Boni Blackstone on the passing of her husband Joe Pedicino

Apr 29, 2020 - by Steve Gerweck

Boni Blackstone posted the following on Facebook:

Thank you to everyone who has reached out, called, texted, and came by. Needless to say, Joe’s passing was NOT expected. His health had been improving and we had gotten to the point of trying to stand up with 2 physical therapists!!! But, on March 6th Joe was overly tired and sounded congested… So…off to our local hospital we went. Days later, Joe would be on his way back home, and on the mend. This time however, Joe remained weak, and began refusing food. He also talked when he was alone in the LR, so I asked Joe who he was talking to, and he said “His mother” I asked if he could see her- and he confidently said “Yes! she’s right there in the garden! (and gestured) It was at this time that I didn’t contradict a word he said… He also told me that there were 120 people who spent the night with us here at home and same were living- and some had passed on- but ALL knew that he was ill and had had a stroke. On the morning of April the 3rd, I had been watching Joe’s sat/rate drop to the 80’s and at 4:30 am I called 911. Joe was having difficulty speaking and I was not allowed to follow to the ER. Over the next several days Joe’s condition got better and he was moved to a regular room and only 2 litres of oxygen.We thought we were headed home, but on the morning of Thursday April the 9th, I was awoke by a doctor who told me they were trying to convince Joe to move to a ventilator and that he now needed 11 litres of oxygen!!! I asked her to PLEASE let me see him one last time before he would be put on a respirator and she said she would let me know… I headed to the bank and my phone rang. It was the doctor- she said “Boni- we need you to come now!” I put on clothes and was there in 21 minutes. After clearance, and plastic covering and a mask, I headed to the 7th floor. The Dr met me at the elevator and she took me to his room. (I expected to stay while they put him under and on the ventilator, but she called in a second Dr and together they suggested that he would do better “At Home” I said, “you mean with hospice” and both heads nodded.

I stayed there all night Thursday and me and Joe talked… I told him that I had got special permission to take him home with a medical care team. He was pleased. I fed Joe pudding and purried food. We talked about how excited the 3 cats, the bunny and the 2 birds would be to have him home and how Easter was this weekend!. The next day, I left early after feeding Joe a scrambled egg, and waited on the 2 (high flow air/mix perfusion) machines and oxygen canisters to be brought out and set up. Around 9:45 pm the ambulance brought Joe home and he said that he was hungry. I put a taco in our food processor and added water. Joe ate the creamy spicy goodness and starred at me as if I was the “Burrito Fairy Godmother” and sour cream could cure any pandemic. I asked my nurse late Friday night when my “hospice nurse” would be joining me and I was informed that I would meet her Monday– but that until then, I would be dispensing any med’s Joe needed for comfort alone,and I had an on-call nurse if needed 24/7. I knew that just as in life- I could do ANYTHING- as long as I had Joe at my side, even ease him gently into the waiting arms of our Lord. On Sunday neighbors had brought us wonderful food, and I saw Joe was weak and restless. I rubbed his arm and stroked his forehead. I told him I loved him… And, that when he was ready, he needed to let his spirit leave his body and join his family. I told him I was right behind him, I just couldn’t come today. I will post more when I can, I read them when I get up in the middle of the night. Things are just very difficult now. (One of the very first photo’s of us 1986- one of the last,2020 after 30 yrs of marriage)

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