Resident Stories:

Herb and Marilyn VanHassel

“You have to make each day special…and we do.” —Marilyn

They found community, and, ultimately, each other at Holland Home.

 Herb and Marilyn both came to live at Holland Home with their first spouses. Marilyn and her first husband, Frank, decided to make the move after many of their family members had had positive experiences at Holland Home. In their late seventies, they settled into Independent Living on our Raybrook Campus. Herb and his first wife, Caroline, had decided that a retirement community would be in their best interest and were swayed by friends living at Holland Home at the time to apply. They signed onto the waitlist at Raybrook and, a few years later, moved into Estates II. The two couples were acquaintances, seeing each other around at events and meetings, but they hadn’t developed a close friendship. 

After Caroline and Frank passed away, Herb and Marilyn began their lives as individuals at Raybrook, thankful for their close friendships and campus activities that kept them busy—and ultimately brought them together. After some time, Herb started to develop an interest in Marilyn and asked her out to a Saturday night musical. Their relationship blossomed and eventually led to a wedding right at Raybrook!

The newlyweds were welcomed into many group activities and dinners with fellow residents. They took advantage of the wellness center and attended classes on health and nutrition, Bible studies, athletic games, and volunteered to work on various tasks within their building. Oftentimes, they found that there weren’t enough hours in the day to do everything they would have liked. This past January, they celebrated 13 years of marriage—all spent enjoying their time together at Raybrook.