Rockford, IL ,
19:04 PM

No Horsing Around With This Celebration

The one thing that Joyce Patterson wanted for her birthday was to spend time with a horse.

Patterson turned 100 on Monday, August 3. Thanks to her niece, Judy Umbdenstock, and the OSF hospice program, where Patterson is a patient, she got her wish.

Hank, a brown, 28-year-old quarter horse from Braveheart Therapeutic Riding & Educational Center in Poplar Grove, paid a special visit to Patterson at her Rockford home on Monday afternoon. Patterson was all smiles as she stood to take pictures with Hank, gave him a few pets and even a hug.

Patterson previously lived in Florida before moving to the Midwest. “She’s been a very independent, loving person,” said her niece, Judy, who has cared for Patterson for the past six years.

“Joyce is such a special patient of ours,” said Barb Johnson, manager, OSF Hospice. “She looks so forward to our nurses, aides and social worker visits. She calls them her ‘little visitors.’ She has established such a rapport and they with her, also.”

Asked the key to living such a long life, Patterson said “don’t smoke, don’t drink, get your exercise and enjoy life.”

For more information on hospice programs visit OSF Hospice.

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OSF HealthCare is an integrated health system owned and operated by The Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis, headquartered in Peoria, Illinois. OSF HealthCare employs more than 23,600 Mission Partners in 147 locations, including 14 hospitals – ten acute care, four critical access – with 2,097 licensed beds, and two colleges of nursing throughout Illinois and Michigan. The OSF HealthCare physician network employs more than 1,500 primary care, specialist and advanced practice providers. OSF HealthCare, through OSF Home Care Services, operates an extensive network of home health and hospice services. It also owns Pointcore, Inc., comprised of health care-related businesses; OSF HealthCare Foundation, the philanthropic arm for the organization; and OSF Ventures, which provides investment capital for promising health care innovation startups. More at