The Pawnee Assisted Living Hotel employed and served as a home for many who were at the mercy of society. With the changes at the Hotel Pawnee, people are out of luck. The philosophy of the cowpoke management served as a creative place for old time values and now it is closing, at least in part, which means folks will have to leave the building.
The stories of the employees are very interesting since there have been those who worked here that have been very good at caretaking for the elderly and challenged.
One employee took the time to take pictures of residents and occasionally would buy sodas at the vending machine in the lobby for residents. Oftentimes, personal time and volunteer time went into keeping the hotel open. There were many contributions from the greater community.
The food was most interesting at the hotel since it was old fashioned; including goulash, liver and onions, roast beef, sweet potatoes, cherry tomatoes, and oftentimes homemade cake with frosting.
Another employee who spent the last 10 years doing laundry and housekeeping will be missed as she often sat on the second floor in the mornings and kept records. Another man had thought about creating a website for the director. Another man who lived in the homeless shelter now works here and as of now does not know where else he will go, because of pending legal difficulties.
The hotel has had difficulty in the last few years with the state and was not able to take any new residents and has been hurting financially with short paychecks. Yet, it was still able to house around 35 residents downtown in North Platte.
Personally, I lived here before moving to Omaha and returned before spending some time in Lincoln Regional Center. I have had to go into the courts with guardianship matters and to ask for some health assistance.
The Hotel Pawnee provided a place for the exchange of political ideas for many, both inside the hotel and those associated with it.
There are many inspirational people who have resided in the Pawnee Hotel. Sometimes a little off the wall, it is interesting to see how people recover and survive during hard times.
I wish those who have worked so much at it keeping it going, the best of luck.
By Stephanie Sitz, Pawnee Hotel resident