The number of Americans serving as a caregiver for a
vulnerable loved one continues to soar as "Baby-Boomers" step into
retirement status, and AARP is drawing upon the unparalleled experience of
Peter Rosenberger ’86, to offer wisdom gleaned from nearly thirty years of
Caregiving is a subject Peter knows only too well. As
the sole caregiver for his wife, Gracie Parker Rosenberger (who experienced a
horrific accident while a freshman at Belmont in 1983), Peter has helped
navigate his family for decades through a medical catastrophe that includes 78
surgeries, multiple amputations, 60 physicians, 12 hospitals, 7 insurance
companies, and $9 million in health care costs.
Clowning around one day while speaking about the subject of
caregivers, Peter did his best Jeff Foxworthy imitation and delivered a
one-liner of, "‘If you have a professional carpet cleaner on retainer—you might
be a caregiver.”
His friends at AARP agreed it was funny and said, "You
and Jeff ought to do some of those—it would really connect with folks.”
Drawing upon AARP’s desire to offer practical help, encouragement, and community, they saw this as a real opportunity to reach out to hurting hearts during November’s National Caregiver Awareness Month. Peter and Jeff filmed a video sponsored by AARP to offer a little humor, love, and support to the more than 65 million Americans serving as caregivers.
Peter is author of Wear Comfortable Shoes-Surviving and Thriving as a Caregiver, as well as many published articles. He is the president of Nashville based, Standing With Hope, an evangelical prosthetic limb outreach to West Africa. His weekly radio show on Nashville’s 1510 WLAC also contains the unexpected bonus of Peter’s ability to laugh and get others to join with him —even while dealing with brutal circumstances.