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Concordia Retirement Center Resident Organizes Clothing Drive for Tornado Victims

Howard Groves Actively Serving His Local Community into His 90s

GROVES HowardBELLA VISTA, Ark. (May 27, 2014) – Howard Groves doesn’t let any grass grow under his feet.

A member of Concordia Retirement Center’s “90 Year Club,” Groves works out three times a week, plays golf and helps others in need.

When Vilonia was ravaged by a level-4 tornado in late April, Groves – a Magnolia native – immediately wanted to start a collection drive to help the victims.

Residents of Concordia Retirement Center’s independent living community donated food, blankets and clothing during a one-week collection drive.

“Our residents responded in an overwhelming way. All the items filled my Blazer to the brim,” said Concordia Activities Director Sharon Bettis. “We had a tremendous response here to help the victims in southern Arkansas.”

Enthusiastic about helping others, Groves was ready to drive the collected goods down to Vilonia himself. Bettis, however, took the items to a drop-off collection spot in Fayetteville.

Patti Poulides, assistant activities director, said the native Arkansan is dedicated to helping others. “Howard is a true Southern gentleman,” Poulides said. “He really feels for his state and if something will help fellow Arkansans, he’s the first in line to help.”

Groves initially approached Concordia Marketing Director Linda Woollett about the idea, not long after the tornado occurred. “It doesn’t surprise us that Howard spearheaded this effort,” Woollett said. “He is one of our greatest ambassadors, always showing how much he cares for others.”