A native of France, Jacques Wahide came to the U.S. from France in 1963 looking for more opportunities beyond what was available in Europe at that time. He found work, learned the language and eventually began to attend college at night, where he earned a BS degree in electrical engineering.
Through happenstance, he discovered Applewood, with no intention of ever residing in a continuing care retirement community (CCRC).
Jacques developed a debilitating virus after his wife’s passing and recovered in Applewood’s healthcare center for about 12 weeks. “During my stay, I received truly compassionate, warm and friendly care; I started to realize the retirement community here could be a wonderful place for me to live permanently.”
Jacques was unaware that some retirement communities offer healthcare support services, should the independent living resident ever need it.
Once fully recovered, Jacques worked with marketing director Eric Eichhorst to help locate the perfect apartment to suit his needs.
After a warm welcome from his new neighbors, they soon asked when he could start teaching them to speak or improve their French language skills.
“My wife taught French to youngsters for years and I was excited to carry on some of her conversational techniques here at Applewood,” says Jacques.
The first class was held in March and a roomful of residents turned out. “I was pleasantly surprised by the number of people who attended, so we agreed to meet weekly on Thursday evenings.” Jacques says all residents are welcome—beginners, ‘refreshers’ or experienced French speakers.”
“While I’ve only recently moved into independent living, I think it offers just what I need—the comforts of home, nice people with whom to socialize, many daily activities—and plenty of Francophiles.”