Iowa Visitor Identifies Needs, Lends Helping Hand Throughout Park
by Rocio Villalobos
Sue Bartlett understands what it means to be a friend. Ever since deciding to escape the harsh winter of Eldon, Iowa, at Alamo’s Acacia RV & MH Park three years ago, she has forged friendships with her neighbors who she now considers family.
“I lost my husband in 2016 and was unsure whether or not to buy this place and come down,” Bartlett said. “But when I came to this Park, everyone made me feel right at home.”
Bartlett is a retired post-office supervisor and worked alongside her local fire department as an EMT a few years beyond that. Now she uses her helpful spirit to serve others at her Park.
“I get more in my heart from helping people than people really realize you get,” she said. “It comes back to you.”
From taking those in need to their doctors’ appointments to helping them make a meal in their homes, Bartlett is glad to help. Others, who can, also join in, taking rotations.
“It depends what the need is and it also gives me something to do to pass my time,” Bartlett said.
And despite lacking expert training, she does what she can to help anyone struggling in an entirely different way.
“A lot of people come to me with their computer or phone not knowing how to work something,” Bartlett said. “I don’t think I’m so good at computers, but in comparison, I guess I am good.
While the circumstances of this year have led fewer Winter Texans to travel down, leaving about 14 households in the park this season, Bartlett helps make the most of the situation by helping plan safe activities everyone can enjoy.
“We are having an ice-cream social once a month, and every Sunday we have coffee together,” she said. “We’re starting to do a few things in the Recreation Hall but have to get permission ahead of time.”
Her caring demeanor has led to another hobby. In the downtime Bartlett has to spare, she enjoys gardening and keeps a shed full of the necessary tools, including an incubator to help her flowers grow from seed.
She also shares this passion with others, planting flowers around the Park and for her neighbors to add just a little more brightness to their lives.