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The Lee Rome Memorial Award

 May 30, 2019

Lee Rome Award


Ten years ago I wrote a book. The dedication read 

''To Lee

 I made a wish and you came true” 

 

Today would have been our 51st Anniversary! 

18 years ago he got a big diagnosis. His cancer was very rare,

usually found in extremities of younger people...

not in the abdomen touching every major organ and not in someone his age.

Prognosis nil. No chance of survival.

One of the biggest

hospitals in the world wanted to do radiation and chemo immediately. With such a poor diagnosis why would you put him through this ordeal!!?

 

It was through the dedication, brilliance, caring, kindness and treatment of this hospital's family medicine department that we got another 13 years and most of that was quality... the real quality of life.

 

Our orchestra leader, Dr. Joyce King, was in charge and taking 100s if not 1000s of calls from my beautiful husband.  And not once making Lee feel like he was a bother. To this day I don’t know how she did it all.

Dr. King even taught my Lee, at the age of 80,  how to text...not an easy task. Even though he was a Wharton graduate and CEO, he did not use technology. 

 

The most amazing part of his ongoing care was the way he was treated first as a person ...not a patient. Whenever  Dr. King saw Lee...she really looked at him. Most doctors walk in the room while reading a history that was given to someone else.

 

No question that Dr. King had already read the labs, x-rays, scans etc but she asked how he was doing. How was he really doing and she really wanted to know? Amazing how well she knew her patient.

And she listened!

We had two criteria that gave us his condition. If he was not eating and not watching TV...he was in critical condition. I remember once when he was obstructed...had an NG tube, NPO for nine days...he was a sick cookie and they were talking about emergency surgery. That surgery, in my opinion, would have killed him...since he was not healing from a surgical wound.

 

And miraculously the obstruction opened up.

I forced some old fashioned prune juice down a disconnected NG tube. Of course, this was without doctors orders. Within minutes...he was hungry, eating roast beef sandwiches and the TV was on quite loud.

Family medicine was delighted, we celebrated. The surgeon may have been cheated out of a procedure but it was a happy day and Lee was up and ready to go home

 

 

During those 13 years, we saw a lot of specialists.  When making a list there were 2 dozen including:

 

Family medicine, Oncology Surgeon, Oncologist,  General surgeon, Orthopedic oncology, Pulmonologist, Cardiologist, Chemo-therapist, Radiologists, Proton Beam, GU, GI surgeon, Renal specialist, Plastic surgeon, Inhalation therapist, Hypobaric Chamber, Wound care and Wound vac, Physical therapy, Psychiatrist, Sleep apnea, Inhalation therapy, Oxygen therapy, Infusion platelets and more.

 

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

 

There was one time  I felt no one was seeing my LEE ROME,  they were seeing a sick old man.

I scanned a couple of photos onto my iPad. They were from our honeymoon..51 years ago. I shared the pictures with anyone who came into the hospital room... doctors nurses, cleaning personnel, food service, and visitors.

The response:

"Oh Mr. Rome, you were a hunk, look how handsome.

There was an immediate, amazing and positive change in his condition.

 

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

Look at the patient before the illness.

Encourage family photos when they were vibrant, well and happy.

 

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!

 

Thank you, Dr. Joyce King and all the lucky physicians

who have the privilege of emulating this kind of care!

 

Congratulations to Dr. Joseph Brodine recipient of the

Lee Rome Award.

 

Dr. Brodine stood out among his colleagues as a physician who most exemplifies the qualities that Lee found most important for a personal physician.  Especially caring for his patients in all aspects of their journey whether that was in the office, hospital or home. 

It was an honor presenting The Lee Rome Memorial Award to

 Dr. Brodine who just became a father! 

 

Margaret Rome

 

 

 

 

 

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Comment balloon 7 commentsMargaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland • June 02 2019 08:40PM

Comments

Good morning, Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland such a special post this morning.... it says a lot about Lee and his very long journey but it demonstrates the strength, instincts AND  wisdom by you, Margaret.... how many would have stepped up and administered that "prune juice?" you used your "instincts and deeply set love" rather than what medical books directed....

by the way, congratulations to Dr Joseph Brodine, the recipient of The Lee Rome Memorial Award..... 

thank you for this post....it shows another side of Margaret Rome....

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty ) 3 months ago

Good morning Margaret. A testimony to both you and Lee for never giving up! And, congrats to all those medical people who aided you on the journey! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) 3 months ago

Hello Margaret, what a love story. Two strong people making diffcult decisions and being totally dedicated. I'm sure Dr. Joseph Brodine is honored to receive the Lee Rome award. 

Posted by Lottie Kendall, Helping make your real estate dreams a reality (Compass) 3 months ago

Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland Dr Joyce King sounds like the most amazing physician.  What a wonderful story.  I enjoyed reading it and learning about the Family Medicine Department.  This is something I'm going to remember.  How lucky you and Lee were to have each other!  

Posted by Elyse Berman, PA, Boca Raton FL (561) 716-7824 CRS, ABR, GRI,ePR (Best Connections Realty, Inc.) 3 months ago

Margaret- your post is full of people with strengths, compassion and courage, (and by the way, I'm including you in that.) Your story is a wonderful one. Congratulations to Dr. Joseph Brodine!!!

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) 3 months ago

I can feel your enthusiam and the beautiful memories while reading through the post Margaret. The 2 of you are one of the most special couples I've had the privilege of meeting and getting to know. And, naturally, you continue to do so much good and inspire others! Congratulations to Dr. Joseph Brodine! 

Posted by Andrea Bedard, M.A.; REALTOR® Silver Spring, MD and beyond (Thompson Company, REALTORS®) 3 months ago

 

Andrea Bedard So glad you were able to meet and get to know my Lee!

Posted by Margaret Rome, Baltimore Maryland, Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome ( HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400) 3 months ago

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