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Jean Neely, A Woman of Distinction
Board member emerita and a driving force behind the founding of SAIL, retired Navy Captain Jean Neely received the 2013 Woman of Distinction Award for Jefferson County from the Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital. Since her retirement and subsequent move to Shepherdstown, Jean has spent nearly 30 years focusing on community service. She helped found the Potomac Valley Audubon Society which now has more than 800 members. Additionally she has held key roles with the Jefferson County League of Women Voters and the West Virginia Air Quality Board. Working with the Eastern Panhandle People’s Empowerment Coalition, she helped draft the 2002 Jefferson County Farmland Protection Act. Jean has volunteered with many other groups including Friends of the National Conservation Training Center, Friends of the Shepherdstown Library, and the Land Trust of the Eastern Panhandle.
At the awards luncheon, Jean was recognized in a moving video tribute filmed by friends and colleagues including SAIL President Vicky Thomas as well as by West Virginia Secretary of State Natalie Tennant.
Who knew? Well, we did know but we’re so happy to see her publicly recognized for all her efforts. Hat’s off to our “SAILer” of the year.
SAIL Lunch Bunch
...has been launched! A group of members, under the leadership of John Burns, has decided to enjoy a regular outing at local eateries on the first Tuesday of each month.
The first of these lunch gatherings was held on Sep 10 at Shaharazade's, with 9 SAIL members in attendance.
Call John for a reservation at 876-9146 or more details.
SAIL Member Dabney Chapman Speaks at SPC’s Storied Evenings
Each year, Shepherdstown Presbyterian Church invites several well-known members of the town community to speak about their life experiences in an evening of stories, musical talent and delicious home-baked desserts. On Wednesday, July 10 the featured speaker was SAIL’s own Dabney Chapman. Music was provided by Vicky and Jerry Thomas’ son, the amazing saxophonist John Thomas, accompanied on jazz piano by highly acclaimed Rodrigo Pincheira. It was magical by all accounts!
Dabney weaved a lively tale of his remarkable experiences during many years in the Foreign Service in Europe and Afghanistan, and had the full-to-the-rafters audience laughing all the way. Despite his well-known modesty Dabney’s talents as a raconteur are equaled by few, and his knowledge of just about everything is vast. When asked what he regarded as his greatest professional accomplishment he replied, with a twinkle, “Winning the Cold War!”
John Thomas and Rodrigo Pincheira served up one of those performances that so often has us Shepherdstowners scratching our heads and wondering how it is that we in this small community can be so blessed. Even though they each have already earned much recognition it is likely that in years to come we who were there on Wednesday will recall this special performance and say, “Wow, we knew them when!”
Sail members are encouraged to take advantage of the upcoming two Wednesday evenings at SPC, 7:30 PM. The evenings are free, and no advance reservations are required. On July 17 we look forward to hearing Erwin Asam tell about his remarkable life’s journey, and on July 24 the presenter will be Monica Lockett, whose service to the community at Canterbury Center is well known. Stellar music will also be a feature of each evening.
We keep getting favorable comments from members about their experiences as SAIL members. Here is a sample:
What a great opportunity to write a well-deserved testimonial for SAIL. SAIL membership contributes greatly to my feeling of being well-supported as, at age 85, I continue to enjoy living in my Shepherdstown home among good friends and neighbors. (more ...)
I moved to Shepherdstown from Allentown, PA, at the end of 2006, after my husband died, to live next door to my younger daughter and her family. I had heard about the Beacon Hill project many years ago so was immediately eager to find out more about SAIL when it was first announced.
Sherman and I are some of the first people to join SAIL. We are almost 86 and 89 years old, and hope to remain in our home on 10 acres here in Shepherdstown. SAIL is sort of a security blanket for us. (more ...
Hi! My name is Melinda Landolt. I became interested in the Village concept several years ago when I heard that an Aging in Place group might be forming in Shepherdstown. When I was invited to join this group, I was happy to add my voice to the effort. (more ...
SAIL's creation is rooted in the "village movement," a neighbor helping neighbor system developed around the country by seniors who are assisted by other members of their community. SAIL provides members with help going to and from the grocery store and appointments, with simple home repairs, with access to reliable service providers, with organized outings to cultural events, and fun activities such as walking groups, board game and card groups, and more.
SAIL membership is open to anyone interested in its services who lives in the 876 and 870 telephone exchanges.
For the coming year, SAIL's Board has adopted the following schedule of membership dues. The rate for a single person is now just $250 a year and for a household $500 a year. This is a reduction from the previous year's fees.
Let’s make our remaining years in Shepherdstown the best ones yet by,
“Keeping the wind in our sails!”
All About SAIL Volunteers
During the first full year of operation, the SAIL volunteers have made a real impact on the lives of SAIL members. Just in the last half of 2012, member and non-member volunteers have given SAIL over 650 hours of their time. Non-Board members alone racked up 327 hours providing transportation, running errands, making home visits, preparing meals, and doing office work.
Linda O’Brien coordinates this ever-growing corps of volunteers, as well as provides training for home visits, transportation issues, and related concerns. Volunteers going into members’ homes wear an official SAIL Volunteer ID name tag.
Some volunteers focus on office work: sending out mailings, monitoring the phone during hours the office is not open, organizing and maintaining files, and providing computer support.
The Newsletter Team is currently designing a publication to be distributed to members, friends and the public, with input from members and community partners.
The Website Team updates content and plans improvements for www.shepherdstownSAIL.org.
Home visit volunteers provide respite for caregivers and company for the home-bound.
Membership volunteers plan the small group “coffee and conversation” sessions for potential new members; call members to remind them of an event or offer a ride; and make sure there is coffee and dessert for the monthly Brown Bag Lunches.
Volunteer members of the Activity Committee have added some new activities, from Trivia Tuesday evening get-togethers at the Clarion Hotel and trips to the movies, to the well-attended Mah Jongg, Board Games, and Walking Groups.
And let’s not forget those who always pitch in to set up and clean up after events, bring fabulous foods to the potlucks, and do countless acts of kindness, often as unsung heroes, to make it possible for us to continue to build and sustain our Village.
That’s what makes SAIL so special. We couldn’t do it without our volunteers. And to those of our members who have moved on to communities offering a higher level of care, we hope we helped you remain in your homes longer and that we were and will continue to be able to assist in the transitions life requires.