Real Life Story–Right at Home and Mary Poole Hartsock
“As long as I am well and able to do for other people, that is what I want to do,” said Mary Poole Hartsock, who, at 90 years old, is still working as an in-home caregiver for Right at Home of Frederick, Howard, Carroll, and Washington Counties.
Mary has been with her current client for six years, and although they are nearly the same age, she loves helping him maintain his independence. “I take care of him—remind him to take his medicine, keep his apartment clean, take him to run errands,” she said.
Born in West Virginia, Mary has always had a strong work ethic. In addition to working in various service and hospitality industry positions, Mary also raised one son, Dale Poole.
After moving to Maryland, Mary spent years working at the Francis Scott Key Hotel in Frederick, holding positions ranging from assistant manager to banquet manager. She worked there for 28 years before the hotel closed. She also worked in childcare, running an in-home day care.
Mary was looking for something different when she came across Right at Home’s ad for caregivers. She responded, and began to make history.
“I really love my job,” Mary said. “I get to meet so many different people, and the families are just so nice to me. I also enjoy helping elderly people who have been sick.”
Mary’s skill at caregiving has not gone unnoticed. She recently received Right at Home’s National Caregiver of the Year Award. The national franchise, headquartered in Omaha, NE, encompasses more than 330 offices nationally, as well as 8 international offices. After winning the East Coast Caregiver of the Year Award, Mary was invited to Omaha, where she received the National Caregiver of the Year Award. She was selected from 15,000 caregivers nationwide for this prestigious award, which she received in front of an audience of over 800 Right at Home franchisees and guests.
“I was honored, and the people were so nice; I wasn’t sure I wanted to come back home,” Mary said of the award banquet.
However, while she enjoyed the recognition, Mary was back on the job just a few days later. “You have to keep moving and not sit around,” she concluded. “If you can keep going, why retire? Just keep working and accomplishing things and never stop.” Mary certainly isn’t stopping anytime soon.
Published: July 2014