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Senior Stories: Changing the Way the World Ages One Client at a Time

Through our holistic approach to care, Home Care Assistance has instilled a new sense of meaning and purpose into the lives of thousands of seniors. The clients we are so privileged to serve are now leading their best lives, everyday.

We’ve gathered a few stories about our clients that illustrate how our caregivers and care teams are truly enriching their lives and invite you to read a larger collection of heartfelt stories, here.

Senior Story #1: Frank, Avid Traveler and Heroic WW II Veteran

Frank and Merab on an airplane

Even at the “young” age of 98, Frank was enjoying a youthful lifestyle and deeply thriving. This was due largely in part to the heartfelt and dedicated care our caregiver, Merab, was able to provide him. Merab, who’s originally from the country of Georgia, is a caregiver like no other.

Merab began working with Frank full-time, seven days a week, and has continued to work with him nearly every day since starting. Through his encouragement of healthy foods, physical exercise and social activity, Merab fosters our Balanced Care Method in everything he does and keeps Frank living a purposeful and active life.

Merab and Frank have a very special relationship. When you see them together it goes without saying what a warm place Merab has earned in Frank’s heart. Merab is not only a caregiver to Frank, but also an advocate, best friend, and a part of his family.

All of us at Home Care Assistance look forward to the bi-weekly photos and home videos Merab captures and shares with us. We’ve seen dozens of amazing videos of Frank and Merab smiling while traveling all around Wisconsin, and across the United States. Some of the highlights of Frank’s adventures with Merab include annual trips to Florida to enjoy the sun’s vitamin D and the company of Frank’s son, as well as leisurely trips to the shorelines of Door County, along with many other destinations.

Whether the two are at a wedding, fair or around his hometown of Milwaukee, we all enjoy seeing Frank’s genuine smile in the moments Merab captures on camera. They never miss a chance to explore different cultures, music festivals, natural museums and other landmarks around the U.S. Even with Frank’s limited mobility, Merab is constantly seeking more places to venture together.

Merab’s biggest priority is to keep Frank enjoying all the beautiful bounties life has to offer, while also keeping him mentally and physically engaged in life. One of Merab’s proudest moments was when he had the privilege of accompanying Frank to the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight in 2015 to honor Frank’s military service in WWII. Even though Merab and Frank had recently returned from an annual trip to Florida, Merab decided he was up for yet another cross-country trip with Frank to commemorate his service in the war. Merab woke up with Frank at 3am to make a 7am flight from Milwaukee to Washington D.C. where the pair saw many iconic sights including the World War II Memorial. On their return flight home, Frank was greeted with hand-written letters of appreciation as well as cheers from the Honor Flight homecoming event crowd! Frank had always wanted to take part in the Honor Flight, and because of Merab’s dedication and empathy, Frank was able to be honored for his heroic and noble service to our country with his favorite supporter by his side.

Seeing the positive influence Merab continues to make in Frank’s life makes us all at Home Care Assistance truly appreciate the service and care we get to provide to older adults. Merab is the true embodiment of what Home Care Assistance stands for and we are so proud and excited to see what else is in store for this amazing pair!

Frank handing out candy for Halloween

Read: Some of the Best Travel Destinations for Senior Travelers

Senior Story #2: Bob H., Photographer Extraordinaire

Bob and wife in front of a truck

Home Care Assistance has served Bob and Annie H. since May 2015. Bob started out as a photographer in the Air Force and from there became a professional photographer for the remainder of his career. Though he and his wife Annie have traveled extensively, one of their favorite places to go is their cabin in the mountains of southern Colorado.

From the beginning, one of Bob’s favorite caregivers was Michael. Because of Bob’s Parkinson’s disease, holding a camera or even getting out of the house for more than a short outing has now become very difficult. Last October, Annie asked if his caregiver Michael would be able to take them to their cabin for a week so they could enjoy the mountains and watch the changing of the Aspen leaves. Michael was more than happy to accompany Annie and Bob to their cabin, and they all had a very enjoyable trip.

Bob and Annie still talk about how much fun they had and how much they appreciated Michael’s help. In fact, they enjoyed it so much that they asked Michael to take them back to their cabin for another week.

There is no way they would have been able to visit their cabin without our help. We feel very fortunate to know we’ve been able to make a difference in Annie and Bob’s life by taking them to one of their favorite places in the world!

Read: Late-Blooming Artists: Musician, Painter, Writer

Senior Story #3: Carol F., More Than a Client…She is Family

Carol

We received a call a little over two years ago from a personal friend who had been helping out his elderly next door neighbor, Carol F. Carol lived alone and had two daughters who lived in San Diego, CA. The daughters each had busy lives of their own and could only make occasional trips to Phoenix to help their mom. Her condition was getting to the point where the daughters were going to place their mom in an assisted living community.

Carol did not want to move, but she also didn’t know any other options available to her. A friend mentioned to the daughters that they should give Home Care Assistance a call to see if the company could help their mom. Since that first phone call, we have been providing 24/7 care to Carol and have allowed her daughters to regain peace of mind knowing that their mom is being well cared for by a reputable company and a compassionate caregiver named Carmen.

On our initial visit to Carol, we found her flat on her back and unable to get out of bed. Through the loving care of her primary caregiver, Carmen, she is vibrant again and even goes to the gym for weekly exercises.

Home Care Assistance has become an extension of Carol’s family. She is extremely happy that she has been able to stay in her own home and has developed a great respect for her loving caregivers. We have celebrated birthdays, holidays, weddings, graduations and newborn great-grandchildren together with her, and couldn’t imagine it any other way!

Read: The 3 Best Options for Long Distance Caregiving

Senior Story #4: Phil K., Leader of a Happy, Healthy Life

Phil Headshot

One client we’ve been able to have an enormous impact on is Phil K. When we first started working with Phil, he had a long history of being in and out of the hospital due to frequent falls from overusing prescription medications and drinking alcohol. Over the year and a half we’ve been together, Phil’s quality of life has significantly improved, in addition to his relationships with family and friends.

Phil’s primary caregiver has done an exceptional job managing his medications, removing alcohol from his diet, and encouraging him to live an overall healthier life. Together, they regularly enjoy going to the movies, walking in the park, and getting fresh air and exercise.

After building a strong rapport with Phil, he allowed us to arrange in-home physical therapy visits twice a week. With the support of PT and the encouragement of his caregiver, Phil has begun to build strength and stability in his legs again. He has not had any falls recently and has stayed out of the hospital. He has even been able to spend quality time with family or on his own without wanting to revert back to his old habits.

It has been very rewarding to see how much Phil has transformed since we first met him. He has really made the life changes needed to live happier and safer at home.

Read: Why You Need a Medication List (Print This Form)

Senior Story #5: Molly, The Party Planner with a Good Sense of Humor

Molly's headshot

Molly is something else. At 82-years-old, she is incredibly active. She takes classes five days per week, other than in the summer, when she tends to an amazing, eclectic garden featuring eye-catching yard art. She plays bridge whenever she can find partners and she loves to host backyard parties for her many friends. She is funny, interesting, vibrant and active. Molly has a great sense of humor and loves a good laugh.

When her kids took away her car keys, they knew they had to do something. Someone like Molly could not be locked in her house – the isolation would kill her and so would a facility. Her home is indescribable. It has whimsical art and sculptures from around the world throughout the front and backyards. Her coffee table is a sculpture of a magician’s assistant being cut in half in a magic box with the assistant’s head sticking out of one end, hair hanging down, and her legs sticking out of the other. Who wouldn’t want to stay in this cozy, unique home forever?

We asked Molly if she feels that her caregivers have made a difference in her life. “Oh yes,” she says, beaming at her caregiver Beonca. She and Beonca have been together three years now. “Without Beonca I could not stay in my home and I don’t want to leave my home.” Beonca and Debbie ensure that Molly’s dog is well cared for and that she gets to her classes (at a participant-led program which Molly, herself, founded over ten years ago) and to bridge games. They also help her plan and prepare for parties so that she can continue to live a full, vibrant and social life. There is no question that the care provided through Home Care Assistance has changed the way that Molly is able to age….and she is aging well, indeed!

Read: Card Games to Keep Your Mind Sharp and Brain Healthy

We are constantly in awe of the incredible seniors we are so privileged to serve and the compassionate, kind caregivers who make a difference in their lives so that they can live out the rest of their years in a meaningful way.

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