Patty Harken’s Hometown Hero

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LAKEWOOD, Ohio -- Fox 8 Traffic Reporter Patty Harken has called Lakewood her home for over twenty years.
With its excellent schools, beautiful parks and walk-ability, it’s a great place to raise a family.
It’s also a wonderful place to retire, thanks to a host of volunteers at the Barton Center, a senior activity and social center located on Detroit Road.
The people who enjoy the Barton Center are also the ones contributing to its success by donating their own time to keep the place running.
It’s a system that makes the center thrive and enriches the lives of the residents and members, which is why Patty chose all of the Barton Center volunteers as her Hometown Heroes.
“It makes the quality of our life greater for being a part of all of this,” said Sandra Suminguit, who works at the Barton Center transportation desk.
She understands the value of her work as she helps to schedule rides so seniors can get door-to-door in Lakewood.
“Without our volunteer services, a lot of things wouldn’t be available,” Sandra said.
Another volunteer, Nancy Shannon, takes care of the greenhouse, a place frequented by the seniors who live on site.
“A lot of the residents read outside or eat their lunch or have little picnics with their families, so you try to make it as nice for them so when they’re out there they can be proud of the place they live,” Nancy explained.
Delores Berish and Arlene Schroeder make their mark at the Barton Center’s Hodge Podge Resale Shop.
“I like to come down here and work,” Delores told Fox 8 News.
“It’s being with people that you know and want to work with, you’re happy doing it,” Arlene added.
The volunteers are quick to share how much their work means to them.
“I feel I get more out of it than what I give, I really enjoy it,” said Barbara Gurney, who fulfills several office duties.
Each person’s contribution makes a difference to the entire group, and helps make their golden years shine.