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November 28, 2006 > Washington Hospital Healthcare Foundation's Trees of Angels' Campaign Brings Community Together

Washington Hospital Healthcare Foundation's Trees of Angels' Campaign Brings Community Together

Events Raise Needed Funds for Hospice Care

by Washington Hospital

The Washington Hospital Healthcare Foundation invites the community to celebrate the 11th annual Trees of Angels campaign, which helps raise funds for local hospice services. The campaign officially kicked off with a tree lighting ceremony on November 27 at the McDonald’s Restaurant located at Mission Boulevard and Interstate 680 in Fremont.

In addition to raising funds, the Trees of Angels campaign increases awareness of hospice provided by Pathways Hospice. During the past year, Pathways Hospice has served 349 families in Washington Township. The increasing numbers are attributed primarily to a higher awareness of hospice services.

Trees of Angels was started in the Tri-City area by Al Bernardin, owner of several local McDonald’s franchises, and the Washington Hospital Healthcare Foundation (WHHF) as part of a joint commitment to supporting hospice care.  Bernardin began his quest to bring Trees of Angels to the community after a family member was cared for by hospice.

The tradition has continued over the years with the support of the Bernardin family, including current McDonald’s owner and WHHF Trustee Mark Bernardin. Trees of Angels now includes additional sites at the Fremont Hub, Nakamura Clinic in Union City and the Silliman Center in Newark.  In addition, children and their parents now enjoy a special holiday breakfast with Santa Claus and Ronald McDonald.  As of last year, the campaign had raised over $244,000 for hospice care in the Tri-City area.

“Washington Hospital works with Pathways Hospice to ensure the comfort, independence and dignity of people nearing the end of life,” says WHHF Executive Director Brent Hodson.  “We are grateful for the support of McDonald’s and the Bernardin family in this important work.  Many other members of the community have been instrumental in the success of Trees of Angels, including our Benefactor Sponsor, R.K. Electric, Inc. and its owner Lonnie Robinson, who contributes both financially and technologically to our tree-lighting events.”

There are three additional joyful events coming up for those in the community that would like to support local hospice care and join a wonderful tradition:

Wednesday, November 29
Tree Lighting Ceremony – Union City
5:30 p.m., Nakamura Clinic, 33077 Alvarado-Niles Road

Saturday, December 2
Children’s Breakfast with Santa Claus & Ronald McDonald – Fremont
8:30 a.m., Washington West Auditoriums, 2500 Mowry Avenue
Reservations are recommended – please call (510) 791-3428 or email Cost is $5 per person.  Attendance limited to 300.

Thursday, December 14
Tree Lighting Ceremony – Newark
6 p.m., Silliman Center, 6800 Mowry Avenue

Care for the community
Washington Hospital works in partnership with Pathways Hospice to ensure comfort, independence and dignity for those nearing the end of life.
Pathways Hospice offers a team of caring support people including a consulting physician, nurses, home health aids, social workers, chaplains and volunteers. Family and caregivers may receive individual and group grief support for up to a year following the death of a loved one.
Hospice care is a comprehensive, program for people in the final stages of a life-threatening illness. Hospice offers support and guidance with the physical, emotional, spiritual, and social aspects of terminal illness and dying and allows patients to remain as comfortable and active as possible, often in their own home, surrounded and cared for by family and friends.
For more information about hospice services, call (888) 755-7855.

How To Become an Angel

Your tax-deductible donation of $10 or more will help ensure that local individuals and families know about and have access to hospice care.  Each donation to light a symbolic bulb in the Trees of Angels campaign shines in honor or in memory of a loved one.  Donors who contribute $50 or more will receive a special angel tree ornament and recognition in the Washington Hospital Healthcare Foundation’s newsletter.

To donate, please make checks payable to Washington Hospital Healthcare Foundation and mail to WHHF, 2000 Mowry Avenue, Fremont, CA 94538.

For further information about Trees of Angels events or sponsorship opportunities, please call (510) 791-3428, email, or visit

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