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TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI) -A longtime director at a North Mississippi hospice organization is retiring. As WCBI’s Allie Martin reports, steps are being taken to ensure a smooth transition at a ministry that has touched many lives through the years.

George Hand has been spending a lot of time recently at the Sanctuary Hospice House. On October 1st he takes over as executive director from Linda Gholston who is retiring after nearly ten years.

“Since that time we’ve served almost three thousand patients and families.”

Shortly after Gholston became executive director, the Sanctuary Hospice House moved to its current location in west Tupelo where it began providing in service care for terminally ill patients. It began with eight beds, quickly expanded to sixteen and now has 24 rooms and they are at capacity.

Gholston sees her work as a calling and not a job.

“Hospice workers are not hired, they are called. I think all of us feel that it is such an honor to minister to patients and families during this special time.”

George Hand comes to the Sanctuary Hospice House from the North Mississippi Medical Center where he has worked more than twenty years.

” All patient care is a ministry, just a different type of ministry at the medical center as we take care of heart patients. So , you know, I see the skills I’ve learned from leadership, business and management will translate extremely well here at Sanctuary Hospice House.”

Although Gholston is retiring, she will still volunteer and do whatever is needed.

” I love Sanctuary Hospice and it will always be a part of me.”

In Tupelo I’m Allie Martin WCBI News.

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