Hill fundraiser helps senior citizens and handicapped

Posted 6/29/18

Enjoying the fundraiser at Iron Hill Brewery are Jimmy Lynn (from left), Charlie Cunningham, Pat Cunningham and Barbara Lynn. by Barbara Holman Lynn I am 68, and my husband is 70. We live in …

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

Log in

Hill fundraiser helps senior citizens and handicapped


Enjoying the fundraiser at Iron Hill Brewery are Jimmy Lynn (from left), Charlie Cunningham, Pat Cunningham and Barbara Lynn.

by Barbara Holman Lynn

I am 68, and my husband is 70. We live in Roxborough, and I have been a member of the local “Y” for over 10 years. Many doctors believe I have Multiple Sclerosis or some type of progressive neuropathy. In October 2015, I had a serious fall, broke my femur and had two major surgeries. I spent 67 days in Jefferson Hospital and five months in rehabilitation hospitals in Louisiana while my home was being renovated to accommodate a wheelchair. Prior to the fall, I used a walker and could drive.

On May 10, The Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant in Chestnut Hill donated 20% of the food bill to the Roxborough Y for those diners presenting a coupon. I consider the “Y” my family. Now that I'm retired, I travel on CCT, the SEPTA Paratransit bus, to and from the Roxborough Y at least four days a week. I could stay home alone in the wheelchair while my husband works in Center City.

However, I prefer to visit with my family at the “Y”. Exercise and socialize. Dine at Iron Hill and raise money, perhaps for a new boiler. Seniors like me enjoy regulated pool water temperatures that are favorable for arthritis sufferers.

So, for two weeks I posted signs and talked amongst my “Y” family members. Everyone was told to pick up an Iron Hill coupon at the front desk. Tables were reserved for lunch at noon under Roxborough Y. A large group of “Y” members sat together at long tables. Another table was reserved at 6:30 p.m. for dinner with my husband Jimmy and friends from Chestnut Hill.

I wheeled into the Iron Hill, a very accessible restaurant; I met the day manager, Jason, and Ned (regional, from Atlanta) at lunch time. How professional they were! Our group felt most welcomed by the Iron Hill staff and could not stop complimenting the very good quality of the food.

Some folks could not linger, and the service was prompt to accommodate them. Our main server, Emily, had no problem handling separate checks, each with a 20%-off coupon. Service was pleasant and efficient. We will be back. There were toasts from “Y” members Vittorio, "Salute;" Mary, "Slainte;” Niessa, "Sante," and Barbara, "Na Zdorovie.” Reverend Samuel Jordan gave a silent prayer.

My Roxborough Y family ranges in age from 20s to 90s. Some are working. Some are retired. Many are bilingual and from various ethnic backgrounds and religions. What we have in common is that we love to exercise and go out to lunch together at good restaurants near the “Y.”

Matt Student, executive director at the Roxborough Y, enjoyed lunch on May 10 with Mike Leonard, wellness director, and Zeffi Angelikas, vice-president. They managed to lift me from my wheelchair to a bar stool for a photo. Matt reported a very successful event raising some additional funds for the Y and spending an enjoyable time with friends.

I've been exercising at the Roxborough Y for over 10 years. Prior to living in Philadelphia, I attended YMCAs in Connecticut, where I grew up. There I was awarded my Junior and Senior Life Saving Certifications, and I served as a “Y” Camp Counselor. After high school, I moved to upstate New York; I attended college and graduate school, married, had two children and patronized the Cortland, NY, “Y”. My children Laura and Craig took swimming lessons, gymnastic classes and attended nursery school there. Next I moved to New Orleans. My children stayed there, married and started businesses in the New Orleans area.

My five-year-old granddaughter, Sia, says it best: “Grandma, you are the letter ‘L’ in your wheelchair, and you cannot walk; but you are the letter ‘I’ when you sit on a noodle and walk in the pool.”

I love being the letter “I” at the Roxborough Y. Exercising allows me to eat out for lunch at Iron Hill and even enjoy dessert.

More information at barbjane@gmail.com or https://philaymca.org/locations/roxborough/