I am the director of nursing for Homestead Hospice of Athens and we have patients who are residents at Summers Landing Assisted living facility in Gainesville. It was a complete coincidence that I was visiting the facility at the exact moment that some frozen pipes in the ceiling burst Jan. 8. I wanted to write a letter to the editor in attempt to recognize the staff of Summers Landing. They happened to be having a staff meeting at the same time and that meant there were more employees in the building than usual.
I have never seen such a chaotic situation go as smoothly as it did that day. When the commotion happened (halls flooding, ceiling leaking, fire alarms sounding) every staff member went running to assist the residents in the building. In less than five minutes, every resident was safely out of the building and in the designated evacuation area. Now you have to throw in the fact that it was freezing outside — the facility staff then placed the residents in their personal cars and turned on the heat for them while attempting to notify the residents’ families.
The whole situation is very unfortunate and I’m sure some family members are upset that their loved ones had to be brought out in the cold and relocated for the night. However, they should be thankful that the staff cares so much about their residents and were so prompt in getting everyone to safety. I would recommend this assisted living facility to my family and friends based on the simple fact that their staff members care for their residents as they would care for their own loved ones.