Community Connection Newsletter | July 2020 | News & Announcements
Resident Spotlight: Meet Gary
Gary is a resident on our rehab unit and we have had the pleasure of getting to know him since he first came to us in October 2019.  
Gary was born and raised in Bellville, IL where he lived with his 5 brothers and 2 sisters. When he was in fifth grade they moved to Portage Wisconsin. Gary and his siblings spent a lot of time outdoors playing, camping, and ice skating and enjoying the holidays. Gary was quite the athlete, he played basketball, football, and baseball.  

After school Gary went on to join the Air Force where he worked as an operating room technician for 21 years. Throughout his career he spent 5 years in Germany and was also stationed in Wyoming, Utah and Michigan.  
Upon retiring from the Air Force, Gary worked as Private Scrub First Assist for Dr. Bizzogotti here in Cadillac, MI. That is where he met his wife Mary Jo. They have been married for 26 years and have 4 beautiful sons, 1 daughter and 3 grandbabies. Gary says marrying Mary Jo and having his children were the happiest moments of his life.  

Gary is a ray of sunshine in our community and spends his time getting stronger in therapy, taking walks and hitting golf balls out in the courtyard, playing corn hole (which he is quite good at), cracking jokes and making everyone smile. He says he has loved getting the chance to recover here at Samaritas where the people are very, very nice.  
I asked Gary to share some of his best advice, and he was happy to share these with me;  
“Eliminate the negative, accept the positive, and leave the mystery in between.”  
“Always try to look for the positives in things, they are there you just have to put yourself forward.”  
“If everybody brushed their front doorstep off it would be a clean world to live in.”  
“We are in a time now where the future is very doubtful, it’s never going to be the normal that was in the past, so now is the time to put our best foot forward and make it a better world.”  
And as Red Skelton always said, “May God Bless.”  
Employee of the Month
Way to go Virginia Baker!
We are proud to announce that our July Employee of the Month is, Virginia Baker!  
Virginia has been working in our Dietary Department for almost 2 years. She grew up in Cadillac, MI and has been working in food service one way or another since she was 14 years old. Virginia has a beautiful 14 year old daughter, and one cat that was given to her daughter by her own father before he passed away. She loves to bake and read in her spare time.  
Virginia says she enjoys working at Samaritas because she loves to make the residents and her coworkers smile. Her future goals include working on getting her Bachelors in Food Science and Nutrition.   
Congratulations Virginia, we appreciate all that you do!  

What Does Freedom Mean to You?
Samaritas residents share their thoughts
It’s an exciting time we live in, glad to be in a country where people would give up their lives for our freedom. Like the statesman said, “Give me liberty or give me death." - Joe Schictel

Freedom is so we can do as we please without hurting the other fella. - Vivian Wamba

When I was in a nursing home in Mississippi, I had to fight to get back home to Michigan. I had naysayers, but I proved them wrong. - Jenni Simmons

When I was a kid we lived on a farm. If we got all the hay in by the 4 th my dad would get a case of pop, keep it in the well pit to stay cool. That was our reward. - Joanne Harrison
Freedom is being able to do what you want when you want to do it. -Jeffery Carpenter

Freedom is that I can do anything I want that is not illegal. - Mary Brown

Free speech and Independence. That’s freedom.- Lauren Ward
Hospice of Michigan Training
Hosting a FREE Continuing Education Training. All are welcome to attend and will receive a certificate of completion. 1 credit hour CE for nurses and social workers. Visit the Hospice of Michigan Training website for details.
See what else is going on at Samaritas this month!
Samaritas Backpack Drive for Kids
This drive will help needy students get the school supplies they need for the new year.
Samaritas is launching the Annual Backpack Drive for Kids to collect school supplies for the students in its care.
Starting Wed., July 15 through Sat., Aug 15, Samaritas is asking the public to donate 1,400 backpacks and the school supplies to fill them. 
Due to the Coronavirus Pandemic, in-person donations will not be allowed this year. Instead, the backpacks and school supplies may be purchased from this Amazon Wish List available at and shipped to the Samaritas Detroit Office located at 8131 E. Jefferson Avenue, Detroit 48214. Monetary donations to help purchase school supplies can also be made online at . Visit to learn more about specific items needed for various age groups. 
It is not a secret, but not everyone is taking advantage – Are you?
Are you like Dan and Barbara? They worked and saved carefully throughout their lives. Each year they made annual contributions to their IRA’s (Individual Retirement Accounts), knowing their funds would grow over time and help provide additional income when they retired.  
If you have an IRA, you know IRS regulations require you to start taking Required Minimum Distributions from your IRA starting at age 70-1/2 (unless you have a ROTH IRA).  
Here is the important IRA option not everyone has discovered.
A few years ago, Dan and Barbara’s financial advisor clued them in on an opportunity to make a Charitable IRA Rollover to help support the programs and services that are important to them. 
Dan says, “We absolutely LOVE this option. Yes, it is good to be wise stewards of what we have, but it is not just about saving on our taxes. It is more about maximizing the use of those funds at their FULL VALUE. We have been blessed, and giving back brings us a true sense of satisfaction and JOY!”
If you want to join Dan and Barbara, there are a couple of important things to know:

  • No. 1 – Talk with your financial advisor to decide what works best for you and your situation.
  • No. 2 – If you decide that this is a good option for you, your IRA Plan Administrator can provide a short form to ensure the funds you give go DIRECTLY to the charity/ties of your choice. This bypasses the income tax you would otherwise pay on that distribution. 
You may be aware that there is a 2020 exemption to IRS Required Minimum Distribution rule due to the COVID 19 crisis. Many, like Dan and Barbara, have already decided to continue to use their distributions the same way again this year - knowing they can continue to provide help and hope for those who are most in need.  
If you have questions or would like more information, please connect with us to learn more.
Samaritas Resources include:
DeeDee McVety, Director – Major & Planned Gifts
Visit our website: , then click on “Tax Saving Option to Give”
Samaritas offers retirement living for seniors with five communities throughout Michigan. Whether you want independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing, memory support or rehabilitation therapy, you’ll find a home that feels right.

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460 Pearl Street | Cadillac, MI 49601 | S | (833) 505-CARE (2273)