Community Senior Spotlight
Meet Paul Trudel!
Born in Woonsocket, RI, Paul moved to Danbury at age 3 when his father, who worked for The Railway Express Company, got transferred to Connecticut. Paul has since lived in Danbury for 63 years, attending school for 8 years at St. Peter’s on Main Street and graduating from Danbury High School. In 1968, Paul joined the U.S. Army, 4th Infantry Division, serving as a Specialist 4th Class as an Armorer performing small arms repair until his honorable discharge in 1971. After his discharge from the Army, Paul returned to Danbury to work for Danbury Printing and Litho, Inc., retiring in 2012.
It was upon his retirement that Paul, and industrious and giving man, found himself without purpose. Even though he was very much involved in the Danbury Softball League as a player and statistician, and an avid Met fan, Paul needed some other way to occupy his time and give back to his community. A friend mentioned the Elmwood Hall Senior Center. He decide to give it a try!
As soon as Paul walked into the Elmwood Hall Senior Center he was greeted by soon to be friends Roosevelt, Wayne, and Steve. He quickly became involved in the Walking Club, Sports Talk, and the Wii Bowling Leagues. Paul has a natural tendency to help others in need. When he saw some members struggle to get their own coffee, he was quick to help out, extending himself for the benefits of others. This is something he credits to his education at St. Peter’s that taught him “discipline, respect, manners – it stayed with me my whole life.”
Paul quickly realized he could do more. In high school he had a job in the kitchen, he jokes it was 50 years ago! But those skills remain and now Paul is a valued kitchen volunteer at Elmwood Hall serving lunch to over 50 diners. He helps unload the food from the delivery truck, serves the hot lunch, and cleans up afterwards. Who knew a high school job would be valuable so many years later in life!
“I’ve got roots here,” Paul says of Danbury – “there’s no place like Danbury in the world” – and the Elmwood Hall Senior Center. Well, it’s more than just a building according to Paul, “it’s the people that make it so good.”
Meet Marni Emerito!
Marnie Emerito has enjoyed a fulfilling 27 year career with the City of Danbury as the Municipal Agent for the Elderly. She is our first “Community Senior Spotlight.”
Marnie Emerito began her employment with the City of Danbury in September of 1987 before the Department of Elderly Services was formed. Marnie first served as a member of the Commission on Aging and then was hired by former Elderly Services Director, Leo McIlrath. Over the years she worked out of numerous buildings including Ives Manor and the Old Jail before finishing her career at Elmwood Hall. Marnie’s list of accomplishments are many, including being a CHOICES trained counselor, coordinating the CARES program, and designing and executing the Rent Rebate program to name a few. However, what was always most important to her were the seniors she served, the people whose lives she has touched and changed. This list includes countless individuals over the past 27 years for which she is most proud.
Marnie’s retirement began this January as she embarks on a new chapter in her life. She is thrilled to be spending time with her companion Jim, as well as her children and grandchildren. She is planning a cruise in January as well as trips to Florida and Vermont. Marnie remains an active member of the Elmwood Hall Senior Center. Please join us in wishing her well on all her new adventures!