Obert, 60, was stricken with a severe infection in his intestinal track due to diverticulitis. That, combined with a bug he picked up on a mission’s trip to Mexico, and Obert was rushed by ambulance to Dominican where he spent two weeks in bed as doctors found and treated a large abscess off his intestinal tract and an infection.
“I’ve never been sick like that in my life,” said Obert, who has pastured Valley Vineyard for 27 years.
The care he received in the hospital saved his life, he said, and he wanted to respond.
“I’ve got to do something that says thank you back to them,” Obert said.
Additionally, during his many hours in the hospital during recovery, he noticed how few people came to visit many of the other patients.
“There are just a lot of people there and many of them do not get any visitors,” Obert said. “My heart kind of broke for the people there.”
He hatched a plan to bring some Christmas cheer to the hospital.
His idea was cookies. He contacted Pacific Cookie Company and purchased 1,500 individually-wrapped cookies that could be passed out on Christmas Eve. He bought another 500 cookies for Sutter Maternity and Surgery Center where another of tending physicians works.
Half the cookies were for the Dominican staff and included a sticker that said “We appreciate you. Merry Christmas!” The other half for the patients included a sticker that said “Get well soon. Merry Christmas!”
With the help of about a dozen people from the church, Obert delivered the boxes of cookies to the hospital on Christmas Eve.
“People are alone in their rooms,” Obert said. “The people who work there just have the hardest job on the planet. Not only meet their needs to get them well, but to try to cheer them up. It’s like mission impossible.”
Obert was able to talk to one of the nurses who attended to him while dropping off the cookies.
“It was the highlight of my Christmas time,” he said.
Obert said he’s 95-percent back to health, and he is having surgery in February to remove part of his intestinal track that has caused the problems.