The Trip of a Lifetime

Marina Quatrini’s personal trips to Cape Cod have always been memorable – the ocean, the views, the places to visit – she’s always enjoyed vacationing there. When she was given the opportunity to bring an individual from Liberty ARC to Cape Cod for the first time, however, that memory easily became her favorite.

“Just seeing him smile as he felt the sand and the ocean and listened to the waves all for the first time was amazing,” she said.

Marina has worked at Liberty ARC for seven years. She’s currently a residential assistant manager at the home where Joe Moran lives in. Joe always wanted to visit the ocean – he always wanted to smell the salt water, feel the sand between his toes and listen to the waves crash against the beach.

Last summer, Joe finally made it to the ocean with Marina by his side.

“In order for an individual to go out of the state of New York for vacation they must know how to self-medicate,” she said. “Joe is blind, so learning to self-medicate was challenging at first, but Joe and all of the staff worked with him. After a lot of practice, Joe mastered the use of his electronic medication dispenser and was able to go on vacation.”

Joe and Marina went to Cape Cod for three days and then to Maine for another three days. They spent a lot of time on beaches, eating seafood, visiting lighthouses and museums and visiting the Cape Cod Chip Factory.

“Joe trusted me to take him to the ocean for the first time in his life,” she said, “and it was so special to me. I brought him to all of the places I’ve been to and he was so happy. It was a great experience for him and he now has so many new, amazing memories.”

Not only was the trip a great memory for Joe, but it’s one of Marina’s favorite memories now too.

“Being given the opportunity to share one of my favorite places with Joe was amazing,” she said. “It didn’t feel like I was working at all, but I was. Working in this field gives you a lot of special opportunities – you get to visit different places with people you develop special friendships with.”