97-year-old man booted from California retirement home for playing ukulele

“Management continually suppressed my talents,” man says.

By Evan Bleier
Someone playing a pink ukulele (CC/Dani Lurie)
Someone playing a pink ukulele (CC/Dani Lurie)

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NAPA, Calif., July 21 (UPI) -- A 97-year-old California man ended up at a homeless shelter after a retirement home in Napa allegedly gave him the boot because of his ukulele playing.

Jim Farrell, a Merchant Marine veteran who was born in 1917, was a resident of Redwood Retirement, but he didn't exactly see eye-to-eye with management.


"Management continually suppressed my talents," Farrell told KPIX 5. "Management would stop me and say these words: 'Go back to your room!' Like a kid. No more."

Farrell was asked to leave the home and he ended up at an area homeless shelter.

When local residents found out about the situation via a Napa Valley Register article, they began donating money to help Farrell find a new home.

Thanks to the kindness of strangers, one of whom paid Farrell's rent while another covered his moving expenses, the elderly gentleman moved into Piner's Nursing Home.

"It's been a pretty remarkable day," senior advocate Carol Eldridge told the Register after Farrell moved in at the home. "I woke up this morning thinking I'd be visiting him at the shelter, but the generous people of Napa have stepped forward, and he's already in his new place."


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