BURRILLVILLE – When Connie Woodbine arrived at Overlook Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Burrillville in mid-June, she couldn’t walk.
The 73-year-old joined residents at the facility seeking rehabilitation amid the COVID-19 pandemic with an unclear future. Woodbine had lost her husband in May and now, she would also be unable to see other family members due to restrictions at the facility aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19.
On Thursday, Aug. 13, Woodbine, a North Kingstown resident, walked out of the facility to begin the next phase of her journey to recovery.
“She became such a big part of our Overlook family and she worked so hard to get herself back on her feet,” said Overlook Activities Director Cindy Brigido.
Staff at the facility organized a surprise celebration recognizing Woodbine’s success and were joined by family, along with members of the Pascoag Fire Department.
“With the help of our in house therapy team Connie walked out of our facility yesterday with the celebration of staff, family and our local fire department,” said Brigido.
The event was the latest in an ongoing effort at the Burrillville facility to keep spirits high even as there are limits on activities and visitations. The Pascoag nursing and rehabilitation facility was among the first in the region to organize ways for family members to show support – even from a distance – with a Friday Night Lights event started in mid-March.
“It’s been such a challenge to keep our residents happy and safe through this entire COVID ordeal,” Brigido said.
There were tears and hugs as Woodbine walked away from Overlook, a center she had called home for two difficult months.
“She was very emotional,” Brigido said.
The nursing home was family-owned and operated for more than 60 years before it was purchase in December by Overlook Eden Operations, LLC owned by Louis Gellis.