Senior centers in Abilene open doors for first time since March 2020

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ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Doors at Abilene senior centers opened for the first time in more than a year, welcoming in seniors early Monday morning.

The day may have seemed a little chaotic, but for Monie Cortez, it was just another day at the office.

“I used to count the money, give out the color cards when they come through the line,” said Cortez.

Cortez has been volunteering at the Rose Park Senior Center since 1998.

While that would put her at 23 years behind the register, COVID-19 has reduced it to just 22.

The last time Cortez and many people were in the Rose Park Senior Center lobby was March 2020.

“I’ve just been sitting at home, going to the doctor, go to the store and pick up prescriptions, that was about it,” said Cortez.

The doors to the city center were closed and the cars went from being in the parking lot to a line, picking up lunches and getting their five minutes with some of their closest friends.

Beth and Judy used the drive-thru lunch line every week, but this is the first time they’re sitting side by side in more than a year.

“So many people live totally alone, and like, Jimmy Kay lives totally alone, and I do, and some of the other ladies, so, you know, we kind of made each other, you know, our families,” said Beth Paige.

Center staff and volunteers say they are doing everything to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19, requiring masks and sanitizing dining room and public areas.

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