In The News
June 17, 2013

Gonzales resident is a Golden Texan awards recipient

By Cedric Iglehart/
Posted June 12, 2013 – 7:57pm

The Texas Health Care Association (THCA) recently announced the results of its first ever Golden Texan Award winners and the list included a Gonzales resident.

Ruby Kapavik, 81, was among the 14 seniors chosed by the association to receive the honor. The THCA announced the results during its first annual Golden Texan Awards program, which recognizes Texas long-term care residents who are living productively engaged and inspiring lives into their 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s and beyond.

These individuals have raised loving families, built successful businesses, served our country, and given back to their communities. Despite age and the ailments that come with it, these Texans continue to demonstrate compassion, thoughtfulness, resourcefulness and an entrepreneurial spirit.

“I was proud to receive the honor because I really think of this place as my second home,” said Kapavik, who lives at The Heights of Gonzales. “Everybody is real nice to me and the people here are like my second family.”

Kapavik, a Gonzales native, has been living at the facility for the better part of the last three years. She had been married to her husband, Ernest Kapavik, since June of 1950. Her husband passed away six years ago and Kapavik chose to move into The Heights permanently after rehabbing there following hip surgery.

“I decided to stay because I feel safe here and everybody is so nice,” she said. “All of my children are married and they all have jobs that keep them very busy. This way I can get the care that I need.”

A mother of ten children, Kapavik also has 23 grandchildren and nine great grandchildren with another on the way. She is a longtime member of St. James Catholic Church, where she used to call the Bingo games.

“I attend everything that involves my family,” Kapavik said. “My kids take turns to make sure that I always go to church. They all come to see me here.”

Kapavik said that despite her limited physical condition, she still finds way to remain active.

“There’s a great many things I can still do, but I get tired after many hours,” she explained. “That’s why I think it’s better that I stay here. I’m going to keep going as long as I can.”

Kapavik’s second eldest child, Josie Tomas, said her mother has not missed a beat since she decided to take up permanent residence at The Heights.

“Mom doesn’t miss anything that the family does,” said Tomas. “She’s there to support us in everything from the kids’ birthdays to any baptisms or confirmations. She participates and we’re very proud of her that she was chosen for this award because it certainly fits her.”

“She is very happy here at The Heights. She can come and go as she pleases and knows she can get a good sleep here every night. She’s very happy with her care here and satisfied with everything they’ve done for her.”

The other award winners named included:

• Beatrice Arredondo, Buena Vida Nursing and Rehabilitation Center of San Antonio

• Ulus Bailey, Heritage House of Marshall

• Mary Carson, Buena Vida Nursing and Rehabilitation Center of San Antonio

• Melvin Brewer, The Vintage Retirement Community & Health Care Center

• Leo Gamblin, Retama Manor Victoria

• Louie Hall, Southwest Nursing Rehab Center of Fort Worth

• Ronald Jenkins, Rowlett Health and Rehab

• Constance Parker, Heritage House of Marshall

• JD Slack, Heritage House of Marshall

• Ida Slone, Heritage House of Marshall

• James Wester, Ennis Care Center

• Reagan Wilkins, Heritage House of Marshall

• William Williamson, Retirement and Nursing Center of Austin

SOURCE: Gonzales Cannon
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