Unconditional Love From A Veteran

Vintage residents have a deep history. For many, that deep history includes memories of being an active part of the war. Each Vintage community honors these residents by putting their pictures on a “Veteran Wall.” Learn about Wallace, a veteran and his wife, Marilyn.

This story began in the city of Pasadena.  Wallace and Marilyn met when they were four years old.  They attended the same church and their mothers were friends.  Wallace lived in Montebello and Marilyn in Pasadena.  They grew up knowing each other and spending Sundays together.  They attended different schools but were friendly throughout their childhood and adolescent years.

In 1943, Wallace joined the marines and was sent to Iwo Jima with the 5th Marines.  He had just become engaged to a high school sweetheart right before departing for battle.  But after enlisting and being sent off, he reconsidered and broke the engagement, thinking it would be unfair to have his fiancé wait for him.  The next six weeks of war were very challenging ones for Wallace.  The battle was treacherous and difficult to fathom.  But Wallace persevered.

Wallace acknowledged it was a horrible war.  When the flag was raised at Mount Suribachi, he shared that a roar could be heard from all the Americans.  The point was so high, Americans could easily spot the American Flag.  “It sends a chill in me to think of it” Wallace would say.  “The flag stands for something.  It stood for a lot that day.”

Wallace was discharged in 1946.

When Wallace returned in 1946, he once again became engaged to his high school sweetheart.  Marilyn was invited to the wedding. But two weeks before, the wedding was once again called off, this time by the soon to be bride.  It was for the best as Wallace did not feel as bad as he thought he would. It simply was not meant to be and this opened the possibility of a romance with Marilyn.

Marilyn and Wallace continued to be friends throughout this time.  In fact, Wallace’s father would encourage Wallace to ask Marilyn out as he was fond of her.  Finally, after week s of prompting, Wallace did ask Marilyn out after church one Sunday.  Their first date was going to see  “I’ve Always Loved You”, a war movie.  Their courtship was quick and they become inseparable thereafter.  Their relationship continued to strengthen and their romance was alive and well!

They were married in 1947 at the Church of Roses in Pasadena (which is still there).  Marilyn was studying English literature and they moved into her mother’s home in Pasadena. Wallace found a job in the van and storage business and Marilyn found herself pregnant.  They have resided in Alhambra for 57 years with 3 children.

For 65 years, Wallace and Marilyn have been together.  They had a happy marriage, she shares, with many good times.  Wallace was firm but never got angry and never raised his voice.

They both moved to Massie Hall at California Mission Inn in July of 2011. Marilyn shared she knew it was the right place when she visited and discovered the building was built in 1926, the same year as she was born, and was originally a home for missionaries.  Her faith has always been strong.

“We love being here, it’s home” she says. “The staff is wonderful to us, from the food servers to the caregivers.  They are all kind, considerate, ready to do the next step and so good at anticipating our needs. I am so happy here!”

In March of this year, 2012, Wallace moved to Recollections.  Marilyn stayed in her apartment.  Fortunately, they are on the same floor so she can visit him frequently.  “Separating from Wallace was the hardest thing I have ever done.  But I’ve gone the road as far as I can go with Wallace and we are in the best environment now.” They still dine together as well as spend quality time together, watching Dancing with the Stars, a favorite activity.

Marilyn concludes, “We have three wonderfully supportive children and three wonderfully supportive grandchildren. We could wish for nothing more.  And here, we are surrounded by wonderful people.  We are lucky!”

For more information on how Vintage has honored our veterans, visit our YouTube channel.

Find a community near you.


Super Soaker Alzheimer’s Fundraiser

Vintage proudly supports the Alzheimer’s Association in the fight to end Alzheimer’s. For the second year in a row Eric Dobner, Activity Director at Narrows Glen, rode his stationary bike from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on July 13th in order to raise money for the Walk To End Alzheimer’s. Donations provided the opportunity to soak Eric down with a Super Soaker. Resident Stan Allen was first in line! Eric raised $500 dollars for the Alzheimer’s Association. Thank you Eric! Call a Vintage Senior Living community near you. Join us in our efforts to end Alzheimer’s.


Ask The Expert, Episode 4

Learn about Assisted Living – questions answered: What support is offered for seniors transitioning to assisted living? What happens when siblings disagree about moving mom or dad? What causes family issues surrounding moving to assisted living? Is guilt normal? Knowing when it’s the right thing to do – moving mom into assisted living or memory care for dementia.


Reasons to Keep Your Sodium Low with Vintage Senior Living

Vintage takes pride in our healthy diet plans. “At Vintage, we don’t want to meet the standards, we want to go above and beyond them” says Shawn Stanchfield, Director of Food Services for Vintage Senior Living. One focus of our communities is our Low Sodium Diet.

The menus at Vintage Senior Living meet or exceed the recommendations set forth in the Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) for men and women age 70+, established by the Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine, and National Academies in 2010. This includes the recommendation to limit sodium to 2300mg per day.

These are not “therapeutic” diets, but are meant to be consistent with the recommendations for a healthy elderly population. The regular diet offered by Vintage Senior Living contains ~2300mg sodium to reduce risk for transient sodium-induced hypertension.

We need sodium in our body for:

  • Marinating fluid balance
  • Nerve transmission
  • Impulse contradiction
  • Muscle contractions

If we consume too much sodium:

  • May be detrimental to bone density
  • Blood pressure/hypertension

Hypertension often has no warning signs or symptoms. The high blood pressure increases risk for heart disease, stroke, congestive heart failure and kidney disease. Come visit a Vintage Senior Living near you and see how we can accommodate your health needs and help you be your healthiest.


Resident Testimonials

Vintage Senior Living prides itself on the happiness of our residents. We are very thankful for all of the Vintage family and proud to display a few of their testimonials:


“We enjoy living at a Vintage community and love our beautiful apartment.  Living here has made life so much easier for both of us as taking care of a home was just getting to be too much.  And we can’t say enough about the people who work here—they are wonderful. Moving here is one of the best things we have done for ourselves.” — Pat & Jim F.


“When I first moved to a Vintage Senior Living community I could not bend down to put on my shoes and socks or tie my shoelaces.  Because of the exercise program I can do all of that myself again!  I found the perfect apartment at Vintage Senior Living—just a beautiful new home for myself.  I have enjoyed decorating it and making it my own.  I am very proud to call Vintage HOME.” — Betty K.


“Living at Vintage is like living in a large family, you never have to be alone.  There is always someone to talk to and laugh with.  There is always something to do, day trips, games, reading, painting and bingo.  It’s always a great day at Vintage.” – Joann G.


View more resident and family testimonials on our YouTube channel.


Resident of the Week

Rosemary Kotch, resident of the month and resident at Las Palmas in Laguna Woods, CA comes from the sunny state of Arizona. She married in 1946, and her husband decided to move to Southern California. After their move out West, Rosemary went to work as a secretary for the first J.C. Penny’s buying office when they opened their first West coast branch. Together they had four delightful children.

During the war, her husband was in the Air Force stationed in France. They decided to move the whole family to Chateauroux, France, which is 150 miles south of Paris for three years. Her favorite part of living abroad was traveling throughout Europe with their four young children. Rosemary loved boat rides on the French Riviera as well as her trips to Paris, her favorite European city.

When she returned to California, Rosemary and a business partner started a fabric store called “Fabric Lane” in Garden Grove. When they started the business, between the partners they had 10 children and neither had much business experience. They enjoyed what they did and were quite successful in their store, holding classes, selling fabric, and holding fashion shows. Rosemary and her business partner had a wonderful relationship for 16 years before they decided to sell their business.

When her husband also decided to retire, the two took some time to travel all over the world. They traveled to Europe, Asia, the Pacific Islands and throughout the United States. They frequently traveled to Hawaii since her husband got his wings there! Hawaii functioned as a second home. After traveling extensively they lived in Arizona for 30 years until Rosemary moved to California to live at Las Palmas. She loves volunteering at the hospital. Rosemary enjoys oil painting and ceramics as well as staying fit. She played tennis 3 days a week until she was 80 and she loves swimming, water exercise, and walking. Visit our Activities Page for more information about Vintage Senior Living’s Activity Program. Rosemary really enjoys Chef Louie’s cooking and delights in not having the responsibility of having to cook anymore! We are glad to have Rosemary in our Vintage family.


Spirit of ’45 – Couples in Love

During our partnership with Spirit of ’45 Keep The Spirit Alive! we have acquired many sensational love stories. In honor of Memorial Day, and our veterans we would like to share this love story:

Betty and James during their engagement on Valentine's Day, 1944.



First Lieutenant James Tipton and his wife Betty met when they were working as college students as Lassen National Park. In the Fall of 1941 James Tipton entered Columbia Law School in NYC. Shortly after came Pearl Harbor and Tipton was the first person drafted out of Columbia. Tipton would write home and occasionally visit Betty when he received leave.
On Valentine’s Day, 1944, Tipton visited Betty and proposed to Betty. That same June, Tipton received a few day of leave before he was due to be shipped out to Europe. He visited Betty in Los Angeles and they decided to marry. Tipton, in full uniform, married Betty on June 22, 1944. Shortly after and with one semester of law school left, Tipton was shipped off to the trials of the Dachau Concentration camp where he served as the Administrative officer of the trials at the age of 25.


After the Dachau Trials, he was finally allowed to return home to Betty. In the span of their 2-year marriage they had only lived as man and wife for 3 days! Tipton returned to California and finished law school at the University of California, Berkeley. Betty and James were married for a wonderful 62 years.


Featured Resident of the Week

Our resident of the month is Gloria Klein. Gloria was born in sunny Los Angeles in 1925 as an only child to two loving parents. As a young adult, Gloria started working at MGM Studios as Head Secretary for the Music Department. She enjoyed being a young woman in Hollywood, going to all the glamorous parties and dancing the night away. But that soon changed after Gloria took a trip to New York to visit one of her girlfriends. She was set up on a blind date with a very handsome man by the name of Dick. At first glance Gloria and Dick fell in love, and ten days later the two were married. Gloria cherishes the fact that she lived a very good life. She has traveled all over the world with her husband and lived in many different places such as New York and Florida, before finally settling into the East Bay. Gloria has raised two children, many grandchildren, and just recently welcomed her very first great-grandchild.

Today Gloria lives a very active life. Her days consist of running to and from activities, going on trips and being an active member of the Berkshire’s Ambassador Club. You will always find her encouraging other residents to sign up for trips or activities. She is always willing to lend a helping hand when it comes to decorating for a special event, or even giving guidance to new residents of the Berkshire. Gloria is always smiling and has a very contagious laugh. She is what many like to call a social butterfly at its finest. We are very proud to call Gloria a resident of The Berkshire in Berkeley, CA.


Ask The Expert, Episode 3

Is it better for you to try and care for a loved one alone? David Hahklotubbe, Gerontologist and Executive Director of Vintage Sonoma explains why it is a bad idea. Hahklotubbe also discusses caregiver burnout and why we shouldn’t delay a decision to move our loved ones.


Featured Resident of The Week

Bill Wylie has found his second childhood since moving into Vintage Brush Creek in Santa Rosa, CA. When moving into the community Bill brought along with him Brush Creek’s first community Ping-Pong table and the inspiration to buy a small fleet of adult tricycle bikes that Bill rides during daily walks. Along with the bundle of toys, Bill also has started traditions such as Friday night Ping-Pong and pizza. He has even taught residents how to make paper airplanes and how to ride a tricycle. Outside of the community, Bill has shown residents hidden spots in Santa Rosa like Flat Rock and Brush Creek trail.

Bill believes he found Brush Creek for a reason. With this belief come daily actions of goodwill toward his fellow residents. He is known to loan a friend a coat when they are cold, offer a backrub when someone is looking sad, or walk a friend to an apartment if they get turned around. Bill has made a positive impact in the lives of other residents and in the lives of the staff. He takes the time to know people as individuals and genuinely wants to help us all lead happy lives. Lately, Bill has been sharing inspirational books and is always on the lookout for special events that he thinks residents should attend in their spare time. Bill is an inspiration and we thank him for all that he contributes to Vintage!