Christy Bean, who serves as Activities Director at Middlesboro Nursing and Rehabilitation, explained that the campaign event coincided with National Nursing Home Week (May 9th-15th) — in which the facility is currently celebrating — and contended that the theme of the week was “Everyday American Heroes”.
She maintained that the meet-and-greet event was part of the week-long celebration — adding that the facility will be hosting a variety of other patriotic events everyday this week in honor of the national observance.
Bean said that Tuesday’s political crusade was put together to simply give facility residents the opportunity to meet with several of the primary election candidates here in Bell County.
She said that nearly 25 residents within the facility will vote by absentee ballot this election.
“Part of our job is to keep them involved in the community and provide them with the quality of life that they had at home. So we wanted to bring the candidates here to give them the opportunity to kind of put a face with the name... to help when they mark their ballots,” Bean conveyed.
She said that the turnout for Tuesday’s campaign was huge — with over 20 local candidates participating.
“We had over 20 candidates come out, and I think everything went really well,” Bean said.
She said most of the residents were real responsive to the candidates — exhibiting sincere gratitude for their visit.
“They’re still talking about it,” said Bean. “They enjoy the one-on-one aspect.”
Bean commented that many of the candidates were also very receptive of the campaign rally — expressing humble appreciation for the event, the residents, and for the nursing home staff.
“I had lots of candidates talk to me and tell me how much they enjoyed it — as far as it being informal and how they can just walk around and talk with the residents rather than have to give a formal speech,” expressed Bean.
“They’re able to get to know the residents and talk about issues that they have,” she concluded.
Current Bell County Jailer Rex Miller, who attended Tuesday’s campaign rally, said that the event was of great community importance.
“I thought it was important to be there because of the people and the wealth of knowledge that they have — not to mention the experience,” said Miller.
Miller said that he thoroughly enjoyed the experience and maintained that he met some great people along the campaign way — including a retired United States Marshal who once drove a limousine transporting former President Richard Nixon through Bell County.
“It’s a good thing just to be able to visit with them,” he said.