Crystal’s sister-in-law, Wendy Diamond, moved her mother Muriel Miller to Glenmeadow that year.
As Muriel settled in with us, Crystal began to hear, more and more, about the compassion and kindness that is synonymous with our Life Plan Community and the Glenmeadow experience. So, three years later, when Crystal’s mother, Helen Blount, wanted to move closer to one of her two children, Glenmeadow was one of the communities the family visited in the Longmeadow area and in the Portland, Maine, region, where Crystal’s brother lives.
The family chose Glenmeadow, and Crystal was thrilled to have her mom living only five minutes from home. “She was 80,” Crystal says. “She had lived alone for 12 years, since my father passed away. She wanted to be nearer to one of us.”
Crystal has since become an ambassador for Glenmeadow.
Five months after moving her mother to Glenmeadow, in June 2006, Crystal moved her aunt, Nancy Tyborowski, here into Assisted Living. Nancy transitioned to Independent Living in April 2007. In 2009, Crystal also recommended Glenmeadow for Pat Reach, the mother of Crystal’s significant other, Milton Reach. Crystal has also sat on our Board of Directors now for several years.
Crystal embodies the way in which relationships are built and nurtured at Glenmeadow, and she is an example of the many groups that feel an interconnection. At Glenmeadow, we are proud to have other groups of close and caring family members, as well as groups of friends who grew up together, and friends who met each other here and grew into confidantes.
Glenmeadow is a place where relationships thrive.
Crystal’s mother lived here with us for 10 years, until she passed away in 2015. Her Aunt Nancy and Pat remain with us and dine together now and then.
Crystal says she knew how special Glenmeadow is immediately after her mother Helen moved in. “It was just amazing. I was so happy,” she says. “She got here before she was impaired. She still drove and could go to Tanglewood and the symphony, and she could take the bus places. My mother literally dove in. She did everything that she could. It was great.”
Crystal says our former CEO Tim Cotz was friendly and warm with all residents, and “Everybody I met on every level was so giving and kind and so helpful to my mother with her transition.”
Before she moved here, Nancy lived in Rhode Island and had some serious health concerns, including a broken hip. She was unable to drive, in a rehabilitation hospital in her region—and very sad and unhappy. Crystal was pleased to be able to move Nancy here with her mother, Nancy’s big sister, and Nancy was relieved to be able to make the transition with her dog, Buffie.
“My mother and aunt had ten wonderful years together,” Crystal says. “My mom would drive, and Nancy would ride shotgun. They went shopping. They went everywhere. They were a riot.”
Crystal is at Glenmeadow every day still. Because it’s difficult for Nancy to care for her dog at night, Buffie spends evenings at Crystal’s home, and each morning, Crystal drops the dog off with her aunt and has a visit; in the evenings, she picks Buffie up again for bedtime.
Pat has also settled in well here at Glenmeadow. Even though the transition from Westfield was difficult for Pat, she became part of our fabric easily. “Within two years, she was head of the Resident’s Council,” Crystal says.
Crystal says she became a board member after our former CEO Tim Cotz asked her to serve. A realtor with Coldwell Banker and a member of Bay Path College’s Board of Directors, Crystal was no stranger to community work. “I jumped right in as the member of the board with a resident family member at Glenmeadow,” she says.
Crystal’s advice to children with parents who are aging and resisting a move to a community is to help them embrace the transition as quickly as possible. “I would say you can’t get them here fast enough,” she says. “The sooner they get here, the more they’re going to enjoy what Glenmeadow has to offer.”