Tim Eggebraaten has been a devoted Hospice of the Red River Valley (HRRV) volunteer for the past four years. He shares his love for music by singing and playing the guitar for those under our care. Tim’s fondness for music dates back to his childhood. Tim stated, “My parents said that I was whistling before I began to speak, and it seems like all the time I have a song running in my head where there’s music.” Tim started playing guitar in high school and continued playing at various events, churches and funerals throughout the years. Tim believes that music unites us during these sentimental moments.
Tim has personal experience with hospice care as both of his parents received it at the end of their lives. He witnessed firsthand the incredible dedication and loyalty of the hospice team who cared for them. Tim deeply appreciated the compassionate and knowledgeable support that the team provided to his family during this difficult time. Therefore, when he discovered that he could contribute to an organization like HRRV, he eagerly jumped at the opportunity. Tim now volunteers with HRRV by visiting patients in their homes, singing and playing his guitar to bring comfort and joy.
According to Tim, music has a therapeutic effect as it brings joy to people and helps brighten their days. He believes that music is particularly powerful during funerals and end-of-life moments. Tim shares a personal experience when his mother was under hospice care at home in Fisher, Minnesota. He recalls playing his guitar and singing while his sister comforted their mother in her final moments. Tim was singing “How Great Thou Art” the moment his mother passed away. Tim describes this moment as being so powerful. Since then, Tim has had the privilege of playing music for other families in similar situations, providing them with a special and meaningful time together.
Tim, who has been playing music professionally for the past 25 years, has personally witnessed the profound impact that music can have on individuals. According to him, music is deeply ingrained in our DNA, and there are certain songs and moments that hold great significance in our lives. Tim recounts a memory from a show he did in Walker, Minnesota, where he played the song, “Brown Eyed Girl.” After the show, a gentleman and his three children approached Tim, and the man thanked him for playing the song. He showed Tim a photo of his wife who had passed away, who had beautiful brown eyes, and said, “That was our song.” This memory serves as a powerful testament to the meaningful and personal nature of music.
Another instance where Tim witnessed the transformative power of music was during a performance at a group home in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota. Tim played for a group of about 10-12 people, including a gentleman in a wheelchair who was positioned directly in front of him. As Tim played his guitar, he noticed the man’s hands were starting to move in time with the music. This was particularly remarkable since Tim later learned that the man had not responded to any sounds for several weeks prior to this moment.
Tim wrote the song, “I Am, I Can, I Will” in memory of his mother who passed away while receiving hospice care. He wrote this song three years ago and it has become an anthem for him as he sings it for patients of all ages. According to Tim, the song’s motivational lyrics can be applied to anyone’s life, and he has witnessed people become inspired after listening to it.
Throughout his musical career, Tim has had a profound impact on countless lives. Hospice of the Red River Valley is grateful for dedicated volunteers like Tim who generously give their time and talents to help our patients and families. Whether it’s through music, patient care, delivering supplies, fundraising events, creating celebration bears, or any other form of volunteering, we appreciate all of our volunteers who make a difference in the lives of those we serve.
If you are looking to make a difference in someone’s life and want to volunteer, please visit, https://www.hrrv.org/volunteer/.