Rye Y Story Project: Kem B.

Kem I originally came to the Y when I saw a posting in one of the local newspapers back when my daughter Caitlin was 14. That would be 17 years ago. I was only going to work for a while because I was working toward a goal, which was Caitlin’s sweet sixteen. And then I stayed for quite a few years.

I have been here on and off. I left for illnesses and different reasons but not for anything the Y did. It was just because my outside jobs were overwhelming and I couldn’t continue the part-time job here. I have now retired from my fulltime job and have now come back in retirement.

I work under Barbara and have really liked it here from the minute I started. It is a very family-oriented place and it’s a place I wish I had known about before. I am from Port Chester and never knew about the Rye YMCA; otherwise, I would have put my kids in camp and in classes. My kids were at the Port Chester YMCA at the time.

I have three children: my older daughter Kerry, my second daughter, Daniele, and Caitlin. There is a 13-year age difference between Kerry and Daniele and a 30-month difference between Daniele and Caitlin. All the same dad, which people sometimes ask about. I always wish I had raised my children here.

Caitlin had been working another job on the outside and she needed a fulltime job, so Barbara hired her. She started working at the front desk and has since been promoted to Membership Coordinator.

Kerry loves this place. Her daughter Ella was born in 2012. As soon as we could get Ella into a class here, she was in. She has done everything here from camp to swimming and gymnastics; she is on the pre-team. She is seven years old now and has lived her life here. She absolutely adores it!

I am going to have my second grandchild in December. It is going to be a boy and his name will be Joseph. He will be here next summer for his first class and he will be raised here also. I will be watching him a few days a week, so Nana will be toting that bucket in and he will be coming to Armelle’s music classes and anything else we can get him into.

I love the people I work with. It’s flexible. Every staff member, starting at the top – everyone – is like family. If we need time off, we work around it. If I can’t work the day, I can work the night. We help each other. We cover for each other. It’s perfect for me.

The members are fantastic! Everybody that comes through the doors is family. I love the kids. I love Saturday mornings when they all come in for their classes. I love the babies in childcare. There are so many kids that walk in the door and I recognize them. I see kids that are grown and come in with their own kids now.

I have known people for so many years now. We go to each other’s parties and their kids’ parties and their grandchildren’s parties. They come to your house and eat at your house. There are certain people that I have become so close with and it is another added part of your family.