Instead of thank-you notes, Pleasantville’s Myrtle Salim writes thank-you books.

Grateful to find a job she could handle as a home health aide after spinal surgery, she self-published “A Diamond in the Rough” for Marilyn Scheinholtz, of Ventnor. It describes how Salim prayed to find a job, then was matched as a home health aide for Scheinholtz and her husband, Ervin, who died in December after more than 60 years of marriage. It also includes stories of Ervin’s youth.

“I called it the perfect assignment,” Salim said. “I fell in love with the couple, especially the old man.”

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The job involved light cleaning, helping reorder the house and a lot of talking about the past, she said. While she has lived in the U.S. more than 20 years, Salim still has the accent of her birth country of Trinidad, but Ervin Scheinholtz always understood her and never had to ask her to repeat herself, she said.

“He called me his ‘diamond in the rough,’” Salim said of Ervin.

Salim didn’t forget Ervin’s stories. She put them in the 101-page book, and surprised Marilyn with a copy last week.

“I’m going to treasure this,” Marilyn Scheinholtz told her. Then she described how Ervin proposed to her the day they met on a blind date. Three months later, they were engaged, she said.

“That story is in the book,” Salim said.

Salim, who continues to work for Marilyn, also wrote a book called “I Follow the Point,” for the Somers Point neurosurgeon who successfully operated on her, Robert Alan Sabo.

‘Right Notes’ chair

Mark Benevento, chairman of Greate Bay Country Club and Racquet and Fitness in Somers Point, is honorary chairperson for the 2013 “Right Notes” jazz and wine tasting fundraiser Oct. 17 at the country club.

The event is a collaboration of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Somers Point Jazz Society, and Passion Vines Wine & Spirits Co. in Somers Point. Benevento’s father, Louis, struggles with multiple sclerosis daily, a representative said.

Last year’s Right Notes raised more than $37,000. Contact Michael Bray at 609-226-4585 or the Somers Point Jazz Society at

‘Guardian Angel’

Nurse Cathleen Hernandez, of Sicklerville, Camden County, is Shore Medical Center’s August 2013 Guardian Angel of the Month.

The Guardian Angel Program was established to enable patients to say thank you to a special caregiver through a donation to Shore Medical Center.

Contact Michelle Brunetti Post:


More than 30 years’ experience reporting and editing for newspapers and magazines in Illinois, Colorado, Texas and New Jersey and 1985 winner of the Texas Daily Newspaper Association’s John Murphy Award for copy editing.

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