The St. Ursula’s Senior Citizens’ Program welcomed a packed house when four women were honored at a Friday, December 21, Pre-Christmas Luncheon for their dedication to local seniors. Barbara Dalmida-Thompson, Michal Rhymer-Charles, Edith Haynes-Lake and Isidora Pharoah were given plaques for their service.
Each woman helped the Senior Citizens’ Program in their own individual way, explained program director Clarence Scipio.
“Whenever we needed anything for the seniors, Barbara Dalmida-Thompson is there,” said Scipio. “Edith Haynes-Lake has stretched out her hand to help and gone over and above. Isidora Pharoah, who works at Banco Popular in Red Hook, always makes sure the seniors have their own special line and deals with them herself.”
The crowd had Rhymer-Charles, assistant commissioner of the Department of Human Services, to thank for their comfortable seats, Scipio explained.
“When she was here at Thanksgiving, I told her, ‘you see what we sit on here?’” he said, referring to the metal folding chairs. “She got us new chairs by Christmas like she promised. She is a tireless worker.”
Senior citizens are the foundation of a community and it’s important to support them, Scipio explained.
“Senior citizens were our priests, doctors, cooks, they did our laundry — everything,” he said. “Now they are going over the hill, and people who try to assist them, I applaud you. We gotta keep the seniors happy, and we vow to keep them happy on every special occasion.”
Dr. Wesley Williams, who delivered the main address, spoke fondly of two very important senior citizens in his life — his mother and grandmother, who both lived with him and his wife during the last 10 years of their respective lives. Williams’ mother and grandmother taught his children about helping elders as a way of life, he explained.
“You are the people who supported us in so many ways,” Williams told the seniors. “I could never give back enough to seniors everywhere. You are the glue that holds our society together; without you, we fall apart.”
The senior citizens enjoyed musical selections by ‘N Harmony, who sang Silver Bells, and Charlotte Amalie High School students, who performed several holiday songs. The seniors themselves got into the spirit by singing the Senior Citizens’ Theme Song and Joy to the World, before a hearty lunch was enjoyed by all.