Allegheny Valley Resident Goes From Knee Replacement to Retirement Apartment – And Has Never Been Happier


JoAnn Paulenda had been familiar with Concordia at Cabot for most of her life. Between being a member at nearby John Huss Lutheran Church and visiting friends and loved ones, she had been to the campus a number of times. In 2011, after having both knees replaced at the age of 70, she became the person that friends and family visited, as she spent six weeks in the Lund Care Center rehabilitating.

While recovering, JoAnn, a retired secretary for the New Kensington-Arnold School District, started thinking about the big house she had in Arnold, with its stairs and lawn and maintenance and upkeep. She asked the nurse, half jokingly, how she could move to Concordia. The next day, Havens Admissions Counselor Peggy Trettel knocked on her door.

“The only retirement community I knew much about was so expensive that I thought I would never be able to afford any of them,” JoAnn said. “After talking to Peggy about everything, I felt so much better. She didn’t sell me, she just explained the costs, and they worked.”

JoAnn took the next year and a half to get her house ready to sell, while looking at future apartments and evaluating her current expenses. When she saw how much she was spending on home maintenance, lawn care, utilities and the like, she was shocked.

“I tell people my age, look at what you’re spending to stay in your house. Look at how much time it takes you to do things yourself, while you could be doing something you enjoy. Look at the toll these things take on your health. Do yourself a favor and call Concordia,” she said.

JoAnn said she has a number of “favorite things” about her new life at Concordia, but among the top are:

1) Feeling safe and secure
2) The new friends she’s made
3) The trips and events
4) Being carefree

When touring the apartment that she would eventually call home, she walked in, looked out the balcony, took a breath and said “this is it, this will be my apartment.” Peggy laughed and asked if she at least wanted to see the kitchen first.

JoAnn smiled and replied, “Why? I’m retired. The dining room downstairs looked nice… I won’t be using my kitchen very much!”

For more information or to schedule a tour at any of Concordia’s worry-free retirement communities in Pittsburgh, Cabot or Copley, OH, visit the Retirement Living section of our website. For general information, call our administrative headquarters at 1-888-352-1571.

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