We Are Thankful for Maribel’s Gift
Thanksgiving is a time of reflection. A time to take stock of the good graces bestowed up us. And a time to remember just how fortunate we truly are.
At SRI Management, we are thankful and are fortunate for the more than 1,200 team members we have caring for our residents. Their jobs — and passion — don’t start at nine in the morning or end at five in the afternoon. This dedicated team makes what we do possible.
In The Colonnade at Carrollwood, one of our Tampa communities, Executive Director Maribel Vazquez helps nearly make all things possible for her Assisted Living community residents. She’s a local hero of sorts.
Without a cape or superhero getup, she walks the halls and speaks to each resident by name. She knows their backstory; they know hers. Maribel is present in each moment and in each interaction because she cares.
Maribel has a gift.
This gift is a genuine love of people, wrapped in empathy tied neatly with a bow of pure curiosity. To say she cares about people is an understatement. People, specifically her residents and her immediate family, are what make her whole.
But there’s another gift. A gift so precious, so delicate only the recipient can truly understand its importance.
It’s the gift of life.
In 2020, Maribel’s brother needed a kidney transplant. Without it, the impossible would happen. Maribel’s brother, Tomas, would die.
She volunteered to be a donor and on October 1, 2020, under the bright lights of an operating room and a scalpel, she gave Tomas what he needed the most: Turning the impossible into the possible with a second chance in life.
A little over a year has passed since the transplant, and the two are in good spirits and good health. They were close before the surgery, but now the two are literally and figuratively inseparable. And they wouldn’t have it any other way.
Maribel and Tomas have much to be grateful for this Thanksgiving. Maribel knows there could have been an empty chair around the dinner table if she didn’t give her gift to Tomas.
But Maribel wouldn’t have it any other way.
To view a video about Maribel and Tomas, click https://vimeo.com/647754979