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An image.
Friday, January 19, 2018
The Rochester Sentinel
  • Thursday, February 19, 2009 3:00 AM
    Before the clinic opened each day Mike Vanden Bossche stood at the table and shared a thought based on a biblical passage and blessed the breakfast.

    Shortly after we returned, I e-mailed him the following question, which is presented here with his reply.
  • Basics only
in this OR
    Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    "We're kind of concerned about our instruments," Jani Downhour said late in the week. "We have our sterilizer that doesn't work right, so we're praying not to do a lot of surgery today."
  • Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    Domond Bertony's thoughtful eyes have seen much.

    As prime translator and longtime confidant of the Haiti Parish Twinning Project in Port-au-Prince, he has driven thousands of miles across bone-jarring Haitian backcountry roads, facilitated thousands of encounters with American aid workers, helped interview hundreds of patients and assisted with surgeries by the score.
  • Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    Lora Slone has worked on St. Joseph missions for a decade - long enough that things don't get to her much anymore.

    But the blind kid made her crumple.
  • Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    BELLADERE, Haiti - You need a notepad to be in the Notre Dame de Lourdes choir.

    There is no sheet music, no hymnal, no muscular pipe organ. Just pure, sweeping voices that sometimes seem to come from the angels themselves.
  • More clinic log
    Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    A sampling of the cases treated at the Belladere parish hall clinic:


    Donna's patient is a woman with an uncomfortable stomach and constipation.

    "Does she have any fever? Chills?" Interpreter: "It feels like gas is moving up and down." Her only other symptom is poor vision.
  • Grade school expansion funding arrives, concerns about salt, water efforts voiced
    Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    BELLADERE, Haiti - Mike Vanden Bossche called a little powwow in an alcove near the dining room after we ate Monday, the first clinic day.

    On hand: Father DuPortal Michenet, Dr. Sulit and his wife Karen, Dr. Carlton Huitt, Bob Weaver, and an interpreter.
  • Clinic log records a variety of ills
    Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    Editor's note - All of the health providers in the mission to Belladere provided complete access to their patient interviews.

    In four days of operations, the clinic saw just under 1,200 patients. Here is a sampling of what was encountered.

    Anemia, fungus

    Warren Penrod, the nurse practitioner, is reviewing the symptoms of a listless grade-school aged girl who dressed for the occasion in a flowing yellow satin dress. She is with her mother.
  • The faithful gather
    Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    BELLADERE, Haiti - Notre Dame de Lourdes, is a big breezy thing that could use a coat of paint, but is anything but lacking in heart.
  • Wednesday, February 18, 2009 3:00 AM
    BELLADERE, Haiti - Long before the blanc medicos make their way downstairs for a breakfast of stout coffee, pasta, hard-boiled eggs, fried plantains, salad and peanut butter, perhaps 100 patients are lined up waiting entry to the clinic.
  • Monday, February 9, 2009 3:00 AM
    PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti - We made it through the Port-au-Prince airport scrum in good shape, if a little bug-eyed.

    We had flown from Indianapolis to Chicago to Miami to Port-au-Prince and gotten little sleep. What seemed like scores of loud, forceful energetic, men wanted to carry our luggage. Mike Vanden Bossche of Rochester, our team leader and, herded us to three vehicles.

    We loaded 28 chunky duffel bags carrying medical supplies, and the carry-on bags we'll live out of for a week, and rolled through rowdy, reeking, roiling Port-au-Prince.
  • A man with a mission
    Monday, February 9, 2009 3:00 AM
    BELLADERE, Haiti - Mike Vanden Bossche has been feeding his soul with regular trips to Haiti since 1983.

    He figures he gets at least as much from the Haitians as the Haitians get from him. That's saying something, because he puts a lot into Haiti.

    The 74-year-old retired businessman is the driving force behind Rochester's St. Joseph Catholic Church support of Notre Dame parish in Belladere. He has wrangled about 110 visitors (including 26 from Rochester and Leiters Ford) to Belladere, helped organize something near to $200,000 worth of aid, not including the expenses associated with annual mission trips. Haiti is his avocation, and then some. He's not sure exactly how many times he's visited the place, but it is nearly 20.
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