Senior Spotlight: Meet Ellen

posted in: Senior Spotlight

Originally from the South West (Arizona), Ellen and her husband, Chuck, have been calling the Pacific NorthWest home since 2010. She loves the year-round greenery, flowers and mountains in Seattle. She also enjoys the weather here much more than Arizona (which can have months of 100+ degree days!)

Ellen attended school for nursing in Arizona and worked as a nurse in various capacities in both Arizona and Washington. Upon coming to Seattle, she worked at the Veterans Administration (VA) hospital for 11 years before retiring in early 2020. Her nursing career spanned an incredible 36 years—a true testament to her lifelong passion of caring for others. She is especially grateful to have had the chance to work at the VA which allowed her to help America’s veterans.

She has been married to her husband Chuck for almost five decades! Ellen and Chuck have been coming to the South Park Senior Center for dinners on Monday and Wednesday since things opened back up for in person activities. They’ve attended a few of the field trips as well including a museum visit and outing to the Chihuly glass exhibit.

Ellen enjoys the culture focus events at SPSC and the new experiences and food they have introduced to her. She remembers trying a traditional West African food called Fufu (a side dish made from cassava root and plantains) that was served with an SPSC dinner one night. Before this dinner, she had never seen or heard of this staple in West African cuisine, so imagine her surprise when she saw a vendor serving it at a local farmer’s market shortly after and recognizing it because she had tried it at SPSC!

After retiring, Ellen has made time for sewing (she made many of her own masks during the COVID-19 pandemic), baking, bird watching, watching Seahawks games and gardening. With more flexibility in her schedule, she has also had the ability to join a Bible study group at her church.

A Fun Fact About Ellen

Ellen and Chuck have a lot of wildlife in their backyard in Seattle—including regular visits from squirrels. During these visits, Ellen and Chuck have started feeding the squirrels by hand!