John Hatch was a familiar face here at Schreiber in the past few years. H was a neighbor, whose Homestead Village villa was close enough to our campus that he could hear of the squeals of the kids playing on the playground.
When Schreiber and Homestead talked about starting a new intergenerational program to bring residents into the center to volunteer, John took the lead on Homestead’s end.
When the women who organize the annual Homestead Village Mother’s Day Jewelry Sale wanted a man to join their effort, John raised his hand.
When a group from Homestead attended our annual gala two years ago, John reserved the table.
In every case, he was a gracious, gentlemanly presence.
We hadn’t seen him much recently, though. We heard a little more than a year ago that he had received a difficult medical diagnosis.
Last week, we learned he had passed. His loving wife Louise stopped in to tell us and to share a few memories as she looked through some of our archives to check details about his connection to Schreiber.
As Louise already knew, it was a long, faithful connection.
John came to Lancaster in 1976. He moved here as the director of purchasing for Howmet Aluminum, later Alcoa and now Arconic Mill Products, according to his obituary.
By 1979, he had joined the board of directors for what was then the Lancaster County chapter of Easter Seals. By the early ’80s, he was leading the fundraising for the organization and was a key player in launching Buck-A-Cup and the Rubber Duckie Race as major community fundraisers. In 1985, he was named president of the board of directors.
After his time on the board ended, and after Schreiber became an independent nonprofit, John continued to stay involved with the center for another 30 years.
It would be difficult to find a more dedicated servant for Schreiber. We will miss him.
Rest well, John.
Another Arconic connection. Back in September, four Penn State Harrisburg engineering students approached us looking for a senior capstone project. Two of the students had been interns at Arconic in the summer of 2018 when they joined a group of Arconic employees who visited Schreiber on a volunteer day.
After talking with Schreiber Occupational Therapist Bernie Hershey, the students decided to modify a therapy bike and fit it with variable resistance.
The students brought their first version of the bike to Schreiber in February. After taking time to refine their concept and make adjustments, they brought in the completed bike last week. Owen Hull, a Schreiber kiddo who took the first bike out for a spin, was here again to greet the students and test out the final product.
Thanks again to Nicole Linke, Cody Mackanick, Michael Ruch and Andrew Saienni for their creative work on behalf of Schreiber. Nicole and Michael graduated and had jobs waiting for them.
We’d like to think that John Hatch would be pleased.