Samaritan Wiley Creek Community opened its doors in 1998. It was perfect timing for Patty Rhoads, who was looking for a job after being a stay-at-home mom for seven years.
“I noticed the construction, and I decided to apply,” Rhoads said. “Twenty years later, here I am.”
Rhoads started as a resident aide at Wiley Creek in November 1998. As the facility’s longest-serving employee, she’s enjoyed her work and is looking forward to Wiley Creek’s 20th anniversary open house on Thursday, May 10.
“The residents here are very interesting,” she said. “You don’t realize that until you start talking with them. They’ve led fascinating lives.”
Wiley Creek opened at a good time as well for Joy Alton and Donna Ego, who were among the first to rent independent-living cottages on the facility campus in 1998.
“I was the first one here,” said Ego, 87. “The place wasn’t quite finished yet. It’s beautiful today; it’s very well cared-for.”
Alton, 85, moved in with her husband shortly after Ego. They had been living in Seaside, but her husband had health problems and they decided to be closer to medical care.
“We looked at Wiley Creek and loved it,” Alton said. “It was a good move. I love my place: I have an enclosed patio and it’s very quiet. I can come and go as I please.”
Alton’s husband died three weeks after the move, but Alton has kept busy since moving to Wiley Creek. She and Ego walk together every morning, keeping each other accountable to their daily exercise.
“The people here really care about each other,” Ego said. “A lot of the people here have lived in Sweet Home for a long time, but it’s very comfortable for people who are new to the area.”
The assisted-living component was a big selling point for both of them as well. “It’s good to know that kind of care is available right here, although I don’t anticipate needing it anytime soon,” Ego said.
Join the residents, staff and families at Wiley Creek for a 20th anniversary open house on Thursday, May 10 from 1 to 4 p.m. with refreshments. The Sweet Home Chamber of Commerce will hold an After Hours event at Wiley Creek that same day, from 5:30 to 7 p.m.