Candace Ransing

After decades in Europe, new resident chose The Village because during visits ‘I already felt I lived there’

One of the newest residents of The Village at Brookwood knows a thing or two about moving. She’s just completed what she intends to be her last move – number 17, to be exact.

Candace Ransing, who turns 73 this month, lived and worked for more than 30 years overseas as a civilian educator for the U.S. Department of Defense. By the end of her career, she was the Deputy Director of the Department of Defense Military Schools in Europe. Her work necessitated more than a dozen relocations.

“It certainly was an adventure,” she says of time spent in Germany and Italy, among other locales. “But by the time I returned to the States, to Virginia, I learned quickly that I better have a plan” – for the next adventure, retirement.

With no immediate family, Candace began to ask, “What happens when I literally can’t take care of myself?”

“Continuing care retirement communities? I didn’t even know what they were and started doing research,” she recalls. “I went online and stumbled upon ads for them and started looking. At this point – about 13 years ago – I was living in Arlington and then Charlottesville, Virginia. The local area had nothing quite like what I was looking for.”

And then a friend told Candace about The Village at Brookwood in Burlington, N.C.

“She had had a friend, who, with his wife, had lived there,” Candace says. “So, I visited. I kept looking, but I kept going back. On my third visit, a couple of ladies came up and said, ‘We know you’re going to live here. When someone comes back a third time, we know.’”

But first, Candace’s research took her to over 20 continuing care, or “life plan,” communities in Connecticut, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia and South Carolina – and for the first time, in 2015, The Village at Brookwood. “I kept coming back to The Village.”


“I just liked the feel of it,” she says. “The people – the residents and the staff – everybody talks to you. ‘We’re going for a walk around the pond, would you like to see that?’ I visited the library and was immediately invited to be a volunteer. Also, I wanted a place where health care was going to be available for me. That is very important. And geography is something I took into consideration. I’ll be able to get on a plane without having to drive three hours to an airport.” (Two international airports are less than an hour’s drive from The Village). “I already felt I lived there.”

Candace already has many plans for fun and exploration.

“I was given a subscription to Our State magazine on a visit to The Village,” she says. “I love that magazine. I’ve kept a folder of articles from it about places I want to visit and things I want to do.”

Well done, Candace. Welcome, and best wishes on your newest adventure!

Hear More About Our Village

Oh, my goodness! She’s the great Kate!

Candace Ransing is a native of Old Saybrook, Connecticut, where from time to time she encountered a certain other resident.

“She volunteered at the library,” Candace remembers. “We used to see her shopping. She was very nice, very friendly, very down to earth. The locals just treated her as one of the people in town.”

Then came the revelation.

“I didn’t know her as a movie star until I went off to college,” Candace says about realizing this neighbor was legendary actress Katharine Hepburn, whose family settled in Old Saybrook in 1912.

“It was like, ‘Oh my goodness!’ I went out and bought all the books about her. But she was just one of the townsfolks.”