Forty-four-year-old Kelly Merriman has a dream

September 28, 2011 – Centerville, OH – Forty-four-year-old Kelly Merriman has a dream: To take her son, Zackary and husband Ralph, to visit the Columbus zoo one more time.
Sept. 28, 2011 - PRLog -- Contact: Allen Nelson                
Next Steps Senior Transitions/Senior Dream Center of Southwest Ohio


44-year-old Woman and Family Headed to The Columbus Zoo

September 28, 2011 – Centerville, OH – Forty-four-year-old Kelly Merriman has a dream:  To take her son, Zackary and husband Ralph, to visit the Columbus zoo one more time. The Senior Dream Center of Southwest Ohio, an organization that grants dreams to seniors (aged 65 and over) made an exception this time in order to make Kelly's dream come true.  

In an effort to fulfill this special dream, The Senior Dream Center of Southwest Ohio partnered with Crossroads Hospice, Beaver-Vu Construction, Valley Transport and Next Steps Senior Transitions. Mike Dorsten of Beaver-Vu Construction provided a monetary donation for tickets, food and souvenirs at the zoo and Valley Transport, a non-emergency transportation company serving the Greater Miami Valley region and surrounding areas, will provide transportation to and from the Columbus Zoo from Dayton, OH at no cost.  Next Steps Senior Transitions and Pat Acker from Crossroads Hospice helped coordinate the many details of the dream.  

Mike Dorsten of Beaver-Vu Construction said “We are very honored to have the chance to partner with a wonderful community organization like The Senior Dream Center. We hope that our contribution can bring a smile to the entire family while they are at the Columbus Zoo.” Beaver-Vu Construction specializes in residential and commercial building and remodeling.

Mrs. Merriman, currently in hospice care for advanced Muscular Sclerosis, uses an electric wheelchair which makes family outings very challenging.  She is thrilled to have this opportunity to make a special memory with her husband and twelve year-old son. The Merriman family will visit the Columbus Zoo together on September 29th, 2011. “Kelly and her family are so excited about this event,” said Allen Nelson from Next Steps Senior Transitions. “It truly is a dream come true for them.”  Nelson’s wife Deb, Dream Coordinator for the Center, added “Dreams are fulfilled at no cost to the recipients and their families. Our growing network of partners are the real heroes; they make dreams like this possible.”
Allen and Deb Nelson of Next Steps Senior Transitions were invited by Frank Lewis of The Senior Dream Center of Springfield, OH to help fulfill dreams in the Southwest region of the state.  The Senior Dream center is a non-profit organization based in Clark County.  Next Steps Senior Transitions is a Centerville business serving seniors who are in the process of downsizing or moving to a retirement community by managing the many details involved in this type of transition.  After learning of the Senior Dream Center, The Nelson’s knew that they and their company were a perfect match.  "As soon as we heard about the great things they were doing for people in Springfield, we knew we wanted to make a way to offer that in the Dayton-area as well," says Allen Nelson.

Previous dreams fulfilled by the Senior Dream Center of Southwest Ohio include sending 75 year-old, Garnett Lemon of Riverside Rehab and Nursing, to attend his mother’s 100th birthday celebration in College Park, MD as well as arranging for 99 year-old Alverna Dishun of Sterling House in Washington Township to attend a Reds game with her family.  Rosalind Garringer of Greenwood Manor, confined to a reclining wheelchair, took a “sentimental journey” that included a visit to the family homestead, dinner at the Xenia China Inn and an opportunity to see her husband’s grave for the first time ever; 100 year-old Mary Catherine Wolf, also of Sterling House, was treated to a private hour-long concert by local violinist Jacob Tudor.  In November, Helen Vanderbergh of Sunset Square in Piqua will be the guest of honor at a party with 50 of her friends and family members when she turns 101. The Senior Dream Center in Clark County fulfilled 40 dreams last year; the Southwest Ohio Center, founded in September of 2010 is currently planning their 8th dream of the year.  The Senior Dream Center does not do traditional fundraising and relies totally on the donation of goods and services to fulfill dreams; monetary donations are requested on an as needed basis for specific dreams.  

Dreams may be submitted for approval in one of 5 categories: Life-long Dream, like flying in a WWII airplane; Fun-filled Dream such as a makeover and dinner at a special restaurant; Memory Dream like being reunited with a childhood friend; One Last Time Dream such as visiting the family farm one last time and Needs-based Dream like getting a walker with a seat on it to make certain activities more accessible.  Requests for Southwest Ohio Senior Dreams will be handled by Mr. and Mrs. Nelson and their staff.  "It's a real honor for us to be connected with this organization," says Allen Nelson.  "The joy and happiness that comes with the fulfillment of long-cherished dreams is priceless to people. I have to say though, being a part of making those dreams come true is pretty amazing too.”

To nominate someone for a dream or to learn more about sponsoring a future a dream, please go to or contact Allen Nelson at 937-718-1729.

# # #

We help seniors move to a retirement community. We provide a single point of contact, a move plan, downsizing, packing, moving, and unpacking. We provide estate sale services and handyman services to get your home ready for selling.

Like PRLog?
Click to Share