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Published on June 27, 2016

Meet Dora LaSala

Enjoying life at 100 years—and counting

When you ask Dora LaSala what she likes best about living at Valley View in Elwyn, her enthusiastic reply is, “All of it is good to me!”

You could say that is Dora’s outlook on life too.

At 100 years old, Dora has had her fair share of ups and downs. But despite the challenges, she maintains a sunny personality that endears her to family and friends and the staff at Valley View.

“Dora is so lovely,” says Molly Crumley, Director of Operations at Valley View, a 24-hour staffed residential facility for Deaf seniors. “She is happy all the time. She is this petite, high-energy person who loves to socialize with the staff and other residents. We adore her.

“We are so happy to have Dora here with us,” Crumley says. “She is such a loving person who has overcome so much. She is amazing.”


Some highlights of Dora’s life

She was born in Poland in 1916 and lost her hearing at age 5 as a result of a very high fever.

She escaped to the U.S. at age 13 with her parents and four siblings. Two of her sisters stayed behind in Poland and were killed in the Holocaust.

Dora and her family lived in Brooklyn when they came to the U.S. In 1939, Dora married James V. LaSala Sr., who was also deaf. They moved to Staten Island in 1968 and had two children.

Dora worked making women’s handbags in New York City in the 1960s.

Dora and James moved to Valley View in 2010. James passed away in 2013. Dora’s surviving family includes her son, Jim LaSala, and his wife, Barbara; three grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Dora spends her time at Valley View playing cards and dingo—the deaf version of bingo. She loves to color and do other forms of art.

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