Resident Spotlight: Carolyn Hargreaves


Posted by Kia Crawford on December 21st, 2015 in Alpharetta, GA | No Comments

DSC00658Where did you grow up? Atlanta, Georgia.  I was born in Ludlow, KY in 1932, during the Depression and Dad, who was with Southern Railway, moved our family to Atlanta when I was only three (3) months old.  I consider myself a native Atlantan.

What are some of your favorite memories from your childhood? I was basically raised by my father with five brothers and one sister.  We lived in the Cascade area and attended West End Baptist Church.  My father served the church as a Deacon and I recall going with him on many home visits and just sitting and listening to what he had to say.  I remember being on the front porch with my family, making homemade peach ice cream, catching lightening bugs and playing ball in the street.

What are some of your favorite memories from your adulthood? I married at 19 years of age and later became a single mother, raising three children, two boys and one girl.  Concluding I needed a college education, when my oldest child was in college, another in high school and the third in elementary school, I went to college where I ultimately gained two  Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. I love my eight grandchildren and was blessed to be the in-home nurse for six of them for the first week of their births.  I also recall the day my son Robert and I went to the Varsity and he announced he wanted to open a business in Atlanta which has been in operation for 35 years.  My other son, George, lives in California and he is an  Environmental Engineer.  My daughter, who owned an advertising firm, announced at 45 years old, that she was pregnant and gave birth to twins.  I am extremely proud of all of my children.

Did you have a profession?  If so, what industry were you in and what did you do? My first professional job was as Director of the Foster Home Program at Huddleston Baptist Children’s Home in Illinois where we lived for 14 years.  I then moved back to Georgia and was in a Social Worker for the Georgia Department of Labor developing programs and training across the state.   Twenty years later I retired at the age of 70.

Do you remember what was happening in your life during a significant event in U.S. history such as WWII, Vietnam, Woodstock or any other historical events? Four of my brothers served our country stateside and one brother who made the service a career retired as a full Colonel.  I recall family gatherings in 1945 where the men were talking about Pearl Harbor.  I was working in Savannah, in a meeting where we watched 9/11 happen on television.  Words cannot describe the emotions at the time.

Which accomplishments in your life do you feel most proud? Most of all, my relationship with Christ Surviving and coping with the many losses in my life, to include losing two husbands and my mother.   Changing my major from Accounting to Social work where I felt I could make a difference.

Is there anything you’ve learned in life you wish to share with someone who is just graduating from college? Work at what fulfills you – not just for the money.  God has given all of us talents!  My father always taught us to be responsible, which is great advice.

Is there anything you’ve learned in life you wish to share with someone who is just starting a family? Spend as much time as possible together during meals in conversation with your family with no cell phones and no television.

What brought you to Dogwood Forest?  Why did you choose Dogwood  Forest? I recognized the spiritual quality of this environment which was of utmost importance to me.  My son and daughter-in-law, while looking at various assisted living communities, happened to meet Al Holbrook who was visiting his mother here at Dogwood Forest.  Of course he gave the community a glowing recommendation.  Carolyn Holbrook immediately took me under her wing when I moved in.

How do you enjoy Dogwood Forest as your new home? This is a community of people with interaction on a daily basis, and we get involved in each others lives. It is important for me to be able to contribute which I find easy to do here.  If there is a need, I certainly try to help.

Who are your best friends at Dogwood? Dot, the Life Enrichment Director, and my table mates.