Swan Funeral Home

1224 Boston Post Road, Old Saybrook, CT


Paula Anne Ford-Martin

March 17, 1968March 25, 2020

Paula Anne Ford-Martin (Hemhauser), of Old Saybrook, CT, passed away on March 25, 2020, after more than five years enduring stage IV metastatic breast cancer (MBC). She never liked to call MBC a “battle” or a “war,” since that implies she had a chance of winning the unwinnable — beating an incurable disease. She passed peacefully at home, surrounded by loved ones, just as she wished. She leaves behind her husband, the love of her life, Tim Hemhauser, and their four beautiful boys, Cas, Jasper, Chris, and John. She is also survived by her sister, Marlo Kysiak, and her niece and nephew, Jayme and Matthew, all of whom live in Texas. Paula’s mother, Mary Ford, lives in Illinois, but has spent the past few summers in Old Saybrook helping out as Paula’s physical abilities began to be affected by MBC. Paula’s dad, Paul Ford, passed away in 2017, but Paula is also survived by her stepmother, Nora; her step-siblings John, Terry, and Debbie; and nieces and nephews Greg, Katie, Jessica, Asher, and Jackie. All reside in Washington state. Paula and her husband Tim were lucky enough to have visited them in 2017 for Katie’s wedding to Freddie Wilhelm. Paula was born and raised in Arlington Heights, IL. She got her BA in Broadcast Communications from Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI, and an MA in Writing from DePaul University in Chicago. After working in the radio industry, she began a medical communications career. In addition to working in online, video, and traditional print media, she authored and ghost-wrote more than a dozen books on various health and parenting topics. After a stint managing the Diabetes Guide for About.com, in 2004, Paula joined the founding staff of the first multimedia company completely devoted to diabetes education, connection, and inspiration — dLife. She was chief content officer of dLife.com and an executive producer of dLifeTV. She helped launch this innovative show, which ran for eight years on CNBC. She left dLife in 2012 and had a thriving freelance career, via Wordcrafts, her own content consulting business. Her clients included JDRF, WebMD, Healthline, and the Wellness Network. Among Paula’s many professional accomplishments are 26 Telly Awards, a Communicator Award of Excellence, a Freddie Award, and an Emmy Nomination in the Public Service Division. Paula’s first love and priority was always her family, but she also had great affection for animals (especially her dog Sunny and her cat Nellie). Her professional dedication to patient education and advocacy earned her deep admiration and respect among the diabetes community, and served her well when she became ill and began to navigate the world of chronic illness from the patient perspective. She started a blog ( www.livingwithstageIV.com ) to update friends and family and also to educate them on the realities of MBC. The family thanks all of our loved ones who have been so supportive of Paula during her illness. She wanted all of you to know how much she appreciated the regular check-ins, meals, visits, notes, and more. The family also asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Paula Ford-Martin Memorial Scholarship Fund for LGBTQ+ youth and their allies.


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Paula Anne Ford-Martin

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Tom & Ellen Hemhauser

March 28, 2020

Please accept our condolences. It was an honor to have met Paula Anne when we said goodbye to Brian. Although we had limited time together her warm-hearted and caring nature made an immediate impression. We are thinking of you at this very difficult time.

Jeanne Hemhauser-ricci

March 28, 2020

She made our lives better. There’s no other way to say it.

Debbie Young

March 27, 2020

I will always remember Paula fondly as the producer of my morning show on WOKY in Milwaukee. Sadly, I lost touch with her over the years, and was unaware of her many achievements and accomplishments. Wish now, of course, that I had a chance to say well done and proud of you. God's peace to her family.