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PWL Red Deer remembers residents
with a Celebration of Life

June 27th, 2018

Points West Living Red Deer held its first Celebration of Life on Saturday June 16, welcoming friends and family members to remember departed loved ones who had called PWL Red Deer ‘home’. It was a moving and joyful time as people shared fond memories and mementoes. 

The Eden touch

The idea of holding a Celebration of Life came through PWL Red Deer’s Eden Committee. LPN-Educator Alyssa Seifried says, “One of the concerns brought to our attention is that since we opened in August 2016, we had not yet celebrated our residents who have passed away. As a team, we decided to plan a yearly function where we will call back the families and friends of our residents to participate in a Celebration of Life.”

Some beautiful art

In early June, recreation coordinator Barb Morris worked with residents and students from a local school to paint stones for the Celebration of Life. “Some beautiful art was painted on the rocks, and each included the name of a resident who had passed away,” says Barb. “During our celebration, family members came out into the courtyard and planted a petunia for their loved one and placed the memorial rock beside their flower.”

Butterfly ornaments

Family members were also able to hang lovely butterfly ornaments on the PWL Red Deer Memorial Tree, a metal tree made by Wel-Can Welding & Fabrication of Red Deer, especially for the event. Alyssa herself made individual glass ornaments; one for each resident who had passed away. Along with care partner Melissa Gouthro (HCA), Alyssa also put together a memorial ‘slide show’, with music and photos of each resident. It played on the big screen TV inside, and many residents and family members sat quietly and watched.

Joy

“The afternoon was filled with joy as some of the family members told stories about their mother, father, grandma or grandpa,” says Barb, “and now, every time a resident or care partner goes into the courtyard, they will be able to take time and enjoy the beautiful flowers and memorial stones.”

Photo: Nancy Fick (left), whose husband Walter was a resident at PWL Red Deer, plants a flower in the memorial garden, as her daughter holds the painted rock with Walter’s name. While not a resident herself, Nancy regularly drops by to visit with friends, and often joins them for lunch or special activities.

More photos at Flickr: PWL Red Deer remembers residents with a Celebration of Life

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