XENIA — Christmas came early this year for Vivian Wood, who was named Senior of the Year for 2022 at the Xenia Adult Recreation & Services Center’s annual Austria Christmas Party.
The senior center welcomed a packed house at the 45th event held Wednesday. Beginning in the morning, guests enjoyed a Christmas lunch, as well as performances by the Xenia High School Ensemble and the Senior Sensations.
During the program, Wood heard her name addressed as being selected Senior of the Year.
“I just about passed out when I heard my name,” said Wood, who said the honor was totally unexpected.
Wood, who worked for Elano for 32 years, suddenly had time on her hands after she retired and her two grown children, daughter Renee, and son Brian, had already left to be on their own. Now her three pets — cats Lilly and Zeus and dog Roxie — keep her company.
“She is an active, fun-loving senior,” said Judy Ann Baker, Executive Director, Xenia Adult Recreation & Services Center.
Wood also said she appreciates her church family at Jamestown Church of Christ for keeping an eye on her earlier this year when she was sick. She became a widow at an early age when she lost her husband Ted and raised two children on her own. She enjoys her time volunteering at the center and spending time with her friends and co-workers there.
“I joined the center in 2018 and I volunteer there one or two days a week (more if needed) as a cashier,” she said. “I get to see people I know although I know faces better than names. I’ve gone on a lot of their trips and outings and always enjoyed myself. I just like being around people I guess.”
The event is named in honor of Dr. Clemont Austria and his wife Jean and is sponsored by the Austria family.
Reach Karen Rase at 937-502-4534.