Fort Washington Estates celebrates 40th anniversary
Fort Washington Estates celebrated its 40th anniversary Oct. 3 at 4 p.m. with a ceremony inside the continuing care retirement community.
In attendance for the event were state Sen. Stewart Greenleaf, R-12, and wach Shamberg, campaign manager for state Rep. Todd Stephens, R-151, speaking on his behalf, who each presented citations celebrating the anniversary.
According to Marvin Mashner, president and CEO of ACTS RetirementLife Communities, the facility opened in 1972 under the original name Open Door Estate. As a part of the ACTS Retirement-Life Communities, it’s a place for seniors 62 and above that combines residential apartment living with long-term care services, including assisted living and skilled care residences.
The facility was founded on the basis of providing a better life for the aging population.
“It’s been a blessing both to our area and to the nation. I go to almost all of your facilities on a regular basis during the year as well as some other facilities and it’s very hard to compare or to match what is provided here in this facility,” Greenleaf said.
Shamberg joked that while the facility was celebrating its 40th anniversary, he hadn’t even celebrated his 25th birthday.
“An organization thrives because every part of that organization works together and pulls its own weight,” Shamberg said. “I look at a place like Fort Washington EVWDWHV DQG , GHfiQLWHOy VHH that here. … I think a big congratulations goes to each and every one of you.”
The ceremony began with a welcome from Elmer Heiland, executive director of Fort Washington Estates, before an opening prayer by the Rev. Dr. Alfred Muli and a brief history of the facility by Mashner. Afterward, dinner was held for the residents and guests in celebration of the event.
“We are proud to be the fiRVW $&76 FRPPuQLWy, DQG we are proud of our Fort,” said Carole wacharias, president of the residents association. “Living here is like having a large extended family and lots of preparations have been made for tonight and we’re excited, so as they used to say in my early years, in the ’60s, ‘Let’s party.’”
Shirley Howles, who has been a resident at Fort Washington Estates for a year, said it was a big decision to move to the community after work- ing 29 years teaching preschool. She said she was torn between retirement communities in Rochester and Syracuse, but the residents and staff made her feel welcome from the moment she stepped through the doorway. She said the community is a nice, wonderful place. She said her friends always point out how everything always feels new and nice.
Resident Harry Broadbent said while he’s only been at Fort Washington Estates for 14 months he’s glad he made the move.
Broadbent began to get choked up as he said “this is the closest thing to heaven on Earth. The love shown by residents and staff, it makes me emotional.”
Celebrating Fort Washington Estates’ 40th anniversary are, front from left, residents Annlouise Devenney, Carol Zacharias, president of the residents association, Harry Broadbent, Shirley Howles and George Saurman; rear from left, Jeff Kaighn, ACTS regional vice president, Elmer Heiland, executive director of Fort Washington Estates, Marvin Mashner, ACTS president and CEO, and state Sen. Stewart Greenleaf, R-12.
Zach Shamberg, center, from the office of state Rep. Todd Stephens, R-151, presents a House resolution to Fort Washington Estates on its 40th anniversary. Accepting is Carol Zacharias, president of the residents association, and Marvin Mashner, ACTS president and CEO.