Thelma and Henry Strong
Living Legacy of Support
Thelma Strong, a long-time volunteer of the Ukiah Senior Center leaves her “home away from home” her Estate. In October 2013 Thelma Lucille Strong passed away at the age of 96. She lived a full life. She was born in Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada on June 17, 1917. In 1946 she married Henry Strong. They were married 53 years. Henry passed away in 1999.
After Henry’s passing, Thelma was alone and devastated. She was not accustomed to being alone. On the advice of her doctor, who suggested that she get involved either as a volunteer or attending social events, she found the Ukiah Senior Center.
An instant fit for her at the Ukiah Senior Center was a group entitled the “Crafty Ladies”. Thelma loved this collection of women. They each brought their own style of handiwork to the weekly meetings, crocheting was Thelma’s choice. Every Wednesday this group of women would sit around the table, swap risqué jokes and create treasures to be sold at the end of the year at a Christmas Bazaar to benefit the Center.
Thelma also found that volunteering at the Thrift Store was a fun place to spend her time. At one point in time she owned 80 pair of shoes…. “At one dollar a pair from the Thrift Store, what gal could resist have different styles in many colors!” And her classy wardrobe soon was increasing weekly from ‘finds’ from the Thrift Store, her favorite place to shop!
She loved the Ice Cream Social, not only to catch up once a month with long-time friends but to indulge her sweet tooth with her favorite dessert, chocolate chip ice cream.
And lastly, she rounded out her volunteer time by serving once a week in the dining room. Here she gathered among another set of ‘regulars’ and enjoyed the bantering back and forth. The volunteer dining room manager, George Kennedy, affectionately referred to her as “Hot Buns” since she just loved handing out the warm bread at meal time.
With Thelma's passing she left their entire estate of over $150,000 to the Ukiah Senior Center. Her Niece Chris Love from Healdsburg met with the Senior Center's Director and gave personal input on what areas she felt Thelma would have been pleased to support. It was determined that the generous donation would be earmarked towards three categories: 1:) Operational improvements such as the website, computer upgrades and building repairs. 2.) Long-term investments through the investment committee. 3.) Low-income senior services such as Lunch Bunch sponsorship, Outreach support, Transportation vouchers and food related services.