Social worker Aleeza Granote, LCSW, right, helps her patient, Michelle Lanham, get comfortable behind the microphone in the BJC media services recording studio. —Photo by Mary Williams
Health Hero Aleeza Granote Helps Cancer Patient Realize Dream to Record Her Songs
“Adults need to have wishes come true every now and then,
too,” says Aleeza Granote, a licensed clinical social worker
on an oncology floor at Barnes-Jewish Hospital (BJH) in
St. Louis. When she was assigned last spring to Michelle
Lanham, 27, who was ﬁ ghting an aggressive cancer and
lacked a support system, Aleeza decided to ﬁnd a way to
grant Michelle’s wish to record a CD of hymns she had
written and to send it to her grandmother.
As Aleeza relayed Michelle’s story, assistance, products,
and services came quickly. As a result, Aleeza was able to fulfill Michelle’s wishes—and then some.
It all came together on June 9 last year when Aleeza told
Michelle that she’d have a special day.
First, a stylist and nail technician came to Michelle’s room,
shampooed and cut her hair, and gave her a manicure and
pedicure. Next, a cosmetics consultant gave Michelle a facial,
applied makeup, and gave her a gift bag of products.
Then came the most special surprise as Michelle was taken
to the hospital’s media services department, where a
media services specialist, a videographer, and a news crew
from KSDK-TV were waiting to help make her dream
But it was Michelle who delivered the biggest surprise of
the day. After being ﬁtted with headphones and placed
behind the microphone in the recording studio, the softspoken
woman, weakened by cancer and cancer treatment,
began to sing in a high, strong soprano voice. Without accompaniment
or hesitation, she sang two hymns she had
composed, and Sarah McLachlan’s “Angel.”
“To be part of this was so special for me,” said Aleeza, who
played down suggestions that her actions were extraordinary.
“It’s just what you’re supposed to do,” she said.
Others have a different perspective on Aleeza’s accomplishments.
She was featured on the the local television
news and twice in the hospital’s publication; she was
recognized by the BJH CEO as a Health Hero; and she
received a Caring Spirit award for care and compassion.
A Mu Delta/Bradley U initiate, Aleeza is vice president of
the St. Louis Chi Omega Alumnae Chapter.
Watch Michelle record her songs at: http://bjhne.ws/michelle-lanham.