From The Board of Directors


     November is a good month for Thanksgiving.  I am
writing today as your “Acting President,” and am thankful
at this time to be addressing a wonderful group.  I am
especially grateful for our HOTPACS caregivers and all
that you do.
My father was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease
years after I had married and moved away from home.  My
mom became his caregiver and set the standard for what
would one day be my future.  My father died with
Parkinson’s disease at the age of 84; my mom was 81 and
cared for him at home until his last few days.  I don’t
honestly know how she did it except to say she was loving
and caring until the end of his life.  It takes courage to face
the unknown.
Parkinson’s progresses differently in each family, but
we gain strength through encouragement we receive from
each other.  HOTPACS is a wonderful support group and
we hope we can always be there for each other.  Be sure
and reach out and thank a caregiver, especially during
Stay well, everyone.  Wash your hands often, and
always wear your mask if social distancing is not available.

—Acting President, Ida McBride


THANK YOU, MIKE ROSE, FOR LEADING & SERVING OUR SUPPORT GROUP!!  In the September Newsletter, Mike told us that he is stepping down from the office of President after leading us for the past three years.

His leadership has revived HOTPACS, not only to grow our membership, but also to greatly increase regular attendance at meetings, exercise classes, programs, and discussion groups.  Every time we met, Mike’s warm greetings made us feel welcome and glad we came.

His business experience, planning skill, and creative ideas have contributed to productive Board Meetings and group activities outside of regular meetings.  We can thank Mike and Debe for arranging the bus trip to the Parkinson’s Symposium at the Bell County Exposition Center in Belton.

Mike also led the “Parkys” discussion Group with encouragement and acceptance, phone calls, and a sincere concern for each member.  Beyond the official duties of his office, he worked behind the scenes: arriving early, setting up the room, and bringing water.

Thankfully, Mike and Debe will still be active members of HOTPACS, serving as needed.  WE THANK YOU BOTH FOR GIVING SO GENEROUSLY OF YOUR TIME!!

SEPTEMBER 2020 – From the President

The Heart of HOTPACS is still beating, and exercise classes will resume September 8th from 3-4 p.m. each Tuesday and Thursday at the Crestview Church of Christ.  Look for more information within the newsletter and expect to receive an email with details from Caren.  If you have opportunity, please thank Ms. Cheryl and Ms. Kerri, they are the volunteers who graciously made the church facility available to us.  Don and Kirk will be leading the exercise classes just as before.  This has been a long time  coming and it’s an exciting breakthrough!  Precautionary actions such as cleaning, disinfecting, and social distancing will apply in order to help insure your safety.  So come on out and start moving again.

As you know, September starts a new fiscal year for HOTPACS.  We are thankful for new beginnings, and it’s the perfect time for me to step down from the position of President, allowing for someone with a fresh new vision to lead our group.  Debe and I have been honored and abundantly blessed to serve on the Board.  We’ve learned a lot and plan to keep on serving, hopefully, just in other ways.  Again, Thank You for giving us this opportunity.

HOTPACS Volunteers Have The Power of Extra Effort.*

2 extra acts of kindness weekly plants 104 more seeds of generosity each year.  15 extra minutes a day creates over 90 hours each year for what’s most important to you.  1 extra contact daily sparks 180 more personal connections every 6 months.  1 extra risk each week leads to 52 more opportunities every year for excitement and possibility.  At 211 degrees, water is hot.  At 212 degrees, it boils  And with boiling water, comes steam. And with steam, you can power a train.  One extra degree makes all the difference.

We believe in living life to the fullest, celebrating together, laughing often, and loving always.  We believe we were brought together to care for each other.  We believe in each other in this support group.         Mike & Debe

(*from the book “Smile & Move” by Sam Parker 2005)

AUGUST 2020 – From the President

This Heart of Texas Parkinson’s and Caregiver’s Group has weathered storms before and we’re still standing, because of the perseverance and character of its members, volunteers, and because of you.  Your phone calls, emails, and texts, filled with words of encouragement for one another, holds us all together during these uncertain times.  Please don’t stop!  You’re making a difference in the world, to our group, and to  our families.

We understand a number of  pharmaceutical laboratory trials are showing promising results pointing to the possibility of a breakthrough in identifying a successful COVID-19 vaccine.  Let’s keep believing and praying for positive results; it’s the very best thing we can do.

HOTPACS Volunteers Smile & Move

Wake up and Engage with care and attention.  Be Thankful; the opportuity to serve is a gift.  Be Approachable; we’re at each other’s service.  Complain Less; being positive is more fun.  Smile Really; it’s where pleasantness begins.

Start Early & Go Long; get lost in your service to others.  Exceed  Expectations; expect more from yourself.  Have a Sense of Urgency; everyone’s time is valuable.  Be Resourceful & Resilient; results are what we’re all after.”  This attitude of Smile & Move may be the medication that serves as the “virus vaccination” until one comes out; and it just might be the right innoculation to help us keep smiling and moving, despite the prevailing circumstances of Parkinson’s Disease.  We are determined to carry on regardless.  Right?

We believe in living life to the fullest, celebrating together, laughing often, and loving always.  We believe we were brought together to care for each other.  We believe in each other in this support group.–Mike & Debe

JULY 2020 – From the President

This is the first HOTPACS newsletter produced for the month of July since we’ve been a part of the group.  Normally we do not publish a newsletter in July or August.  We find ourselves in the midst of this unprecedented time in our history when so many challenges are before us at once.  There is a heartfelt call to define and implement Racial Equality for all, and to find a vaccine and a cure for COVID-19 to end the Pandemic.  We also must deal with the Economic Impact we have all felt and restart our economy.  The challenge before each of us is to understand that our new normal and, of course, Parkinson’s disease both have changed our way of life.

Perhaps we have reached a point where things will never be the same, defining our watershed moment.  Things will not be the same because together we the people will emerge from this catastrophe smarter, stronger, and more powerful than ever before!  Stay tuned for the Rebirth of America.

“O Beautiful for Spacious Skies, For Amber Waves Of Grain, For Purple Mountain Majesties Above The Fruited Plain.  America, America, God Shed His Grace On Thee And Crown Thy Good With Brotherhood From Sea To Shining Sea.”

Mary Gerecke is retiring after 20 years of volunteer service to HOTPACS.  Most recently, Mary served as our Program Director.  She will be greatly missed!  Thank you Mary; we wish you abundant blessings and much success with your next endeavor.

We believe in living life to the fullest, celebrating together, laughing often, and loving always.  We believe we were brought together to care for each other.  We believe in each other in this support group.–Mike & Debe