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Follow us @GrowingBolder C H E C K O U T O U R T V S H OW Check your local listings or watch complete episodes of our Emmy-nominated 30-minute show at growingbolder.com/tv.

We have started a partnership with Growing Boulder to bring you content that appeals to your interests and helps you live a healthier lifestyle. Our monthly newsletter will also keep you informed about the happenings in our community, events, and other relevant information. We hope that our monthly newsletter will be a resource to enhance our communication and your life. As always, we thank you for your support during these unprecedented times. We are hopeful of the future and all the possibilities that it brings. Sincerely, Barbara Galindo

THE BEST QUALITY AND VALUE IN SOUTH FLORIDA'S ASSISTED LIVING Residential Plaza at Blue Lagoon provides an affordable home with assisted living services that allows older adults to live in a safe, caring and supportive environment while maintaining their dignity, independence, and purpose. Residential Plaza offers ample solutions to overcome the challenges of aging, including housing, assisted living care, memory care, and short-term care.

HAND IN HAND TOWARDS A MEANINGFUL AND DIGNIFIED LIFE Assistance to the Elderly, enables low-income vulnerable older adults to lead meaningful and dignified lives by providing safe supportive housing, quality services, community education, and advocacy.

Residential Plaza’s COVID-19 Considerations As we gain some normalcy, we recognize that COVID-19 remains a very harsh illness, and because unvaccinated residents, staff, and visitors remain vulnerable, mitigation measures will continue as contemplated in our current visitation guidelines, which also ponder the most recent CDC recommendations for assisted living facilities. We encourage all residents and family members to familiarize themselves with the current visitation guidelines, which can be found on our webpage (www.residentialplaza.com). The visitation guidelines enable us to follow best practices for visitation, infection prevention, and the screening and triage of everyone entering a facility for signs and symptoms of COVID-19.

Please note: We are adhering to The Core Principles of COVID-19 Infection Prevention to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission. Visitation slots will be assigned by appointment ONLY. Except for the visits for residents in an end-of-life situation. To make an appointment go to our web page (www.residentialplaza.com), go to the Visitation Appointment App and follow the prompts. We currently have available appointments in the morning (8:00 AM to 12:00 PM) and appointments available in the afternoon (2:00 PM to 8:00 PM). When making an appointment, regardless of the time you choose in the morning, it will enable you to visit from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM, and in the afternoon, regardless of the time you choose, it will allow you to visit from 2:00 PM to 8:00 PM. Remember, there is no visitation between 12:00 PM and 2:00 PM. All residents can leave the facility as they wish with no restrictions. If a resident stays overnight at a family member's home or elsewhere, we ask you to coordinate your arrival between 9:00 AM and 12:00 PM to allow the healthcare staff to perform a rapid COVID-19 test. Residential Plaza will perform a rapid COVID-19 test to staff and residents randomly, or in case someone is showing symptoms or is at risk by contact.

If you have any questions or concerns, send an email to info@residentialplaza.com

Residential Plaza's Summer Olympic Games

Please participate in our Summer Olympic Games, from July 26 to August 9.

We are waiting for you!

SMOKE -FREE COMMUNITY, WHY? Many have been the studies throughout the years putting in evidence the risks of smoking, and secondhand smoking. Smoking harms your organs, from heart disease, cancer, diabetes, among many others. Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. It causes more than 480,000 deaths each year. That is nearly 1 in 5 deaths, or 1,300 deaths every day. In Florida alone, cigarette smoking is responsible for 32,300 deaths every year. ¹ ² ³ All major health organizations channel a great deal of resources to community education, policies, and support to encourage smoke-free communities, along with many civil organizations. Smoke-free communities are communities where residents who want to smoke are not allowed inside the building or any common area, limiting smoking for assigned areas. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, smoke-free policies have helped smokers and nonsmokers alike⁴. The benefits of banning smoking in your community include⁵: Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ Ÿ

Protecting nonsmokers from the side effects of secondhand smoke. Increased smoking cessation among tobacco users. Preventing nonsmoking individuals from picking up the habit. Cutting employee sick days and medical costs and increasing productivity. Improving a business’s image. Decreasing the risk of fires and smoke damage to property. Lowering office cleaning and maintenance costs. In an assisted living environment, we believe all the residents benefit from having smokefree policies.

We would like to remind you that Residential Plaza is a smoke-free community. The decision to be a smoke-free community was made to protect the health of all our constituents (residents, staff, visitors) from the adverse effects of secondhand smoke, a known health hazard associated with lung cancer and heart disease. The decision was also made to protect our community from damage to units and lower the risk of fire. Considering that our community is the home for our residents, the Administration has created a designated and marked areas (first floor back terrace) as smoking areas. Please use these areas accordingly. 1 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Health Consequences of Smoking—50 Years of Progress. A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2014 [accessed 2019 July 10]. 2 Jha P, Ramasundarahettige C, Landsman V, Rostrom B, Thun M, Anderson RN, McAfee T, Peto R. 21st Century Hazards of Smoking and Benefits of Cessation in the United States. New England Journal of Medicine, 2013;368(4):341–50 [accessed 2019 July 10]. 3 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. QuickStats: Number of Deaths from 10 Leading Causes—National Vital Statistics System, United States, 2010. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 2013:62(08);155. [accessed 2019 July 10]. 4Source: www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/secondhand_smoke/protection/reduce_smoking/index.htm 5Source: www.cancer.org/content/dam/cancer-org/smoke-free-worksites/smoke-free-factsheet.pdf

July 2021



in every issue 6








From star to sage



Tips for success in the gig economy

feature 30


How Ed Rosenthal turned saving the ocean into a religious experience





Clermont, Florida



'We had an adventure'



Summer safety tips

finance 22


Making the gig economy work for you



Tips about annuities and how they can benefit you


'PEAK 65'

What is it, and why it could change your retirement plan

defy 21


Airman's remains come home 65 years after his plane vanished

heal 14


Guilt-free black bean burgers

fitness 16


Run, bike, run for your life

caregiving 27


Eugenia Zukerman writes about a hard chapter in her life

YOURTAKE What personal mantra do you use to fight obstacles?

“Don’t let the best you’ve done so far set the standard for the rest of your days.”

”The past has prepared me for the next level... the adventure continues.”

—Nancy Smith

—Gary Ronconi

“I have a 100% success rate getting through days like this. I am successful!”

“I refuse to have a battle of wits with an unarmed man.”

—Wendy Nuesca Kelley

—Clare Franklin

”Think how it can be done, not how you cannot do it.”

“This too shall pass.”

—Peter Sykes



—Martha Kemp

”Just because something doesn’t work out, it doesn’t mean failure, it’s an opportunity to try something else.”

"When my daddy was teaching me to drive in the mud, he said, 'If you don't stop, you're not stuck!' Good advice for lots of things beyond driving in the mud."

—Jeannette Amicay

—Martha Russell

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This month’s digital digest is packed with useful information inside Growing Bolder’s typical double dose of inspiration. Bill Shafer introduces us to the tenet of "tikkun olam" and to the rabbi professor whose unusual student organization, Scubi Jew, is having a positive impact on Florida’s reefs and oceans worldwide. Doris Bloodsworth plays Q & A with Diane Travis, a 66-year-old real estate agency owner and a world champion masters athlete. Travis has lived a life of tragedy and triumph and shares a message that we all need to hear. The pandemic devastated much of the tourism industry as most of us chose to avoid travel. One bright spot was an increase in outdoor recreation and visits to state parks. Leslie Poole shares the story of a Florida couple that has visited all 175 of Florida’s state parks in their VW camper. Their story might inspire you to hit the road and explore the amazing diversity of the Sunshine State. The pandemic also accelerated the trend toward working from home and selfemployment. Can you become a successful solopreneur? Jane Harrison has been doing just that for 3 decades and offers a few important tips for success in the gig economy. We also continue our Neighborhood Spotlight featuring the Florida city known as The Choice of Champions. It’s a city surrounded by rolling hills and pristine lakes and has been chosen as a top 25 City in America for Retirees by two national magazines. Do you know which one it is? These stories and more as we explore the people, places, and passions that make Florida the state we call home.

We explore the people, places, and passions that make Florida the state we call home.

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Watch inspirational stories any time day or night Search for Growing Bolder in the app store and download today.


Debbie Allen 71 Jackie Carlin

When Debbie Allen was 12, she was denied admission to the Houston Ballet Academy because of the color of her skin. Several years later, her application to a major university dance academy was rejected because her body was “unsuited” for ballet—a comment commonly used in years past to discourage Black dancers. Fast forward six decades. Allen is a legendary choreographer, actress, director, producer and one of the most powerful executives in Hollywood. Her many awards include three Emmys, a Golden Globe, 10 Image Awards, the prestigious Olivier Theater Award; and most recently, she was named a 2020 Kennedy Center Honoree, the nation’s highest artistic award. Allen’s big break came in 1982 with the TV show “Fame,” in which she was both a star and choreographer. She has appeared in TV shows ranging from “The Love Boat” to “A Different World,” a show she also directed. She also has directed or produced “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” “Scandal,” and countless others. Since 2011, she’s had a recurring role on “Grey’s Anatomy,” where she also serves as Executive Producing Director. Despite her remarkable success, nothing has come easy for Allen. She has had to overcome the sexism and

racism prevalent in her industry. Now, Allen is also encountering ageism. “I respond to challenge with passion, persistence and energy,” she told Growing Bolder. “I’ve been told many times that my energy level is off the charts, which I think diminishes any negative perception that one might have about working with a 71-year-old actor, director, choreographer or producer.” Allen says she takes care of herself physically and makes it a point to be around people with positive attitudes. Allen doesn’t think about the future and won’t venture an opinion about what she’ll be doing in her 80s or 90s. “It’s all about the here and now,” she said. “That’s where I live and that’s what I focus on. I have no intention of slowing down and resting on my laurels, because there’s so much more to do.” With a legendary career that has spanned four decades, Allen is still going strong. “To make things happen, you must believe in yourself; and you must continue working to expand your talent and your technique, because just when you think you’re there, you’re not. There’s always something else you can learn. I’m still a student, and that’s what makes a difference.”

Rodin Eckenroth / Stringer via Getty Images



“I think the greatest thing I ever got from sports is understanding that I had the ability to be stronger, to do more and go further than I ever thought I could.” G R O W I N G B O L D E R / J U LY D I G I TA L D I G E S T 2 1

Bill Shafer


Growing up, Donna Orender loved sports. But she was not the fastest, not the tallest and she couldn’t jump the highest. So, how did she become a five-sport athlete in high school, earn All-American honors as a college basketball star, and become an all-star in the Womens Pro Basketball League? “I had this incredible determination that no matter what, no one was going to outwork me,” she said. “And that led me to a pretty promising career.” The defining moment in Orender’s life came at the age of 14 when she was denied the right to play high school tennis because there was no team for girls. “So, I asked to play against the boys,” she said. “They gave me a tryout. I won my match and became the first female to play on a boys’ team at my school.” The experience ignited in her a sense of social justice that only grew stronger as she grew older. When the Women’s Professional Basketball League shut down, bringing her playing career to an end, Orender moved into television production and sports marketing. She spent 17 years as an executive with the PGA Tour and became President of the WNBA. Fox Sports named her one of the Top 10 Most Powerful Women in Sports. Yet, she felt there was more that she wanted to do. She wanted to help encourage women to fight for their right to opportunity, as she did when she was 14. So, Orender created Generation W, a nonprofit organization that brings women together to educate, inspire and connect through mentoring. “When you get older, you have this wonderful gift of perspective and experience,” said Orender, 64. “And a lot of us women have this desire to pass it along.” Orender said there are some things women need to hear Photos: Jacob Langston

from other women, which is what Generation W is set up to do. “I think we’ve grown up thinking if we work hard and do the right thing, someone’s going to tap us on the shoulder and say, ‘Guess what? You get to go ahead.’ And we learn the hard way that that’s not necessarily true,” she said. Based in Jacksonville, Florida, Generation W empowers individuals from across the country to help create a level playing field, by offering advice, support, ideas and direction. “I believe in planting seeds,” Orender said. “We know that women really want to give back, but our time is the most precious asset we have and how we choose to spend it is important. We created a mentoring program that says you don’t have to spend every day or week mentoring. You just connect a couple times a year. So, it’s never overwhelming for anyone.” Just as Orender fought back time and again to create new pathways in life, she believes her work now with Generation W may be the most important fight of all. “I think the greatest thing I ever got from sports is understanding that I had the ability to be stronger, to do more and go further than I ever thought I could,” she said. “If we can pass that message along to those who have been denied, this world will be a much greater place for us all.”

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TRANSLATING TECH Tips for success in the gig economy Jane Harrison


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You know that bad feeling you get in the pit of your stomach on Sunday evening when you realize tomorrow is Monday?  I call it the “ga-gunk,” and I never get that feeling. Never.  Why? Because as a freelancer, while so many are rushing out the door in the morning, I’m having a leisurely cup of coffee, reading the news and planning my day. Many retirees and younger workers are turning to freelancing or what some call the “gig economy.” While I genuinely revel in the freedom, life without a steady paycheck is a trade-off.  In three decades on my own, I’ve collected some tips on managing finances as a solopreneur. 

Choosing the right clients


I hear the same story over and over again. Someone enters the freelance world, and a large company starts feeding them work. The next thing you know, their entire income is in the hands of one client.  Here’s some advice: Just because you’re busy doesn’t mean you’re in business. To build a healthy freelance business, you need a diversified client list. That way, if you lose one—and you will—you still have income while you search for a replacement.  Even better: Strive for five “A” clients of equal value.

Consider embracing the minimalist lifestyle. Like so many empty nesters, I had too much house. Recently, I sold it and used just the equity to buy a bungalow. Then I went through all of my expenses and trimmed and shaved and then shaved some more.  Less overhead. More freedom. Best thing I ever did.

What’s an “A” client? →

Clients who pay well. I like medium-size firms. They have decent budgets, yet they’re not so big that you have to deal with layers of approvals. 

Clients who pay in a timely fashion. I give extra points for those who make it their responsibility to pay on time. They follow up and then reach out to accounting if there’s a problem. Love that.

Clients who respect you. This is another big one. Does your client give you credit for your contributions? Do they allow you enough time to complete the job?

Start off right Lastly, staying vigilant about cash flow will do wonders. Always request a deposit at the start of a project. Invoice your client the minute the job is complete and make your terms “due upon receipt.” With new clients, attach a completed W-9 with the invoice. Send polite reminders if your invoice is late. I’ve been through slow times when finances were a worry. But it’s never been scary enough to give up my independence, my quiet mornings and life without the ga-gunk.

“A” clients are different from one freelancer to another. Get clear on what’s best for you and put your antennas to work seeking them out.


that bad feeling you get in the pit of your stomach on Sunday evening when you realize the next day is Monday.


Illustration: Mykyta Ivanov via Getty Images

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Let’s get this party started!

(healthy) Chef Collette Haw

Summer is here! After a long year of delayed family get-togethers and backyard barbecues, I’m ready to celebrate enjoying time and, most importantly, meals with loved ones again. One of my biggest passions is dispelling the myth that healthy food isn’t party food. Of course, it is! And what better meal to reinvent than the traditional, summer backyard barbecue. These healthy, nutritious—absolutely delicious— black bean burgers just may change your party menu forever. They’re easy to prep in advance, giving you more time to spend with your guests. When it’s time to eat, just toss them in the oven and then give them a quick sear on your stovetop. Trust me – you don’t want to skip that step! To up the flavor factor, I like to skip traditional condiments and instead top these black bean burgers with my fresh and zesty Summer Veggie “Ceviche” Salad. I just toss whatever I'm in the mood for, such as fresh herbs, avocado, tomatoes, peppers and lime juice and zest, together and pile it on top. Experiment by using whatever produce looks best at your local farmer’s market or even in your backyard garden. 

Want more ideas? Visit WellbeingNetwork.org to join me in the kitchen for more fresh recipes!


Chef Collette Haw studied at the prestigious Culinary Institute of America. After training in some of the country’s most honored restaurants, she became a personal chef for celebrities. She then launched her own business, Collette’s Clean Eats, to provide healthy, prepared meals to busy families. Chef Haw is now a restauranteur, partnering with the Winter Park Health Foundation to operate Nourish Coffee Bar + Kitchen in the Center for Health & Wellbeing in Winter Park, Florida.


G R O W I N G B O L D E R / J U LY D I G I TA L D I G E S T 2 1

Photos: Jacob Langston

Black Bean Burgers Makes 4 Burgers



1 can black beans

1. In a food processor, puree ¾ the amount of the black beans until it forms a paste.

¼ cup chopped, toasted walnuts 2 tablespoons chopped red onion ½ chipotle pepper, diced 1 tablespoon adobo sauce 1 tablespoon chopped jalapeno ¼ teaspoon salt ⅛ teaspoon black pepper

2. Add the pureed black bean into a bowl with the whole black beans and add the following: walnuts, red onion, chipotle peppers, adobo, jalapeno, salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, chopped garlic and cilantro. Mix well. 3. In a separate bowl, mix the ground flax seeds with the water and allow to sit for a few minutes until the flax has soaked up all the water.

1 teaspoon cumin

4. Add the flax mixture to the bean mixture and mix well again.

1 teaspoon chili powder

5. Form into 4 patties and place them on a sprayed cooking sheet.

½ tablespoon chopped garlic cloves ¼ cup chopped cilantro

6. Bake in a pre-heated 350-degree oven for 10 minutes to set.

2 tablespoons ground flax seeds

7. Sear the patties on the stovetop on a flat top or pan on both sides.

2 tablespoons water

8. Ready to enjoy!

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Diane Travis

Run, Bike, Run For Your Life Doris Bloodsworth

Photos: Jacob Langston


It’s hard to keep up with Diane Travis—literally. When her friends say Diane’s always on the go, they aren’t kidding. Travis is one of the country’s most accomplished masters athletes and is active in her hometown, Clermont, Florida, known as the Choice of Champions—a nod to the many Olympians who live and train there. Travis, 66, is a world and national champion in duathlons, a division of USA Triathlon. Duathletes run, bike and then run again instead of swimming on their third leg. She won the gold medal at the 2019 national competition and silver at the world for women 65-69 years old. In addition to a rigorous training schedule, Travis also runs a real-estate agency she founded and served as a city council member for six years. She has been a statewide advocate for bicycle safety, following the death of her fiancé who was killed by a motorist while on his way to a cycling event. Since this is the year of the Summer Olympics, we wanted to check in with Travis, who is also a friend and Realtor to some of the Olympians who live and train in Florida. We caught up with her at Waterfront Park in Clermont, named one of Central Florida’s most popular parks and an international triathlon destination.

Q&A How do you find time to train, compete and run a business? Training and competing takes a solid commitment to a schedule, repetition and consistency, if you want to compete or if your goal is just to stay healthy. Plus, the fun thing is most of my clients are also athletes, and we have become close friends. It lets me understand their needs much better when they’re looking for a home.

What does your training look like? My strength training is two to three times a week. My running is much less than before, and much slower, due to knee surgery. I run two to three times a week, and I mostly stay on a soft surface, like the treadmill. My cycling has been much better. I have been riding at least four times a week.

Has your training changed as you have aged? How is it different today from what it was five years ago? My training has changed over the past year due to a knee injury, which is why I’ve been concentrating more on cycling. I have new aspirations of hiking the Grand Canyon, from rim to rim, and for some epic cycling trips once we can travel internationally again.

How long have you been a competitive duathlete? What inspired you to start? My first world championship was in 1998 in Germany, three years after I started racing locally. Some of my friends were trying it, and it looked fun. The competitions were held across the lake from where I lived. When I started competing nationally, I made many new friends and became hooked on the sport.

Do you have a favorite way to celebrate after a big race? You can find me enjoying a hamburger and a beer or glass of wine.

What would you say to encourage other older adults who may think it’s too late to try something new? You’re never too old, and it’s never too late. The power of setting and achieving goals can empower you with confidence.

You’ll want to start early with a run on the 10-mile clay loop, a former orange grove road that runners call nirvana. It’s common to see novice athletes alongside the pros, like Olympian Sarah Haskins or 800m World Champion David Rudisha. If there’s time, stop by Southern Hills Farm to pick blueberries and sunflowers before heading downtown.


Clermont’s downtown is the historic, hip center of the arts and business district. For a power breakfast, check out Cheeser’s Palace Café. Amanda Walsh offers a welcoming atmosphere and extensive menu with Clermont-centric names, such as the Montrose Crunch Salad, named after the main street.

Clermont Doris Bloodsworth 

Snap a selfie along the Art Walk, connecting Montrose Street to Minneola Avenue. Or watch artists create their next masterpiece at the South Lake Art League Gallery.

Recreation is a big part of the Clermont lifestyle. The Coast-to-Coast Connector, a trail that will go from the Atlantic Ocean to the Gulf of Mexico, runs through Waterfront Park, part of the downtown district. The 2-mile park, which hugs the shore of Lake Minneola, offers a beach, playground, splash pad, championship disc golf course, fishing piers and a pavilion, where you will find triathlons and festivals nearly every weekend.

Once a sleepy, citrus town, Clermont is now known as the Choice of Champions—a nod to the Olympians and elite athletes who live and train there. Surrounded by rolling hills and pristine lakes, Clermont was named the Best City to Live In by the “Orlando Business Journal” and was chosen as a Top 25 City in America for Retirees by two national magazines. Why is Clermont so hot? Imagine this itinerary.

For lunch, Clermont offers almost every chain imaginable. But if you’re looking for local fare, you can have high tea at Erica’s Tea Room or legendary burgers and beer at the Tiki Grill on Lake Minneola. Customers come by boat, bike, car and even seaplane!

Stop at Epic Cycles World next to the park to view Italian racing bikes like the pros use. And be sure to visit the Citrus Tower nearby. It’s one of Florida’s original tourist attractions, offering a spectacular view of seven counties.

Illustrations: bortonia Via Getty Images

As one goes through life, one learns that if you don’t paddle your own canoe, you don’t move. –Katharine Hepburn


@GrowingBolder Jan Kjerrman / EyeEm via Getty Images


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Honored Bound Amy Sweezey

Airman’s remains come home 65 years after his plane vanished On Nov. 22, 1952, three military transport planes disappeared in snowstorms near Anchorage, Alaska. Airman Isaac William Anderson Sr. was a 21-year-old serviceman on board one of those flights. When the Air Force returned and flew over the crash site, inclement weather kept them from finding any of the vanished planes, leaving behind the 52 people on Anderson’s flight. Almost 50 years later, Airman Anderson’s granddaughter, Tonja Anderson-Dell, began a letter-writing campaign to recover her grandfather’s remains from the glacier. “The Air Force said contact the Navy; the Navy said the Marines, and it was full circle,” Dell said. “But I wouldn’t take, ‘No,’ for an answer.” Dell was told her grandfather’s death was considered an “operational loss.” That means he was not killed in action, and there was no government agency assigned to recover the remains from his flight.

“You always hear, ‘We never leave our fallen behind,’” Dell explained. “But I felt that was not true about my grandfather. They left 52 servicemen out there on that glacier.” Within the Department of Defense is the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA). Their job is to recover service members from designated conflicts around the world. There is no agency that recovers “operational losses,” such as the remains from a plane crash transporting troops from one duty station to another. Dell refused to let that stop her. She continued to write letters, send emails, and get in front of military groups, senators and other government officials. Her initial goal was to return her grandfather to his family, but soon her goal became returning all 52 military personnel aboard his C-124 Globemaster flight. Dell’s efforts finally paid off, 60 years after the initial crash. On June 10, 2012, the C-124 Globemaster was found. Six years after that, Anderson’s remains were located, along with his dog tags. And in 2019 – more than 65 years after his plane vanished – Isaac Anderson Sr. finally came home. As of May, 2021, only nine of the 52 servicemembers remained unfound. Dell is committed not only to returning all 52 home to their families but also to finding the servicemembers lost on two military transport flights that went down the same month in 1952. Dell created the nonprofit organization, Honored Bound, to help other families look for servicemembers lost in operational or non-war situations. To find out more, go to Honored Bound on Facebook or visit honoredbound.org. Dell’s book, “Gifts from a Glacier: The Quest for an American Flag and 52 Souls,” is available on Amazon.

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PIVOTING AFTER JOB LOSS Making the gig economy work for you Amy Sweezey

Marc Walker is finally getting back to work. After spending most of his adult life living and working on cruise ships, he lost his job, like so many others during the pandemic. Now that travel is beginning again, and the cruise industry is starting to open, Walker said he’s ready to do a happy dance. “I’m back on a ship for the first time in 15 months,” he said, “and it’s absolutely amazing to be back.” For 30 years, Walker worked his way through the cruising ranks to larger ships and bigger responsibilities, eventually becoming cruise director on one of the largest cruise ships in the world. He was shocked when his career came to an abrupt halt due to the coronavirus pandemic. When travel stopped, Walker said he was frightened. “I think it scared everybody, especially those of us with careers revolving around hospitality, travel and being around people,” Walker said. “This was the scariest thing I’d been through in my life.” As the paychecks ended, and the bills piled up, Walker was determined not to let it devastate him. He needed a plan. “I probably applied for about 200 jobs,” he said. “I like to drive, and get out, and not sit behind a desk, so I applied for driving jobs. I only got five responses from those applications.” That might have been a roadblock for most people, but


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not for Walker. Instead, he put on his thinking cap and figured that since people still needed food, and delivery services were considered essential, he would drive for DoorDash®. He was happy to have the work but knew it wasn’t going to be enough to support his two young daughters. He added a few other jobs, such as working for Publix and driving an airport shuttle van, until he found a better fit delivering cars for Carvana. “I think some people in my industry would refuse to do anything but entertainment,” he said. “They’d rather just stay in bed, but I knew I had to do it. I wanted to keep my house and had to support my family.” Walker was willing to step outside his comfort zone and try something new. He credited his upbringing for his persistent job searches and humble work ethic. “My mum and grandparents did a great job bringing me up,” he said in his British accent. “My mum was in a very bad car crash, which I witnessed when I was 5 years old; and it put her in such a bad place. She still went out to work to provide for my sister and me. When you’re a kid, you don’t realize what your parents are doing; but I think it all mentally gels inside of you and molds you for the future.” Walker said that as much as he loved driving, there were times he felt isolated. “I would get a little depressed when I had so much time

Nobody else can fix things for you. You have to do the homework. You have to put in the groundwork. You have to follow up, make those phone calls, send those emails. Of all the jobs I’ve had this past year, I’ve had to go get them myself.” – M A R C WA L K E R

to think,” he said. “I started asking myself, ‘What is going to happen? How long is this going to last? Am I going to lose my house? Will I have to move back to England? What is my family going to do?’” Walker said his circle of friends was critical when he had negative feelings. “They motivated me a lot by reminding me this was just temporary,” he said. “They told me to focus on the good. Some of the guests from my cruises sent gift cards so I could take my girls to dinner and even sent them birthday gifts.” Walker recognized he was fortunate to have his job waiting for him when the cruise industry returned and had encouraging words for others who find themselves in similar, challenging times. “There are jobs out there for everybody,” he said. “It might not be what you’re used to and the pay of what you’re used to. A couple of the jobs I had I didn’t really like, but the people I worked with were amazing. If I could turn back the clock, I would probably do the same again, because I have learned so much about how people survive with so little; and I’m proud of myself that I’ve come this far. There’s light at the end of the tunnel.” Walker made it through the tunnel and now he’s off to do another happy dance—this time on board his cruise ship.

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Illustration: sorbetto Via Getty Images

Finally, Something You Can Count On to Protect Your Retirement

Protected Lifetime Income

With all of the surprises and uncertainty in our world today, there aren’t many things in your financial life you can always count on. However, there is one that can—annuities. Annuities date back thousands of years to the Roman Empire. In fact, the word annuity is derived from the Latin annua, meaning “annual payment,” and was used to describe the guaranteed money paid to soldiers for their years of service. In the U.S., annuities have been used for hundreds of years, to protect retirement for millions of Americans. While the benefit of lifetime income remains one of the significant benefits of annuities, they have evolved dramatically in recent years to meet the increasingly complex and changing needs of investors preparing for or in retirement. Like most other financial products and investments, annuities can be complex, which is why you should always discuss retirement plans with your financial professional. At the most basic level, annuities now span three basic types—fixed, indexed and variable— and many can be customized to achieve your particular financial needs and objectives. But the one universal aspect of all annuities is that they provide “protection” in retirement and a wide variety of powerful benefits. Here is a quick look at some of the most popular.

Since pensions have virtually disappeared, and Social Security typically provides only 40% of your pre-retirement income—the steady income that annuities provide is one of the most unique and important benefits sought by investors. Many use the income to pay for essential monthly expenses such as a mortgage, utilities and groceries. Annuities deliver cash flow that you can rely on for either a predetermined period of time or for the rest of your life. Deferred income annuities, for example, let you lock in a stream of protected income years before retirement, while reducing any impacts from market volatility on your retirement income plan.

Protected Growth The ability to limit the downside risk of an investment, while still providing upside benefits—also known as stop-loss strategies—has long been favored by investors active in the stock market. Some deferred annuities provide a similar benefit, allowing you to create a retirement plan that provides some protection from market declines while allowing you to capture gains from your investment. Fixed indexed annuities, a type of deferred annuity, also offer the opportunity for growth based on a market index. It is typically capped at a certain level which may be less than the actual market gains achieved by the index, in exchange for protecting your principal investment.

Protected Initial Investment As an optional benefit, many annuities offer the ability to protect your principal, where the initial money you’ve invested is not at risk due to market losses. This is a real benefit for those looking to improve their potential returns through the various types of investment options available within these annuities.

Tax-Deferred Earnings A smart retirement portfolio weighs the potential impact of the many types of taxes that can affect your nest egg and income in retirement, including capital gains and ordinary income tax obligations. All annuities offer tax-deferred growth, meaning taxes aren’t paid on the assets or investment gain in an annuity until they’re withdrawn. In this way, the annuities tax treatment is similar to other tax-advantaged accounts, like a 401(k), with one big difference: there is no cap on how much you can invest in a non-qualified annuity or income limitation to consider. The benefit of tax deferral can be immense, allowing your investment to compound tax free from investment growth, dividends and interest for decades.

Protected Assets A common estate objective is to shelter assets from prying eyes, as well as unnecessary tax obligations. Insurance companies can and will work with you to create custom contracts that specify payout and beneficiary options. Because annuities are insurance contracts, and therefore not subject to probate, they can protect your estate’s assets from public disclosure and taxation.

Protected Family Benefits To learn more about annuities and their potential benefits to you, visit PROTEC TEDINCOME .ORG .

Another common estate objective is to leave financial assets to one’s loved ones or other beneficiaries. You can use an annuity, for example, to leave a legacy. Annuities can be customized to help pay for the living expenses of your child or your grandchild’s college education, while avoiding the burdens arising from probate. The evolution of annuities—and the variety of benefits they now provide— explains why they are becoming a mainstay in the retirement portfolios for millions of Americans and play an important part in a truly diversified retirement portfolio.

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Growing Bolder is now airing on public broadcasting stations nationwide. Check local listings.

STARTING MAY 8: WUCF/Orlando, Saturdays @ 9:30 am WGCU/Fort Myers/Naples, Saturdays @ 2:30 pm WUFT/Gainesville, Saturdays @ 3 pm WEDU/Tampa, Saturdays @ 6:30 pm JAX PBS/Jacksonville, Saturdays @ 10 am WXEL /South Florida PBS, Saturdays @ 12:30 pm WPBT/South Florida PBS, Sundays @ 12 pm

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STARTING AUGUST 14: WDSC/Orlando, Saturdays @ 6:30 pm


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Alzheimer’s: In Her Own Words George Diaz

Eugenia Zukerman is a brilliant woman. She’s a world-class flutist. She was a long-time television correspondent on “CBS Sunday Morning.” But now there’s another chapter in her story. She is dealing with the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. She is not alone. An estimated 5.8 million Americans 65 or older have Alzheimer’s disease. That number is projected to nearly triple to 14 million people by 2060. But this is her personal journey, one that she is documenting in a book she has written: “Like Falling Through a Cloud.” It is filled with poems that provide eyeopening insights into the challenges of living with Alzheimer’s disease, which has no cure. She started her journey of discovery at the urging of her daughters, who noticed she was acting a bit off and asked her to get tested. Then she began writing. Shortly afterward, she had the first 25 pages. It was published in November 2019. “It just poured out of me, and the response that I have has been so wonderful for everyone, I think, who has Alzheimer’s or this kind of disease,” she said. “I have to say, people say to me, ‘What’s it like with this unending hardship?’ And I have to say, first of all, I don’t feel it’s a hardship or that it’s unending,” Zukerman, 76, said. “I have a disease, but it’s not painful. It’s not debilitating. It will end when I end. But so far as I know, I’m still pretty cogent.” The poems are powerful and poignant, reflective of one of the pieces titled “Marbles.” Maybe mine are lost, or maybe they’re rolling around in my head looking for a place to land, or maybe not. My daughters tell me to get tested. Tested for what, I ask, even though I know for what, but it’s for what I don’t want to know. So I let the marbles roll around in a swirl of distracting colors, because I don’t want to listen to them, the daughters, because if I hear them, I will be very afraid. And this mother cannot be that mother, not ever, never.

As with most Alzheimer’s patients, she is blessed to be surrounded by caregivers—her husband, Richard Novik, and her two daughters Arianna and Natalia. During her Growing Bolder interview, Novik was by her side in case she had any logistical hiccups. He playfully kicked her under the table and suggested she recite another poem. “I think it’s important for family members, with someone like me, to let that person be who they are,” she said. “Don’t worry about them. Just encourage someone like me to keep doing what they’re doing and be as happy as you can.” She braces for the future courageously, and with the hope that a recent breakthrough that may help her defense mechanisms of the disease. A drug, called aducanumab, which will go by the brand name Aduhelm, is the first new Alzheimer’s treatment in 18 years and the first to attack the disease process. In the meantime, she steps into the uncertainty with confidence. “I don’t look at my disease with fear,” she said. “It doesn’t hurt. There is no physical pain. What hurts is the knowledge that my life on this planet will not be as long as I would like it to be. But that knowledge makes me even more positive. I do wake up in the morning with an excitement that a new day has dawned. I can’t wait to explore it, to devour it, to enjoy it. My life is blessed with joy.” FROM THE GB BOOK S TORE :

Read Eugenia Zuckerman’s beautiful and lyrical memoir, Like Falling Through a Cloud. GROWINGBOLDER .COM/ BOOK S TORE

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Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine. –Anthony J. D’Angelo


@GrowingBolder MarcTutorials via Pexels

Among the many possible solutions, here are some ways Fichtner suggests you can play a more active role in addressing your retirement income needs.

Illustration: sorbetto Via Getty Images

'Peak 65' – What is it, and why it could change your retirement plan The U.S. is facing the greatest retirement surge in its history. The population of older Americans is growing rapidly and living longer. America is quickly approaching a moment in time where there will be more people reaching traditional retirement age—age 65—than ever before. This historic demographic milestone, coined Peak 65™, will take place in 2024, but its effects have been accelerated by the huge increase in Americans retiring early, by choice or due to layoffs during the pandemic. Jason Fichtner, a senior fellow and head of the Retirement Income Institute at the Alliance for Lifetime Income, and Chief Economist at the Bipartisan Policy Center, says that the traditional three-legged stool which has provided retirement income security for generations— pensions, Social Security and personal savings—may not provide sufficient, reliable and protected lifetime income today and for future generations. Why? Pensions—one of the three sources of guaranteed income—have basically disappeared, and the other, Social Security, only covers about 40% of the average person's pre-retirement income, leaving a large gap in income for millions of Americans. This serious issue requires the attention and collective action of everyone, including government policymakers, financial advisors, and retirees/ pre-retirees themselves. All must work together to ensure that Americans planning for retirement have the information and means they need to help maintain their standard of living once that regular paycheck stops coming. Fichtner believes that a new framework is needed that focuses on how protected income, like annuities, can better prepare individuals financially and help them maintain their planned and preferred standard of living.

Is an Official Personal Finance Partner of Growing Bolder


about the protected retirement income you'll need to help improve your retirement income security—like an annuity—and how it fits into your current financial plan. They can help you discover and implement solutions that will help you meet, and possibly surpass, your financial goals, and live the retirement you want.


that are being proposed and/or passed by the White House and Congress and are intended to increase retirement security for Americans. For example, during President Biden’s campaign, he proposed expanding payroll taxes for those with income above $400,000 per year to help strengthen the current Social Security program. If the plan is implemented, it would generate more than $700 billion in revenue over a decade.


about the availability of protected lifetime income solutions as part of your workplace retirement plan. Thanks to the recent passage of the SECURE Act, adding annuities to your employer-sponsored retirement account is now a possibility and can help you feel more confident about having enough income to retire.


Rabbi of the Reef Story by Bill Shafer | Photography by Mike Dunn


How Ed Rosenthal turned saving the ocean into a religious experience

We are all capable of doing so much more than we think. We can be the ones who light the spark of inspiration, we can draw attention where it is needed, and we can be the ones to affect change. The problem is that it can be difficult to know where to begin, even though the answer is often right in front of us. Instead of trying to reach out to everyone, sometimes it works best to simply reach out wherever we have connections and influence: to our friends, neighbors and community. Growing up in the Midwest, Ed Rosenthal never saw the ocean until he was 12. He quickly fell in love. He was captivated by the wonders of the underwater world. But as he took in all the beauty, he could not help but also see the ugliness. His beloved oceans were being destroyed by people with their endless sources of pollution. It haunted him to the point that he knew he had to take action. Protecting the sea became his passion and his cause. He knew that to make a difference, he would have to reach out to others. This, he thought, was one of his strengths. Rosenthal is a rabbi. And as a leader in the Jewish community, he thought maybe his congregation would help. After all, he is not the typical rabbi leading a typical congregation. As rabbi and Executive Director of  Hillels of the Florida Suncoast, he leads a Jewish organization for college students in Tampa, Florida. If he could just find connections between the oceans and Judaism, he mused, perhaps he could inspire his students to become better stewards of the earth and better people. It turns out that his religion has a lot to say about our personal responsibility to protect the planet.

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Repair the World “Judaism has a tenet called ‘tikkun olam,’ which in Hebrew means ‘repair the world.’ It’s the concept that when God created the earth it was perfect. But then humans got thrown into the mix and we messed it up,” explained Rosenthal. “So, as part of our Jewish way of life, we have a responsibility to repair the damage we have done. Some do it by helping the homeless, the poor, the needy; and others do it through the environment. And with my students, we work to change the sea.” Rosenthal formed an organization called Scubi Jew that offers scuba certification courses and coordinates underwater clean-up activities. Scubi Jew clubs quickly spread to six college campuses across Florida. In order to facilitate growth elsewhere, Rosenthal formed a larger organization called Tikkun HaYam, which translates to “repair the sea.” Rosenthal believes it is the first Jewish marine conservation organization in the world. And he

thinks it might be the first group to make the ocean a major rallying point in the Jewish religion since Moses parted the Red Sea. Tikkun HaYam and Scubi Jew turn saving the ocean into a religious experience. “Locally, we have adopted the St. Petersburg downtown reef; and the students go out at least once a month, clean the reef and remove fishing nets, fishing line, anchors, ropes and plastic,” he said. “It’s a neverending battle, but our number of participants is growing, and not just here in Florida. Before the pandemic, we had over 850 volunteers in 49 different groups in the U.S., Canada, Israel and Argentina cleaning waterfront locations. This year we already have 34 teams in the U.S., Israel, Norway and Palau that are going to take part. Our goal is to get the entire Jewish community to observe a new tradition: Rather than casting ourselves into the water, we want to take sin out of it.”

Ensuring the Future Rosenthal believes that it is not only important to the future of our planet but also to the future of Judaism itself. “I ask my non-Jewish students how many Jews they think are in the world. They say, ‘Oh, a couple of billion.’ When I tell them there are only 14 million, they’re flabbergasted. That’s why I feel college is the last line of defense,” Rosenthal said. “I have to ensure that everything we do is inspiring for them, that we don’t waste their time. We have to provide meaningful opportunities, purposeful opportunities; and in doing that, we can ensure the next generation. The tagline for my Hillels is ‘Ensuring a Jewish future, theirs and ours.’ They are our future, and I’m inspired by their idealism, optimism and altruism. They want to change the world, and I believe they will. It’s an honor and a privilege to work with them.” Rosenthal is energetic and youthful. There is a 40-year age gap between him and his students that gets wider with each new freshman class. But at an age when some are contemplating retirement, he feels more emboldened than ever about his mission and more passionate about his cause. “If I can’t see it like that, I’m not going to be able to inspire them,” he said. “It’s about recognizing that every


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day is new, and every day is another opportunity to do something to make the world a better place. And that’s how I keep the passion.” His passion for the ocean may only be exceeded by his passion for inspiring young adults. He believes it’s his purpose, which makes his message to them even more powerful. “Do whatever you can to leave the world better than you found it,” says Rosenthal. “That doesn’t mean you have to change the world. The Talmud says, ‘Whoever saves a single life, it’s as if he or she has saved the entire world.’ Have an impact, whether it’s on your family or your friends or your neighbors or your students. It’s really that simple. Yes, I want my students to be successful; but more importantly, I want them to do good with what they have. It’s not about us. It’s about us making a difference in the lives of others.” What it comes down to, he says, is making the world a better place for everyone, which is something made clear to him by the late Eli Wiesel, a writer, activist and Holocaust survivor. “What he said was, ‘The mission of the Jewish people is not to make the world more Jewish. The mission of the Jewish people is to make the world more human.’”

“Do whatever you can to leave the world better than you found it.” ED ROSENTHAL

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A spark for parks ‘We had an adventure’ Leslie K. Poole

When Rebecca Falkenberry and Bill Stokes moved to Florida, the Alabama natives wanted to immerse themselves in the Sunshine State’s natural beauty. They bought a much-coveted VW camper van, loaded it up, and headed out to learn about their new home state. Today, they are among the rare few who have seen all 175 state parks, an achievement that has rewarded them with rich experiences that included star gazing on a prairie and watching wild bison graze. “We are both nature lovers, and we felt like that was the best way to see the real Florida,” said Stokes, 77, a retired Realtor. “We’re both tree huggers, and that’s a big part of our lives—a love for the environment.” “We wanted to see this new state we’d moved into,” added Falkenberry, 75, a St. Petersburg travel adviser. “We thought state parks were a great way to do this. We’re kind of list-makers. We like to have goals, and a plan, and a way to do things. This fell into what we like to do.” After experiencing a variety of sites, they bought a state parks passport book in 2007 as part of a program that lets visitors officially document their travels. That’s when the couple got serious, planning weekend and week-long expeditions in order to fill the book with stamps from across the peninsula. Eight years later, the book was full—one of only 64 to complete the list in the last 12 years. “This is one of our treasured memories of Florida,” Falkenberry said, noting that they keep visiting newly created parks to keep up their goal. “It’s been great. We had a goal. We had a plan. We had an adventure.” The couple excitedly recalled some extraordinary moments: watching shooting stars and listening to coyote howls during a dark night at Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park, kayaking on the sparkling waters of Rainbow Springs State Park, negotiating Suwannee River rapids at Big Shoals State Park, and enjoying the white sands of Bahia Honda State Park in the Keys. Falkenberry and Stokes saw bison, alligators and wild horses at Paynes Prairie Preserve; learned about early park history at Highlands Hammock; and got their last passport stamp at the urban Ybor City Museum—all state parks with vastly different landscapes and offerings. “I like to think that some people realize that Florida is much more than beaches and theme parks,” said Eric Draper, director of the Florida Park Service (FPS). “The passport inspires them to see really remarkable ecosystems, like the freshwater marshes of Fakahatchee and historic treasures like Plaza San Carlos. Some people just like a challenge. " The state has many conservation lands for recreation, such as fishing and hunting, he said, but state parks have the added challenge of preserving “natural and cultural resources. So, beaches in state parks have a completely different look and feel—kelp stays on the beach, bird and sea turtle nests are guarded, and success is measured.

Here are treasures found nowhere else in the nation.” “Florida’s state parks provide a diversity of natural and cultural values unique in the United States,” said Jim Stevenson, former FPS naturalist. “A visit to all of these parks enhances one’s opportunity to explore a variety of terrain, from the coral reefs and tropical hammocks of the Keys to the high bluffs along the Apalachicola River in Torreya State Park. There are the dry caves of Florida Caverns, the longest and deepest underwater caves of Wakulla Spring, and Devil’s Millhopper, the state’s largest sinkhole. These state parks are also home to a variety of native wildlife, including the Florida panther, black bear, manatee, bison and wood stork.”

I like to think that some people realize that Florida is much more than beaches and theme parks. The parks also have been human refuges during the COVID pandemic, beckoning people who see “outdoor recreation and picnics as an alternative to gyms and restaurants,” said Draper, adding that the national award-winning FPS puts a “big emphasis on trails as safe and easy places to stay fit and healthy.” He estimated that 30 million people visited Florida state parks in 2020—bigger attendance than at the theme parks. Falkenberry and Stokes found camaraderie in their travels with a group of about 20 campers that call themselves the Pinellas Pine Cones. Some use tents, others use campers, but all enjoy traveling to natural spaces for recreation. The couple, in a normal year, would visit a half dozen parks in the brightly painted camper van; but that has been hampered recently because of closed facilities or other health concerns. When things return to “normal,” however, the couple plans to be back in the parks for hiking, biking and nature viewing. A word of caution from Stokes for those who want to accomplish the passport program: Do your homework, investigate parks, and make reservations well in advance, especially in winter months when more than migratory birds flock to the state. “There is a huge diversity of facilities in some of the parks—some are primitive. Find out before you go,” he said. Their next challenge? They’ve been to three-quarters of the national parks, said Falkenberry. “I don’t know if we’ll ever get to all of them, but we are well on our way.”

For more information about the FSP Passport Program, visit the website at floridastateparks.org/Passports G R O W I N G B O L D E R / J U LY D I G I TA L D I G E S T 2 1


Beat the Heat: Summer Safety Tips

Summer is officially here, and that’s a great thing as we leave our COVID-19 bubble and explore the great outdoors. As always, there are cautionary notes to remember along the way. Sun is fun, but it won’t be your friend unless you protect yourself properly. Florida Blue Medicare offers some important tips to consider:


Ultraviolet Type A (UVA) rays are present during all hours of daylight and can cause skin damage and wrinkles. Ultraviolet Type B (UVB) rays are most prevalent between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and can cause sunburn. UVB rays also play the greatest role in causing skin cancers, including the deadly black mole form of skin cancer known as malignant melanoma. UVA rays can also play a role in the formation of skin cancer.

PROTEC T YO U R S K IN It is important to protect yourself from both types of rays by wearing sunscreen and setting up yearly visits to your doctor for skin cancer screenings. Protecting yourself from the sun is particularly important for people over age 65, based on years of exposure to the sun. Men—particularly those over 80—are particularly vulnerable. Men age 80 and older are three times more likely to develop melanoma than women the same age. Clothing can be another important protective layer. You can still look great and fashionable wearing long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and hats. Hats with wide brims are great because they cover your face, as well as protect other easy-to-forget spots like your ears and scalp.

DO N ’ T FO RGE T YO U R E Y E S And while you’re accessorizing, don’t forget sunglasses. They can protect your eyes from UV rays that can cause eye problems, including cataracts. You don’t need an expensive pair; just look for sunglasses that block 99 to 100 percent of UVB and UVA rays.

Florida Blue and Florida Blue Medicare are independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. We comply with applicable Federal civil rights laws and do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex. For more information visit floridablue.com/ndnotice. ©️ 2021 Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, Inc., DBA Florida Blue. All rights reserved. Y0011_104751_C 0721 C:07/2021 Y0011_104751_C 0721 EGWP C:07/2021


CHOOSE THE RIGHT SUNSCREEN Sunscreen is important for protection, but the variety of options can be overwhelming. The sweet spot is to pick a sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 30 and avoid those that have oxybenzone, or either of the two active ingredients the FDA considers unsafe— aminobenzoic acid and trolamine salicylate. Look for sunscreen with “broad-spectrum” on the label for the best coverage. This will protect your skin from all UV rays, including UVA and UVB. Florida Blue Medicare’s chief medical officer, Dr. Beth Malko, offers these tips: There are so many sunscreens to choose from and so many chemicals to avoid, it can be frustrating to get the most appropriate sunscreen. But take this article with you and take the time to get a safe sunscreen that you will use. The sunscreen that you don’t use could quite literally kill you. Reef-safe sunscreen is thick and not necessary to use every day—only if you will be at the beach. Never leave the house without sunscreen—make it a habit to put on after your morning shower or before you leave the house. If you are using clothing to be sun-safe make sure it has the appropriate UV protection. At Florida Blue Medicare, we’re also environmentally conscious, so please choose “reef friendly” sunscreens, especially if you live in South Florida and frequent the Florida Reef Tract. Avoid harmful chemicals like oxybenzone, octinoxate, octocrylene and anything with paba or parabens. These chemicals have been found to harm coral and the fish that call our reefs home. No matter how high the SPF, remember to reapply sunscreen every two hours, or as needed. If you are swimming or sweating a lot, you will need to apply it more frequently.

PAW PATRO L TIP S If you’re a pet owner, you’ll also need to protect your furry friends. Whether it’s a trip to the park or a staycation, you should be aware of risk factors. Over-exposure to the sun can cause a variety of skin problems in dogs, including cancer. Dogs—much like humans—can form actinic keratosis (AK), a firm, thickened, crusty skin lesion that may develop into skin cancer. The most common canine skin cancer caused by excessive sun exposure is squamous cell carcinoma (SCC). Skin cancer is most common with dogs who have a thin coat or lack a lot of fur. Fortunately, there are dog sunscreen sprays available to help you stay proactive.

Check out this article from Florida Blue to learn more. Remember, healthy skin is always in. Use these tips to stay happy and healthy while still enjoying your summer. As always, keep cool and use sunscreen to protect yourself and your fur babies! G R O W I N G B O L D E R / J U LY D I G I TA L D I G E S T 2 1



Make Medicare an opportunity to live BOLDER.


Go to growingbolder.com/Medicare to download your free, easy to understand guide to Medicare. To speak to a representative call 1-844-396-2579.

Florida Blue and Florida Blue Medicare are Independent Licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. ©️2021 Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, Inc. DBA Florida Blue. All rights reserved. Y0011_101935 R1 2020_C

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Growing Bolder Digital Digest | ATE July 2021: Rabbi of the Reef Issue  

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