New Street Name Honors Former Abernethy Laurels Chaplain and Administrator and His Family

Lee Syria, CEO of United Church Homes and Services, with Edith Grimes on the newly-dedicated Grimes Lane.

On Saturday, Nov. 9, United Church Homes and Services unveiled a new street sign and dedicated it in memory of the Rev. Van D. Grimes, his wife, Edith Grimes, and his family. Grimes served on the staff of United Church Homes and Services in 1983, and as chaplain at Abernethy Laurels (then, Abernethy Center) and administrator (1984-1990).

“Grimes Lane is located in the Village at Abernethy Laurels and will serve as an emergency entrance as needed,” said Lee Syria, CEO of United Church Homes and Services. “All streets within the community are named for past leaders as a tribute to their service and dedication to the organization. It is with heartfelt gratitude that we recognize the Grimes family and are pleased to dedicate Grimes Lane.”

Grimes, from Thomasville, N.C., was a graduate of UCC-related Catawba College in Salisbury, N.C., and Lancaster (Pa.) Theological Seminary. He served churches in Lexington, Conover and Claremont, N.C. During his service with United Church Homes and Services and Abernethy Laurels, Grimes was responsible for expanding the residential living areas of the community. In addition to his commitment to the organization, his wife Edith served as a member and secretary of the original Board of Directors of United Church Homes and Services. Currently, Edith Grimes is a member of the organization’s Foundation board and a member of its Legacy Committee.

United Church Homes & Services (UCHS), a not-for-profit corporation located in Newton, N.C., operates three continuing care retirement communities, a PACE (Program for All-inclusive Care for the Elderly), and seven affordable senior housing communities across North Carolina and Virginia. Learn more about United Church Homes & Services.

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CHHSM Board and Staff are grieved to learn of the death of our friend and colleague, Greg Watson, who died in October 2022. Greg was vice president of operations for Embrace Living Communities, based in Oak Brook, Ill.Greg was a graduate of CHHSM’s Nollau Leadership Institute, class of 2018-2019, and was consecrated as a Diakonal Minister during our 2019 Annual Gathering in Chicago. In an article about his class in June 2018 — not long after the group’s first retreat — Greg said, “The best part is not only beginning the process of clarifying your calling; but also, understanding and accepting one’s personal strength. Recognition of one’s ‘true' self enables us to serve from a place of wholeness.”Greg also served on the CHHSM Board of Directors, and was a beloved friend and colleague to many in the CHHSM family. Embrace Living stated on its website, “Greg was an outstanding servant leader for 17 years at Embrace Living Communities. He will be greatly missed.”CHHSM sends its prayers and love to Greg’s friends, family, and Embrace Living colleagues. ... See MoreSee Less
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