Resident Spotlight: The Arnold’s

By Sarah Sexton | Publish Date May 19, 2022

This Spring our resident spotlight is our not-so-new couple, the Arnolds! They recently moved into a beautiful two-bedroom grand apartment in our Mountainview building, but they are not new to Kirkwood at all! Patsy and Joe have been volunteering at Kirkwood for over 15 years now. Patsy blesses us with her gift of playing the piano for a myriad of events on Kirkwood’s campus, including, our weekly worship service! Joe has been around as well, providing moral support for Patsy’s performances, and keeping folks entertained with his charismatic personality.


Patsy is from Holcomb, Mississippi, and she is the youngest and now, only living of 12 children. She graduated from Mississippi College with a BA in Religious Studies and has a minor in Piano. After graduation, she began working for Highland Baptist Church in Mt. Laurel. Joe is originally from Trinity, Texas but he moved to Mississippi in 1958 – working in oil – and met Patsy there while she was working for the church. They quickly fell in love and got married and soon after, they moved to Birmingham in 1964 and had two daughters. Patsy taught piano for 55 years and Joe started a business manufacturing equipment for the natural gas industry. Their daughters now live in New York and Kentucky and they have 3 grandchildren. In their time in Birmingham, the Arnolds have found joy and purpose in serving the Lord at their church, McElwain Baptist Church (recently renamed Hope Community Church). Of course, living in sweet home Alabama, they enjoy cheering for Saturday football before heading to Sunday church. Their favorite team is the Crimson Tide and after Joe’s retirement, he had the exciting (and perhaps at times difficult) job of being Nick Saban’s personal driver! The Arnold’s also cheer for Baylor and SMU, as that is where their daughters graduated from. They have lived at Kirkwood for a few months now and are loving it! Patsy says her favorite thing is the staff and residents because they are so loving and welcoming.


Joe and Patsy bring so much light and life to our community. On any given day, you can find Patsy practicing her piano in the Chapel or on the baby grand in her apartment, and you can find Joe watching Alabama football and making everyone around him laugh! We are thankful to have this wonderful couple as part of our Kirkwood Family.


The Residents

Our residents come from different backgrounds and bring their unique qualities, talents, and life experiences to complete the Kirkwood community. Here are just a few reflections from some individuals who call Kirkwood their home.

I fell in love with the cottage and the view from my back porch. I am excited to have a yard for Ginger, my poodle, to play in and my own garage, all within an established retirement community!

Charlotte Hamilton Current Resident

My husband and I looked at a number of places when deciding to move to a retirement community. For the most part, we found communities that said, ‘We’re going to take care of you.’ But Kirkwood was different. It wasn’t just about taking care of us. It was also about having fun, having friends, and living life to the fullest. The attitude at Kirkwood was positive and the atmosphere was comforting. We simply couldn’t resist. Without a doubt, the location was ideal. The Cahaba Room that overlooks the river, the mountains, the trails – there were just so many things about life. The community was lively. It was alive.

Alice Brooks Current Resident

We realized we were approaching an age where we might need more assistance than what just downsizing could provide. Knowing we have my sons nearby and the levels of care should we need it is comforting, and the beautiful hillside, river, and the woods makes it that much more appealing. We don’t know of any other community that has the woods, the various levels of care, and so many different amenities.

Phyllis and John Guschke Current Residents

We were moving my parents down from the Cleveland area to be near us. I looked at almost every retirement place in the Birmingham area. The second I turned into Kirkwood’s drive and drove up the hill, I knew that I’d found the perfect place for my parents to live in Alabama. In the six years that my parents have been at Kirkwood, I have always felt nothing but love and helpfulness from every staff member. Everyone is always helpful with a pleasant attitude. You can truly see and feel the family atmosphere. I’m happy that my parents can call Kirkwood their home.

Brenda Sheehan Kirkwood family member

When we learned that Cedar Ridge was being developed, that seemed to fit our needs very well. It is the ideal place for the next phase of our retirement.

Carol and Arthur Stephens Current Residents

One thing that we feel is very important here at Kirkwood by the River is the relationship that we have between the staff and the residents. They are dedicated to making our life here as safe and secure and pleasurable as possible. That goes a long way.

Fred Rogers Current Resident

The community's cottage living surrounded by a wooded, natural environment with access to future healthcare services is what attracted us to Kirkwood!

Rick and Jane Ricketts Current Residents