Spotlight on Heritage Hospice, Inc. Volunteers

Published 7:39 am Saturday, February 3, 2018


Heritage Hospice, Inc.

Volunteers are the foundation of Heritage Hospice, Inc. In fact, the organization was founded by volunteers under the leadership of Margaret Caldwell in the late 1970s. Since then, volunteers have continued to play a vital role to the effective team approach to end-of-life care at Heritage Hospice Inc. 

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They also engage in administrative work, fundraising and helping out with special events. All of these various contributions are necessary in making Heritage Hospice Inc. the successful agency that it is. 

Heritage Hospice provides end-of-life care in Boyle, Garrard, Lincoln and Mercer counties with the goal of having volunteers invested in each of the counties serve. Hospice volunteers can give as little time as they want, whether that is several hours a week or a couple hours each month. Any time is appreciated. 

The opportunities available to volunteers vary from providing companionship for a patient to working with family members up to 13 months after the death of a loved one to filing and data entry are also completed.

When his wife encouraged him to become a hospice volunteer prior to her death four years ago, John Aspenleiter knew he had to take action. Now, he volunteers a few hours each week to sit with patients in their homes in Boyle County. 

“I have a rather interesting life,” Aspenleiter said. “I do hospice in the morning and in the afternoon I’m a rock ‘n roll disc jockey in Louisville . . . Those that know me think that’s crazy.” 

While some may see it as crazy, Aspenleiter said he’s never looked back. 

“Whatever role I can play in their final days I will.” He also spoke about how positive the patients he’s had the pleasure of working with are. 

“Being there in their final days is rewarding because, ironically, patients seem to have a fairly positive attitude about things. I have yet to really have a patient that is extremely depressed.” He had no idea what volunteering with hospice would be like, but encourages anyone who is interested to seek out more information. 

Volunteers are an important part of the Heritage Hospice team. Without their continued support, time and dedication Heritage Hospice would not be able to have such a positive impact on the community. Training is provided for all who are interested in volunteering. 

Volunteers must be 18 years or older, have reliable transportation, and complete an application screening process. For more information contact Wendy Hellard, Director of Volunteer Services or Renee Knies, Volunteer Services Coordinator at (859) 236-2425 or email at or respectively.