4000 Golden Age Drive | Batavia, OH 45103
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You Get What You Give



From L to R: Brian Foreman, Bob Speelman, Joe Barger, Anita Owen, Elizabeth Dreyer


December 21, 2017
NOTE:  This story was taken from the blog of Bob Speelman, owner of Atlas Healthcare Solutions and Batavia Nursing Care Center. Each week Bob works as a nursing assistant in one of his facilities in order to better learn his company's motto - Supporting Superior Care.

My journey as an STNA took me this week to Batavia Nursing Care Center, our 129 bed facility in Batavia, Ohio. Elizabeth Dreyer is the Administrator there and Brian Foreman is the Director of Nursing. Elizabeth and Brian have an amazing supporting cast of caregivers at Batavia and it was encouraging to work along side them for the day. When I arrived at Batavia I was introduced to Anita Owen, the unit manager on the unit which I was going to work. Anita toured me around the unit and introduced me to the residents on the unit as we looked for the STNA who I would be working alongside.

Anita spotted Joe and introduced me to him and we immediately went to work. Joe is 45 years old, a single father of a 16 year old boy, and one of the most caring and compassionate caregivers I’ve ever had the privilege of working with.

As we entered each residents room the residents faces lit up as if their son was there to visit with them. I quickly found out that is exactly how they felt around Joe. Joe was more than someone there to do a job and provide essential care; he is family to them and they were family to him.

To understand this completely you need to know a little about Joe, where he’s come from, and what brought him to Batavia. Joe started working at 12 years old on a farm. Being one of 11 kids, Joe’s father taught them early about a strong work ethic, and with 11 of them everyone needed to do their part.

Joe lost his father to cancer at an early age. When Joe was 19 years old, he drove home one day from a camping trip and noticed an elderly man walking on the side of the road. Cars were honking and swerving at the man, but Joe pulled over to see if he needed a ride. As fate would have it the man was a resident at Batavia Nursing Center, and was out for a walk. Joe got the man in his car and drove him back to the Nursing Center and they hired Joe on the spot. They instantly wanted a great caregiver like Joe!

A few years later Joe joined the Army. After 6 years of service to our country in the Army, Joe came back to Batavia as a nursing assistant and has been there ever since. In 2011 tragedy once again struck Joe, as he lost his mother and sister to cancer within a few weeks of each other. His work with the residents at Batavia Care Center and losing so many loved ones to cancer has led to Joe’s attitude of savoring each and every day he has on this earth. He wants to make a positive difference and he is! The residents at Batavia adore him! But Joe told me that he gets as much as he gives. Not only do the residents see Joe as their son, Joe sees the residents as his moms and dads. He told me he has gotten so much great advice from them.

When I was 5 years old my mother always told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when i grew up. I wrote down “Happy.” They told me I didn’t understand the assignment, and I told them they didn’t understand life.
- John Lennon

Joe – I witnessed happiness yesterday. Happiness that you bring to your family at Batavia and happiness that they bring to you. This lesson is something I could have only experienced from spending time with you. For that I am profoundly grateful. I am a better person because of you.

With Happiness in my heart,


Bob Speelman, STNA

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