25000 Country Club Blvd. Suite 255, North Olmsted, OH 44070
440.793.0200

I Have Lived


Front Left to Right:  Tracie Black, Jennifer Coen, Alana Loudermilk
Back Left to Right:  Bob Speelman and Chelsea Holsinger

May 29, 2019
I spent the day at Hickory Creek, our 114-bed facility in Athens, Ohio yesterday. Chelsea Holsinger is the Administrator there, and she is doing an amazing job. I worked with an entire team of amazing people, three in particular that I spent most of my time with were Tracie Black, Jennifer Coen, and Alana Loudermilk. Tracie has been an STNA for 27 years, Alana for 12, and Jennifer is a new STNA. The three of them were absolutely amazing and worked the entire unit as a team.

The unit we were working has a lot going on from vents to dementia to regular long-term care. One thing I noticed right of the bat was that Tracie, Jennifer, and Alana knew and loved their residents and it was all about them. As I bounced back and forth assisting Tracie, Alana and, Jennifer, our conversations with the residents stand out to me as I'm writing this.

In one room were two sisters. One was in a car accident and recovering and the other blind. I assisted the sister that was blind with her lunch and the three of us had the most wonderful conversation. As I was helping an STNA from another unit came over just to say hi to them and see if they needed anything. You could tell this was a daily routine. She even called both of them "Momma." They were like family to her. It was a beautiful thing to witness.

In another room, Jennifer and I helped a gentleman transfer. He was wearing a Marine t-shirt and I asked him if he served. He said yes and I thanked him for his service. He told me the facility bought him that t-shirt one year for Memorial Day. He went on to tell me that he served 20 plus years as a sheriff deputy in Hocking County. His roommate was someone he arrested twice and now they are good friends. He went on to tell me how much he loves it here at Hickory Creek. "Everyone is so good to us and they work really hard to make sure we are cared for."

In another room, there was a lady agitated because she couldn't find her socks. Alana told her not to worry and that we would find them. We helped her look and I kept her company as Alana went down to laundry to get some for her. As we talked, I found out that she was a librarian at the Cleveland Public Library. Although many of her memories may have faded, this was one that had not, and she was proud of it. She told me all about people calling and asking questions and she would help them find the answers. She told me about all the owner's manuals they had at the library and how people would want to know how to fix something or order a part. I laughed and told her she was Google before there was Google. She smiled and said, "I don't know what that is, but I suppose so."

Another resident that we helped was a lady who they told me had been an STNA there until her late sixties. She suffered a stroke and ended up as a resident there a few years ago. The staff adored her and honored her for her service.

I know this blog is a bit different. I usually talk more about the staff and less about the residents. I guess this is a tribute to Tracie, Alana, and Jennifer. They make it all about their residents every day. That is what came through on my visit and I couldn't be or prouder of the team at Hickory Creek.

"These wrinkles are the hands of time,
The journeys I've been on
They've seen me through a thousand days,
And ev'ry victory won

These fragile hands, With exposed bones,
Are not a fearful sight
But rather, they, my faithful partners,
Rocked babies through the night

These eyes are weak, They see much less,
Than yours they've seen much more
They've guided me through birth, through death,
Through grief, through hurt, through war

These ears can hear so very little,
Yet they've learned to listen much
They perk up not for gossip now,
But for a heart to touch

Those younger often look my way,
With pity looks to give
Yet this old body doesn't mean I am dying,
But rather, that I have lived"

- Emily Nelson



Bob Speelman, STNA

Hickory Creek of Athens

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