Seniors Share Their Love Stories; Celebrate Love Both Early and Late in Life

91- and 89-Year-Old Wed

Feb 11, 2011, 12:01 ET from Brookdale Senior Living

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Feb. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- In celebration of the upcoming Valentine's Day holiday, Brookdale Senior Living, a leading owner and operator of senior living communities throughout the United States, is sharing some of its residents' own classic love stories.  

The newest (and oldest) wedded couple within the Brookdale family met at The Kenwood Lake View in Chicago during 2007. Tom Stinchcomb, 89, had spotted Joan Garrison, 91, and a friend of hers standing in line at the buffet.  Stinchcomb introduced himself to the ladies and asked if they'd mind if he joined them at their table.  From then on, Stinchcomb took advantage of every opportunity to spend time with Garrison. 

Before they were married, the couple lived in the same building but ten floors apart.  Stinchcomb, always a gentleman, would see Garrison to her apartment to ensure she arrived safely after events they attended.  From there, their love blossomed culminating in their recent wedding.

For most people, true love and romance happen only once in a lifetime. For Carriage Club Charlotte resident Emily Bauermeister, it happened three times. Bauermeister met her third husband, Herman, at an elder hostel in Tennessee. The moment Ms. Bauermeister saw her future husband, a voice in her head told her that she was going to marry him, which was quickly followed by her second thought, "Oh no, don't tell me that."

After a period of Ms. Bauermeister ignoring Mr. Bauermeister's attempts to get to know her, the couple eventually went to dinner together. About two months after they met, Mr. Bauermeister started talking about marriage. Ms. Bauermeister looked at him and said, "Herman, you haven't even told me you love me yet." Regardless, they married and spent 25 years together.

"I can tell you first-hand these two were a match made in heaven," said Jaynie Segal, life enrichment director for Carriage Club Charlotte. "They were deeply in love, always holding hands, laughing, enjoying this special time in their lives together, always finding something to talk about and always finding time to steal a kiss."

William Speir, resident of Cypress Village in Florida, took the time to write his wife, Bobbie, of 58 years an emotional poem titled "Dear Bobbie, Do You Remember?" The poem highlights their history together and ends, "The glue of love is still bonding us together – Love is what I remember. Do you remember?" The Speir's grandson's band, Yellowcard, set the poem to music, and William's voice narrates the poem at

When Carol Mitchell moved into the Classic West Palm Beach, a Brookdale Senior Living independent and assisted living community in Florida, she wasn't looking for love. However, last June, Jack Levy was sitting in the lobby when he first spotted Mitchell on a tour of the community. She moved in two weeks later and decided to go for a swim. Levy's favorite pastime was sitting at the pool and reading, which he was doing when he noticed Mitchell in the pool doing exercises. He did not take his eyes off her. Mitchell, watching him, noticed that the book lay in his lap and no pages were being turned.  Eventually he waved to her, beckoning her to join him. They talked and found they had a lot in common: books, theater, museums, and even their favorite New York City restaurants. That night, Levy cooked an exquisite dinner for Mitchell. From then on, they saw each other every day, and just knew they were meant for each other. One day, along the walkway, he, in his scooter, pulled over, stood up, and said, "I need a hug." They hugged, and a first kiss followed. "The best ever," said Jack. He proposed later that year, and they wed in November 2010.

At the Heritage Raleigh, residents Flo Moore and John DeGraff met in November 2006. They met by discovering that they were both Republicans in that election year. As they talked, they found out they both liked to play bridge. Moore started asking DeGraff to play on Sunday afternoons, which eventually extended to Tuesdays also.

Now, they take walks every day, holding hands and enjoying their friendship. Their love has survived his throat cancer and some physical health problems. Recently, they were sitting outside, holding hands, and a woman crossed the parking lot to where they were sitting. She said to them, "I wish I had what you have!"

Don't we all?

To read the full narrative of each love story featured, visit Brookdale's Facebook page at

Brookdale Senior Living Inc. is a leading owner and operator of senior living communities throughout the United States. The company owns and operates independent living, assisted living and dementia care communities and continuing care retirement centers. In all, Brookdale operates 560 communities in 34 states with the ability to serve over 51,000 residents, as well as operating a dedicated rehabilitation and therapy group serving its communities and residents nationwide. Brookdale is committed to providing exceptional living experiences within properties that are purpose-built, designed and operated to help residents live well while achieving an Optimum Life®. Brookdale Senior Living communities provide a daily experience of programs, services and care that are unique as a result of the collective talents and inspiration of the residents, their families, and its associates – demonstrating Brookdale's promise of "Our People Make the Difference." Brookdale is a publicly-traded company (NYSE: BKD). For more information, visit

Contact: Holly Botsford, Public Relations Manager, 414-918-5314,

SOURCE Brookdale Senior Living