History & Milestones of the Mary Campbell Center
In 1969, Chuck and Charm Welch were inspired to explore the possibility of establishing a residential facility for young adults with disabilities. Their daughter, Charmie, lived with them at home, but the needs for her care were increasing. The Welchs were concerned about her care if somehow, they were unable to continue to provide it. Their vision was a home-like atmosphere unlike any traditional institution. After forming a non-profit corporation, Chuck and Charm were joined by their friends, Joe Picciotti and Dick DiSabatino, and together they began to visit existing facilities for people with disabilities, developing their vision and plans. During the planning stage, this group was introduced to Amos Campbell, who lived and farmed 10 acres on Weldin Road with his wife, Mary and daughter, Evelyn, who was born with Down Syndrome. Amos entered into an agreement with the corporation to donate his land for the building of the facility, and in return, Evelyn would reside in and be cared for by The Center. Named after Amos’ wife, The Mary Campbell Center opened its doors in 1976. Charmie Welch and Evelyn Campbell were among the first residents.
With success, growth and expansion of our programs, the need for more space was met with the help of many friends and foundations. In 1985, The Charmie Welch Memorial Wing was dedicated, housing the Joseph J. Picciotti Jr. Hydrotherapy Center, the Jean-Louis Vermeil Physical Therapy Room, and the Learning Center. In 1997, a new wing was dedicated and named for one of the founders, Barbara Z. Holmes. The upper level, now called EZee Street is a Skilled Nursing Unit. The lower level features a large atrium which is used for many resident activities and by the Children and Youth program. The All-Star Room was doubled in size in 2007 and a Snoezelen Room for sensory stimulation was added through the generosity of ADK Sorority.
We are grateful for those that dedicated their lives to helping form the MCC. Without Chuck, Joe and the founding members, this vision would not be possible.