Many know Meri Baskin as the lovely “towel folding” lady at Beach Cities Health District’s (BCHD) Center for Health & Fitness.
As a self-proclaimed “Air Force brat,” Meri was used to moving from state to state every three to four years during her childhood. Each time her family moved, she had to settle in and make new friends, which was never too difficult for her. However, when she moved to Redondo Beach three years ago to be near her sister Pattie, Meri realized that making friends in the busy South Bay wasn’t so easy. To make matters worse, Meri’s health wasn’t the best – her diabetes was out of control and she had a broken foot.
With a need to get out the house, make friends and get her health back on track, Meri started looking for a gym to join and immediately liked the Center for Health & Fitness. There she found an opportunity to not only become a gym member, but also a volunteer.
What makes Meri so special is that when her shift ends at the gym at around 9 p.m., she escorts women from the gym to their cars. She explains, “I was a cop for all my working life and I just wasn’t comfortable seeing the ladies walk alone from the gym to their cars in the dark.”
Alejandra Sierra, Volunteer Services Associate at BCHD said, “Meri does an exceptional job getting the towels from the storage room, folding them and keeping them well stocked. She always stays on to make sure everything is clean and tidy for tomorrow’s staff and never has a problem covering any shifts at the last second.”
We thank Meri for her commitment to her volunteer role and for going the extra mile by helping to make others’ lives easier and safer.
Written by Sue Murray, Volunteer Spotlight Writer