Joan Schupp's Story

Joan Schupp's first volunteer job at Hospice of Washington County was working at the front desk at Doey's House. During the pandemic she found another volunteer opportunity she could do remotely—making calls to families to offer bereavement care services. 
“I like to talk to people. I like to call and hear their stories, listen to them," says the retired real estate agent. “It makes me very proud to be representing hospice when I make the calls."

Joan can empathize with people on the other end of the phone. She lost her sister to brain cancer when she was 22 years old. More recently she lost her aunt and really saw the difference that hospice can make. 

“When my aunt got sick with cancer and was dying, my husband and I went down there and she was in this gruesome hospital room,” Joan says. “I asked if they had a hospice house there, and they did. We were able to transfer her to that. It was a beautiful, peaceful facility, and it really made an impression on me."

Joan's volunteer work is a natural extension of the civically minded life she leads in the Hagerstown community. She is active in her church and as a member of the Women’s Club of Hagerstown, which hosts events and also offers low-cost, subsidized housing for women in need. As a past president of the club, Joan helped guide fundraising efforts to make sure that a service like that can continue. She also volunteers at the St. Mark’s Community Food Bank.

Her time spent volunteering with hospice has provided another layer to her perspective on life.

“This is something that we all have to face,” she says. “Death is inevitable for all of us. If you can ease someone's burden through all the different phases of hospice, volunteering is a way to be able to do that.”