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Wish List 2017: Music lovers would benefit from music therapy

Wish List 2017: Music lovers would benefit from music therapy


One woman loves country music and is especially fond of Blake Shelton.

Her neighbor and friend is an aficionado of classical music and The Metropolitan Opera.

Both are home-bound and wheelchair bound, with 24-hour care. Patsy McGinnis, 76, and Maura McNamara, 57, would both benefit from 10 weeks of music therapy though the Quad-City Times Wish List program.

"Music therapy will improve social contact, increase mental alertness and provide many other benefits to Patsy," said Alise Raisbeck, case manager for Community Service Options for Rock Island and Mercer counties, East Moline.

Kory Darnall, a Community Service Options case manager for Maura, agreed. "A weekly visit for 10 weeks from a music therapist would greatly enhance Maura's quality of life by providing her stimulation, contact with others from outside her home, and exposing her to new ideas and concepts."

Patsy came to the Quad-Cities from Illinois City, where she grew up on a farm. Her brother still lives there.

When she was a baby, there was always music playing in her house, she said. While Patsy is semi-isolated with cerebral palsy, she appreciates the beats and lyrics of country music.

She has been affiliated with the United Cerebral Palsy organization since birth and attended school in Iowa City and high school in Chicago. She moved to the Quad-Cities when she was 50 years old; her mother couldn't care for her anymore, and her father died.

When Patsy was growing up, she could walk and had curly blond hair. She liked Johnny Cash the most and saw him twice in concert. A pet lover, Patsy has a cat in her apartment.

She still likes to go to country music concerts, and has seen Blake Shelton twice, as well as the Rascal Flatts group and Luke Bryan. "That [Bryan] concert was in Moline, and it was packed. It was fantastic," said her caregiver, Mary Ann Raychel.

Her favorite radio station is WLLR-FM.

Maura lives next door to Patsy in Moline, and the two women became friends years ago.

Growing up in Monmouth, Illinois, Maura graduated from high school there and took a few college courses. But illness keeps her dependent on 24-hour care.

It does not abbreviate her interest in music, however. Maura's father is a lover of classical music, and he passed along his passion.

Maura has a season ticket to the Quad-City Symphony and finds classical music on her favorite radio station, WVIK-FM, Rock Island. She also enjoys opera and has seen "Carmen" on television several times.

The lyrics, she said, calm her down. She plays the radio during the daytime hours and enjoys the voices of Plácido Domingo and Robert Merrill.

Every Saturday, Maura listens to The Metropolitan Opera from New York City; her father has visited The Met, she said.

When she is not listening to music, Maura loves to read, and books fill her apartment. She appreciates author Ian Fleming and the exploits of James Bond, as well as Stephen King and his work.

"She has all the James Bond movies on DVD," said Melissa Neece, one of Maura's caregivers.


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