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Hospice friend-raiser leaves with praise

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 26 March 2013 at 12:00 am
Hospice Cora Goyette

Photo by Tom Rivers – Hospice of Orleans County Director of Development Cora Goyette, left, and Hospice Executive Director Mary Anne Fischer are pictured outside the new hospice residence that Goyette helped raise more than $2 million to build.

ALBION – Six years ago Hospice of Orleans County leaders were looking for a dynamic person who could help the agency raise $2 million to build a residence for the terminally ill.

The agency hired Cora Goyette, who brought with her 14 years in development for Lakeside Health System in Brockport, and an endearing British accent.

Goyette was successful in rallying Orleans residents to support the Martin-Linsin Residence, which opened in December. With that major goal complete, Goyette decided to retire last month. She plans to stay in Albion, but she said she won’t be asking people for money again.

The 8,500-square-foot hospice home on Route 31 in Albion has rooms for eight residents. There is 24-hour-a-day nursing care.

Goyette said the project is the result of “ordinary people doing extraordinary things.” Mary Anne Fischer, the hospice executive director, praised Goyette for building support for the agency throughout the county.

“She has an innate charisma that draws people to her,” Fischer said. “She’ll tell you it’s not about fund-raising, it’s friend-raising.”

The final tally for donations is about $2.3 million for the project. Fischer said the building is needed in the county because so many elderly residents have family members scattered around the country. Many terminally ill residents do not have a primary caregiver at home, she said.

The Martin-Linsin Residence provides “a home away from home” for residents with complex medical issues, Fischer said.

The eight residential suites were designed to accommodate visitors and allow family members to stay overnight. The site includes a family kitchen, lounge and dining room, spa area with therapy tub, family meeting room, a chapel and an indoor courtyard.

“They tell us it is their home,” Goyette said. “They love it. Their privacy isn’t invaded. It’s been amazing and phenomenal.”