Margaret Rome's Blog


Remembering - Lee Rome Memorial Award 2016



Family Medicine

Franklin Square Hospital


  LEE ROME    


This hospital treated the whole person not the patient. It was the doctors who looked first at my

husband and then at the chart and lab results! 

Lee Rome had a BIG diagnosis but he was treated first as a gentleman, a husband, a father, a business man and a friend to many. 

Thirteen years before Lee died, we were told there was no chance of survival.   We were in and out of medical facilities including Baltimore's Johns Hopkins, Boston's Mass General and New York Presbyterian. 

Brilliant doctors were at each one but it was at Franklin Square Hospital that the true brilliance came through. 

First and foremost I had confidence in Dr. Joyce King and her staff who made  Lee and our family feel part of the treatment. I slept at the hospital every night Lee was a patient whether NY, Boston, Hopkins or Franklin Square. 

It was here at FSH that I was made to feel really welcome and needed. Being a former RN, there was no way I was going to leave.  

We had 13 years after that fatal diagnosis! 

 I remember when the doctor in New York said no to Chemotherapy.

With his diagnosis, the chemo would not have helped and would have just made him sick. Instead of hearing doom and gloom…I responded with 'Hey Babe, Great news'! 

The New York doctor told us  IF  there was no lung metastasis..we could go for Proton Beam in Boston. I told him there was no Lung metastasis. He pointed out 3 nodules. He was adamant they were malignant. I was just as adamant they were not.

You see our  Dr. King had done a PET scan and the 3 nodules were cold. He was not convinced and put little faith in the PET scan. I asked what do we need as proof. The answer.. lung biopsies. With this procedure only one nodule was reached.

 It was benign but we were told we have to do the other two.

With tremendous force, I banged my fist on the doctor's desk and said :

'No way!  If one is benign they all are.'

We were both startled by my outburst. 

We went to Boston for almost 3 months of Proton Beam Therapy. 

Of those 13 years, so much was quality time. We were living and enjoying each other and life.  Lee was still able to fly his plane, drive a car, play poker, travel and use his treadmill daily.

The positive attitude, we adopted, made things OK.  

Complications were handled as needed. There was the  recurrence after 5 years. One doctor, not from FSH, said remove the leg including the pelvis. He said this in the same tone as if  ordering a chest x-ray. 

There was the wound that would not heal, the bone pain, the  sleep apnea, the obstructions and the fluid in the lungs. 

Dr. King answered every phone call and even taught Lee how to text.

Numerous times she stopped by our house just to see how we were doing.


During those 13 years we missed very few specialists. 

 Below is a partial list..

Family medicine, Oncology Surgeon, General surgeon, Orthopedic Oncology, Pulmonologist, Cardiologist, Chemo-therapist, Radiologists, GU, GI surgeon, Renal specialist, Plastic surgeon, Inhalation Therapist, Hypobaric Chamber, Wound care and Wound vac, Physical therapy, Psychiatrist (a very special one), Sleep Apnea, Inhalation therapy, Oxygen Therapy, Infusion Platelets etc.


Like an orchestra leader  Dr. King  was personally in touch and in tune with each of them! 



Hospital staff was very kind and attentive and giving the best care possible. But one time  I felt no one was  seeing my LEE ROME, they were just seeing a sick old man. That needed to change.


So  I scanned a couple of photos onto my  iPad. They were from our honeymoon..quite a few years ago. We were married almost 47 years 16,802 days…we counted each one. I shared the pictures with anyone who came in to the hospital room.


Lee Rome


The responses:

  "Oh Mr. Rome, you were a hunk" " you were a hottie" " look how handsome" The staff looked at him in a different way. There was an immediate change in his condition.   


This is one of the most important things I can leave you with.

Look at the person before the illness. Encourage family photos when the patient was well and vibrant.  


That is what you do under DR. JOYCE KING.

You look at the entire person not just the sick part.

For that I will always be grateful!


Dr. Joyce King


Dr. Joyce King


Thank you Dr. Joyce King and all the lucky physicians

who have the privilege of emulating this kind of care!



 The 2016 Lee Rome Memorial Award is presented to 


Dr. Jean Masoso


The Lee Rome Award  Dr. Jean Masota


Congratulations to the Family Medicine Residency Class of 2016

Franklin Square Hospital



Margaret Rome


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Wow Margaret!  Such a loving and moving tribute to Lee and his doctors.

So glad that thanks to the doctors and your tenacity that Lee could enjoy those final years with you.

Thank you for sharing this.


Posted by Bob Crane, Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671 (Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams Fox Cities) almost 4 years ago

Bob Crane Thank you. I aways appreciate your kind words.

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) almost 4 years ago

Good morning Margaret.  Love this touching story of a life together, filled with memories that will forever be remembered

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty) almost 4 years ago

I can only imagine the emotion that went into writing this post and how very proud you were to make the award presentation...wonderful memories and his spirit kept with such a wonderful remembrance.

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Real Estate Agents - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) almost 4 years ago

What a wonderful tribute!  Love the sharing of the wedding photos!  During my mom's last year she  was dealing with lung cancer and the aftermath of a hip replacement, and it was so frustrating that her doctors each focused on one part of her.  Even her long-time GP wanted to defer to the specialists.  That was 1989.  I hope that doctors like your Dr. King are more common now than they were then.

Posted by Dianne Goode, Realtor/Broker (Raleigh Cary Realty) almost 4 years ago

Good morning Margaret. Such a touching and powerful post. Thank you.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) almost 4 years ago

Sheila Anderson Thanks for taking time to read.

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) almost 4 years ago

Margaret, what an extraordinary story of optimism, love and good health care.  Your philanthropy in honor of Lee is such a mitzvah and you must be so proud to give this to deserving doctors.  And yes, what a hunk!!

Posted by Joanna Cohlan, Designing, Decorating & Staging Westchester Homes (Fresh Eyes For Your Home) almost 4 years ago

Hi Joanna Cohlan Hope you and George are well. Thanks for the lovely words.

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) almost 4 years ago

Margaret- what a beautiful love story, one of strength and one of courage.  I cannot imagine what it has taken you to write this wonderful post and tribute to not just Lee but the doctors that were there for him and who, as you said, saw the man first.  Something you said will stick with me, and that is bringing in photographs of the person so we don't forget just who's there going through treatment or a procedure. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) almost 4 years ago

Kathy Streib Sharing the story keeps the memories alive.  That is the one thing I would like to share with anyone who has a loved one in a hospital or facility. Bring in the happy vibrant photos. 

Posted by Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) almost 4 years ago

I have tears of joy. Such a beautiful story. I read it out loud to my husband. My husband has been in great spirits from every struggle he has had to endure these last 2 years. Thank you for sharing...

Posted by Dr. Karen Lewis, Broker 954-2489149, No Compromise When it Comes to Our Clients! (K1 Realty Group) almost 3 years ago