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Senior singer, nurse share bond through music

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ISHPEMING, Mich. (WJMN) – Two people are making music together nearly every day. One of them, Lois Westman, a dining assistant at Marquette County Medical Care Facility in Ishpeming. The other, Estella Jarvi, a resident at the facility.

In November, the facility shared a video of the two singing together.

Lois Westman said their style fit perfectly. “As soon as I met her, I loved her instantly.”

With all the challenges of 2020, Estella has stayed positive. “I enjoy all the people who have been so nice to me when I’ve been here. It hasn’t been as hard as I thought it would be.”

Lois says she’s exactly where she’s supposed to be. This friendship has been ongoing for more than a year, but started by accident.

“Last fall, I saw Estella’s family was around her bed, singing to her,” said Lois. “They had a violin and guitars. I was in the hallway and had a meltdown. It was so beautiful. They were singing and she was singing.”

Estella says she grew up around music. Her parents who came from Finland sang on television. She and her siblings would perform in church. A shared faith between Lois and Estella further cemented the relationship.

“We became fast friends,” Added Lois. “She had a women’s devotional book and I spotted it. I asked, ‘Would you like me to read it to you?’ That’s where it all started.”

Lois works as a dining assistant. What she does with Estella goes well beyond her daily duties.

“It has been such a joy,” said Lois. “A lot of times it’s at night before I go home and I’ll come and read to her. Then we talk about the message, then we’ll sing a couple songs. I go home and I’ve got this big grin. She just lightens up my life and she says I lighten her life up. We’ve just got this bond now, and it’s a beautiful thing. I hope I can make her feel half as good as she does for me.”

They sing nearly every day and have no plans on stopping.

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