Therese Casler, my story...
|Not long after leaving the farm in Iowa to enlist in the Navy,
my father was accepted to the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. My
mother, a native of Rhode Island, met him at a midshipman's dance
where the romance blossomed. Soon after graduating from the Naval
Academy, my parents married and my father transferred to the Air
Force to be a fighter pilot. I was fortunate to see the world and
old enough to realize my dad was flying dangerous missions when stationed
in Vietnam. I have a special love and gratitude for our veterans
and their families for their service and sacrifice.
|I am blessed to be the mother of six children, but tragedy struck
when my oldest died suddenly in 1999. I believe God gives us graces
in the midst of sorrow, though. I found this out soon after when
my mother was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease). I would
travel home as often as I could while being a single parent to the
three younger children who were still in school. For six months in
2003, I would stay each month to assist my father in caring for my
mother. When she died May 6, 2003, I was able to help my father
plan for my motherís funeral and burial in Arlington National Cemetery.
||That was only one of the gifts I received a few years earlier. Life does go on and
my oldest daughter married a wonderful man and I now have two beautiful granddaughters.
I enjoy traveling with the family and every year I go to Haiti on a medical and
dental mission trip.
|Life is about change and we need to chart a new course during different
passages. My father was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease
in 2003 and I once again become the family go-to person for a parent.
Driving was becoming an issue as was his mobility and in 2010, as
difficult as it was to move away from all his friends, my father
moved to Nashville to an assisted living community. Although he enjoyed
another two years in assisted living, he was challenged with the
progression of his disease and transitioned to a wheelchair. I had
to navigate the changes when he moved to a long term care facility
until my father, the fighter pilot, my hero, died on May 5, 2013.
Thankfully I was prepared for the changes in my parents’ lives
and I share those experiences and knowledge with the families I encounter.
I have worked as a marketing director for an assisted living, care
coordinator for an elder law attorney and administrator/case manager
for a firm that helped clients attain Medicaid and VA benefits.
Licensed insurance producer in Tennessee
GNRC Area on Aging and Disability Advisory Council Member
Senior Services Network Treasurer
Hendersonville Chamber of Commerce Ambassador
Our Lady of the Lake Parish Council Stewardship Committee and Building Committee Chair
Our Lady of the Lake Haiti Committee Co-chair