Senior Project Highlight: Hannah Grubbs

By Hannah Grubbs
January 24, 2023

Many of you have already undergone the grueling process of senior projects. Many of you are just starting out and the rest of you have this to look forward to! Although this project prevents you from getting the right amount of sleep and sometimes gives you a sore back and eyes from the amount of books you have to carry and look at, when it’s done, it’s extremely satisfying. All the accumulated research and planning put together in one cohesive place. And not to mention, you’re just done with it all.

But sometimes it can be a little anticlimactic. You might wonder, “Well what was all of this effort for? Just a grade? Who does this even impact?” While you might have a chance to present this project in front of your faculty and a few friends and peers, why should it stop there?

This semester (and beyond) the Northerner wants to partner with you and share your senior project! You have done an amazing job and it deserves to be appreciated. Starting out, I will be highlighting my own project (this seems a little arrogant to pick my own, but hey, gotta start somewhere right…). And if you or anyone you know has a senior project that needs to be shared, let us know by emailing ncunortherner@gmail.com.

Project Title: Ohman Family Living – The Story of Where it All Began

Project Format: Book, Script, Wallpaper

Description: My grandparents started a nursing home business over 60 years ago and the stories that they have are endless. I grew up hearing them all and hearing that they should write them all down. I took my project to do just that, detailing how it all started, where the business is know, where they are now, and all the stories in between. The book was the main portion of the project, along with a marketing piece composed of a script for a potential video and promotional wallpapers to put up in the buildings.

Excerpt from the book: “In 1964, the Ohman Brass was playing at Pinebrook Bible Conference, which was held in the Poconos Mountains for a week. The conference was led by Dr. Percy B. Crawford, founder and president of Kings College and founder of Youth on the March television program. Chuck, George’s older brother and Ohman Brass trumpeter, was talking with a couple at lunch while Joan was with the kids. George eventually came over to join the conversation and recognized the couple as he had met them a year prior in Florida. They were Bob and Janice Copeland from Bucks County, Pennsylvania. George asked Bob what line of work he was in. Bob said that he was in the nursing home ministry and that he and Joan should get into it. George thought that was strange for Bob to say but nonetheless told Joan and Chuck. He thought that Bob might’ve known about Bill, George’s other brother who had Multiple Sclerosis. This conversation was the first plant in their hearts and minds that quickly grew into further investigation.

Two weeks later, George and Joan were up in Montrose, Pennsylvania with George’s father. They discussed whether or not the nursing home ministry was their calling from the Lord. George’s father said it would be an honorable thing to do. And next thing you know, George and Joan made phone calls to find out about the specific rules and regulations in Ohio for nursing homes. It definitely didn’t happen overnight, but slowly and surely the Ohman nursing homes began. George and Joan looked at different properties and discussed more with Bob. During this whole process, they were constantly in prayer and asking the Lord because they knew this would be a full-time life service. Many people questioned them along the way. “What do you know about running a nursing home?” There was a certain amount of discouragement from anyone who knew what they were doing. George would answer their questions, that they knew nothing, zero, didn’t even know a nurse. Except that he did know something. Before the nursing home ministry, George and his brothers owned a bookstore, so he knew how to run a business. Secondly, George thought he was being prepared through the elderly congregation of his dad’s church. He would often drive separately to church to pick up the ole’ spinsters, loving their conversations along the way. And lastly, the Lord was preparing George and Joan through George’s brother Bill. George had been caring for Bill for years, driving him to and from work, helping him up and down the stairs to his apartment, all with Joan’s support. While they hadn’t had any technical experience in this business, the Lord gave them tools and different experiences to prepare for this specific ministry.

After looking around the Geauga County area for a property, Bob’s partner found a home in Middlefield off 608 on Durkee Hill. The property overlooked a country club and had a great view from the living room. It was a pie-shaped property with holly bushes lining the hill, hence the name Holly Hill. The man who owned it before was a taxman who went bankrupt, so the bank took his house. George and Joan purchased the home in 1965 at $25,000, helped by the selling of their book store to Zondervan book company.

As soon as the purchase and the deed went through, George went to work on the house, tearing down walls to move the kitchen and overall fixing up the place. The garage was where George and Joan and their family of three at the time made their living quarters, really just big enough to sleep in. They had a tiny little room for their kids, George Jr., Andy, and Nancy, composed of a bunk bed with a trundle underneath that was as wide as the tiny little room they shared. George and Joan had a sofa bed of their own where they slept every night. It was small but cozy.

The house itself had four bedrooms and was licensed to take care of nine people. They bought hospital beds from Yuron Hospital as it was closing. They cut down the beds because they were so tall and painted them green instead of the normal cold colors of the hospital. George and Joan kept up this decorative homey spirit throughout the rest of the home with beautiful curtains and furniture creating a home-like atmosphere and presence within the home. The living room was quite a good size, overlooking the blueberry and holly bushes along the road with a fireplace warming the room. They had an in-ground swimming pool out front. Bill was the first to use it for therapy.

George and Joan hired nurses to administer the medication but the rest they did on their own. From the cooking to the cleaning to the finances, they started, worked, and ran a whole business together.”

Take a look at nursing home from Ohio!