Keeping up with technology had always been a priority for Mary Jane Farnsworth. At 86, the Canal Fulton resident frequently used her iPhone to, among many things, stay in touch with family and friends. When she was recently admitted to Mercy Medical Center, technology served as her only and final connection with loved ones.
“In so many ways, my mom was not a typical senior citizen,” says Darlene Geiger, one of Farnsworth’s four children and a senior Azure infrastructure solution specialist at Microsoft Corporation. “Had she not been so tech savvy, we could not have been with her throughout her illness or at her bedside when she died.”
Geiger’s sadness at her mother’s passing also made her think: so many people, especially the elderly, don’t have access to electronic devices in a hospital setting or know how to use them. She and her family want to change that in memory of Farnsworth. The family has concentrated their efforts in making donations for devices, collaboration software and supplemental training for nurses.
Using donations as well as contacts and resources at Microsoft, the family of Mary Jane Farnsworth is making it as easy as possible for patients to access and use the latest technology to stay close to their loved ones during hospitalization. Mercy Development Foundation was blessed with their generosity.
“To my mother, family was everything,” Geiger says. “We don’t want any family to be unable to communicate with someone in the hospital or miss that incredibly important opportunity to say goodbye. We also want this entire process to be far less stressful for nurses, who have so many other things to focus on.”
Mercy Development Foundation is grateful for the generosity of the family and friends of Mary Jane Farnsworth and is asking people to join their efforts by donating to the Mercy End-of-life iPad Project by going to https://www.cantonmercy.org/giving. Under “donation,” select “other” and enter End-of-life iPad Project.
Photo caption: Geiger and her siblings celebrated Farnsworth’s 86th birthday this past summer. Pictured left to right are Enos Farnsworth, Mary Jane Farnsworth, Darlene Geiger, and Mark Farnsworth. Not pictured is sister Helene who died from colon cancer seven years ago.