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David Birkenfeld ’85, nursing director for the Hearthstone assisted-living facility in Seattle, WA, befriended Cecilia Schick Roop while she was a patient there. Their bond intensified, he said,
“with our discovery of Skidmore as a common thread. She last visited the campus in 1981, for her 50th reunion. Twenty years earlier, a profound congenital hearing loss robbed her of her hearing. Irrepressible and incredibly adaptable, Cecilia compensated for her sensory loss by developing
self-taught fluency in lip reading.” David noted that Cecelia was Hearthstone’s first activity coordinator and later served as resident council president. “Her belief in the importance of handwritten notes to express appreciation, recognition, or best wishes impressed and validated others. Forty years of service to, and subsequent residency and volunteerism in, this facility
marks only one facet of the positive impact Cecelia’s life has had on others.” Cecelia died in June.