Sunday, March 3, 2013


In my previous report, I mentioned how I would be providing medical escort for a patient who needed surgery in Washington. When patients face such traumatic ordeals, I always take the time to make their visit as pleasant as possible. One of my patient's few pleasures left in life, was to enjoy fine food.

And so, I had quite an adventure once we arrived in Seattle and she checked in to the hospital, as I later traveled by taxi to various restaurants carrying the kinds of cuisine she really adored. 

She wants to thank all of my readers across the nation for your prayers! The surgery safely took place as planned on Friday, she was returned to her room in stable condition, and was determined by her doctors to be stable enough to return to Montana on Saturday. We brought her wheelchair with us on this trip, knowing she would not be able to walk out on her own.


The staff at HARBORVIEW MEDICAL CENTER is among the finest I will ever encounter through my field of home health care work with patients who are hospitalized! These highly skilled and compassionate personnel took excellent care of  my patient, helped me when appropriate, and even provided a special transportation vehicle to get us both to the train station Saturday evening,

Honestly...if I ever needed medical care, I would want it to take place at a facility as special and professional as Harborview Medical Center. Throughout years of providing this kind of service for patients, I have been in many hospitals. NOT ALL HOSPITALS ARE CREATED EQUAL! And quality and compassion of staff can vary from facility to facility.

The gracious and skilled staff plus a very friendly atmosphere in professional settings found throughout the entire facility made for a very pleasant stay, in spite of the reasons for which we were there. God bless the good people at HARBORVIEW!

The AMTRAK staff are ALSO amazing people!

Once we arrived at the AMTRAK station, I transported my patient into the AMTRAK sleeper car room, transferred her into a nice bed and covered her up for the long trip back home. AMTRAK makes sure that every train can be easily wheelchair accessed, with portable ramps and even electric lifts as well.

I never ceased to be amazed, both coming to Seattle and returning home, at how warm and friendly and actually helpful these AMTRAK people really were! They all remembered my patient from her previous hospital visit in January of 2013, and were all very concerned for her well-being (and mine.)

Great AMTRAK personnel such as Stan, "J.C." Collins, Veronica and many others working on THE EMPIRE BUILDER made this the most enjoyable train ride my patient and I had ever taken. Special meals were even prepared for her by the concerned staff, due to the loss of all her teeth earlier, and brought directly down to her room.

"J. C." was especially wonderful to me as well. He informed me he had worked on the trains for 21 years! When he realized that I would really have no place to sleep or even sit in the sleeper car room for two that she was assigned, due to all her baggage from the hospital stay taking up most of the room, J.C. actually moved me into an unused room with bed FREE OF CHARGE for our return trip! 

This is something that has never happened in my entire life. I was so exhausted and in need of SLEEP after five days and nights in the hospital helping to attend to my patient. And this compassionate AMTRAK employee "J.C." came through!

I also carefully noted that the restrooms were kept spotless and well supplied, their food selections were top quality in the diner car, the sleeper rooms were clean and very comfortable and well stocked with bottled water and personal soaps/shampoo/lotion and several pillows and blankets. The porters were warm and friendly and efficient and very caring. I was impressed!

I have a true confession to make. Throughout my years of investigative reporting and other revealing experiences throughout life, I have become a bit cynical about the "goodness of mankind". I actually find myself wondering at times if there really WERE any more good people out there who really loved God and cared about others, and who really wanted to make a positive difference in this world.

This entire experience has been nothing less than a wonderful and POSITIVE event for me. I witnessed firsthand that God has His good people positioned everywhere "out there!"

Whether in Harborview Medical Center, or traveling by AMTRAK, or even the many friendly and helpful taxi drivers whose transportation we had to rely on...this world is yet filled with good people who still care about their fellow human beings.

And I have a sneaking suspicion that THE PRAYERS OF MY READERS have played a major role in the miracles  and mercies we  BOTH experienced throughout this journey!

Please continue to pray for my patient. Her mouth will take weeks to heal and recover due to her many other physical problems. But PRAYER WORKS!

Thank you God through Jesus Christ, and "thank you" to all my readers who prayed about this journey and helped to make it a wonderful success!

-Pamela Rae Schuffert

1 comment:

  1. My sister and I, traveling from my dad's funeral on the EMPIRE BUILDER, on March 19, 2014, encountered the wonderful JC Collins who treated us as well as Pamela was treated. He is truly a great person and an employee that should make AMTRAK proud. He's a walking advertisement for Amtrak...without even trying. His kindness, his goodness and his delightful personality are so much appreciated by us and, from what I read, from others who have taken notice of his going 'above and beyond' for people whom he will, most likely, never see again.
    Thanks JC, from the bottom of our hearts. You mitigated the sadness we felt when we boarded the train and you even made us laugh. We'll never forget you!