Volunteer Story

The client: a young, Asian woman living in Berryville.  At the time she spoke little English.  She did not have use of a car nor did she have family living nearby.  Getting places she needed to be, like to her doctor in Winchester, was uncertain at best and a challenge made dire by the fact that this young woman was battling cancer.

It was through an interpreter that she happened upon Faith in Action and Mike, a retired school administrator and one of Faith in Action’s long-standing drivers.  No sooner did Mike learn of her predicament did he go into action reaching out to would-be translators and other  parties to make sure this new client did not miss a treatment.  Coordination was often painstaking and as it turned out, Mike would step up for all of her transports.

Their rides together were quiet for the most part but as Mike will recount, the weight of her burden was palpable.  Through words and expressions she conveyed her worry about whether she would ever get better and her sadness at the prospect of not having children.

But on the day of their final transport together, Mike recalls an uncharacteristic spring in her step as she emerged from her appointment.  Once in the car, she flashed a broad smile and a card with handwritten letters that read, “no cancer.”

If it’s possible for this unlikely pair to share a moment of greater joy, it might have come just over a year later when Mike eagerly made his way down a corridor at Winchester Medical Center on  route to visit his daughter and newborn grandson.

An occupant of another room caught his eye and he stopped. There before him, surrounded by caring faces, sat a young Asian woman holding her new baby.  When she looked up to see her driving companion standing in the hall, the broad smile again appeared and as Mike will recount, the shared joy was palpable.