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Willow Brook News

Delaware Run Roof Comes Up – And Goes Down

Delaware, OH—The folks over at Willow Brook at Delaware Run on West William Street are raising the roof this week and next.

Raise the Roof“It’s in preparation for an expansion of our assisted living center,” says CEO Larry Harris.  The self-funded $5.5 million project will add 12,600 square feet to the 14,000-square foot healthcare center, with 22 additional  assisted living rooms or suites and seven transitional living apartments.  A new dining room for the memory care center, and a snack shop/deli where residents, families, guests, and staff can grab a quick bite to eat any time of the day will also be added.

Opened in 2009, the healthcare center at Delaware Run has reached capacity and sees a growing need for assisted living services.  The expansion will add two more floors to the assisted living wing, one just like the first floor, and the other with apartments that will provide transitional care.

“Transitional apartments will make it possible for couples to get more supportive services than they can receive in independent living,” says manager Heidi Reed, “but at a lower cost than a couple would pay for an assisted living suite. So many couples just barely hang on because they want to continue to share their lives as before, but one person’s illness places that married life in jeopardy.”

The roof project will continue on Monday, once the weather improves.

Construction of the two additional floors is expected to be complete in about eight months, says Harris.

A Word from the CEO (June 2013)

Weren’t the three Willow Brooks gorgeous this spring? All the flowering crabs, redbuds, dogwoods and forsythia painted our communities with splashes of pink, fuchsia, and sun-bright yellow. What a show!

Larry Harris, CEORight from the start, as we developed our campuses, we were determined to use growing things to create environments that not only would please the eye, but also offer a home for birds and critters. Mission accomplished, I would say.

We have planted 3,500 trees combined at the two Delaware communities. Many of those went into reforestation projects. At The Village, the woods trees were planted 20 or so years ago. The results are almost indistinguishable from the parts of original forest that survived our development. Seeing now how it turned out, I wish I had committed more acres to trees.

At Delaware Run, we are only getting started with the reforestation. The saplings we planted are maturing nicely. Come back in a few years and you’ll find dense woods.

And even at Willow Brook Christian Home, we long ago declared “hands off” a little corner by the lower parking lot. Nature has taken its course, and just look at the beautiful outcome. There is even a little stream flowing through the trees, but you have to walk over and peek in to see it.

I have done my best to make amends for all the tree cutting required to make room for our structures and parking lots. Please enjoy.

With love to all, Larry Harris

A Word from the CEO (May 2013)

While watching all the painful images of the Boston Marathon bombings, Janet and I were talking about the uncertainty of our lives.

Larry Harris,CEO

The three who were killed that day left home that morning with no inkling that the end was so near.  The biblical writer James was right:  “...life is a vapor, that appears for a little time, then vanishes away.”

We have no guarantee on tomorrow – or this afternoon. When you consider all the ways there are to launch us into the afterlife – a Boston bombing, the infestation of a malevolent microbe, a meteor falling on your head, a vital organ failure, a violent encounter with a Mack truck – it’s a wonder any of us are still walking the planet.  But I have to say, I’m happy I am.  You and I, we’re the survivors. And each morning as I rise to a new day, I am reminded that life is beautiful.

Last evening as I drove home to Worthington, a stunning rainbow graced my left flank. A gentle mist was falling, and the sun’s rays were low.  So boom.  A rainbow appeared!

I don’t understand the dynamics of light refraction, but I am mighty thankful for an occasional demonstration of the phenomenon. And guess what – I’m even a little color blind. So I can only imagine how rich it must have looked to others.  But even with a red-green deficiency, I was moved.

I cherish life and all that it brings me – the people I love, an evening with Janet on our back deck, my dear Willow Brook, the aroma of a morning coffee, a horizon-to-horizon rainbow.  I never take anything for granted these days, and I’m glad I’m still here.  And I’m glad you are too.

With love to all,


Gift of Love Honorees

The Terrace Room was full Friday, April 26, when volunteers from all three campuses came together for the annual Volunteer Reception. More than 150 volunteers attended the reception in their honor at The Village. The Gift of Love award is presented each year to one volunteer from each campus, and our congratulations go out to them.

After a truly wonderful hors d'oeurvres reception enjoyed by all, Thomas Johnson was announced as the honoree for Willow Brook Christian Home for his exemplary service and love of the residents. Tom serves The Home with a heart full of caring and spends hours each month calling bingo, helping on trips, talking with the guys, leading games, and many other activities.

Carol Conklin was also honored as an outstanding volunteer at Delaware Run. Carol, who is the daughter of a Willow Brook at Delaware Run resident, is in her third year of volunteering every week, conducting a craft class in the assisted living and memory care centers, teaching residents to make whimsical clay animals and other creatures.  She also helps on trips, and once hosted a luncheon around the pool at her home. 

On the Village campus Jan and Bid Andrews are our honorees for 2013. Jan has directed the Willow Brook Singers each week for the past seven years. She has touched the lives of everyone with song and brought a smile to all in the Village. Bid has shared many evenings with the residents of the Centrum and Cherith bringing us Gaither Family music and a prayer or two.

We are all indebted to these four fine individuals and grateful indeed for their gifts of love.

WBCC on Daytime Columbus Program

Larry Harris, Willow Brook CEO and Delaware Run residents, Arlene Shoemaker and Bill Savely were on Daytime Columbus with Gail Hogan letting Central Ohio viewers know what makes Willow Brook such a great place to live.


You can also view the "Full Life Fair" promotion that aired on cable TV.