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Dreams by the Letter

Ronnie is memorable. He won the Halloween 2022 costume contest as Michael Jackson in Thriller – complete with choreography – and has been visiting the Sky Valley Community Resource Center ever since.

Ronnie is dependable. Working as a courtesy clerk at Fred Meyer for 21 years, he enjoyed fetching carts and greeting customers.

Ronnie is an athlete. Basketball and Bocce are favorites, but he excels at Track & Field, competing in the Special Olympics. Next, he wants to learn Pickleball.

Ronnie is 62 and there’s one thing he still isn’t: a reader.

At a first grade level of literacy, he enjoys sitting with his niece’s children, reading them simple books. But dyslexia makes for a frustrating stumble over letters that seem to twist and turn. He’s tried “ABC Mouse,” an app designed for young readers, without success. Not one to give up, he connected with the Sky Valley Resource Center. Not only is he able to access resources and one-on-one help to learn to make sense of words, he is also learning money and spending, and works as a paid intern at VOA’s thrift store in Sultan three days a week. He sews small quilts for his nieces and nephews, and even sells them at the farmer’s market for a little extra cash.

It’s this yearning for independence that keeps him working to break down this last barrier to success. “I want to walk into Everett Community College and pick up any book and be able to read it.”

Ronnie is a dreamer. With the support of the SVCRC, Ronnie can continue to chase his dreams.


Ronnie's story is part of our "Home is Where the Heart Is" series of narratives from clients who have been helped by our Community Resource Centers. Services are always free, and we rely on the generosity of the community to help people like Ronnie succeed. To donate, visit right now.

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