A reign as Residential manager has come to a close. None has served longer in that role. Tuesday (April 27) after hours, staff threw her a farewell party at the center, but the real party is back in her home state. Vicki (Sayler) Hedrick flew off to Oklahoma this weekend to be with her mother, Dorothy, who is recovering from brain surgery last Monday. By all reports, Dorothy is doing fine, and we are all pulling for her.
We talk a lot about our CCB family because we feel that way about one another, supporting each other, staff and students, when we struggle and celebrating each other’s growth and successes. So, we feel both sadness and joy as Vicki moves on to a new life – some of it planned for, and obviously some of it unexpected.
Vicki raised that family feeling to a new level since coming to CCB as a student in 2015. After graduating, she moved in with Dishon and Jen to be their first nanny when Mason was born in 2016. She left that only when we needed a new Residential Manager at our McGeorge Mountain Terrace Apartments.
“I didn’t have children of my own,” Vicki once said, “but now I’ve been blessed to be a surrogate mom for so many of our students.”
And so she was. Vicki greeted new students even before they arrived, handed out their apartment keys and helped them get settled. She taught them in their apartments, took their calls at all hours, visited with them, and applied band-aids, both physical and emotional as needed. and she also worked with our summer youth programs and Seniors in Charge, making sure apartments were cleaned and ready for occupancy, and generally smoothing the way for everyone.
“I thought I would be here the rest of my life,” she told her colleagues with a laugh on Tuesday. “But God had other plans.”
First, Vicki met and married mark Hedrick in 2019. For a time, they shared Residential manager responsibilities at the apartments, a huge help during the “shelter in place” stretch from May 16 through June 1 of 2020. Vicki had a hip replacement in early March of 2020, just as things were about to close down. In late summer, she had a knee replacement. Then Mark’s family obligations took him back to his home state of Missouri in late 2020 where a job opportunity also availed itself. Early this year, Vicki told Director Julie Deden she would leave at the end of 2021 to join Mark. Then Dorothy’s health crisis took Vicki back to Oklahoma for nearly six weeks. Fortunately, the early dire prognosis for Dorothy is somewhat less dire, though cautious. Still, sometimes we have to reset our priorities. Vicki will now reside in Missouri with Mark, and devote all the time necessary to spending with her mom as well.
And Dorothy has been a part of our family as far back at least as Vicki’s graduation from CCB. Her hugs and buoyant, loving nature were a natural fit with us during her many visits. In a recent farewell Philosophy discussion with Vicki, Evan, then a brand-new student, recalled the Friday afternoon last September when staff and students walked from the center down the foot path to the South Platte River, across the bridge and through the neighborhood to the apartments, about a mile and three-quarters. Dorothy was in town, helping out after Vicki’s knee surgery, and she brought out ice cream sandwiches for all the hikers – a memory we will all long cherish.
And so, Vicki is off to a new chapter in her life with one part of her family, and we of her CCB family wish her and her Oklahoma and Missouri family all the best. Go with our blessings, our love and prayers and hopes for fullness and love in all things!