Horiana Grosu: As I mentioned, Lynette had been complaining of coughing and shortness of breath in September. The fluid on her lungs revealed by the October 31 chest CT seemed to give us a reason. We saw Dr. Horiana Grosu on November 2 as well. Dr. Grosu is illustrative of one of the things we liked best about MD Anderson and Houston. Houston is the most “diverse” city in the United States. During our early October visit, Lynette and I spent an afternoon at the Houston Zoo. In just a few minutes of sitting near the entrance we saw families of African Americans, Hispanic Americans, South Asians, Whites, and East Asians. Likewise, at MD Anderson, we encountered a Korean American Medical Oncologist, A Nigerian American research nurse, a Hispanic Social Worker, a scheduling specialist descended from slaves, a Jewish American neurosurgeon, two South Asian radiation oncologists and now a pulmonary specialist originally from South America. I strongly believe that our traditional openness to immigration from other countries is a strength of America. That such a diverse group of people came together to do what they could to keep Lynette alive supports my conviction. Dr. Grosu said that Lynette needed a thoracentesis. This is a procedure in which an instrument is inserted into the thorax to drain excess fluid. She also said we might need to insert a “drain” to allow for the regular draining of fluid. Again, since we didn’t know how long it would be before we’d be scheduled for the gamma knife surgery, I thought we might be able to have that drain inserted in Jackson.Dr. Grosu did the thoracentesis the afternoon of November 2. In a VERY uncharacteristic move, Lynette allowed me to begin driving home afterward. Since we got such a late start, we drove only as far as Lake Charles, LA that night. Lynette’s Dream Group was to have an overnight retreat starting about 1:00 on Friday, November 3. We got back to Harrisville in time for me to get Lynette to the person from the group who would drive her to the retreat site. Lynette wanted to bring along a fan to help keep air circulating near her face. This was a “life hack” she came up with deal with her shortness of breath. As a long term plan, this “hack” would last for only about three weeks. Lynette completed the retreat.She did not participate in the horseback riding that was a significant part of the retreat program, but she was glad to be with “her people” for that time. Sarah brought her back to the Harrisville area and went with her to a Fall meal at Rexford UMC. I attended the wedding of Lindsey Windham and Robert Myers from the Harrisville congregation that Saturday afternoon.The next morning, Sunday, November 5 was Homecoming Sunday at Harrisville UMC. Sarah was one of the featured soloists at the service. As it turned out, that was the last worship service the four of us would attend together.That Sunday evening, I was the scheduled speaker for a Simpson County Cluster worship service at D’Lo United Methodist Church. That service was to begin at 5:00. The Millsaps Chamber Singers were to have a concert at St. Phillips Episcopal Church at 7:00. Sarah REALLY wanted her Mama and me to attend. We figured out that we would JUST make it, if I didn’t talk too long and if we did not stay for “fellowship.” That was acceptable to the Cluster folks.Of course, Lynette was the driver for our trip to northeast Jackson. She received WAY fewer speeding tickets than she “earned” during her life. We made it before the concert began and Lynette (again) did not get a ticket. This was another of those (almost) “last” events, though none of us knew it.
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