Meet Christwood Residents

Ruth Bienvenu

Resident since 2017

Originating from the southside of Chicago, Ruth Bienvenu relocated to New Orleans in the ‘70s while working for American Airlines. Once here in Louisiana, Ruth and her husband, Gary, became active in the volunteer circle in the community. Gary volunteered at a food bank, and she volunteered at a thrift shop. Her husband also introduced her to Restore for Habitat for Humanity, where he regularly volunteered until he passed away. She loved the group and decided to join the volunteer team as well.

Read More

Susan Milling

Resident since 2016

As a life-long New Orleanian, Susan Milling has been a staple in the community since the ‘80s, where she lived in Old Covington for over twenty years. In 2016, Susan and her husband, David, moved to Christwood, where she continues her years of service to the community.

Read More

Karen Place

Resident since 2020

Karen Place and her husband, Morris, lived 8 miles from Christwood in Mandeville, Louisiana, where her husband planned to spend the rest of his life at home. Karen, on the other hand, had friends at Christwood and researched the community extensively before convincing Morris to embrace the community lifestyle.

His decision to move to Christwood “was the sweetest thing he did for me,” Karen says. Their house sold in 5 days, and they swiftly moved into a beautiful 3-bedroom cottage with lots of windows and natural light.

Read More

Richard Kilgore 

Resident since 2018

Walking the halls of Christwood Retirement Community, one sees dogs on leashes, an occasional cat in a buggy and sometimes – rarely – a pet bird nestled in a female resident’s hair. But when Richard Kilgore decided to enter the community in September 2018, he made a request that was without precedent. He wasn’t asking to bring a dog or cat, or even a bird. He wanted to bring his honey bees – some 20,000 of them.

A retired Shell Oil engineer, Richard took up beekeeping while living in the Beau Chene subdivision in Mandeville.

Read More

Bob and Jan Carr

Residents Since June 2018

If you watched New Orleans television in the sixties – an era many describe as the golden age – chances are very good you shared a cup of coffee with Bob and Jan Carr by the rooftop pool of the Royal Orleans Hotel.

The young couple’s morning show, Second Cup, on WDSU-TV, dominated its time slot as they interviewed newsmakers of the day and touted upcoming events and performances, hosting visiting celebrities such as Bob Hope, Ann Margaret, Jerry Lewis and Gina Lollobrigida.

“It was an exciting time to be on live television,” Bob remembers. “They gave us free rein, and we made it up as we went along.”

And now, as they approach 70 years of marriage, this couple is still making it up as they go along, treating life as the supreme adventure that it is and having a wonderful time.

Read More

Karen Depp

Resident Since 2019

Karen Depp has moved more than a dozen times in her life, but never before has she thought of relocation as “liberating”. “Moving to a Christwood Lane Cottage is the best thing I could have done,” she says. “I feel liberated here. I have everything I want except the maintenance responsibilities of my former one-and-a-half acres, pool and pond. “I love this place, and I’ve enjoyed making it my own. I couldn’t say no to the place because Christwood said yes to every change I asked for.”

Read More

Steve Gorin

Resident Since 2015 

Steve Gorin, a man of many talents and interests, likes to say his life’s work has been to put disparate parts together to solve problems. However, it is impossible to talk about Steve’s life without mention of his wife Abbye, who died in 2017. “So many things in my life started with my wife,” he readily acknowledges. Steve and Abbye met in 1946 at a U.S.O. function south of Austin, Texas. Abbye was a sophomore at the University of Texas, and Steve was a B-17 pilot in the Army Air Corps. “We hit it off pretty much right away, so I got her number, called and asked her for a date. After three dates, I asked her to marry me and she said yes, and that was the beginning of seventy wonderful years of marriage.”

Read More