Lifestyle Reader Contributed

Old Guard Adapts to COVID Challenges

Old Guard member Tom Trumble introduces Mark Vasington, (seated), the CEO of Hartford Habitat for Humanity, to a recent meeting of the Old Guard. Old Guard members work on Habitat building projects and at their ReStore facility in Bloomfield. Courtesy photo

Members of the Old Guard, are continuing to engage with each other and the West Hartford and Greater Hartford community.


The Old Guard resumed in-person meetings in September after a year of virtual meetings only. Fourteen regular meetings were held at Westminster Presbyterian Church through the holiday season, featuring a wide range of presenters, from University of Hartford varsity basketball coach, the town manager of West Hartford, the son of one of Eisenhower’s Monuments Men, to the CEO of Connecticut Foodshare.

Seating spacing was set to comply with indoor COVID recommendations and members wore face masks as well.  Beginning Jan. 4, 2022, meetings will resume with a broad and interesting roster of presentations.

As a result of experience with virtual meetings for the past year, meetings early in 2022 are being held via Zoom, and 69 members attended the first meeting of the year on Jan. 4.

While there were many varied challenges during their working lives, the retired members of the Old Guard have adapted to the COVID pandemic as everyone else. This feature has even enabled some members who moved to other states to continue their membership and participation in meetings, gathering with their peers. The educational (growing) part of the Old Guard has been able to resume with these regular meetings and activities.

One aspect of the Old Guard experience has remained unchanged – giving. Members have contributed their means and their talents to an assortment of community services: delivering Meals on Wheels, support of the Salvation Army, 40 members staffing the kettle at the West Hartford Post Office on LaSalle Road, organizing food donations at Connecticut Foodshare, and helping to build residences with Habitat for Humanity. Significant financial contributions continued for the Salvation Army and the West Hartford YMCA campaigns and Old Guard members contribute leadership to the West Hartford Senior Jobs Bank.

While the opportunity for social interactions in the community have lessened due to Covid restrictions, members of the Old Guard have enjoyed the opportunity to meet within health guidelines.

New members are welcome to join the organization throughout the year. Additional information about the Old Guard is available at their web site: ctoldguard.org or from Membership Chairman Ron Robinson, [email protected].

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