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Mom's decision gets 110 thumbs up

Created date

April 30th, 2009

Her family loves Seabrook just as much as she does

By Kathleen Szczepanik TINTON FALLS, NJ When you are the mother of 9 children, 22 grandchildren, and 24 great-grandchildren, you might say you ve heard it all. But it wasn t until Margaret O Brien heard a resounding "yes" from everyone in her family that she decided to take the next step toward her freedom years and move to Seabrook, an Erickson community in Tinton Falls, N.J. "I have always wanted to come here," O Brien says.

"Mom is an extraordinary woman living an extraordinary life at Seabrook loving every minute of it." Kathleen Walsh, Margaret O Brien s daughter

It s a family affair She asked all of her children to visit Seabrook at different times and offer their points of view. "We knew, without a doubt, that Mom would be at home here at Seabrook," says O Brien s daughter Kathleen Walsh. "Coming from a big family, it meant so much for Mom to be surrounded by people and to be involved with a lot of activities like the ones that are available here on campus." With a blended family that includes relatives from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Indiana, California, Wisconsin, and Illinois, O Brien is still amazed at how Erickson welcomes family members to make them feel at home. "It s so important to know that my grandchildren can come to dinner with me, attend religious services and special events, all while feeling quite comfortable in the guest rooms and efficiencies that are available for a nominal fee on a short-term basis," she says. O Brien adds that two years ago, she hosted a Christmas gathering for more than 45 family members. Seabrook s catering department took care of "every single detail," and the feedback from every attendee was "positive, all the way!" "I, along with my brother and sisters, have always felt that Seabrook is not just a residence for Mom, but a family within a family," Walsh says. "The feeling of hospitality and genuine friendship has existed from the first day that she moved in. From the time we entered at the security gate until we got to Mom s door, it was a positive experience residents and staff members who were genuinely happy." An enviable lifestyle O Brien takes full advantage of Seabrook s 98-acre campus and stays active by swimming at the all-season aquatics center. She is also a greeter for Catholic Mass and an avid fan of the many cultural and theater performances at the community. "I m a little jealous that Mom has a convenience store, full-service bank branch, beauty parlors, and game rooms right at her doorstep," Walsh says, "not to mention a campus television studio to boot!" Walsh says she and her siblings agree that their mom will live a longer, independent life at Seabrook. "Without a doubt, we believe that Seabrook went far beyond our expectations," she says. "We have the security of knowing that Mom is safe and has fulfilled leisure time and medical attention if she needs it in an emergency. Mom is an extraordinary woman living an extraordinary life at Seabrook loving every minute of it."