Their six grown and married children, all raised in the house on Gillmer Drive, live relatively close and take care of their parents' every need. The four daughters, Lois, Jenny, Vicki and Amy, split the weekdays. They come by when their dad wakes up, get him ready, take him and Mom to lunch and spend the day. On weekends, the grandkids take their turns. And every night, without fail, the two sons, John and Brad, rotate coming 'round at bedtime to unhook their dad from his necessary medical devices and lift him into bed.
Housework? Yardwork? Everybody pitches in.
"About five years ago, the children organized this all on their own," Janet beams.
Keith adds, "I think what's significant — and thank the good Lord we could afford to have full-time care if we needed it — is that this is literally a volunteer effort.
"We live a very wonderful, very active life," he says. "I'm in wonderful shape. But I can't get in and out of bed and I can't get in and out of the bathroom."
The Father of the Condo — and the father of Lois, Jenny, Vicki, Amy, Brad and John — shows off as much of a smile as his muscles will allow as he notes the wry irony that he, of all people, hasn't wound up in one of his own inventions.
"I truly believe in the condominium concept and its validity, especially for people our age," he says. "But we'll never leave this home."
Coming up with the condo concept was a great idea. Having a family, that was even better.
Lee Benson's About Utah column runs Monday and Friday. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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