A Veteran’s Dream Day Honoring A Life of Service and Community

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Dreamer: Ethel, age 94
Dream: To attend the monthly pancake breakfast at the local American Legion post with husband Carl
Dream #: 19,121

When time has been cut short due to terminal illness, a dream allows people like Ethel to reconnect with meaningful aspects of their past and honor a life full of love, service and community.

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Photos courtesy of Kristen Reimer and Steven Fontas

Ninety-four-year-old Ethel met her husband Carl when she was serving as a U.S. Army nurse during World War II. The two have been nearly inseparable since, remaining active over the years in local veterans’ organizations. Carl, 92, is a U.S. Army veteran as well. As Ethel struggles with the effects of terminal lymphoma, the couple has been forced to put their house on the market in order to meet the financial obligations associated with her care and treatment.Now living together in a residential care facility, Ethel and Carl still enjoy keeping up with their veterans’ activities, although as Ethel laments, “our deteriorating health has begun to make outings more difficult.”

Ethel’s dream was that she and Carl attend the monthly pancake breakfast at their local American Legion post, then take a drive to visit their old home and see the military cemetery where they will one day be buried. They were able to spend quality time in their old home and see their final resting place. It was precisely what this proud, patriotic woman had wished for.

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