HLC Chats With Carol Hill

Carol Hill is a member of the Hope Loves Company team and volunteers at our office on a weekly basis. She is also one of our core Camp HLC facilitators and travels with the HLC team to all of our camps! Carol is a retired teacher and longtime friend of HLC's founder, Jodi. We are so grateful to have Carol's help, wisdom, and dedication to the HLC mission and our children. Check out HLC Chats with Carol Hill to learn more!

(HLC): Do you have a nickname? How did you get it?

(CH): I have 2 nicknames given to me. One is Chill. Obviously C. Hill (Carol Hill). Also I was called CJ during my time as an intercollegiate fencer because there was another Carol on the team. My name is Carol Jean-CJ.

(HLC): What is your favorite childhood memory?

(CH): My best memories are times spent with my extended family. My Uncle Bob and Aunt Pat had a pool and my sister and I would spend weekends with them. Unlimited soda and fun were the bywords at their house.

We also spent Thanksgiving and summer vacations at the Shore with my mother’s sisters and their children. My cousin Phil and I have a special bond because we are a month apart and spent all of our time with each other. To this day our happiness overflows when we are together.

(HLC): Camp HLC is one of our wonderful programs. Have you ever attended summer camp? If yes, what was your favorite memory about camp?

(CH): I was a Girl Scout and attended Camp Kettle Run in Medford. My best memory of camp is a 3 day canoe trip on the Susquehanna River. We camped outside and cooked food over a fire. It was an amazing experience.

(HLC): Carol is also one of our fabulous Camp HLC facilitators. We are so very fortunate to have her on the Camp HLC team!

(HLC): Who is your favorite musician?

(CH): I don’t think I can limit my choice of a favorite musician to one person. Some of my favorites are Prince, Bonnie Raitt, Pretenders, Beatles, and Rihanna.

(HLC): Do you have a pet companion? If so, please share his/her name and what you love most about him/her.

(CH): I am reduced to one cat. She was a feral and still is. We can’t hold her, pick her up or have her in our laps. Her name is Punkin. She loves us and we can pet her when she wants. We love her and she is happier than ever, but I want a kitten.

(HLC): People would be surprised to know that... (cool fact about you!)

(CH): I was a mountain biker for 10 years in my 40’s. I biked with guys and we did crazy things on bikes.

I went to the Cayman Islands for a vacation with my sister, brother-in law and husband. They were all certified scuba divers. I had never dived. My brother-in law taught me how and I went down to 60 feet, as well as doing a night dive.

(HLC): What is one thing you can share with others about resilience and adversity?

(CH): When adversity strikes we are at times unable to do anything. However, knowing that we can fight back, help others, inform ourselves, and find ways to be kind has always pulled me through. Being passive is not an option for me. I must find a way to do something for others or myself to deal with the situation. Because of this attitude I usually can plow through the bad times. Then I do my best to learn from my troubles and grow as a person.

Resilience is another situation altogether. I was born resilient. I always believe that there is something better on the other side of trouble. If I didn’t believe this, I would not be able to deal with adversity. I have experienced 2 terrible tragedies. They were devastating and resulted in deaths. It was very hard to deal with both. I lost some of my joy and became a more somber person, but I came out on the other side. As my great aunt said when in her 80’s her husband had lung cancer and she came home to find her house had burned down, “This too shall pass.”

(HLC): What's your go to person, book, or movie for inspiration?

(CH): I adore Bend it Like Beckham!! The theme of women athletes fulfilling themselves in sport and finding acceptance from family and friends (as well as snagging the gorgeous guy) is universal to all women who want to be athletes.

(HLC): If you have a go to resource (website, blog, etc...) that you think would help others, please share it!

(CH): Read and take yourself into another world. Use that world to help you cope, calm down and re-calibrate. It works for me.

Hope Loves Company staff, volunteers, and board members at the HLC Kids Count Conference. From left to right: Laurie Kolano, Dr. Michael Palmer, Jan Purcell, Cara Haggerty, Lydia Shirley, Carol Hill, Benton Ames, Jodi O'Donnell-Ames, Linda Cassidy.

(HLC): Share something that you want others to know about ALS…

(CH): The families affected by ALS are your best friends and resources. Get to know others, use them as crutches, find friends who understand and surround yourself with people who have lived your journey.

Thank you so much Carol for participating in HLC Chats With and for all that you do to support Hope Loves Company and our families.