Crossroads Hospice patient Claire Mowry enjoys a helicopter flight as part of the ultimate gift program. Submitted photo

Crossroads Hospice patient Claire Mowry enjoys a helicopter flight as part of the ultimate gift program. Submitted photo

For Gardner hospice patient Claire Mowry, the perfect day meant realizing her lifelong dream of soaring hundreds of feet above the earth in a helicopter. On Mowry’s “Gift of a Day,” she was joined by her daughter and granddaughter for an unforgettable flight over Johnson County from Gardner’s New Century Airport.
Created by Crossroads Hospice, the Gift of a Day program asks patients what their perfect day is and staff and volunteers work to make it a reality. The process begins as soon as a patient is admitted.
“The Gift of a Day program brings out the best in the community, with Crossroads staff, volunteers and area businesses coming together to create special moments for these seriously ill patients,” says Scott Christ, Executive Director of Crossroads Hospice’s Lenexa office. “The requests are as varied as the patients we serve, challenging us to find creative ways to bring about a perfect day. The Gifts have brought smiles, tears, laughter and joy to countless terminally ill patients and their families.”
The Gift of a Day program was inspired by Jim Stovall’s novel, “The Ultimate Gift.” Blind from age 29 due to a degenerative eye condition, Stovall went on to become an International Humanitarian of the Year, a national Olympic weightlifting champion, Emmy-award winner, world-renowned author and speaker.