Dr. Kathryn Hyer honored at Suncoast Pace


Two decades ago, Kathryn Hyer was part of a small group of people who aspired to start a local center for older adults at risk of having to enter a nursing home to receive the care they needed. They created the Suncoast PACE center – a program that to this day provides day services, including meals, activities and medical care, so its participants can remain in the community even though they have advanced and chronic illnesses. Kathryn Hyer, a professor in the School of Aging Studies at USF, died on Jan. 1, 2021. On June 30, 2021, Empath Health dedicated the Dr. Kathryn Hyer Adult Day Center, naming the center that began in 2001 after the woman who was so responsible for its existence. Much was said at the dedication about her persistent efforts to improve the lives of older adults. Jim Anderson, director of spiritual care for the Suncoast Hospice, chose to paraphrase Ghandi to describe what motivated Kathryn Hyer: “To truly find ourselves, we must lose ourselves in the service of others.”