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SIU alumni share memories of former cook now with dementia

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June freeman SIU

CARBONDALE (WSIL) -- Sometimes we'll never know the impact that we have on someone's life. But one woman is getting to hear about just that from former Southern Illinois University students.

June Freeman worked as a cook for the Delta Chi House from 1985 to 1992 when she suffered a stroke that forced her to quit.

June now has dementia and thought she was living back in those days, so her granddaughter Jennifer Glodo decided to do something about it.

Glodo, who works in healthcare, reached out to the former fraternity brothers to tell them about "June Bug" reliving that time at SIU in her mind.

June was recently in the hospital and then transferred to Manor Court of Carbondale for her care. As with many long-term care facilities, visits are only allowed through the windows and Jennifer wanted to do something to cheer her grandma up.

She hoped the men could write little notes to uplift her spirits, but they went above and beyond to show just how much they care.

Altogether 37 former Delta Chi's put together a Christmas video for June sharing their fond memories.

Some of those included having an extra breakfast set aside for one of the boys who always overslept, making birthday cakes and tasty Italian Beef sandwiches, giving out advice, and cleaning up after food fights.

Most importantly many of the alums said she was a mother figure who watched over them while at their home away from home.

In addition to the video, some sent Christmas cards to June as well.

Jennifer says her grandma remembered some of the familiar faces and watching the video brought her back to life.

She stood outside watching from the window while June got to see the video and a worker inside recorded June's reaction.

You can watch the whole video here.

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