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News of The Respite Inn 2016 Edition

906 Lee Lane - Concord, California 94518 925.686.5758 -

Board of Directors Dick Dennin

Judy Levin

Cyndie Lee

Sister Mary Grace Puchac

Barbara Strehlitz

Deborah Wilhelmus

Staff of The Respite Inn Susan Carty

Tara Jose

Ellee Coleman

Pamela Leffew

Marie Collins

Francine Limperis

Cheryl Gallup

Patrice Porter

Doreen Greenhill-Hurd

Pamela Randle

Mariah Hofstadter

Maria Shaw

Michel’Le Jacobs

Sheila Walker

Nanette Jernigan

Maureen Wright

Elizabeth Jolivet

2016 Message From the President: The Respite Inn has always held a special place in my heart. The Respite Inn provided a fun and safe place for our daughter, Amy, to spend many weekends filled with fun, laughter and love. Amy loved respite (as she called it) and always looked forward to her visits. Time at the Inn allowed Amy to explore life without mom and dad and to enjoy her friends, including the extra special staff. Every Friday drop off, Amy asked the same three questions: who is working overnight; who are the guests and where are we going. Every Sunday pick up the questions: when am I coming back and how long am I staying. In January, our world was turned upside down by Amy’s diagnosis of stage 4 lung cancer. Even worse was the realization that we were going to lose her; it was terminal. While Amy was not fully aware of her illness, she knew something was wrong. Amy was worried that she could no longer go to respite because she was sick. However, her worries were for naught. The Respite Inn staff welcomed Amy with the same love and support they had always provided. The support provided to Paul and me was unbelievable. Quite simply, we could not have survived the most devastating time of our lives without the staff of The Respite Inn. Amy continued to visit respite until she was no longer physically able; however, the staff visited our home, brought food, sent cards and made sure that Amy knew she was loved. Amy passed away on September 9, 2016, eight months after diagnosis. I realized that the staff of The Respite Inn are so special to me because they are like part of our family. Mere words cannot express our heartfelt gratitude for The Respite Inn and the wonderful staff. Thank you for everything you are and everything you do. Our relationship with The Respite Inn has not ended, even though Amy is no longer a guest. The Respite Inn is a very joyful place filled with happiness and love. We are all very blessed to have The Respite Inn, no one more than Amy, Paul and me. I wish you a happy and healthy 2017. Love,

Deborah Wilhelmus President of the Board The Respite Inn

Dear Families and Friends of The Respite Inn: My heart is filled with deep gratitude to all who help each and every day to carry out the mission of The Respite Inn. This includes our staff, our donors, our volunteers, our board of directors, our families, regional centers, and our community at large. I am continually inspired by the richness each group brings to The Respite Inn. There were many achievements in 2016: • If you look into our backyard, you’ll notice a circular structure with a dome on top. This is a yurt and it is finished. Hooray!!! This structure is powered by solar energy and will be used as a relaxation room and also a recreational activity room for our guests. • In our 27-year history, we broke our record of serving the most families; 95 guests were served with 1512 overnight sessions served. • Maureen, Ellee, and a parent attended the International Respite Conference in Scotland, and gave a presentation about The Respite Inn. We gained insight about innovations in respite services throughout the world. We will be adding some of these to our program. • Guests are racing around the backyard with three new three wheelers. Two are selfpropelled by leg movement and one is self-propelled by arm movement. Guests who’ve never been on a bike are enjoying learning a new skill. • A Kenetico soft water system and water purifier system were installed. The soft water system helps guests who typically don’t like the sensation of water pressure on their skin when taking showers. In addition, the water purifier improves the quality of the drinking water for our guests. • The Respite Inn has finally come into the 21st century on the technology side of things. Thanks to Jay Masunaga and his many hours of volunteer work in technical support and consultation, we are able to distribute newsletters through email. He has many helpful ideas to help us with communication through different technology avenues. These are only a few of many events that have happened throughout the year. In the near future, we are looking into getting iPad tablets for our guests for communication and also for games. We are in the first stages of installing outside exercise equipment. This equipment is specially geared for individuals with developmental disabilities and also for those who are wheelchair users. It is such a pleasure to work at The Respite Inn, where everyone comes together to make all these dreams come true. With Gratitude,

Maureen Wright Executive Director

Meeting each other for the first time at The Respite Inn. Anna Lee and Raquel enjoy the various activities offered here. Away from the Inn, Anna Lee enjoys cooking while Raquel is happy to watch the latest movie.

Eddie is here showing off his captivating smile in our 49er’s room. Sports is his passion especially basketball, football and baseball.

Josh enjoys listening to his favorite musician Blake Shelton. There is never a dull moment when Josh is in the house.

Joey is an absolute Raiders fan. He is still going to cheer on games even while quarterback Derek Carr recovers from his broken fibula.

Pamela Randle is one of our newest staff members at The Respite Inn, having joined us in April of 2016. Get to know Pamela better.

Where did you grow up? I grew up in the tiny town of West Helena, Arkansas. What brought you to California? I moved to Pitssburg in 1991 to try something different. Do you have any siblings? I have an older sister that lives in Dallas and an older brother that lives in Virginia. Even though we live so far apart, I’m lucky to be able to see them regularly. You mentioned that you love to travel. Where is your favorite place to go? Disney World. I love the Magic Kingdom. My family generally goes every two years. I absolutely love It’s a Small World. Ironically, I’ve never been to Disney Land.

Pamela’s favorite... Food Holiday

Mexican -- chimichanga with all the fixings Thanksgiving


The Preacher’s Wife


“Yes Lord” by Brian Courtney Wilson

We know you love to cook for us at The Respite Inn. What is your favorite thing that you love someone else to cook for you? Seafood is my favorite, especially crab legs, oysters, lobster and shrimp. It’s gotta be done in a true Southern boil. If you could go anywhere, where would it be? Paris. I would love to see the Eiffel Tower and enjoy amazing French food. Do you have a New Year’s resolution for 2017? Yes; to continue focus on being healthy and being whole spiritually, physically and mentally. What is your favorite thing about being at The Respite Inn? Interacting with guests is just an amazing experience. I love their bright smiles. What makes The Respite Inn special? Compared to a day program, there’s a lot available to guests. There’s better teamwork which results in a better experience for the guest.

2016 Donors Al Accurso

Jennifer Huie

Layne Alfrey

Knights of Columbus Councils:

Virginia Barbee

3265, 6039, 10414, 13179, 13195

Gary and Carol Bonfiglio

Gay Knox

James and Maryilyn Brennan

Judy Levin

Mary Buscaglia

Susan Levy

Ronald Buscaglia

Thomas J Long Foundation


Jay Masunaga

Michael and Terri Chauss

Susan Matye


Robert and Connie Musante

Douglas and Erin Clough

Mary Nunnally

Ellee Coleman

Steve Nunnally

Contra Costa ARC

Saint Timothy’s Episcopal Outreach Ministry

CPHHCD Concord/Pleasant Hill

Rick and Connie Schempp

Sharon Davis

Rocio Smith

Richard and Diana Dennin

Soroptimist Int. Diablo Vista

East Bay Services

Jane Swim

to the Developmentally Disabled

Barbara Strehlitz

Barry Epstein

Sara Tancredy

Betty Ann Erpen

Tom Toschi

Cris and Luis Espejo

Lois VanBoekhout

Lt. Col. Henry and Lesly Fairtlough

Michael and Charisse Wan

JoAnn Fryer

White Pony Express

Vera and David Franklin

Debbie and Paul Wilhelmus

David Greenhill

Sarah and Herb Wilson

Jim Hale

Maureen and Tim Wright

Mariah Hoffstedter

In Loving Memory Chris Bennett Mark Ehni

Beatrice Villasenor Scott Brown Darlene and Aaron Browning Nicole Burrows Thomas Dudeck Mr. and Mrs. Wade Judge Martin Kane

Amy Wilhelmus D. Elisabeth Amyett Donna, Tom, Chelsea and James Ancona Robert and Bambi Barker Sue Bengert Jessica Bowman Arnold and Adele Brooks Jeanne Chun-Turano Christina Currington Dan, Barb and Danielle Denis Diana Ficklin Mary Hatch and Family John and Christa Herrmann Eva Hisquierdo Delia, Joe, Jarod and Breann Hoffman

Michele and Dave Hurrelbrink Karen Johnson Sandy and Lois Kaya Marcia Keefe Christine Kiernan Cyndia Lee William and Susan Manning Elizabeth Marroquin Phyllis Miller Bill and Ann Mobley Christine Richardson Janine and Vernon Sanders Elizabeth Sandoval Marty, Liz and Charlotte Sandoval William and Lynn Sanford Ann Solomon Barbara Strehlitz Anna and Emma Wilhelmus Jason and Alisa Wilhelmus Kenneth and Beth Wilhelmus Rachel Zeiph

Want to help us bring smiles to the people we serve?

Want to help The Respite Inn continue to fulfill it’s mission? Want to help us reduce stress in caregivers?

Become an Inn-vestor! We are happy to announce that we are now able to accept online automatic monthly donations. To learn more about this, visit our website at and click on Donate. If you wish to mail a donation, please fill out the following: ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… YES! I will become an Inn-vestor. Enclosed is my check in the amount of: ___ $25 ___ $100 ___ $500 ___ $50 ___ $250 ___ Other _________ Please make checks payable to The Respite Inn. Contributions are tax deductible to the extent of federal and state laws. We are a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization. Our federal tax ID is 68-0222611. Name:





_________________________________________ Zip: __________________



Please mail to:

The Respite Inn, 906 Lee Lane, Concord, CA 94518

News of The Respite Inn 2016  
News of The Respite Inn 2016