Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Day 177 Joe Beretta Foundation-Story of Family-Giving Thanks

I have seen many of my friends use an unexpected adverse experience to  catapult them into some type of positive action (see Day 60- Skully's Wish, Day 28-Support A Friend, Alzheimer's, Day 57-Ovarian Cancer).  We  participate in various causes because we are affected personally, because of friendship, or because the story behind the action makes us want to help. It’s the story behind  my childhood best friend’s loss of her husband to heart failure and her family’s  amazing dream to make things better for others in similar situations,  that fuels my desire to help and share the cause of the Joe Beretta Foundation. (see

First Open house for the  Foundation in NJ 

The Joe Beretta Foundation's mission is to help families stay together and find rest and peace during the implantation of a ventricular assist device  (VAD) which is used to save  patients with advanced heart failure. This foundation is really about family. It’s the need to stay connected to the ones we love during healing. 

The man that  inspired the foundation, Joe Beretta, used his many talents throughout his life to give a hand up and to support others. His family is now doing the same. The goal is to  build a facility to keep up to 10 families together during the two(2) to three (3) month treatment period for patients who need the VAD to combat their advanced heart failure. This life saving  VAD  procedure is only performed  in a few select hospitals and traveling families often can not afford the cost of lodging, meals, etc., to stay with their loved ones for the duration of treatment. 

"We wondered where were all the patient families" 
Not having family, loved ones, or caregivers for  support is unconscionable to the Beretta’s, a family  of Italian and Spanish  heritage.   Lillian put it so well, “When Joe was in the hospital, his room was filled with people, but as we walked down the hall we noticed the other rooms were empty. We wondered, where were the patient families? Joe said, ‘We have to do something to help.’ "

 Growing up  I was just the 8th kid in  Lillian's family of 7. 

This foundation is about building  a place, the first one  in Nashville, to keep the family together, to heal, find hope, peace, and strength through the support of others.  It's almost a basic need to not be alone especially when you're ill. I am thankful that as an only child, I had the kind of childhood where I was just another kid  at the table of  seven(7) growing up with with Lillian and her family.  It is this community of love which is the basis for this foundation. Learn more at

 Spiritual Reflection

For God is not unfair. He will not forget how hard you have worked for him and how you have shown your love to him by caring for other Christians. Our great desire is that you will keep right on loving others as long as life lasts, in order to make certain that what you hope for will come true. (Hebrews 6:10-11) Don't forget to do good and share what you have with those in need, for such sacrifices are very pleasing to God (Hebrews 13:16)
Other Sources:
Left Ventricular Assist Device