Patient Stories


Melanie Wildhagen

Open Heart Surgery Saved This Kind Woman Who Opens Her Heart

Melanie always had an open heart. A retired school secretary, Melanie spends her days giving back to her community. She is active in her church and runs a food pantry in her hometown of Murrayville. But in the fall of 2017, it was HER heart that needed help.

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An Expert Diagnosis Caught a Defect in Her Infant Heart

Alivia was just a baby when her heart began failing – a condition known as dilated cardiomyopathy. From the time Alivia was born, her parents knew that something was wrong, but thought her eating problems were due to reflux. It was during her six-month check-up when her mom realized it was something much more serious.

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Lance Nagle

A Quick Response Helped This Dad Survive a Heart Attack

For months, Lance ignored the warning signs of an impending heart attack. He would wake up at night with shortness of breath. He would occasionally experience pain in his left arm. Then, one day at work, a normal episode of pain started to snowball out of control.

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Patti Fricke

A Heart Stent Saved This Former Nurse’s Life

Patti was a nurse for over 40 years. She has seen more than her fair share of heart patients. One day, she became one herself. It started when she was on vacation in Mexico and noticed a pain in her chest. 

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Samantha Biel

Heart Surgery Helps a Young Dancer Keep Her Rhythm on Beat

Samantha loved to dance her whole life. She was used to being active, but when she was a freshman in college, she noticed a change in how she felt after rehearsals. But during rehearsals, she started to notice unusual symptoms.

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Duane Dodd

A Non-Invasive Procedure Repaired Duane’s 85-Year-Old Heart

Duane loves fishing and hunting. Even at 85, he likes to be outside and stay active. But what Duane doesn’t like doing, is seeing a doctor. So, when he started having trouble breathing, it was his wife, Phyllis that convinced him to see a cardiologist.

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Linda Johnson-Kabisch

Pulmonary Rehab Helps Patients Breathe Easier

For more than 17 years, Linda Johnson-Kabisch has made pulmonary rehab an important part of her life. Since she retired from teaching in 2001, she’s attended 1,700 sessions of rehab—something she credits with helping her maintain an active lifestyle.

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Mona Bartz

Home Hospice: One Patient's Story of Care and Friendship

Mona Bartz’s Sunday School class calls her most Sunday mornings to sing a hymn with her over the phone. The 74-year-old hospice patient hasn’t let a terminal cancer diagnosis derail her bubbly personality that connects with everyone she comes in contact with – including her Memorial Home Services – Hospice team.

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Donor Spotlight: Fighting Parkinson’s disease with Rock Steady Boxing

Generosity enhances boxing experience

Less than one year ago, Praveen Martinez-Singh could not stand in place for more than a couple of seconds. That was one impact Parkinson’s disease was having on the 30-year-old’s body – his balance was deteriorating.

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George Estabrook

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Promotes Healing

After radiation treatments, George Estabrook, 78, struggled with stubborn scar tissue, and his doctor recommended hyperbaric oxygen treatments.

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