To the editor: This letter is dedicated to the staff and residents of Wingate Residences and other residential assisted living places nationwide in commemoration of National Assisted Living Week, Sept. 12 through 18.

A residential assisted living facility is where faculty and residents work and live side by side. Here residents are fully accepted as individuals and not as nonentities or case numbers. 

A residence where activities are directed to stretch an individual's creativity and intrinsic, inquisitive inspirations whether through the arts or just learning from each other.

A place to restore an individual's sense of pride and faith in oneself and others. A place of hope eternal.

A place to learn new ideologies from all facets of life. A time to say, "I'm here, I exist, I'm not alone. Judge me not — I'm not lost, I'm exploring. I share life's up and downs with my friends. Together, we are one."

Our grateful indebtedness to all staff members for their courtesies, compassion, courage and dedication for their long hours and days in these trying times.

These are true front-line heroes. Staff and residents bonding together equals a winning combination.

Michael J. Amaral, Pittsfield

The author is a resident at Wingate Residences at Melbourne Place.

Jeannie Maschino can be reached at 413-496-6256 or

Community News Editor / Librarian

Jeannie Maschino is community news editor and librarian for The Berkshire Eagle. She has worked for the newspaper in various capacities since 1982 and joined the newsroom in 1989.