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Ken & Gretchen Roose



Ken and Gretchen Roose continued to have two other homes when they first moved to Kendal at Oberlin: their summer cottage in Michigan and a place in Florida. As Gretchen pointed out, transitions continue throughout life. They were fortunate to be able to enjoy the richness of travel and the comfort of home in more than one place.


One of the first projects that these founders took on was building the Kendal at Oberlin soft surface tennis courts. Ken worked with Bill Renfrow to make sure that Kendal at Oberlin would have its own courts. Ken coached the tennis team at Oberlin College twice when the regular coach was on sabbatical leave. To this day tennis has remained close to his heart.


Gretchen has, since the beginning, been involved with the Kendal at Oberlin library. It is fun to see the new donations as they arrive. She now focuses on the paperbacks and sorts and coordinates which one goes where. Some people may see paperbacks as the “poor cousins” in the book world, but thanks to their compact size and light weight they can make a huge difference as we get older and need large print.


Just this summer the Rooses had another major transition as the family closed up the cottage for the last time and put it up for sale. Their second daughter took pictures of everything large and small before the contents were disbursed both to various family members who had the desire, need or space for various items, and to charities that would find a good home for the remaining things. It was fun for everyone to look at the pictures and share their memories of special times.


A celebration that occurred at their cottage on special anniversary years was a party where the children and grandchildren put on a show and everyone gathered to sing favorite old songs and songs created just for the occasion. This year, with the sale of the cottage, Ken, Gretchen and their children moved the celebration to Kendal at Oberlin and opened it up to the entire Kendal community.

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