Monthly Archives: September 2012

How the War was Won

Festus Paul

Frequent contributor and Primrose resident Festus Paul

Decatur, IL, Senior Living

[Welcome, gentle reader. This is the 19th installment in a series of blogs written by actual Primrose residents. Please return often to read more! — Ed]

When World War II started, I was saddened but felt it would not affect me too much. After all, I was already in college and only 18 years old. One year later, the war was broadening and they were drafting 18 year olds. Finally, the inevitable closed in on me and I was summoned in February to Fort Harrison, Indianapolis, IN. Never mind the books, just go!

It was a bitter cold arrival at Fort Harrison for screening, physical exams and waiting. In ten days, I was loaded on a train for Texas and assigned to the 8th Infantry Division. Camp Swift was a welcome sight for one who had slept three nights on a storage rack on a very slow train.

Fortunately, my interviews met some of the expectations and I was assigned to the Headquarters Co. as a Chaplains Assistant. I had never fired a gun, but I attempted to do it correctly-laying on my stomach and shooting at the target. Before I pulled the trigger, I closed my eyes and jumped as though the shot had been fired at me. Little did I know that the Commanding General of the entire division was standing behind me and reacted in a non-military way with a sudden jump like I had done. My jump reaction caused him to jump and he was embarrassed before all his troops.

Four months later, we were on our way to Camp Forest Tennessee and a 10 day furlough to bid farewell to family and friends. From Camp Forest, we rode the rails to the east coast and met our ship. These troops movements were at night and we loaded onto the ship in complete darkness. It was the pits as about 600 soldiers stumbled in the dark for a bunk bed. It was a 13 day trip to Europe and arrival at our Northern Ireland camp for 6 more months of waiting for the invasion.

Our vehicles were water proofed (another type of work for which I had no apitutde). Six days later, I was relieved when my jeep kept sputtering and moving to land. What a noisy, crowded beach with mortar shells, planes and short tempers, but we made it to France and the war became more real for me.

Since you know the war history better than I do (we never saw any newspapers, nor heard any radios), I’ll skip to the ultimate victory. At the Battle of the Bulge, there were extreme casualties. We witnessed six large truck loads of replacement troops. One solder ran across the road to where I was. Thinking he wanted a quick visit with the Chaplain, I greeted him. Lo and behold, it was my brother, older than I and in the Army longer. He was assigned to my unit and we survived the rest of the war together by our concern for each other and assistance for each other.

by Festus Paul
Decatur Primrose

To find out more about the interesting characters living at Primrose, please contact your nearest Primrose Retirement Community today to see more of our fun and social living. We’ll happily answer all your questions and show you around our beautiful communities. Come see why we say, THIS IS LIVING!


First Annual Luau at Pueblo Primrose

Pueblo Primrose Annual Luau

Pueblo Primrose 1st Annual Luau

Nurse Rachel

Rachel the Hoola Hoopin’ Nurse

Heidi’s Girls with Bob D.

Heidi’s Girls with Bob D. (unofficial Primrose Photographer and Resident!)

Luau King and Queen

Luau King and Queen, Bob D. and Ann L.

Resident Marylyn C. with Grandson

Resident Marylyn C. with Grandson

Pueblo, CO, Senior Living

The waves were just right, the sun was shining, and everyone in the Primrose Family got into the Luau spirit by wearing a flower, a lei, a hula skirt, and a Mumu or Hawaiian shirt at last week’s first Annual Luau.

Volunteers, Staff, and Residents pitched in to set up, decorate, transform the courtyard into a tropical oasis, paint a lively photo background booth, take photos, do the limbo, hula hoop and hula dance!

Chefs Glinda and Jerry served up a delicious luau feast of Roasted Pork, Pineapple Glazed Chicken, Hawaiian Rice, Fruit Salad, and Tropical Cake. Special drinks included Mai Tai’s and Kahlua with coffee.

Entertainment was provided by our very own “Heidi’s Hula Girls” and Hella Hollman’s Granddaughter Rachel did some amazing hula hoop tricks. Executive Director Gina Drown looked like a pro when Life Enrichment Coordinator Barbara Della Rossa put her on the spot to hula hoop in front of 80 residents and guests in the courtyard. Aloha!

To find out more about the exotic lifestyle at Primrose, please contact your nearest Primrose Retirement Community today to see more of our fun and social living. We’ll happily answer all your questions and show you around our beautiful communities. Come see why we say, THIS IS LIVING!


Dr. Joe Alexander will join Primrose as Executive Director

Dr. Joe Alexander

Dr. Joe Alexander named Executive Director of Stillwater Primrose Retirement Community

Stillwater, OK, Senior Living

STILLWATER, OK – Primrose Retirement Communities is pleased to announce that Dr. Joe Alexander will be joining the company as the Executive Director of the Primrose community currently under development in Stillwater on Range Road. Dr. Alexander will be responsible for the day-to-day management and operations of the community, which includes 40 assisted living apartment homes, 36 independent living apartment homes and 4 independent townhome villas. He will oversee the nursing, maintenance, marketing and administrative staff and ensure that the retirement community meets residents’ needs.

Dr. Alexander is currently President of the OSU Center for Innovation and Economic Development. He is licensed as a Long Term Care Administrator by the Oklahoma State Board of Examiners and serves on numerous boards and committees including the Stillwater Chamber of Commerce. “Joe will be a great asset to our Stillwater Primrose and we are very excited to have him join our team,” said BJ Schaefbauer, President. “Being an active community leader and supporter, he is very familiar with Stillwater and will do a tremendous job of promoting the quality care and service that we provide at Primrose.”

Primrose Retirement Communities
Melissa O’Hara, Director of Marketing and Sales

About Primrose Retirement Communities
With 28 locations in 14 states, Primrose Retirement Communities is a provider of independent and assisted living communities. Founded in 1989, Primrose Retirement Communities mission is to create a healthy, happy living environment for seniors. For more information about Primrose Retirement Communities, visit