Compassionate legacy: Stone Creek Assisted Living

Compassionate legacy: Stone Creek Assisted Living

Anita Kelley, community relations director; Larry Griffin, and Alun Skitt, executive director of Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care, enjoy the new facility.

The new Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care land was once a farm.

 

Almost every footstep brings a memory for Larry Griffin, who was raised on the bygone Griffin Farm. He had chores before and after school.
Griffin is pleased that Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care is now on the southwest corner of NW 178th Street and Western in Oklahoma City because the old farm site continues the compassionate legacy of his family.
Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care opened in late June. The grand opening is set for August 10th from 5-7 p.m. at the complex nearby Edmond.
“We’d love for folks to stop in and see us then, enjoy some entertainment and free food and a chance to look around,” Kelley said.
As an assisted living and licensed community, they are able to help people with bathing, dressing, activities of daily living and medications, said Anita Kelley, community relations director. The complex has 56 rooms in assisted living and 36 in memory care.
The 183-acre Griffin Farm was built in 1905 and was later owned by Griffin’s parents, Melvin and Anna Mae Griffin. Larry still lives nearby the Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care where he is a frequent visitor. The original white two-story farm house was removed in 1958, Griffin said.
“We tore down that house and it had square nails in it,” Griffin said.
His parents bought the farm in the late 1920s and Larry, two sisters and his parents lived in the house until 1958.
“My dad taught me responsibility. He taught me a work ethic,” Griffin said.
If he did something wrong, his dad would ask him what he learned from his mistake.
Two productive oil wells were constructed on the property in 1958 and the family built another house.
“But my dad was such a giver he used money to help people,” Griffin continued. “He helped his two brothers through college and helped his mom and his sister. He used all that money he got every month to help people out.”
“In fact when he died, people came to me and told me — some of them were crying with tears and said, ‘Your dad helped us out when we were in trouble,’” Griffin said.
A few years following 1958 Griffin brought his dad a royalty check, but Melvin tore it up and said, “No. God gave me those wells. I didn’t have to work for them. You keep that money and keep going,” Griffin recalled.
“He was a giver,” Griffin said.
Fifty acres of the farm was wheat. Griffin helped plow the fields, helping his dad. The land under the footprint of Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care was once one of two pastures.
“We had dairy cattle, beef cattle; we had a couple of horses, and I had 35 head of sheep,” Griffin said.
Before July 4 would come, he would help his dad fill buckets of water to place in the back of the family pick-up. Always at the corner people would shoot rockets and fireworks.
“They’d set the grass on fire,” Griffin said. “So we’d have to go down there and beat it up. And if it got out of hand we’d have to call the fire department.”
His dad always plowed back for or five feet to ward off grass fires at one side of the pasture.
Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care now has neighborhoods nearby where Griffin would run around as a boy.
“I got to talking to my dad for a month and a half before he died. He had cancer and was 90,” Griffin said. “He gave my sister and I this farm. I tried to get him to sell it years ago and move to Edmond. He wouldn’t do it. He said, ‘I’m going to die here on this farm.’”
Griffin told his dad they would do something nice with the farm. Twenty acres at the corner was already zoned for commercial use. His dad always prepared for the future. His dad gave three acres to Trinity Christian Church to build the church on Edmond Road before he died in 2004. Griffin’s mom died 11 months later.
Larry Griffin is retired now. After leaving the farm he attended the University of Oklahoma for two years, but was drafted to join the war effort in Vietnam. He was gone for a year and returned to work on the farm. And he continued his education at then-Central State College (UCO) and earned a marketing degree. He worked at a medical company for three years before he was hired to be a hospital manager. Soon Griffin became a regional hospital manager over five states for 29 years before he retired in 2008.
His wife Sharla passed away ten years ago, but he still has three adult children. His daughter is 30 and his two sons are 40 and 43.
Today, he says the Stone Creek Assisted Living and Memory Care is a beautiful place.
“Like I said, My sister and I were going to have nice things along here along these 20 acres,” he said. “This will be very nice.”

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