Compassionate Care 2

A Glenwood Springs Family’s Experience at Peregrine Senior Living

Jim Hickson loved to stay busy. He had called the Roaring Fork Valley home since moving here from Virginia with his wife Mildred in 2002, after almost four decades working as a chemical engineer with DuPont. Jim was intent on enjoying all that the mountains have to offer, and he never allowed retirement to force him to sit still.

“He loved hunting and fishing, and he flew model airplanes,” Jim’s daughter, Ellen Brooks, says. “He was an outdoorsman, a tinkerer—he built things and always had ideas. It was his engineer’s mind.”

Jim stayed sharp by pursuing his many interests well into his golden years, so when he began experiencing speech difficulties, his family knew something wasn’t right.

“He started losing his ability to speak well,” Ellen remembers. “Initially we thought it was due to a stroke, but he then also began having trouble walking. As things progressed, a neurologist determined that he had not suffered a stroke but in fact had a disorder called progressive supranuclear palsy.”

Being diagnosed with this rare brain disorder meant that Jim’s problems with speech, balance, and movement would worsen over time. As his family considered the level of care that he would soon need, Ellen was concerned about finding a local facility where her father could receive the medical attention he required in a high-quality, homelike location.

“We had intended for him to stay at home, but he really needed 24-hour assistance,” she says. “That’s difficult to find in a small community. We didn’t want to place him in a traditional nursing home, but we weren’t sure if he would be a good candidate for a place like Peregrine. We went to them to discuss, and they determined that he actually was.”

Ellen, a doctor, says that first and foremost her family chose Peregrine because its full-time nurses and aides could provide the high level of personal care and medical monitoring Jim needed. Secondly, the brand-new facility on the river at the 27th Street roundabout in Glenwood Springs offered a comfortable environment where Jim’s entire family could be a part of his living experience there.

“We chose the respite care option they offer,” Ellen says. “We weren’t sure how long he’d need to stay. As soon as my father arrived, everyone was so kind to us. The aides truly cared about what was happening to him, because he progressed rapidly. They checked on him every hour.”


Peregrine Senior Living

2800 Midland Avenue, Glenwood Springs


@PeregrineGlenwoodSprings on Facebook

On May 5, Jim attended one of Peregrine’s many regular social activities, a Cinco de Mayo party, and even enjoyed a margarita.

“That was his last really good day,” Ellen recalls. “We were there as a family with him—welcomed by the staff and encouraged to be present and spend time together. It meant a lot to us to have that.”

Two days later, Jim passed. After his passing, Ellen and her family were able to celebrate Jim’s life knowing that the care he had received, when he needed it most, was truly compassionate.

“Our experience there was wonderful,” she says. “We feel really thankful.”

Peregrine Senior Living offers short-term respite care and long-term residential and memory care living options. Activities, restaurant-style dining, transportation, spiritual services, a beauty spa, and other amenities create a fulfilling experience for residents while aides and nursing staff assist with a wide variety of medical needs.