LeClear opens Young at Heart in Wolfforth
Debbie LeClear, center, is the owner of Young at Heart, a new assisted living facility in the Frenship Community. Also pictured is Donald Williams, left, a resident, and Myrna Williams, his wife. (Photo by Sara Ortega)
Former Covenant and University Medical Center nurse Debbie LeClear recently opened Young at Heart, an assisted living community located on 808 Main St. in Wolfforth. LeClear, who has 35 years of nursing experience, loves working with the elderly and always hoped to start her own business. A small twist of fate placed LeClear right at the front door of her dreams.
How long have you been working in the nursing field?
“I’ve been in nursing around 34 to 35 years I guess and I’ve only worked three places. I worked in New Mexico for 16 years at Presbyterian Hospital System, then I worked at Covenant for 15 years, and then I was a nurse director at UMC for about three years. The elderly have always been my passion. I just love to be around elderly people. So, I just quit there and started this business three months ago.”
What made you decide this was the time for you to start your business?
Well, I was driving down the road with a Realtor — my son was looking for a house out in the country — and I was talking to the realtor and he asked me what I did and I told him but I said, ‘You know what I really like is I want to try to find an assisted living (facility),’ and he said, ‘Well you know what, I’ve got one right up the road.’ So I came up here, walked in and said, ‘This is what I want.’ So I resigned at my position at UMC and now I’m out here.”
Former occupation: nurse director, UMC
Location: Young at Heart, 808 Main Street, Wolfforth
What makes your assisted living facility different from the others?
“Well it’s four large suites with a living room, bedroom, a little kitchen area with a microwave and a refrigerator and each one of them has their own bathroom. Huge bathrooms, so we have five bathrooms out here. What I really love is that it’s like couples, a man and their wife. It would be perfect for them because we have huge rooms. I always do lots of activities, outings, take them to their appointments, and run errands for them. We have a little beauty shop that I’ve already hired a beautician to come out. I always like to say that this is their home, whatever they want they always have choices. I’ve always worked at places where a lot of time, at nursing homes or assisted living, its not really like their home they’re being told what to do. This is their home. I’m a guest in their home.”
What has this meant for you personally to achieve one of your dreams?
“I like it. I miss being around people, but I’ve joined an organization called LORCH. It’s an organization in Lubbock with all the people that own assisted living (facilities) so we share ideas. So it’s been really hard because I ran one of the busiest floors at UMC, I ran a 40-bed unit, and this has slowed way down and I’m still in fast-paced mode all the time. I like it because I’m finally doing something that I’ve wanted to do. I’ve looked years and years for assisted living and it’s always fallen through, or somebody’s bought it or I didn’t like it and this was just meant for me to be here. I never even come to Wolfforth, and just to walk in and know that this was the place for me, I want to let the old patients keep their dignity and respect and let them have choices and not to take away their choices.”
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