By Alex Lippa
---- — PLAISTOW — Gladys Tozier had just one wish for what will likely be her last Christmas — to spend it with her daughter, Anna.
Her caretakers from Brookhaven Hospice made that a reality.
Anna, 64, has medical complications which make her unable to travel on her own. She lives at Oceanside Center Skilled Nursing in Hampton.
Her mother is in hospice at the Colonial Poplin Nursing Home in Fremont.
The likelihood of the two spending the holidays together was slim. But that was before holiday helpers stepped in to make Gladys’s wish come true.
“We heard that they wanted to get together at Christmas,” said Bob Hagopian, a chaplain at Brookhaven Hospice of New Hampshire. “This was a cooperative effort between the two nursing homes and Trinity EMS to make this special event happen.”
Hagopian said it was even more special because it will likely be Gladys’s last Christmas. The 92-year-old suffers from dementia and was admitted into hospice last year.
The trip was made possible by the Butterfly Foundation, a subsidiary of Brookhaven. The foundation offers patients services not covered by their benefits.
Trinity EMS brought Anna to Fremont on Dec. 28. The two longtime Plaistow residents spent an hour reminiscing and telling stories of Anna’s childhood.
Nursing home employee Debbi Logan, who supervised the visit, said Gladys and Anna were thrilled to see each other. The meeting was held in the library because employees thought the room reflected Gladys’ 18 years as a bookkeeper and her love of writing.
“They greeted each other with a hug and Gladys was surprised to see Anna there,” Logan said.
Anna brought a scrapbook filled with Christmas memories. When Anna was growing up, Gladys sewed her a new dress each Christmas. Anna and Gladys enjoyed sewing and making crafts together, selling some in local stores.
The two also looked at pictures of Willard, Gladys’s husband and Anna’s father. He died in a plane crash when Anna was 5 years old.
The staff at Brookhaven said the Christmas meeting was all Gladys could talk about for days. Anna was overheard by Brookhaven staff saying it was their best Christmas ever.
“It was very sad when it was time to leave,” Logan said. “Gladys just didn’t want to say goodbye.”
The staffs at Brookhaven and Colonial Poplin were touched as well.
“It just warms my heart to be able to have a good story with a happy ending,” Hagopian said. “We were able to bring Anna and Gladys some joy, which is the greatest reward.”