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Glen Broombaugh makes a comeback

After three years learning how to play the hammered dulcimer, assisted living resident Glen Broombaugh had a stroke and has spent the past 11 months gaining back most of what he lost last August. Now, he’s pushing himself outside his comfort zone to share his talent with others.

Glen’s interest in the hammered dulcimer developed over many years when he had seen the instrument in Branson.

“I was about 82 years old and my cousin had a hammered dulcimer she wanted to sell so I bought it and didn’t know a thing about it,” said Glen.

Over time, Glen discovered a lady who teaches the hammered dulcimer, and he took lessons from her for about three years.

“Then, about a year ago, I had a stroke and lost everything. I had to start over again on learning to play. So now I’m just getting to remember some of the things I had been taught. I would consider my playing as a pretty good beginner. And now I’m just beginning to come out of my shell,” said Glen.

Word got out that Glen can play, and he’s been asked to entertain diners during the evening meal.

“They want me to play more,” said Glen. “So, this is pushing me to relearn and improve on my playing. They think I’m pretty good, but it’s kind of a struggle. I wanted to push myself into playing more.”

Glen has also gotten back into painting and has shared those talents with us through the Art is Ageless® competition.

“I took some art classes in college, and I always promised myself when I couldn’t do anything else, I would do some painting. So, I’ve been doing a little bit of painting and entered one in this year’s AiA show.”

Glen enjoys painting scenes and landscapes, such as a cold, snowy winter or the view from a mountain in Crawford County where his dad was born. “It turned out really well. And I made one of the hills and trees. That’s the kind of thing I like to do.”

Glen has always been good with his hands. He is a retired teacher who taught industrial arts, woodworking, drafting and metal work to high school students for 30 years. Glen was married to Claudia, a teacher who taught special education, for 58 years before she passed away seven years ago. They raised five children and have 22 grandchildren and 23 great-grandchildren.

Glen moved to Presbyterian Manor before Christmas in 2018 and is enjoying life without the project to-do list.

“The people here are just great, and the campus surprised me. It’s just really nice. I don’t want to go back home because I had too many things that needed to be done there. Everything is taken care of here. I’m really enjoying being here. This is just like being on vacation.”

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