Helen Defies the Odds at Leisure Care

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Two years ago, Helen Scruggs was in a wheelchair. Her doctors and family members told her she’d be there the rest of her life—they all believed that her injuries from a fall were too severe for her to ever be strong or stable enough to walk again. Helen, however, was not convinced. She was determined to get rid of her wheelchair and walk again.

Helen was completely committed and enthusiastic about health and fitness, attending every PrimeFit class she could. Before long, she was walking short distances on her own. She’s been no stranger to persevering through hardship. The year 1959 was especially fraught with tragedy for Helen. That year, she lost her oldest son to cancer, though he was just 14 years old. Later that same year, her husband of 17 years was killed in an accident at work, at 42.

During her husband’s funeral service, she turned to her brother and told him that she thought she was pregnant. Though her brother was skeptical, she knew her instinct was correct, and eight months later, Helen gave birth to her fourth child.

She remarried a year later, only to have poor health take her second husband after only two years together. With her children depending on her, she went to work and built a good career at Welch’s, working hard to provide for her family. The determination and diligence is something everyone around her can notice.

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About a year ago, Helen went to her PrimeFit class and sat in her usual spot in the front row—without her wheelchair! She proudly declared she had walked all the way from her apartment to exercise class that morning and now, a year later, has not been back in the device! She’s an inspiration to so many of the residents at Hawthorne Court, and her story encourages them to stay active. Helen’s a rousing example of how practiced discipline, courage, and strength from within can conquer any trial we might face.

Helen walking with no wheelchairHelen proudly walking without her wheelchair.

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About the author

Alissa has been working in marketing and the senior living industry for over 8 years. With a B.S. in advertising from the University of Illinois, Alissa has worked all over the world as a freelance communications strategist and writer. Published in Forbes, Senior Finance Advisor, Alzheimers.net and on other leading senior care blogs, she leverages her working knowledge of the senior care industry with leading research and best practices to create engaging content benefitting seniors and their caregivers. In her free time, Alissa loves to travel, read, cook, and spend time with her family.

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Retirement should feel like you're on a permanent vacation which is exactly why our communities celebrate freedom from obligation, helping you pursue new interests.

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