August 31, 2021

WWII Vet Frank Grasberger Meets DeShauna Priest, Who Wrote to Him 12 Years Ago

Category: Senior Living

Author: Aaron Nieson

WWII vet Frank Grasberger, a resident of VITALIA Senior Residences – Strongsville, was recently formally introduced with a (now-grown) little girl named DeShauna Priest, who wrote him a letter 12 years ago thanking him for his service. The meeting brought a tear to the eye of all who witnessed it, the two immediately bonding like family as they got to know one another.

The meeting was arranged by Jill Pawloski, the Resident Services Director at VITALIA, and was also attended by Frank’s wife, Dolores, who embraced DeShauna as family, as well. The meeting was touching and it went viral on TikTok!

The story has also gained the attention of national news outlets, some of which have written articles on the story. Via

Priest’s letter was part of a batch sent by her third-grade class in 2009. Grasberger received it on his way home from an honor flight in Washington D.C. When he read it, he was so touched that he’s kept it close at hand ever since. 

His wife, Dolores, contacted Priest’s school and sent her the card, thanking her and telling her about Grasberger’s life and military service. But they were never able to find her and meet her in person. 

When Vitalia resident services director, Jill Pawloski, learned of the story, she turned to social media and was able to finally find her.

When Priest got the message from Pawloski, she was emotional herself. Her mother kept the card she’d received in a memory box, and she still has it.

“I just started crying, I had to go and tell my mom,” she said.

VITALIA® Strongsville in Strongsville, OH offers independent living +, assisted living, and memory care with a variety of services and a range of floor plan options. Amenities include Finley’s Restaurant, a 24-hour bistro, concierge service, housekeeping, events and entertainment, personal care, transportation services, and more. Conveniently located on Hwy 82, residents enjoy a wide range of shopping, dining, attractions, and health service, with a variety of green spaces.

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VITALIA® Strongsville

21452 Royalton Road

Strongsville, OH 44149

Arrow Senior Living serves and employs individuals of all faiths, regardless of race, color, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age or handicap, except as limited by state and federal law.

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