Doctor Chauffeurs Cancer Patients to Treatments in His Bentley
Writer / Matt Keating
He takes them in his Bentley.
“People love riding in it,” Dr. Sexton said. “I had one patient I drove for a treatment who asked to get his photo taken in the Bentley or next to it. It’s been great to see these cancer patients smile or have a laugh, especially after going through such an experience. It’s a great feeling to help them. It’s one of the many reasons I got involved.”
Dr. Sexton has been driving patients to their treatments for the last four years.
“I love helping people out,” he said in an interview at Barnes & Noble. “Some of the patients won’t go unless the volunteers take them. I always tell the American Cancer Society (ACS) people that if you need a driver, I will be there.”
The ACS is looking for more volunteers like Dr. Sexton. The right driver and patient match can help volunteers make an impact in their community, learn new skills, and even advance their careers.
The ACS’s Road to Recovery program offers flexible scheduling and a chance to give back while literally helping to save lives, according to Ashley Noonan with The American Cancer Society. Volunteer drivers donate their time and use of their cars so patients can receive the lifesaving treatments they need. Drivers also offer encouragement and support.
“I’m busy, but I always find the time,” Dr. Sexton stated. “I always tell the cancer patients I am glad to be their personal driver in the Bentley. It’s not a huge demand on your time anyway. I just get my GPS out and away I go. A lot of the patients’ families are working at the times of the treatments, and I hate for the family members to have to miss work to do that.”
ACS estimates that 35,180 Indiana residents will learn they have cancer this year. Finding a way to get to their scheduled treatment can be their greatest concern.
Dr. Sexton noted that most of the treatments for chemotherapy and radiation are very fast, and drivers usually don’t gave long to wait.
Dr. Sexton was in his medical practice for over 40 years. During his career, he was on staff at Hendricks Regional Hospital, where he was an oral surgeon. He still serves on The Regional Hendricks Hospital Foundation. He was also voted the Philanthropist of the Year in 2016 in Hendricks County.
He would like Putnam County to have an ACS Road to Recovery program.
“Volunteers are really needed,” Dr. Sexton said. “The best people to talk to are the ministers in churches and the Kiwanis people. They have the ability to talk to a lot of retirees, service groups and church members about helping. The people at ACS are really appreciative of everything the volunteers do.”
To volunteer, you must have a valid driver’s license, a safe and reliable vehicle, and proof of automobile insurance, according to Noonan. Drivers must be 18 years of age or older, and have a good driving history. They arrange their own schedules and can commit as many or as few hours as their schedule allows.
“The patients are always very appreciative,” Dr. Sexton noted. “I like it if I can get three- five days notice, but if a driver is needed, I can always change my schedule. It’s not a huge inconvenience.”
Volunteering is also a great way to meet new people. It strengthens your ties to the community, exposes you to people with common interests, and provides a sense of purpose.
To learn more about the benefits of volunteering and how to become a Road to Recovery volunteer, call 1-800-227-2345.
“I have enjoyed talking to each and every patient I have driven for their treatment appointments,” Dr. Sexton said. “I like making them chuckle or grin if I can, and bring a little bit of sunshine into their lives.”