“My mother wasn’t shy about anything.” Ms. Martha told me with a wink like we were sharing our own little secret. “I think she’s where I get it from.” Ms. Martha Hutchinson was ready for her interview before I even arrived. As a native of what was once Camp Taylor, Kentucky – now, a part of Louisville – Ms. Hutchinson moved to Sarasota in 1960 with her husband, Robert, whom she referred to as Bobby during our chat.
As they began building their lives in Sarasota, Bobby worked for Davidson Insulation, and Ms. Martha began her career in the banking industry working first for United First Federal and then the Bank of America.
In 1996, Martha brought her parents to live at Pines of Sarasota. “I remember bringing mom through a gate, then we walked to a little office where the kitchen is now,” she recounted for me. “Back then, people dressed up! I brought mom in a dress, hose, & heels,” she laughed as she pointed down to the jeans she was wearing. “It wasn’t like it is today.”
Ms. Hutchinson spoke for several minutes about a nurse who cared for her mother while at Pines. “Nurse Sue took care of my mother like there was no other person in the world,” she told me in a matter-of-fact way. “That’s what you want when it’s your mom.” I could not agree more. That’s what made Ms. Martha’s decision so easy when it came time for her to seek assisted living.
When it came time for Martha to consider long-term care, her son, Chris, gave her the happy news that Pines would be her home. “I’m convinced we get extra good care here,” she told me reaching out to hold her roommate, Lillian’s, hand. “And grandma – that’s what I call her -,” pointing a thumb at Ms. Lillian, “makes it even better.”
Martha and Lillian have been roommates at Pines for 2 years, now. You would think they have known each other for their whole lives. “She treats me like a daughter,” Martha said of Lillian. “We would do most anything for each other.” I took a photo of the two women as they held hands and reminisced about their children, grandchildren, & even great-grandchildren. As they shared their stories with me, I was reminded how blessed we all are to be at Pines of Sarasota – a place that is filled with amazing people who hold incredible stories.