Meet Davi and Nate
In the midst of war’s chaos and uncertainty, sometimes the most beautiful stories of love and resilience emerge. Nate and Davi’s remarkable journey is one such story.
Davi, born Davidina, grew up as an only child on her grandparents’ property in San Anselmo. Tragedy struck when she was just five years old when her father passed away suddenly. With her mother speaking only Italian, they embarked on a new chapter by moving to San Rafael, renting out their San Anselmo home.
Despite the challenges of single parenthood in an era when it was uncommon, Davi’s childhood was filled with joy and many friends. She pursued her dreams, graduating from San Rafael High School and eventually earning a degree in Social Science from UC Berkeley. Her passion for making a difference was ignited after attending John F. Kennedy’s speech at the Cow Palace and she joined the Red Cross, serving in South Korea before volunteering to go to Vietnam. Her journey eventually led her to work in a Japan hospital as a social worker.
On the other side of the world, Nate, the youngest of six, enjoyed a New England childhood on a farm in Massachusetts. His fascination with dentistry from a young age ultimately led him to become one, making him the first in his family to attend college. After graduating from Temple University School of Dentistry, Nate felt a deep calling to serve his country during the Vietnam War. He voluntarily joined the Army, intending to use his dentistry skills to aid wounded soldiers. However, instead of being sent to Vietnam, he found himself stationed in Japan at the first evacuation hospital for wounded soldiers.
Amidst the challenges of wartime, camaraderie blossomed among the US hospital staff. They shared meals, watched movies when available, and explored the local sights together. It was during one of these shared meals at the Officer’s Club that Nate and Davi began to notice each other, laying the foundation for their love story.
As the Japanese Cherry blossom trees bloomed, so did their love. The young couple married in Japan after just six months and spent several years there before Nate was transferred back to the United States. After having served ten years, Nate decided to leave military service, keeping a promise he had made to Davi. She had expressed her desire to pursue a Master’s in Social Work. They chose to make their home in Shaker Heights, Cleveland, to fulfill her educational aspirations. They were drawn to Shaker Heights because of its commitment to racially integrated schools, wanting to provide their son with a diverse environment.
In 1987 Nate had an opportunity to take his dental practice to Travis Air Force base as a civilian dentist. During this same time, Davi’s mother left them her family’s property in San Anselmo after her passing. With bags packed, the Greece family headed westward to Davi’s family home. Their lives in Marin were marked by rekindled memories and the forging of new friendships. Despite having lived in various parts of the world and the country, Marin County held a special place in Davi’s heart, with the majestic Mount Tam serving as a backdrop to her cherished memories.
Davi’s career as a social worker included roles at UCSF Home Care, the Transplant Center, and a career in medical registry until her retirement in 2011. Upon her retirement and with their son embarking on his own journey, Nate and Davi sought new ways to spend their time together. That’s when they discovered Vivalon.
Their Vivalon journey began with Dianne’s exercise classes to maintain muscle strength and balance on their path to age gracefully. They explored the myriad of services offered by Vivalon, attending various classes, utilizing the legal clinic, participating in financial workshops, and even delving into tech classes during the pandemic. Among all the wonderful offerings, the Jackson Café held a special place in their hearts, especially for Nate.
In 2020, just before the pandemic struck, Nate and Davi made a significant move to Redwoods Community. Although they still occasionally attend classes at Vivalon, they have a special affinity for the monthly themed luncheons at the Jackson Café. Nate enthusiastically claims that the Jackson Café offers the best and most delicious lunch deal in all of California. Davi adds, “When we discovered that Vivalon’s Café hosted a Thanksgiving feast, we decided to give it a try. We invited our 95-year-old neighbor to join us, and we all loved it! It was just like being in our own living room – warm, cozy, and full of life with a meal fit for royalty. We always make new friends and never feel left out of the holiday happiness!”
Nate and Davi are eagerly anticipating this year’s last Thanksgiving luncheon at the Jackson Café. They are also looking forward to making more Thanksgiving memories at the new Café opening in early 2024 at Vivalon’s Healthy Aging Campus, just up the street at 999 Third Street.
Their heartwarming journey is a testament to the strength of love and the power of community.
As we gather with our loved ones this Thanksgiving, let’s remember the seniors in our community who may be missing their friends and family during the holiday season.
Every year, Vivalon delivers delicious holiday meals to our homebound neighbors and hosts a special luncheon on Thanksgiving. You can help ensure our seniors receive the care and nourishment they deserve this holiday season with a donation to Vivalon.
Please consider sharing your blessings with our seniors this holiday season.
You are also invited to join Nate and Davi in the Jackson Café for a homemade Thanksgiving meal and lively entertainment.
Thursday, November 23, 11:30 am- 1:30 pm, $12 per person
Reservations required. Call 415-456-9062 by November 17 to register.