Pulling Together After Hurricane Sandy
August 2, 2018

Dear Readers,

I’d like to share a letter I recently received from a family member.

Maryellen McKeon

Dear Mrs. McKeon,

This letter is a bit overdue but hopefully will reach the right desk after the fact.

My family was one that was hit hard by Hurricane Sandy. My mother, Patricia Cumisky was living with me at the time and the storm devastated the part of the house that mom lived in. Under duress and with some sense of urgency we were forced to find a place for mom to live.

I was familiar with The Bristal as it is local to my home and also because my son, while in high school, performed there many times as part of a vocal ensemble. I was always impressed by the building and the grounds and with the way the residents were treated by the staff.

The Bristal was my first phone call, and a fortuitous one. Many people found themselves in the same situation as myself, with more people displaced than facilities available. I spoke with Karen Caroppoli and Judy Svendsen several times those first few days and they could not have been more concerned, considerate and helpful. I also must acknowledge Rhea Welch in resident services and Angela (Nursing staff) as well as JoAnne in the Wellness office. I had tons of questions and concerns – this wasn’t a “planned” move and I was more than a bit anxious at first. They all gave me the time and the attention I needed to know mom was happy and safe.

In the first few days it became clear that many of the staff members at The Bristal were seriously impacted by Sandy. To my knowledge, the worst being Judy Svendsen. She was able to understand, commiserate and offer helpful advice all with good humor and compassion despite trying to put her own home back together.

Since mom’s move in she has had a couple of “bumps” but I must say the care at The Bristal truly has been exemplary. Everyone from housekeeping, dining room, wellness, recreation, line staff, resident service, PT – OT, front desk…maintenance…all so helpful and concerned.

…I know I am missing a few names and I am sure there are many behind the scenes players whom I’ve never even met…but Mitzi, Tony, Sheila, Theresa, Shelita, Ruth, Colin, Kathy, Mary, Laurene, Soline, Ruth…have been wonderful.

I own a small business and know that in a service oriented industry the people you hire make or break your product. Whatever your hiring or training practices are, you have a fantastic staff.

Our sincere thanks – from the family of Patricia Cumisky, The Bristal at Massapequa.

Grail McGinley