Irene Deloris Parodi

April 2, 1935 - March 13, 2004

You never ran out of love for us.
You will be loved and remembered forever.

Click here to view the Photo Album.

In Honor of Irene:

If you enjoy having a smoke-free workplace, then thank my mom because she started it all. She and my father took on the Federal Government and won, and through their determination we all won the right to a healthier, smoke-free workplace. It wasn't an easy road, but as often is the case in life the right thing to do is isn't the easy thing to do. You can read a little about the effect she had on the movement for a smoke-free workplace in her obituary in The San Francisco Chronicle. She was featured in local as well as national newspapers and television news shows from New York to Hawaii. Thank you mom. Thank you for what you did for me and for all of us.

Because of her Small Airways Disease, (caused by second-hand smoke in the workplace,) she had to attend a special exercise program in order to keep her lungs healthy. But she didn't go because she had to. She went because she LOVED to. Some of the biggest smiles you will see on her face in the Photo Album are in the pictures of her with her exercise class. Last year she attended the California Society for Pulmonary Rehabilitation's 2002 Lung Games where she won a gold medal in the Nustep competition and she was very proud of her medal. Without the Pulmonary Rehabilitation Program, her doctor said she would have been restricted to an oxygen tank.


On Wednesday, March 10, 2004 Dad took Mom to the Mad River Hospital Emergency Room complaining of unbearable chest pain that started at her stomach and radiated to her back. The ER physician on duty, Dr. Robert Mott, gave her morphine 4 times, did some tests for a few hours and sent her home with a diagnosis of acid reflux. She was sent home with a large amount of Vicodin to take 4 times daily and medicine for acid reflux

A few days later on Saturday, March13, 2004 she collapsed at home while heating soup. She was rushed to the Mad River Emergency Room via ambulance where it was determined that a blockage had caused her to have a massive heart attack. Although the attending ER physician,(not Dr. Mott,) was able to dissolve the blockage, mom was not able to recover from the damage already done..

In a subsequent conversation between my father and Dr. Mott the following week, Dr. Mott admitted that he should have done more tests on mom that Wednesday.

It is an appallingly accepted fact in the medical community that women do not receive treatment comparable to men when it comes to signs of heart attack. Although I believe all of mom's doctor's let her down by not assessing her arterial condition as they would have likely done with a male patient having some of her same risk factors, Dr. Robert Mott is especially negligent because he was presented with the critical warning signs and he did not practice the necessary care that an ER doctor should have practiced. It does not take a medical school graduate to realize that morphine and vicodin are not appropriate medications for a diagnosis of "acid reflux". Pain requiring that kind of medication clearly indicates a more serious condition.

In light of these facts, we have filed a complaint against Dr. Mott and Mad River Hospital with Medicare and they are currently investigating the events. We will also be filing a complaint with the Medical Board of California because we feel Dr. Mott and Mad River Hospital failed to provide a reasonable standard of critical care.

If you are a woman, or a man, and you are being told you have acid reflux or some other type of dismissive non-critical diagnosis, PLEASE think of Irene's story and INSIST that you have more testing done and/or get a second opinion immediately.


Irene was laid to rest on Wednesday, March 24 2004 at the Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Hayward, CA. Her obituary was featured in the Fremont Argus as well as The San Francisco Chronicle.


April 2, 1935 - March 13, 2004