On June 11, 2010 Springhill celebrated the grand opening of the Woodlands, a specialized memory support neighborhood made possible through philanthropy.
John Schulze was there for personal reasons—his mother, Louise, lives in an apartment at Springhill and his father, Fred, was one of the first residents to move into the Woodlands when the first rooms opened in December.
He was also there for something more.
“My dad taught me that if you get involved, do it 100 percent—because it’s the right thing to do.”
John explains that Fred led by example, sharing generously whether through his 32-year engineering career at GE or through volunteer support.
John has followed that example, serving on the Springhill Board of Governors, the Foundation Board of Directors and the Woodlands campaign committee. The vice president of Erie Bank, he helped his mother make a significant family gift to the campaign.
“The community had to raise the funds through philanthropy so as not to create a burden on the residents through higher rates or debt,” he says. “This neighborhood was something Springhill truly needed—as evidenced by the fact that it’s already full.”
His mother agrees. Louise is pleased to have a safe, beautiful place where Fred can relax, and where the staff are specially trained to accommodate his needs. “They don’t let him just sit in his room, and they know how to help me with him,” she explains.
The Schulzes met at a USO dance in Aberdeen, Md. Louise married her handsome soldier and moved to Erie in 1957.
When the couple moved to Springhill in 2004 because of worries about Fred’s memory and Louise’s mobility, they excitedly got involved in all the community offered.
And last December, when Fred could still talk and Louise was unsure how he would handle the move to the Woodlands, he told her, “I understand—this is my home, and the apartment is your home.”
The Schulze family is grateful for what Springhill has brought to their lives. And they are looking forward to the birth of John’s first child.
John still plans to continue his work with the Foundation. “New projects will arise as Springhill strives to best serve residents. And, as with all Asbury communities, the Foundation can provide the support for Springhill to raise the funds it needs.”