Soon after the pandemic shutdown went into effect at care homes in March, winter resident Marilyn Schoonover had an idea.

She’s bringing touches of caring and friendliness to residents at Prestige Assisted Living and Memory Care in Green Valley.   

She and three friends have been visiting and bringing large pink and green signs to residents to show them people care and they aren’t forgotten.   On Monday, six residents came out front with staff where sign-holders Mardy Midler, Miriam Meyer, Marilyn Schoonover and Donna Murphy — all in masks — greeted them with signs that read, “We Think About You,” “You Are Not Forgotten,” “Stay Strong, We Care” and “We Care About You.”   When it was announced that this was resident Peggy Nelson’s birthday, Schoonover sang out.   

After visiting with the residents, the women walked to the Memory Care area of Prestige where resident Earl Pennington, 99, sang, “I Want a Girl (Just Like the Girl That Married Dear Old Dad),” released in 1911. He sang all the words perfectly, on pitch. He sang to the four women through glass doors.   

As the women turned to leave, he said, “Thank you for coming here. It can get pretty boring.”   The four women left feeling fulfilled after bringing friendliness to the residents. They’ll be back.