Skip to Main Content

Comfort. Care. Hope.


Honouring our Angels: Marilyn's Rehabilitation Journey at HDS!

Posted Dec 7th, 2020

 “I love happy people.”

That is the first thing Marilyn wrote on her ‘About Me’ sheet when she was admitted to Hotel Dieu Shaver this past summer.

 “I was in the kitchen making gravy for my husband and me, and next thing you know, I was passed out on the floor,” explains Marilyn. Her blood pressure had dropped so low she had fainted, causing her to fall, and resulted in a broken femur.

Before she knew it, she was having surgery and would be recovering for the next four months at Hotel Dieu Shaver, learning how to walk again – in the midst of a pandemic.

Marilyn spent her first few weeks at Hotel Dieu Shaver in a wheelchair while her leg healed. During this time, she developed a strong bond with her therapy team, especially Dareyl, Nello and Connie, who helped to build her strength and confidence.

Standing on one foot was Marilyn’s first big accomplishment. She knew she was on the road to recovery and was delighted to hear staff passing by cheering her on and saying “great job!”

“It is very difficult to be in the hospital, but at Hotel Dieu Shaver, I felt challenged, I felt encouraged and I felt welcome – I felt like I was at home.”

Two months into Marilyn’s stay at Hotel Dieu Shaver, she received tragic news on the passing of a close family member. “Everyone from the kitchen staff to housekeeping, to Pastoral Care to the nursing staff, were stopping by to share their condolences. People I barely knew. I was okay, because they were there for me.”

Having to learn to walk again, while suffering a significant loss, was something that she never could have anticipated. However, Marilyn was not going to be discouraged or defeated by this injury. She worked hard and stayed motivated by the people around her, who in turn were encouraged by her journey.

“For four months she brought so much sunshine to our entire department,” said Connie, Marilyn’s health care aide. “She would spread positivity to other patients, inspiring them to make it through their daily therapy.”

Physiotherapist Dareyl says, “I am very proud to have been a part of Marilyn’s care and see her progress.  She overcame so many challenges, medically and personally – she never gave up on herself and continued to have a positive attitude.”

Now that Marilyn is home, she is completing virtual outpatient therapy with Hotel Dieu Shaver. “It has really become a family thing now. Everyday I do my exercises at home with my husband. We have fun with it.”

With a little assistance from her walker, Marilyn has regained her independence. To her, “it’s all gravy.”

Marilyn is just one of the many residents from across the Niagara Region accessing the most advanced rehabilitation, programs and services at the specialty hospital everyday.

Our Snowflakes and Angels Christmas Campaign raises funds for patient care equipment at Hotel Dieu Shaver.  This year, we are honouring and celebrating the special angels in our lives. 

Just like Marilyn honouring her special caregivers at Hotel Dieu Shaver, you can make a donation to honour or remember a loved one.     

To donate call HDS Foundation at (905) 685-1381 or online here

Rebuilding Lives, Renewing Hope

Hotel Dieu Shaver Health and Rehabilitation Foundation raises and manages funds for patient-care equipment, education, specialty programs, and improvements to treatment areas to support exemplary patient care at Hotel Dieu Shaver, Niagara’s Only rehabilitation and complex care hospital.

905-378-4373 Contact