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Lights, Camera, Action!

Posted on December 14, 2018 in Caregiving, Hospice

Marie “Elizabeth” Wood came to Ohio Living Home Health & Hospice at 99 years old, with almost a century’s worth of stories and experiences to share. Our Greater Akron staff members suggested creating a life review video, interviewing Elizabeth to capture some of her stories on film. Volunteer Michael Indriolo was excited to help.

As a student studying film at Kent State University, he was uniquely suited for this special project. They invited Elizabeth’s granddaughter Missy, with whom she lived, to conduct the interview. They also asked her sisters, Lois and Rose, to be there.

On the day Michael came to film the interview, Elizabeth and her sisters transformed into movie stars. Our staff provided gloves, hats and boas, accompanied by movie signs and props. Elizabeth’s gloves were red satin, a tribute to the red satin pajamas her husband had always bought for her before he passed away.

Creating the movie was “a lot of giggles and wonderful stories,” said Volunteer Coordinator Daphne Massaro. “There were some serious questions, but there was a lot of laughter too.”

During the filming, Elizabeth mentioned her love of music. She enjoyed listening to Perry Como, Lawrence Welk, Charles Stanley and the Gaither Vocal Band, and was a longtime organist herself. “Just one time, Grammy?” Missy asked, and Elizabeth approached her organ to play a few songs for her loved ones.

When Michael asked about the knitting needles he saw in Elizabeth’s house, she shared how much she had always enjoyed knitting, crocheting and quilting. With her granddaughter’s help, she was able to pick up the needles again for a demonstration.

Michael edited the footage, hoping to have a grand premiere with Elizabeth and her family, but unfortunately, she passed away before the movie was complete.

A family reunion had been planned around Elizabeth’s birthday, however, and everyone was able to celebrate her by watching the film together. Her granddaughter and sisters now have a precious memorial of their beloved Elizabeth and the special day they spent talking and laughing together, as movie stars.


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