Mother in mourning determined to pass it on

By Sabrina Squire - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – At Advanced Physical Therapy clients seek a remedy for their aching bodies. Many boast that Sherry Hoffman has that healing touch, hands down.

"Her patients love her, her patients think she's awesome. Sherry is the most generous, kind person you'd ever want to meet," said Donna Roberts.

Donna met Sherry years ago through their kids' sports. Donna says her son Joseph never met a stranger.

"Every day we receive a card, a phone call and stories how he touched other people lives," Donna said.

Joseph loved helping people and hockey. For years he pursued the puck with a passion and was only sidelined when the cystic fibrosis he was diagnosed with as a toddler took a toll in his teens.

"When he was 16 he pretty much became very ill," she said.

Last year, her son was put on the transplant list and Donna says when that urgent call came in July, her neighbor Sherry reached out.

"Sherry has just stepped up to the plate. When my son received a phone call to come to UNC for his double lung transplant we were told we might have to be there...3 or 4 months maybe even longer," said Donna. "Sherry said you know I will take care of your house, I will take care of your garden whatever you need me to do, I'm there for you."

The women maintained almost daily phone contact for two and a half months as Donna's family rode a wave of emotions.

"At first he did really well, and then he started having complications, which they were not able to reverse, and so in the end he passed away," said Donna.

When Donna returned home in September Sherry was there.

"She had already had things in place, food started coming to our home, flower arrangements," stated Donna.

Now Donna wants to pay it forward.

Sabrina Squire: "I have 100, 200, 300 dollars."
Donna Roberts: "Thank you so much. You have no idea how much this is going to mean to her, and this will allow her to go spend time with her family just like she gave us time with ours."

Donna didn't waste any time, right smack in the middle of the physical therapy room a stunned Sherry got her own hands on healing.

Donna Roberts: "So, I wanted to thank you and present you with a small token…"
Sherry Hoffman: "Oh Donna."
Donna Roberts: "…of what you've done for me. They're helping me thank you for doing that and today I'm gonna give you this. Thank you. I appreciate your help and all that you've done for us and your friendship and I love you."
Sherry Hoffman: "Love you too."
Donna Roberts: "So I want you to go to your parent's home for Thanksgiving and I want you to enjoy yourself and not worry about anything. That's my gift to you today."

There's a chorus of approval from co-workers, and the boss himself. Sherry admits she was beyond surprised. And she promises to follow her friend's instructions.

"I'm going to my home in North Carolina and have a good time," Sherry said.

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