“I am a radiation oncologist and try to use the platform of Twitter and my blog to help give hope and fulfill dreams of some of my cancer patients,” she writes. “This particular story is quite incredible — what transpired after I found out that a 79 year old patient of mine loved to listen to the violin music of Andre Rieu.”
The story Dr. Tejura refers to is documented powerfully in KTLA’s “Heroes at Home” segment:
Velma Ryan, one of Dr. Tejura’s patients, had experienced a worsening in her late stage cancer; the cancer had spread to her brain, making it incurable. But Dr. Tejura urged her Velma and her husband Jim of over 60 years not to give up hope. “I try to listen to them and see if they have any dreams or wishes, or something that sort of makes them tick,” says Dr. Tejura. “I never want any of my patients to lose hope.”
The couple, planning to celebrate their 62 years of marriage, told Dr. Tejura about their shared passion for the music of concert violinist Andre Rieu. But unfortunately, they couldn’t afford concert tickets; they opted instead to listen to him performing on PBS.
Moved to action, Dr. Tejura generously purchased tickets for Velma and Jim to see Andre Riew perform live. She also blogged about sending good will to the couple. “All I said in my blog posts was to send hope, faith, strength and love to my patient.”
Then, unexpectedly from 6,000 miles away in Amsterdam, Andre Rieu reached out to Dr. Tejura over Twitter. Dr. Tejura, recounts, “He personally sent me a message and said, ‘Dear, I would love to do sometihing for your patient, -Andre.'”
“That day I cried,” Tejura said. “This is incredible!” Velma and Jim received VIP concert tickets and the opportunity to meet Andre backstage, as a result of Dr. Tejura and Andre’s social media connection.
“We never thought anything like this would ever happen to us,” Velma’s husband Jim said. “It gave us the incentive to fight.”
“It’s important to keep (patients) happy and to keep them hopeful,” says Dr. Tejura.