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A Special Thank You to Our Northeast Ohio Heroes: Busch’s 2020 Caregiver Award Winners

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“We rise by lifting others.” - Robert Ingersoll

Every month, we recognize the service and sacrifice of professional caregivers in our Northeast Ohio community, as part of our Busch Caregiver Award program. Since the program’s founding in 2016, we’ve had the honor of meeting and celebrating these outstanding individuals throughout our community—those who so selflessly serve folks in need.

Our monthly program accepts nominations from patients and peers for caregivers in and around Cleveland. Nominees may be a hospice professional, physician, nurse, chaplain, social worker, clergy, deacon, volunteer or anyone else who is seen as a caregiver. Monthly winners are honored on Busch’s website, in monthly email and social media channels, and are given a gift card and plaque for their commitment to serving others.

We’re incredibly grateful for these individuals and their compassionate efforts to make the world a better place. 2020 was challenging for all of us, especially those frontline workers and everyday heroes who fought for our health and to keep some normalcy in an otherwise less-than-normal year. From the entire Busch family and staff, thank you for serving our community.

While we normally host a year-end presentation and luncheon for our annual award winners, this year, we got together on Zoom:


Keep reading for a compilation of this year’s winners.

January Recipient: Kelsey Loushin

The January Caregiver Award was given to Kelsey Loushin, founder and director of Eldercare Professionals of Ohio, an organization that offers valuable monthly continuing education and networking opportunities to healthcare professionals. Julia Ellifritt nominated her saying, “She helps family members understand the needs of elderly seniors. She goes above and beyond.”


February Recipient: Tammy Wassmer

Tammy Wassmer, care coordinator at Bay Presbyterian Church, was honored in February. Her nominator, Whitney Liptrap, said, “She is there in their most difficult moments, offering comfort, grace and advice. I can’t think of a better person to receive the Caregiver Award than Tammy.”


March Recipient: Cheryl Jackson-Ballard

The March Caregiver Award was given to Cheryl Jackson-Ballard, licensed practical nurse at VNA of Ohio Home Assist. Cheryl’s nominator, Angela Daugherty, said, “She goes above and beyond for the people she cares for, and treats everyone with dignity and respect.”


April Recipient: Dale Kraemer

The April Caregiver Award was given to Dale Kraemer, director of the Parma Hunger Center (PHC). His nominator, Joe Osburn, said, “I have witnessed the great efforts that Dale contributes to PHC. We would not be able to operate very long without the various duties he performs.”


May Recipients: Medical Responders

There are few professionals we have to thank more than medical responders this year. These folks tirelessly and generously showed up on the frontlines to fight COVID-19. This year and beyond, we simply cannot thank our medical responders enough.

This list includes:

  • Physicians
  • Nurses
  • EMTs and ambulatory staff
  • Hospital staff
  • Nursing home employees
  • And many more

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June Recipients: Everyday Heroes

The June Caregiver Awards went to our everyday heroes—those essential workers who serve and protect our communities every day during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. These heroes include but are certainly not limited to:

  • Police and fire departments
  • Dispatchers
  • Funeral home staff
  • Custodians
  • Kitchen staff
  • Sanitation workers
  • Utility workers
  • Delivery services
  • Teachers
  • Parents
  • Many, many more

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July Recipient: Harriet Beekman

In July, we honored Harriet Beekman on her 100th birthday. For the past 50 years, Harriet has sent thousands of care packages to active-duty soldiers as the founder and chairperson of the City of Fairview Park's We Do Care Committee.


August Recipient: Janice Snyder

The August Caregiver Award was given to Janice Snyder, leader of Laundry Love at Messiah Lutheran Church. In her role, Janice helps provide low-income families with free laundry services and hygiene kits, among other items. She holds a monthly event where families receive free meals, fellowship, and books and games to entertain children.

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September Recipient: Tom Safran

Tom Safran, dedicated volunteer at University Hospitals Parma Medical Center, was our award winner in September. His nominator, Diane Miller, said, “After being cared for as a patient at University Hospitals Parma Medical Center, Tom decided to make it his mission to help the hospital care for others in return.”


October Recipient: Sandy Levy

The October Caregiver Award was given to Sandy Levy, a retired parish nurse from Ridgewood United Methodist Church in Parma. Upon retirement, she took the lead in coordinating a team to assist a family relocating from Liberia. Sandy guided the family with their physical, spiritual, medical and educational challenges in a new culture. Her nominator, Reverend Karen Wolcott, said, “Sandy is a blessing and light to many.”


November Recipients: Cara Turner and Carole Klingler

The November Caregiver of the Month Award was given to Carole Klingler and Cara Turner, co-founders of LIFE A Dementia Friendly Foundation. LIFE provides programs for both participants with dementia and their caregivers. Even in the midst of a pandemic, the organization still provided outreach safely to those they serve and was recently nationally recognized for its dedication and efforts to making a difference in the community.

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2020 Caregiver of the Year

At the end of every year, we award Caregiver of the Year to an individual who has gone above and beyond. To wrap up the year, we’re honoring our everyday heroes. After a long and grueling year, we owe many thanks to these essential workers. The world is a better and safer place because of these individuals, and the entire Busch family and staff are eternally grateful.

Nominate a Caregiver in 2021

From all of us at Busch, we thank each and every caring individual nominated this year for his and her hard work.

As 2020 comes to a close, we encourage you to nominate someone you know for his or her selfless work as a caregiver in 2021.



Cathy Nichols
Cathy Nichols
Considers it an honor as a Certified Celebrant to listen to life stories, and then design and conduct meaningful tributes. Cathy also trains celebrants nationally, equipping them to share those legacies in ways that comfort and enlighten. Honorably serving Busch families since 2004.

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