Senior Living: Weathering the Storm and Finding a Home
Although it has been two years since Hurricane Katrina devastated the city of New Orleans, current residents of Atrium Village in Owings Mills, Sam and Gertrude Levitan, can still recall the details of their evacuation.
“Even today, is it still like a bad dream,” said Gertrude.
Since she uses a wheelchair, their original plan was to stay in a hotel, but as news kept developing, the couple knew their only choice was to pack what they needed and leave.
With the help of their two sons, they were able to arrange hotel rooms and contact friends to stay with in Tennessee, Dallas and Atlanta as they relied on the news for updates. They eventually learned major roof damage was adding to the five inches of flooding that had accumulated in their home
Over a month later, the couple knew the hurricane and the evacuation process had taken its toll on them. With suggestions from the Jewish Federation and their family, they found their current home at Atrium Village, an active and independent retirement community in Owings Mills, that also offers Assisted Living and Memory Court
Although they miss their longtime friends and neighbors in New Orleans, the couple of 58 years, enjoys the convenient location of Atrium Village. Atrium Village, a Senior Lifestyle community, provides a convenient location that allows them to be near their family as well as various entertainment, shopping, and banking services.
It was not hard for Gertrude and Sam to reach out to others within the friendly community, as their careers always involved interacting with others. Sam worked as vice president of a jewelry business while Gertrude’s parents owned a dress shop where she worked for 30 years.
Sam has also been involved in B’nai B’rith (Men of the Covenant), the oldest operating Jewish service organization in the world. He has worked for the American Institute of Banking and enjoys an occasional game of poker. The couple is very active when it comes to volunteer work. While participating in children’s programs, they have made cookbooks and read on the radio for the blind.
After weathering the storm and dedicating their time to others, the Levitans can now enjoy a rewarding lifestyle at their new home, Atrium Village. While they miss certain aspects of their old home, they now have a fresh start with several opportunities, and most importantly a home near their sons and two grandchildren.