Carol Bell, Joane Slusky, Mark Senkiw

Dear MediLodge Staff,

We’d like to express our deepest gratitude to the entire team at MediLodge of Traverse City. For the past four years our mother, Irene Senkiw, had lived there, and it was the best decision that we ever made regarding her care. We’re sad to say that she passed away on Friday, April 20, 2018.

Irene was diagnosed with dementia in 2011 and had resided at another nursing home in the Detroit area. At that location, she was mistreated by staff and other residents and was so unhappy. She would say “No! I’m not going in there!”, and would beg us not to take her back inside at the end of an outing. As a family, it was so stressful and sad for us to leave our mom somewhere where she wasn’t happy.

However, all of that changed when we moved her to MediLodge of Traverse City (formerly Tendercare) in 2014. Her husband had passed away, so she came north to be near her youngest daughter, Carol, who could oversee her care. As a resident, she was treated as so much more than a patient, she was more like a family member. It could have been devastating for Irene to move far away from the community and family she knew, but that was not the case at all. Soon the residents and staff at her new home were like a family to here. There was a familiar daily routine in which she could participate or there was the flexibility to move to her own rhythm as her body and mind changed with the progression of the dementia. You all have intuitively cared for her in a way that upheld a quality of life that we didn’t know could be possible in a skilled nursing facility.

Whenever we would return from an outing for the day, she would say, “Oh yes, I’ve been here before. It is very clean.” She took comfort in the familiar surroundings and welcoming faces when we came inside. We were always greeted by, “Well, hello Irene! How was your afternoon?” or “How nice to see you!”. She enjoyed the daily meals and activities, parties, music, hand massage, and manicures and the tender loving care she received every day. As her family, we could see that she was happy there. Even though she couldn’t tell us directly, it was reflected in her spirit, her smile, and her health.

So, we give you a great big “Thank You!” to every nurse, CNA, physician, physical therapist, recreation therapist, kitchen staff, laundry staff, sanitation staff, administrative staff, drivers, volunteers, and everyone who made her health and joy possible. Thank you for all of the long hours, late nights, double shifts, weekends and holidays that you spend there. We noticed every one of them and are grateful that you take such pride in your profession.

In much gratitude,

Carol Bell, Joane Slusky, Mark Senkiw
Children of Irene Senkiw

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