Shrewsbury | Briefs

Senior Center celebrates new van, outreach coordinator

The town’s Council on Aging will celebrate its new service van with a May 25 dedication ceremony that will be coupled with a party to mark the 70th birthday of Walter Rice, the council's outreach coordinator. The Senior Center's previous van was retired after a decade of service, replaced with a new lift-equipped vehicle that was purchased with the help of fund-raising and a state Department of Transportation grant. Rice, who has been with the center since 2000, helps local seniors with transportation as well as with meals programs, home-repair services, and other senior-assistance agencies. “Walter is a senior himself, so he can relate to his peers and vice versa,” said Sharon Yager, the Council on Aging director. “He has personally had to deal with tough issues himself: being a caregiver, having to deal with unexpected job loss when one is so close to retirement . . . so he's walked the walk. He is a visionary who helped start key outreach components.” James O'Brien