Congratulations to Our Employee of the Month: Rudy Selmon

Rudy Selmon

Floor Tech

Describe Your Family: Loving and caring.

Describe yourself in five words: Loving, caring, respectful, honest and helpful.

What is something you are proud of: I have the best parents in the world – all three of them.

What do you do for fun: Perform on stage with my band.

Do you have any hobbies or interests: Playing guitar.

Do you have a pet: A snake. It’s name is Gucci.

What is your favorite thing about your job: I get along with everybody.

What is your favorite food: Chicken. 

What is your favorite song: The Thrill Is Gone by B.B. King.

What would you like people to know about you: That I am very kind and easy to get along with.

Rudy Selmon goes above and beyond the call of duty to support the department as well as our residents. He is thoughtful, precise and always a team player. He understands the importance of what we do for the residents of Kirby Pines. He is always willing to help another shift when staff is short and is happy to train or assist others as needed.

Jada Mullins, Director of Environmental Services

Staying Safe and Cool This Summer

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year one out of every three adults aged 65 and older experiences a fall. Falling once doubles your chances of falling again. Older adults who have fallen typically report moderate to severe injuries, including deep bruises, head trauma and hip fractures. Fall related injuries may alter mobility and limit independent living, requiring both formal and informal caregiving. Many of these injuries, such as hip fractures, increase the risk of premature death. These facts of falling put into perspective the importance of reducing your risk of falls. Many falls can be prevented by making simple changes in your daily life. This month’s Healthy Living Series will focus on tips to decrease your chances of falling.

How Can You Prevent Falls? First, it is important to take care of your health. Have your eyes and hearing checked frequently for changes. See a healthcare provider if you have foot pain, or if you can’t trim your toenails. Also, consult a healthcare provider right away if you feel weak or unsteady on your feet, if you feel confused, or if you fall. Let a healthcare provider know if a medicine is making you feel dizzy or making you lose your balance. If your healthcare provider wants you to use a cane or a walker, learn how to use it – and then use it consistently. It is also important to get regular exercise, especially walking.

Six out of every 10 falls happen at home, where older adults spend much of their time. Older adults should be encouraged to take steps to “fall proof” their living areas, both inside and outdoors including:

  • Wear shoes with nonskid soles
  • Be sure your home is well lit so that you can see things you might trip over
  • Remove throw rugs or fasten them to the floor with carpet tape
  • Don’t put electrical cords across pathways
  • Have grab bars put in your bathtub, shower and toilet area
  • Have handrails put on both sides of stairways
  • Don’t climb on stools and stepladders

How can therapy help? By participating in a balance/fall management program, you will develop and learn skills necessary for safe, functional mobility with reduced risk for falls. You may also reduce the risk for falls and other complications resulting from balance problems, low vision, cognitive changes and decreased sensation. In order to ensure success of an individualized balance/fall management program, therapists work closely with the multi-disciplinary team.

Join Functional Pathways, your NEW Rehab Provider, for a Welcome Reception July 28th at 2:00 pm in the PAC.

Lou Anders Celebrates Her 103rd Birthday!

Kirby Pines Resident Since 2004

On June 21st of this year Mrs. Lou Anders celebrated her 103rd birthday. She was born in Searcy, Arkansas and lived in the area on a farm with her parents and five siblings most all of her childhood. One year her parents decided to move to West Texas to a plantation, but quickly came back to their roots in Arkansas. Mrs. Anders graduated high school in Searcy and went on to get married. After a year of married life in Searcy, her and her husband moved to Memphis. Mrs. Anders began working and attending school in the evening. She started at Memphis State but soon transferred to Tennessee where she eventually graduated with a degree in accounting. Mrs. Anders worked for John Morrell and Company for 34 years prior to retiring with her husband. Mrs. Anders husband was an Army veteran who also worked as a route manager for American Bakeries. The couple were married for 52 years. They never had any children, but had numerous nieces and nephews they treated as their own.

Throughout life, and especially during retirement, Mrs. Anders developed some hobbies of her own. She is very well traveled. Together with her husband, they visited every state in the union. Since then, she has also traveled abroad to numerous areas including Rome, Greenland, Norway, Germany, and all throughout Europe. When not traveling, she enjoys painting and woodworking. She says if you show her something and let her measure it, she could make it. Prior to the pandemic, she was also an active member of Highland Heights United Methodist Church. She spent many hours there involved in all the activities they offered. She enjoyed volunteering at the church and with local charities. She says that one of her proudest moments was working with Each One Teach One and watching students grow and succeed.

Lou with her family at her 103rd Birthday Party

Mrs. Anders moved to Kirby Pines in August of 2004. She has enjoyed her years here and has been active in several of the clubs throughout her time. For many years, she led the Uplifters Circle Bible Study. She also led the Garden Club at Kirby Pines and is a lifetime member of the Tennessee Federation of Garden Clubs. Mrs. Anders still gets out and about and is looking forward to Monday Night Bingo and the Rhythm Band. She said the best part about moving to Kirby Pines is the friendship of other people, everyone is so friendly. The activities and entertainment are great. Kirby Pines is a good place for anyone to be.

Congratulations to Our Employee of the Month: Jeremy Richardson

Jeremy Richardson

Personal Care Assistant

Describe Your Family: Brave. Hardworking. Patient. Successful.

Describe yourself in five words: Caring, Kind, Loveable, Patient, Happy!

What is something you are proud of: I have the best parents in the world – all three of them.

What do you do for fun: Swim, play video games, eat lots of junk food.

Do you have any hobbies or interests: I love to sing and cook.

Do you have a pet: A snake. It’s name is Gucci.

What is your favorite thing about your job: I love all of the residents. Victoria and Tania are the best managers ever.

What is your favorite food: Crawfish. 

What is your favorite song: Necessary by Brandy Norwood.

What would you like people to know about you: I am a really good dancer.

Jeremy Richardson is dedicated to Kirby residents by providing exceptional service with a positive attitude. He arrives with a smile on his face every day. He has always made himself available to work additional shifts during this pandemic. Jeremy’s commitment to Caring in Place is unwavering. We are fortunate to have him on our team!

– Victoria Johnson, Director of Personal Support Services

Staying Safe & Cool This Summer

Did you know that each year more people die from excessive heat waves than from hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes, floods, and earthquakes combined? Summer weather can be erratic, especially during the spring and summer months. Even with a degree of unpredictability, it`s almost certain that we will see high temperatures climb into the upper 80s, 90s and even 100 degrees. Older adults are at high risk from excessive heat. As we age, the body’s cooling mechanisms may become impaired. Living alone or being confined to a bed and unable to care for one’s self further increases risk to heat related illness. Existing health conditions such as chronic illness, mental impairment, and obesity can also heighten an individual’s vulnerability. In addition, individuals taking certain medications are also susceptible to heat related illness. 

You can follow these prevention tips to protect yourself from heat-related stress: 

  • Drink plenty of fluids but avoid alcohol, caffeine and sugary drinks 
  • Rest 
  • Take a cool shower, bath, or sponge bath 
  • If possible, remain indoors in the heat of the day 
  • If you don’t have air conditioning in your home, open windows and shades on the shady side and close them on the sunny side to try to cool it down 
  • Avoid strenuous activity during the hottest part of the day (between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.) 
  • Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing 
  • Wear sunscreen and a ventilated hat (e.g., straw or mesh) when in the sun, even if it is cloudy 
  • Never leave children, pets or those with special needs in a parked car, even briefly. Temperatures in the car can become dangerous within a few minutes 
  • Check on your neighbors, family and friends, especially those who have special needs 

How can therapy help prevent heat related stress during the warmer months? 

By seeking professional advice to analyze your unique situation, the rehabilitation team can offer assistance and guidance to increase your safety during summer. Your rehabilitation team can offer assistance in creating a plan for summer safety that includes: 

  • Identifying lifestyle changes that can facilitate staying physically and mentally healthy during the summer months. 
  • Facilitating ease of movement throughout the home and outdoor spaces. 
  • Recommending home modifications to keep you safe during the warmer months. 

For additional information, please contact your Select Rehabilitation Physical, Occupational and Speech therapists. 

Join us for “Fun in the Sun: Outdoor Safety Tips for Older Adults” in the PAC June 9th at 11:00 am

Drink More Water for Better Health

Did you know water makes up about 50 to 60% of your body? True, water is essential to life. Staying hydrated is important for our general health, too. Dehydration can be the result of exercise, certain medications, diarrhea, excessive sweating, breathing, and diseases such as diabetes. With the warm summer days ahead, it is easy to become dehydrated which can cause dry mouth, weakness, dizziness, headaches, heart pounding, cramping, confusion, low blood pressure, rapid but weak pulse and fainting. 

Everyone knows—but many people seem to forget—that water is what sustains life. Here are just two of the benefits of being hydrated: Drinking at least five 8-ounce glasses of water daily reduces the risk of fatal coronary heart disease among older adults. Being sufficiently hydrated reduces the discomfort of constipation, improves balance and kidney function (reducing the risk of urinary tract infections). Water helps energize muscles. Cells that don’t maintain their balance of fluids and electrolytes shrivel, which can result in muscle fatigue. 

How much water is enough? A good formula for how much water is needed every day is to take one-third of the person’s body weight in pounds and drink the equivalent number of ounces of water daily. For example, a 150-pound woman would need 50 ounces of water daily, or about 6 8-ounce glasses of water.

Don’t wait until you feel thirsty to start drinking water: As we age, we are less aware of our thirst and our ability to regulate our body’s fluid balance via kidneys decreases. If you think you may need to be drinking more, here are some tips to increase your fluid intake and reap the benefits of drinking water:

  • Start your day with a glass of water before breakfast.
  • Have a beverage with every snack and meal.
  • Choose beverages you enjoy; you’re likely to drink more liquids. If you’re watching calories, go for non-caloric beverages or water.
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables especially melons. Their high water content will add to your hydration. About 20% of our fluid intake comes from foods.
  • Keep a bottle of water with you in your car, at your desk, or in your bag or walker.

So drink up and stay hydrated and stay well. Don’t forget we have a cool water dispenser in the Oasis when you come to exercise.


Many Thanks to everyone who helped make our fundraiser and Arthritis Awareness Month so successful. I very much appreciate the support for our Walk to Cure with more than 43 walkers and two pups. We are still receiving donations for The Arthritis Foundation but as of this writing we have received over $1,100 in donations which will be used to support research, education, and assistance to people of all ages who live with the pain of Arthritis. We really appreciate your generosity. Way to go Kirby Pines!

Midsouth Woodturner Guild’s Oldest Member & Kirby Pines Resident John Johnson Celebrates 101 Years!

John in the Hobby shop on his 101st birthday

On May 22nd of this year John R. Johnson, one of our founding members, celebrated his 101st Birthday. About two years ago he stopped woodturning but stays active making Zentangle diagrams (repetitive figures often involving only straight lines) and other detailed pen and ink drawings. John’s philosophy holds that to enjoy life one needs a goal every day. If you stand outside and knock on John’s window (he is currently restricted to his assisted living room at Kirby Pines) you will most often find him working there where the light is strong. He’ll look up, smile and be delighted with a ‘socially-distanced’ visit and raise the window for a chat. 

John was born in Martinez, CA but grew up on a farm in Cleveland, Georgia. Completing his few years of formal schooling (finished 4th grade) and ‘put to the plow behind a mule’ he soon learned farming was not for him. Early radios were often just a galena crystal, a “cats whisker” and a pair of earphones, but John moved on to building and operating a ham radio station which involved diodes, capacitors, resistors and learning the Morse code. At the beginning of WWII this served to get him into the Army Air Force (bypassing boot camp), wherein he was flown over much of the African continent setting up radios at local airports in case the military needed them. In 1946 John took flying lessons and much later built and flew two ultralight planes. He joined the Civil Air Patrol and retired as supervisor of the Memphis unit. Through self-study and various organized courses he became a licensed professional engineer. He is widely read, with an enormous vocabulary and an insatiable curiosity, and has travelled over the entire US and much of Europe in his later years. There are few topics which John does not know something about. Currently he is hindered by defective hearing and frequently has to search for the correct word. Because he recalls a great deal of the Bible he sometimes is asked to stay quiet or leave religious classes because he raises so many questions. For his 91st birthday he wanted to fly one more time, rented a plane with an instructor (who never touched the controls) and greatly enjoyed it. 

After retirement, John and his wife spent many winters living in an RV near Phoenix, Arizona where he set up a small shop, turned and sold items. He has turned hundreds of stair bannisters, thousands of clock case finials, numerous bowls, weed pots, and offset items during his 65 years at the lathe, never using a sharpening system! He was a master at making adapters, wooden chucks, and special jigs to hold his work. At one time John got into miniature turning and did many objects within objects, often using a jewelers lathe. His large bowl lathe was a converted horizontal milling machine. His favorite lathe for many years was a Delta rescued from the Lazarov Scrap Yard by his friend John Williams. 

In the mid-nineties John moved the small, cramped Hobby Shop at Kirby Pines to a new, larger location and set about outfitting it with a wide variety of machine tools for both flat and turned work. He served as the supervisor of the shop until 4 years ago; this included deciding which residents were qualified to use it safely. 

Written by Ray Tanner, Kirby Pines Resident

Congratulations to Our Employee of the Month: Martha Fitzhugh

Martha Fitzhugh

Resident Services Coordinator

Describe Your Family: I am the proud mother of a daughter & son and 3 precious grandchildren!

Describe yourself in five words: Loyal, Honest, Compassionate, Trustworthy and Funny.

What is something you are proud of: My family.

What do you do for fun: Hang out with my friends, go to the movies and travel.

Do you have any hobbies or interests: Singing, gardening and watching true crime shows.

Do you have a pet: Yes, her name is Rorie. She is a golden retriever rescue.

What is your favorite thing about your job: Knowing that what I do truly helps and benefits the residents.

What is your favorite food: Italian, but I do love crab legs, too!

What is your favorite song: We Shall Behold Him – Sandy Patty

What would you like people to know about you: I am thankful for everything I have experienced. It has taught me valuable life lessons.

Martha Fitzhugh is a great asset to Kirby Pines. She always goes above and beyond to help residents, family members, staff, and vendors. Ensuring the residents and family members get the assistance they need. She has endeared herself to the residents by going out of her way to help, even if it isn’t her job to do what they need help with. Staff turn to her for guidance. It is a true pleasure to work with Martha.

Susan Keough, Executive Assistant