pete Kozlowski. Pete and Tim had been roommates in the hospital when they both received L-VADs nine years ago. Dana and Pete made it a point of visiting with Tim every time they came to Rochester, and one time, they asked me to join them for lunch with Tim.

I talked with the group about the Harbor House, and Tim immediately asked whether he could help us out. I was happy to have him join our volunteer team.

What I didn’t realize was how quickly Tim would become an indispensable part of our organization. Whatever we needed, Tim would deliver. He managed our Adopt-a-Day program: maintaining the list of adopted days, sending out letters to the various adoptees on their special day, and every year attending our fundraiser to help promote the Adopta-Day program and sell “days” to our supporters.

Tim was also on the fundraising committee for And the BEAT goes on …, and brought in many great auction items that wouldn’t have been there without his influence. I think he must have asked for items everywhere he went.

He took an active role in the workings of the house and kept it running like a well-tuned watch. And most of all, the hope, encouragement and care he gave to our guests changed many lives.

Now, Tim’s time on earth has ended, and his loss has been deeply felt by many. He was a living example of how to live with a long-term illness by remaining positive and appreciating what is within your grasp. This is a part of his legacy that should make his family very proud.

Every day he would post on his Facebook Page, “Seize the moments, embrace and be happy today.” We loved you, Tim, and will try to remember your example, and do our best to live by these words.

The Early Bird Gets the Worm!

It’s not too early to start thinking about the fun you’ll have at our next And the BEAT goes on… Fundraiser on September 19, 2020 at the Monroe Golf Club in Pittsford, NY! We’re looking for help finding new and exciting auction and raffle items. If you’re willing to do some research and don’t mind asking around, you are exactly who we need! Please contact Joan at: harborhouseofrochester@ or call 585-473-1779.

Make a donation

How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. Every donation helps us to keep our house open.

Donate to the Harbor House

Be a volunteer

All you need is love…It takes all different types of personalities, skills and gifts to run our house Share the love.

Sign Up to Volunteer

Adopt a Day

Adopt a Day to honor, celebrate or remember a special person and become part of our Harbor House family.

Pick Your Day

The Beacon Newsletter

Enter your email address below to recieve our monthly newsletter.