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A publication of the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging
April 2018 VOL. 43 • NO. 4
PRSRT STD U.S. POSTAGE PAID OMAHA NE PERMIT NO. 389
ENOA 4780 South 131st Street Omaha, NE 68137-1822
en oa. org
New Horizons old • er 74 adul ts since 19
ADDRESS SERVICE REQUESTED
On March 1, after a 45-year career in TV news, Rose Ann Shannon retired from Omaha’s KETV. Shannon is seen here on the KETV Weather Now set with husband and retired Omaha World-Herald photographer Phil Johnson (left) and Channel 7 weatherman Bill Randby. Nick Schinker’s profile of Rose Ann begins on page 10.
Honored Marvin Welstead is a 97-year-old Fremont resident who received the Community Service to Research Award from the University of Nebraska Medical Center in February. See page 6.
Homecoming In poor health, Roy Stephens recently returned to his boyhood home built around 1845 in Napa Valley, Calif. The trip was made possible by the Dreamweaver Foundation. See page 20. Photo by J. L. Sousa Napa Valley Register
Older adults impacted deeply by depression, suicide
Fremont Friendship Center You’re invited to visit the Fremont Friendship Center, 1730 W. 16th St. (Christensen Field) for the following: • April 3: Talk by Wendy from Care Patrol on Organizing 101: Making the Move @ 10:30 a.m. • April 5: Registered dietitian Jenny @ 10 a.m. • April 11: Music by Billy Troy @ 10:30 a.m. • April 12: Presentation on diabetes by Kelly @ 10 a.m. • April 18: Music by the Links @ 10 a.m. • April 19: Breakfast @ 9:45 a.m. and talk by Chris Wormath on Why We Need to Keep Moving. • April 25: Music by Wayne Miller @ 10:30 a.m. • April 26: Breakfast @ 9:45 a.m. and talk by Teresa Jordan on How to Choose Senior Housing. The annual garage/bake sale is scheduled for May 17-18. Walking in the main arena Tuesday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. is encouraged. The Fremont Friendship Center is open Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Lunch is served at 11:30 a.m. A $3.50 contribution is suggested for lunch. Reservations must be made by noon the business day prior to the meal you wish to enjoy. For meal reservations and more information, please call Laurie at 402-727-2815.
WHITMORE LAW OFFICE Wills • Trusts • Probate
Ask A Lawyer: Q — Should I put my child’s name on my home title? A — Let’s look at the pros and cons of this. Pro — It will avoid the need for probate on your home. Con — You would make a gift of a share of the property, and your child would become an owner (joint tenancy). Your child and his/her spouse would have to sign if you ever wished to borrow against your home or sell it. If you ever need Medicaid, you would be subject to a penalty period. Your child would also have to pay capital gain tax on the difference between your original cost and the value at the time of your death, losing the benefit of the step-up in basis at death. You can avoid these negative factors by use of Transfer on Death Deed or a by creating a trust, which may be the best way to avoid probate, while allowing you to pass your assets to your children.
Have a question about estate planning? Give us a call! AARP Legal Service Network • No Charge For Initial Consultation
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By Randy L. Ruhge Changes in patterns of behavior – particularly the slowing down of physical and emotional responses – can be significant indicators someone is depressed. Depression, which affects millions of people, has been called the “great imitator” because it’s evidenced by several physical signs and symptoms. Depression is often responsive to treatment. Less than one-third of depressed individuals, however, will seek help. Medical staff, home healthcare providers, and family members need to examine possible signs of depression when someone’s experiencing different forms of physical or mental discomfort. According to Psychology Today, depression is the leading cause of suicide worldwide. One in 200 individuals will commit suicide. Older adults are the most successful age group at completing suicide. The various predictors of
suicide with older men and women include a combination of psychiatric disorders (mainly depression), physical illness, functional impairment, and stressful life events such as the loss of a spouse, according to Lapierre. Complaining about not being able to sleep, waking often, unexplained pain, weakness, not eating well, an upset stomach, feelings of worthlessness, signs of social isolation, loneliness, and not caring about selfcare or hygiene can be signs of depression and suicidal thoughts. Research shows there are several motives for suicide attempts or completions in the older population with the most common being physical illness of self or spouse, friction with spouse or a close family member, social isolation, or loneliness. Research shows males are more likely than females to commit suicide because of a physical illness. Prevention aims at reducing new cases of suicide by
teaching skills that help recognize possible problems. Selective prevention focuses on the high-risk group that may not be showing signs of suicidal thoughts or behaviors. This population is more likely to be exposed to the loss of a spouse or family member, recently retired, undergoing major life transitions, highly disabled, or suffering from a painful chronic illness. Prevention also targets individuals who show signs of suicide risk behaviors and express suicidal thoughts. Salib, Tadros, and Cawley said often deliberate selfharm in older adults isn’t a cry for help but an unsuccessful suicide attempt. They said self-harm in older men and women is different than self-harm in school age children. Research led by Lebret showed the most common suicide method was medical overdose. Family members and care facilities should use care and caution with older adults when adminis--Please turn to page 17.
Return homestead exemption applications by June 30
pplicants whose names are on file in the assessor’s office in Douglas, Sarpy, Dodge, Cass, and Washington counties should have a homestead exemption form mailed to them by early March. New applicants must contact their county assessor’s office to receive the application. The 2018 forms and a household income statement must be completed and returned to the county assessor’s office by June 30, 2018. A homestead exemption provides property tax relief by exempting all or part of the homestead’s valuation from taxation. The state of Nebraska reimburses the counties and other government subdivisions for the lost tax revenue. To qualify for a homestead exemption, a Nebraska homeowner must be age 65 by Jan. 1, 2018, the home’s owner/occupant through Aug. 15, 2018, and fall within the income guidelines shown below. Certain homeowners who have a disability, are developmentally disabled, are totally disabled war veterans, or the widow(er) of a totally disabled war veteran – including those who have remarried after age 57 – may also be eligible for this
annual tax break. When determining household income, applicants must include Social Security and Railroad Retirement benefits plus any income for which they receive a Form 1099. The homestead exemption amount is based on the homeowner’s marital status and income level (see below). Maximum exemptions are based on the average assessed value for residential property in each Nebraska county.
he Douglas County Assessor/Register of Deeds’ office (1819 Farnam St.) is sending volunteers into the community to help older adults complete the application form. The volunteers will be located at sites throughout the county. A list of these locations will be included with your application. Assistance is also available by calling Volunteers Assisting Seniors (see page 6) at 402-444-6617. Here are the numbers for the local assessor’s offices: Douglas: 402-444-7060, option #2; Sarpy: 402-593-2122; Dodge: 402-727-3915; Cass: 402-296-9310; and Washington: 402-426-6800.
Household income table
The Sierra Group, LLC FREE Book & CD Call Us: (800) 309-0753
Over age 65 married income
Over age 65 single income
0 - $33,100.99 $33,101 - $34,900.99 $34,901 - $36,700.99 $36,701 - $38,400.99 $38,401 - $40,200.99 $40,201 - $42,000.99 $42,001 - $43,800.99 $43,801 - $45,600.99 $45,601 - $47,400.99 $47,401 - $49,100.99 $49,101 and over
0 to $28,200.99 $28,201 - $29,600.99 $29,601 - $31,100.99 $31,101 - $32,600.99 $32,601 - $34,000.99 $34,001 - $35,500.99 $35,501 - $37,000.99 $37,001 - $38,400.99 $38,401 - $39,900.99 $39,901 - $41,400.99 $41,401 and over
100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0
Nebraska Public Transit Week set for April 8 to 14 Staff members from the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging’s Rural Transportation Program are excited to take part in Nebraska Public Transit Week April 8 to 14. Nebraska Public Transit Week – which celebrates and promotes public transit across the state – is organized by the Nebraska Association of Transportation Providers, the Nebraska Department of Transportation, the University of Nebraska at Kearney’s Nebraska Safety Center, and the University of Nebraska at Omaha’s Center for Public Affairs Research in cooperation with Nebraska’s public transit providers. Nebraska public transit had more than 6.5 million riders in 2017. These passengers traveled more than 10 million miles combined. Public transit options, in both rural and urban communities, are vital to those who don’t own or can’t use a personal vehicle. This includes the 5.7 percent of Nebraska households that don’t have access to a vehicle. For thousands of
Nebraskans, public transit provides a connection to medical care, education, jobs, and other vital services. The Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging’s Rural Transportation Program provides services in Sarpy, Cass, Dodge, Washington, and rural Douglas counties. It offers demandresponse service, similar to what Nebraskans experience with rideshare programs such as Lyft and Uber. For an appointment, passengers need to call 1-888-210-1093 a minimum of 48 hours in advance of their ride request. In 2017, ENOA’s Rural Transportation Program averaged 422 boardings and 7,340 miles per week. To celebrate Public Transit Week, ENOA’s Rural Transportation Program is offering a free round-trip ride for anyone that refers a new a passenger to the program during April. In addition, new passengers will receive a free round-trip voucher they can use during April. For more information about ENOA’s Rural Transportation Program please contact Yvonne Betts at 1-888-2101093 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Elder Access Line Legal Aid of Nebraska operates a free telephone access line for Nebraskans age 60 and older. Information is offered to help the state’s older men and women with questions on topics like bankruptcy, homestead exemptions, collections, powers of attorney, Medicare, Medicaid, grandparent rights, and Section 8 housing. The telephone number for the Elder Access Line is 402-827-5656 in Omaha and 1-800-527-7249 statewide. This service is available to Nebraskans age 60 and older regardless of income, race, or ethnicity. For more information, log on the Internet to http://www.legalaidofnebraska.com/EAL.
AARP offering free tax preparation at area sites The AARP Tax-Aide program provides free tax preparation services at 10 Omaha-area locations. The program is designed to assist low and moderate income older adults, but services are provided to a variety of clients, including students. With a few exceptions, each site will be open through mid-April. The names, locations, days, and hours of operation for these sites are listed below. Unless otherFriday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. AgeWell 6801 N. 67th Plz. Suite 100
Monday & Wednesday 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Bellevue Volunteer Firefighters Hall 2108 Franklin St. Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Bellevue University Library 1000 Galvin Rd. S.
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, & Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Crossroads Mall (west corridor) 7400 Dodge St.
Tuesday & Thursday 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Thursdays by appointment 5 to 7 p.m. Kids Can Community Center 4860 Q St. 402-731-6988
wise indicated, sites operate on a walk-in basis with no appointments needed or taken. Clients must bring to the tax preparation site a photo identification, all documents related to income, Social Security cards for all persons named on the tax return, and last year’s tax return. For more information, call 402-3989582 or go to www.nebraskataxaide.org.
Tuesday, Thursday, & Saturday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday 3 to 7 p.m. La Vista Community Center 8116 Park View Blvd. Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Montclair Community Center 2304 S. 135th Ave. Monday & Tuesday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday 4 to 7:30 p.m. St. Martin de Porres Center 2111 Emmet St.
Sunday Noon to 4 p.m. St Joseph Villa Community Room 2305 S. 10th St. (not open on Palm Sunday or Easter Sunday) Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. AARP Information Center 1941 S 42nd St. • Suite 220 By appointment only: 402-398-9582
New Horizons New Horizons is the official publication of the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging. The paper is distributed free to people over age 60 in Douglas, Sarpy, Dodge, Washington, and Cass counties. Those living outside the 5-county region may subscribe for $5 annually. Address all correspondence to: Jeff Reinhardt, Editor, 4780 S. 131st Street, Omaha, NE 68137-1822. Phone 402-444-6654. FAX 402-444-3076. E-mail: email@example.com Advertisements appearing in New Horizons do not imply endorsement of the advertiser by the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging. However, complaints about advertisers will be reviewed and, if warranted, their advertising discontinued. Display and insert advertising rates available on request. Open rates are commissionable, with discounts for extended runs. Circulation is 20,000 through direct mail and freehand distribution.
Editor....................................................Jeff Reinhardt Ad Mgr................Mitch Laudenback, 402-444-4148 Contributing Writers......Nick Schinker, Leo Biga, & Lois Friedman ENOA Board of Governors: Mary Ann Borgeson, Douglas County, chairperson; Lisa Kramer, Washington County, vice-chairperson; Janet McCartney, Cass County, secretary; David Saalfeld, Dodge County, & Jim Warren, Sarpy County. The New Horizons and the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging provide services without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, marital status, disability, or age.
Dealing with Vision Loss or Blindness? Come to the Visually Impaired Community Resource Fair April 14-15 | 10am-4pm Baxter Arena during Health Expo
FREE Vision Screenings for Kids Courtesy of Omaha Area Lions Clubs
FREE event with dozens of local resources available to assist those dealing with visual impairment and blindness Visit outlookne.org/ResourceFair for more information
The importance of colon cancer testing
bout one in three adults ages 50 to 75 haven’t been tested for colorectal cancer as recommended by the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), according to a Vital Signs report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Despite research that shows colorectal cancer screening tests save lives, screening rates remain too low. “There are more than 20 million adults in this country who haven’t had any recommended screening for colorectal cancer and who may therefore get cancer and die from a preventable tragedy,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “Screening for colorectal cancer is effective and can save your life.” Colorectal cancer is the second leading cancer killer (after lung cancer) among men and women in the United States. Screening tests can prevent cancer or detect it at an early stage when treatment can be highly effective. Adults age 50 and older should get tested with one or a combination of these screening tests: • Fecal occult blood test (FOBT) or fecal immunochemical test (FIT) done at home every year. An FOBT/FIT is a simple at-home test that can detect cancer early by identifying blood in the stool, a possible sign of cancer. • Flexible sigmoidoscopy, done every five years, with FOBT/FIT done every three years. • Colonoscopy done every 10 years. A colonoscopy can detect cancer early, and it can find precancerous polyps, so they can be removed before they turn into cancer. People aren’t always offered a choice of colorectal cancer tests, but studies have shown people who are able to choose the test they prefer are more likely to get the test done. CDC researchers reviewed colorectal cancer screening data from the CDC’s 2012 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System to estimate the percentage of people ages 50 to 75 who reported getting screened as recommended by
type of test. Major findings include: • Among adults who were screened as recommended, a colonoscopy was by far the most common screening test (62 percent). Use of the other USPSTF-recommended tests was much lower: fecal occult blood test (10 percent), and flexible sigmoidoscopy in combination with FOBT/FIT (less than 1 percent). • The highest percentage of adults who were up-to-date with colorectal cancer screening was in Massachusetts (76 percent). • The percentage of people screened for colorectal cancer using the fecal occult blood test within one year was more than twice as high in California (20 percent) when compared with most states. • Blacks and whites had similar screening rates, but a higher percentage of blacks across all income and education levels used FOBT.
he authors noted that increasing use of all tests may increase screening rates. Furthermore, research shows more people may get tested if health care providers used an organized approach to identify people who need to be screened; contacted them at their home or community setting; advised them of each test; and carefully monitored them to make sure they completed their test. Visit Healthcare.gov or call 1-800-318-2596 (TTY/TDD 1-855-889-4325) to learn more. The CDC provides funding to 25 states and four tribal organizations across the United States to help increase colorectal cancer screening rates among men and women age 50 and older through organized screening methods. For more information about CDC’s efforts to prevent colorectal cancer, please visit http://www.cdc.gov/cancer/colorectal/.
Alzheimer’s support group meets monthly on the UNO campus
he Alzheimer’s Association has a new support group in Omaha dedicated to families and friends of persons with intellectual disabilities and dementia. The group is designed for individuals concerned about changes they may be witnessing in the person with the disability such as behavior, a lack of interest in things they previously loved, and signs of declining self-help skills. It’s also for those who have received a dementia diagnosis and want to be with other persons going through the same experiences. The group meets from 6:45 to 8:30 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month in the Barbara Weitz Community Engagement Center on the main campus of the University of Nebraska at Omaha, 6400 Dodge St. (near the clock tower). For more information, contact Janet Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org or 402-639-8037.
Consider taking your next vacation in an RV
f you’re looking for a way to get away without the hassle of planes, hotels, and an exorbitant travel budget, a recreation vehicle (RV) may be just the answer. Whether you’re traveling with family, your significant other, or several generations of family and friends, these tips from world-renowned auto travel expert Alan Taylor can get you on your way to an unforgettable RV vacation adventure. • Put style first. The first step to planning an RV getaway is deciding what works best for you: a motorhome or trailer. Motorhomes are built on a motorized chassis and are designed as temporary living quarters for camping, travel, or seasonal use. Towable RVs or trailer RVs are towed by another vehicle to be moved from place to place. Many are designed to be lightweight, so even family vehicles like minivans or SUVs can tow them. • Take time to plan ahead. Beyond the type of RV you need, think about how you’ll use it to understand what features you’ll want. What types of trips will you take? Who will be traveling with you? What’s your budget? There are hundreds of models, so how you answer these questions will guide your purchase. • Try it before you buy it. There’s no better way to try before you buy than by renting an RV. Many people rent RVs simply for a change of pace by taking a trip to a special event or destination. You can rent near your home and journey to your final destination or fly and pick up your RV at the other end. More than 460 national chain outlets and local RV dealerships rent RVs, including state-of-the-art, late model year units. A growing number of campgrounds offer on-site RV rentals, as well.
online, but another source of knowledge is any person who owns an RV or regularly rents one. One way to get the scoop and gather tips from experienced owners is to stay at a local campground and talk to your neighbors about their RVs. Ask questions about the space, key features, expenses, tricks they’ve learned, and so on. Also be sure to ask about any problems they’ve encountered or any decisions they’d make
differently if they could. • Get practical. Unless you’re planning to make RVing a way of life, when the vacation is over and the real world beckons, you’ll have to do something with the RV. Before you buy, be sure you have plans for storage, be it a campground, in your garage, or at a storage facility. Learn what’s involved in safely storing your investment while it’s not in use and take those needs into
account when considering what type of RV you’d like to own. As you work your way through the preparations, visit GoRVing.com to learn more about the different types of RVs, get ideas about what to do, and find a wealth of information, including dealers near you, as well as campgrounds, manufacturers, and rental companies. (Family Features provided this information.) ,
ost RV rental companies offer housekeeping packages (dishes, pots, pans, bed linens, etc.) for a fee, or you can bring your own. Even if you’re driving or towing an RV for the first time, features like automatic transmissions, power steering, large external mirrors, and rearview cameras make it easy for inexperienced drivers to adjust to the difference in size, height, and weight. • Do your research. You’ll find plenty of information
Traveling in a recreational vehicle (RV) is a great way to enjoy a vacation. Experts suggest doing some research before heading out on your adventure.
Notre Dame/Seven Oaks Center You’re invited to visit the Notre Dame Housing/Seven Oaks Senior Center, 3439 State St. for the following: • Second, third, and fourth Friday: Community Food Pantry @ 11 a.m. • Second and fourth Tuesday: Get banking help as a representative from American National Bank visits @ 10 a.m. • Third Wednesday: Community Food Pantry @10 a.m. • April 12: Presentation on tornado safety @ 1:30 p.m. • April 16: Birthday celebration with music by Tim Javorsky from the Merrymakers @ 1:30 p.m. • April 18: Second annual Senior Health and Resource EXPO from 9 a.m. to noon. • April 19: Expand Your Horizons program @ 7 p.m. on Death Penalty: A Witness Speaks with Marilyn Felton. • April 23: Program on public health @ 1:30 p.m. • April 26: Walker and Wheelchair Clinic @ 1:30 p.m. Call Barb @ 402-451-4477, ext. 129 for more information. Notre Dame Housing/Seven Oaks Senior Center is open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Lunch is served at noon. A $3.50 contribution is suggested for the meal. Reservations are due by 11 a.m. the business day prior to the lunch. For meals reservations and more information, please call 402-451-4477, ext. 126.
Millard Senior Center You’re invited to visit the Millard Senior Center at Montclair, 2304 S. 135th Ave., this month for the following: • April 3: National Chocolate Mousse Day. • April 4 & 18: Blood pressure checks by Methodist Nursing College students @ 9:30 a.m. • April 4: African dress making @ 9 a.m. • April 6: Retirement party for Cheryl Peterson. • April 6: Treat day. Bring a treat to share. • April 11: Board meeting @ 9:45 a.m. • April 13: Music by Joe Taylor @ 10 a.m. • April 17: Attorney John Massih @ 10 a.m. • April 18: P.A.W.S. @ 10 a.m. • April 20: Smores @ Hummel Park @ 12:30 p.m. Call 402-546-1270 to sign up. • April 24: VNA presentation @ 10:45 a.m. on My Shoes Don’t Fit. • April 26: Goodwill outing @ 9 a.m. Call 402-546-1270 to sign up. The center is open weekdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Lunch is served @ 11:30 a.m. A $3.50 donation is suggested for the meal. Reservations are due by noon the business day prior to the meal the participant wishes to enjoy. For reservations or more information, please call 402546-1270.
REHAB, RENEW, AND RETURN
Transitional care at Florence Home Florence Home Healthcare specializes in rehabilitation to help you recover from an illness or injury so you can safely transition back home. To learn more about this service, please call 402-827-6000 and ask to speak to our Client Services Director. WWW.OMAHASENIORCARE.ORG
For Fremont resident Marvin Welstead, the fight against AD is a labor of love
n 1938, Fremont High School students Jean Olson and Marvin Welstead spent their first date roller skating at the Fremont rink where Marvin worked as a skate boy. Four years later, the Welsteads were married during a Saturday night ceremony at the Justice of the Peace’s office. Over the next 59 years, the Welsteads rolled through a fairly routine life. After serving four years in the Army Air Force during World War II, Marvin embarked on a long and distinguished career as a banker. He retired from the Equitable Federal Savings Bank in Fremont as its chairman of the board in 1984. “When the interest rates went to 21 percent, I stepped down,” Welstead said during a recent interview in his Fremont home. A home filled with his wife’s art, and photos of a man equally proud of his life, his career, and his family. Over the years, Jean balanced her days as mother of the couple’s two sons (the Welsteads also have three grandchildren and two great grandkids) and as an accomplished artist. She served as president of the Fremont Area Art Association from 1961 to ’67 and was an artist in residence at Midland University for more than 30 years. Then in 2001, Jean was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Marvin said he wasn’t surprised by the news, suspecting something was wrong when his wife couldn’t carry on a conversation during a family outing in Wisconsin. For the next 44 months, Marvin was Jean’s primary caregiver in their Fremont home. “The toughest part was when Jean would go 24 to 30 hours without sleeping, and then suddenly collapse on the floor,” he said. Welstead would then get two blankets and two pillows and sleep on the floor next to his wife. “I’d wrap a belt around our legs, so if she woke up, I’d wake up,” he said. Marvin knew Jean appreciated his efforts on her behalf. “She’d pat me on the back when I helped her.”
Marvin Welstead in front of the portrait painted by his wife, Jean, more than 30 years ago. began raising funds through an annual walk which raised $78,000 in 2017, online gifts, memorials, and an annual golf tournament. The Fremont Area Alzheimer’s Fund allocates 60 percent of the money it raises for AD research and 40 percent for caregiver education. Once a month, AD support groups are held at Shalimar Gardens and Nye Square in Fremont.
hile each family’s story is unique, Welstead tries to impart one simple piece of advice to each: “Remember, you’re living in their (the person with AD) world and respond to things accordingly.” Thus far, the Fremont organization has awarded more than $125,000 to the Univers a result of being constantly sity of Nebraska Medical Center to build worried that Jean would infrastructure for AD research, to purchase fall down or take the wrong a retinal imaging machine, and for other medication, Marvin eventually Alzheimer’s-related projects. decided to move his wife into The Marvin and Jean Welstead AlzheimEdgewood Vista, an assisted living facility er’s Disease Education and Research Fund in Fremont. was created at UNMC through the UniverBy that point, Welstead was well into sity of Nebraska Foundation in 2015. Each reading multiple books and medical papers year, Marvin donates $2,500 to the fund. about Alzheimer’s. He also quizzed physiIn February, UNMC honored the 97-yearcians and researchers about the disease old Welstead with its Community Service to shared by an estimated 5.5 million AmeriResearch Award. cans, including 37,000 in Nebraska. “Marv has been tremendously supportIn July 2009, Jean Welstead passed away ive of AD research at UNMC,” said Dr. at Edgewood Vista. Knowing firsthand the Daniel Murman, M.D., vice chair, clinical incredible impact AD has on individuals and translational research, and director of and families, Marvin, then age 88, dedicatUNMC’s Memory Disorders Clinic and ed his life to raising money for AD research Geriatric Neurology Program. and to educating the public about this dis“He exemplifies how someone with viease that claimed more than 93,000 lives in sion, community involvement, persuasive2014, according to the Centers for Disease ness, and passion can make an important Control and Prevention. difference,” Dr. Murman added. Working with Russ Peterson and Kristin Welstead was humbled by the recogHarris from Nye Health Services, Welstead nition. “It’s been a labor of love, but I started the Fremont Area Alzheimer’s Com- couldn’t have done it without the help of the mittee (now called the Fremont Area Algreat people at UNMC.” zheimer’s Collaboration) in 2012. As his approaches the century mark, The organization established the Fremont Marvin is confident a cure for AD is on the Area Alzheimer’s Fund, administered by the horizon. “We’re exploring so many options, Fremont Area Community Foundation, and I believe one of them will succeed.”
Discover how volunteering can benefit you, your community By Jen Kesterson
veryone has a busy life, and it can be difficult to imagine making time to volunteer on a regular basis. However, volunteering can be a benefit to you, your family, and your community. Finding the right volunteer opportunity can help you meet new people, make new friends, and learn new skills while helping those in need. We often hear about the benefits of volunteering for community organizations, but volunteering is often a two-way street for those who choose to commit some of their time to giving to others. Some of the benefits to volunteers include the following: • Improve your social life. One of the best ways to make new friends or strengthen an existing friendship is to bond over a shared experience or interest. Volunteering is often
a great way to meet new people in your neighborhood or who share common interests with you. For individuals who have a difficult time meeting new people or who are naturally shy, volunteering can help them branch out and strengthen their social skills. • Improve your mental and physical health. Volunteering can be a great selfconfidence booster. People tend to feel good about themselves when they’re giving to others. Volunteering can reduce instances of depression because there’s often a social component to volunteering. Isolation plays a large role in depression, especially in older adults. Volunteering can also be great for physical health because it helps keep the volunteer active. In fact, studies have shown lower mortality rates in older adults who volunteer. They’ve also shown people who volunteer tend to be happier. • Improve and share your career skills. Just be-
cause you aren’t being paid for the work you’re doing while volunteering doesn’t mean you can’t learn new skills. Your volunteer experiences could translate into your career or could help if you’re looking for a new career. Similarly, community organizations can benefit from the skills you bring to the table through your experience.
ow that you’ve seen all the reasons why volunteering isn’t just good for the community, but also good for you, you might be wondering how you can get started volunteering. Below are a few questions to ask yourself that will help you find the right volunteer opportunity. • What do you want to get from a volunteer experience? Some answers might include trying something new, working for a cause that’s important to you, meeting new people, learning more about a potential
The importance of having meaning in life during your post-retirement years By Nancy Hemesath Liz, a friend of mine who has been retired about three years, told me how her life has improved since she took a part-time job with a home healthcare agency as a companion for older adults who need support. She doesn’t work for the money, but she needs something to get her out of bed in the morning and to help organize her days. She made the commitment to be there for others and her own life has become richer. Liz gives testimony to the importance of having a sense of purpose in our lives, no matter our age. One large study that followed more than 1,000 older people (average age 80) over five to seven years, measured the level of purpose in their lives. Through a series of questions, they determined who had a high purpose and who had a low purpose. Purpose is defined as a commitment to something beyond ourselves that helps to organize our days. What they found was indeed astounding. Cognitive decline was 30 percent less in people with a high purpose vs. people with a low purpose. High purpose people had fewer disabilities. They were 2.4 times less likely to develop symptoms of Alzheimer’s than their low-purpose counterparts. When followed for five years, high purpose people had a mortality rate half that of those with a low purpose. For all these reasons, level of purpose is a robust predictor of health and wellness in the older adult years. This is a compelling argument to dismantle the idea that retirement is a long vacation centered solely on leisure activities. Rather, the best retirement years are years of contribution to others according to our preferences, availability, and capability. The overarching benefit of retirement is not that
we don’t have to work but we get to work at our own pace doing that which gives us satisfaction and purpose. Circumstances differ for every person. Some contribute to their own families by being engaged grandparents. Others choose to volunteer for organizations they support, doing activities they enjoy. Still others work part-time at jobs of their own choosing without the pressure of a full-time work week. Many retirees pick up on a creative passion they previously put aside during their busy career years. These latent artists create music or artwork for others to enjoy. Whatever the choices, the key element is that there be a significant engagement in something beyond self that provides a sense of purpose. Some struggle with identifying what purposeful activity they want to do. Richard Leider wrote The Power of Purpose, a book that may be useful to those seeking to identify their purpose in the third phase of life. He suggests our purpose is a combination of our gifts, our passions, and our values. Our gifts are our innate talents and those we’ve developed over a lifetime. Our passions energize us at our core. Our values are deeply held beliefs and commitments. Expression of these three components provides a fulfilling sense of purpose. This is what gets us out of bed in the morning, provides some structure to our daily lives, and satisfies our need to make a difference. Along with debunking myths about the negativity of aging, unloading the baggage of regrets (see articles in the February and March New Horizons), developing a personal sense of purpose is the third key to a rich, joyful third phase of life. (Reach Hemesath, who owns Omaha’s Encore Coaching, at email@example.com.)
career, and so on. • How much time are you willing to commit? • How much responsibility are you ready to take on? • What skills and experiences do you have that would benefit a community organization? • What causes are important to you? The key to a successful volunteer experience is finding the right match for you. Answering the questions above can help narrow down your search to a few organizations that might be a good match. Keep an open mind about finding the right organization for your preferences. Visiting the organization, getting a sense of their volunteer programs, and talking with staff and other volunteers might also help you decide if it’s the right fit for your lifestyle. Remember you’re donating your time when volunteering, which is an extremely valuable gift. Make the most of it by communicating your goals, understanding expectations, and being willing to make a change if the experience isn’t the best fit for you. Most importantly, have fun. The best volunteer experiences benefit both the volunteer and the organization. To learn more about volunteer opportunities with the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging, call 402-444-6536. (Kesterson is the life enrichment director for the Florence Home in Omaha.)
Quoted prices are per person, double occupancy. For more information about our tours, please call Ward or Kathy Kinney at Fontenelle Tours at the number listed above.
Missouri Wine Country. July 19 - 21. $529 ($559 after 4/19). Enjoy wine-tasting at four Missouri wineries including Stone Hill Winery and Vintage Restaurant in Hermann, Blumenhof Winery, Chez Trappeur Wine Bar & Bistro, Van Till Family Farm Winery. Also Arrow Rock Historical Village, the musical “Footloose” at Arrow Rock’s Lyceum Theater, plus lunch and a tour at the historical Elms Hotel in Excelsior Springs. “Mamma Mia!” at the New Theater. July 28. $135 ($145 after 5/28/18). On the eve of her wedding, a daughter’s quest to discover the identity of her father brings three men from her mother’s past to the door of the church. Featuring the #1 hits of the legendary Group ABBA including “Dancing Queen”, “Knowing Me-Knowing You”, “Take a Chance on Me”, and many more. Branson Christmas. November 5 – 8. $719. ($759 after 8/20/18). Enjoy the Legends in Concert (Elton John, Brooks & Dunn, Tina Turner, The Blues Brothers, and Elvis), Daniel O’Donnell, The Hughes Brothers, “Samson” at the Sight & SoundTheater, Hot Rods & High Heels, and Million Dollar Quarter. Laughlin (There are currently no Laughlin trips available out of Omaha. Check with us for updates on these very reasonably pricedcharter flights to Laughlin, Nevada. They typically sell out fast.) In Partnership with Collette Vacations Quoted prices are per person, double occupancy, and do include airfare. More destinations available! Canadian Rockies & Glacier National Park. Mid July 2018. Call for details. Spotlight London Holiday. December 2018. Call for details. Iceland’s Magical Northern Lights. Early March 2019. Call for details. Watch New Horizons and our website www.fontenelletours.com for our trip schedule. 11808 Mason Plaza, Omaha, NE 68154
WalletHub survey shows which states provide the best elder abuse protection
ith the share of Americans age 65 and older expected to more than double by 2060 and nearly 96 percent of elder abuse cases going unreported every year, the personal-finance website WalletHub conducted an in-depth analysis that identifies the states with the best elder abuse protection. To determine which states fight the hardest against elder abuse, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 11 key metrics. The data set ranges from share of elder abuse, gross neglect, and exploitation complaints to presence of financial elder abuse laws. The five states with the best elder abuse protection are Nevada, the District of Columbia, Arizona, Massachusetts, and Iowa. Nebraska ranked 31st. The five states with the worst elder abuse protection are California, South Carolina, New Jersey, Kentucky, and Wyoming. Here are some key statistics:
• Alaska has the highest total Long-Term Care Ombudsman program funding per resident age 65 and older at $10.84. That’s 15.5 times higher than in Florida, the state with the lowest at 70 cents per resident age 65 and older. • The District of Columbia has the most certified volunteer Ombudsmen per 100,000 residents age 65 and older with 104. South Dakota, West Virginia, and Wyoming have none. • At once per year, Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Texas have the most frequent assisted living facility inspections. That’s 1five times more frequent than California, the state with the least frequent assisted living facility at once every five years. • Maine has the highest nursinghomes quality (the share of certified nursing-home beds rated four or five stars) at 56.4 percent. That’s 2.2 times higher than in West Virginia, the state with the lowest at 25.8 percent.
Nebraska Senior Medicare Patrol Nebraska Senior Medicare Patrol, a Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services program that works to educate and empower older adults to help prevent health care fraud, offers tips to help you avoid Medicare scams. • Don’t speak to anyone claiming to be a Medicare representative about Medicare. • Don’t provide your Medicare number to anyone
Omaha World Adventurers
except your trusted health care provider. • Shred important documents before throwing them away. • Read Medicare summary notices carefully looking for possible mistakes. • Use a health care journal to record information from doctor visits. • Compare your calendar or health care journal with your Medicare summary notices.
• Count your prescription pills. If the total is less than expected, go back and tell the pharmacist. • Ask friends and neighbors to pick up your mail while you’re away. Medicare loses billions of dollars each year. It’s up to you to help fight fraud. If you believe you may be a victim of Medicare fraud, please call the Nebraska Senior Medicare Patrol at 800-942-7830.
Armchair travel via the Big Screen
Eastern Canadian Adventures, the Maritimes & Newfoundland Thursday, April 5th
2,00 & 1:00 pm'\,.
Westwood 8 Cinema 2809 S 125 Avenue, # 297
Tickets at the door $10, cash or check, with cutout ad $8 RJ ENTERPRISES, Inc Production 866-385-3824
ARE YOU FEELING OVERWHELMED! Thinking of selling your house and simplifying your life? If you are considering a move now or in the future, you owe it to yourself to be prepared. Receive your complimentary copy of our “Downsizing Made Easy” guide, when you schedule a FREE consultation with Michael and Marilyn Goure, CAPS, CSHP, SRES. Simplifying should Leave You OVERJOYED… Not Overwhelmed.
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“Upsize your life by downsizing your home!”
Read it & eat By Lois Friedman firstname.lastname@example.org
Discovering spring is in the air Throw open your windows and doors and head outside. These cookbooks will help you discover all kinds of treats and spring in the air. Forage and make sauces, chutneys, sauerkraut, syrups, yogurt, and more. The Scout’s Guide to Wild Edibles By Mike Krebil (St. Lynn’s, $18.95) Hum “be prepared” as you flip through this illustrated guide to wild things from the Boy Scouts of America. Carefully described are wild foods from Amaranth to Yellow Wood Sorrel with warnings, projects, activities, and more than a dozen recipes. Clear color photos and positive-ID tips are included to identity and enjoy. Wild Fermentation By Sandor Katz (Chelsea Green, $29.95) This award-winning author and fermentation guru known as “Sandorkraut” demystifies fermentation and invites you to discover everything about live-culture foods. Be a “Fermento” and create healthy food. Bubbling pots are supposed to possess magical powers. Traditionally Fermented Foods By Shannon Stonger (Page Street, $22.99) Chapters on the basic fermentation process, grains, dairy, beverages, and condiments. Fermented foods are as old as food itself, only preserved and better. Detailed descriptions to get you started. Increase the flora in your gut and learn when it is safe in this in-dept guide. From Storey: Fiery Ferments By K. & C. Shockey ($24.95) Veggies + salt + time = YUM. Seventy heat indexed recipes with detailed instructions, hot tips, photographs, and variations for hot sauce, spicy chutney, kimchi, and blazing fermented condiments. Meet the ‘heat makers” and savor the fire. The Wildcrafted Cocktail By Ellen Zachos ($18.95) Check out this guide to harvesting seasonal plants at their peak growing here, there, and maybe even in your backyard. Foraged mixology in 50 recipes for syrups, bitters, infusions, juices, and garnishes. Create artisanal cocktails incorporating common flowers, berries, and roots in your own one-of-a-kind mixed drinks including the Shohola Scofflaw (someone who drank illegally during Prohibition), Don’t Sass Me, and this infusion:
1 (750 ml) bottle dry gin, like Bombay Sapphire or Beefeater 1 tablespoon dried or 2 tabelspoons fresh lavender buds Combine the gin and lavender buds in a quart jar. After four hours, start tasting the gin. When you like the flavor, strain out the lavender and rebottle the gin. It’s easy to overdo this, so keep close tabs on your time. You won’t need to infuse the gin for more than eight hours total. More than that and the infused gin can become bitter.
THEOS group meets each month THEOS, a social organization for singles age 60 and older, meets at 1:30 p.m. on the second Monday of each month at New Cassel, 900 N. 90th St. Older men and women are encouraged to meet for a fun afternoon and to sign up for other activities throughout the month. For more information, please call Dorothy at 402-399-0759 or Mary at 402-393-3052.
The impact of low annual COLAs We want to hear from
ow Social Security cost of living adjustments (COLAs) have significantly impacted the retirement income of almost two-thirds of older Americans, according to a new analysis by The Senior Citizens League. “People who have been receiving Social Security benefits since 2009 – an estimated 64 percent of all beneficiaries – have been hit with the full brunt of extremely low COLAs over the past nine years,” says The Senior Citizens League’s Social Security policy analyst Mary Johnson. “Nine years is about one-third the length of a typical retirement,” Johnson says. “Younger retirees since 2009 are also feeling the pain.” Since 2009 the COLA was zero in 2010, 2011, and 2016, and only 0.3 percent in 2017. Since 2010, the COLA has averaged 1.2 percent, compared to the prior decade when the COLA averaged 4 percent. A new analysis by Johnson compared the growth of the average benefits since 2009 with what retirees would have received assuming Social Security law provided a COLA guarantee of at least 3 percent, as has been proposed by some members of Congress. Johnson’s analysis found an average benefit of $1,075 in 2009 would be $206.50 per month higher in 2018 – about 17 percent higher – had Social Security recipients been protected by a 3 percent COLA guarantee. Over the past nine years, the average retiree would have received about $11,947 more in Social Security income. “This is an important perspective to have in our current legislative environment,” says Johnson. Some members of Congress are discussing indexing the COLA to the more slowly growing “chained” consumer price index. “The current index used to calculate the COLA already understates inflation experienced by retired beneficiaries because it doesn’t adequately represent the spending of older consumers,” Johnson says. “A more slowly growing index would only exacerbate the problem of maintaining the buying power of Social Security benefits over time.” When the COLA doesn’t accurately or adequately
reflect the costs retired and disabled people have, the buying power of Social Security benefits erodes over time. A study by TSCL found Social Security benefits have lost 30 percent of their buying power since 2000. The Social Security COLA is calculated based on the spending patterns of younger working adults using the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W). Older consumers, however, spend a bigger portion of their household budgets on healthcare and housing, two categories that have been increasing more
rapidly in recent years. “Medicare Part B premiums are the fastest growing cost most retirees will have,” Johnson says. “But those costs aren’t even surveyed under the CPI-W or reflected in today’s COLA.” This year, Medicare Part B premiums are offsetting COLAs for many. TSCL recently delivered letters to Congress sharing concerns from supporters around the country who saw no increase in their net benefit in 2018 despite the fact they’re receiving the largest COLA in five years. (The Senior Citizens League provided this information.)
• Do you have questions about the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging, its programs or services? • Do you have a comment about the agency and how it serves older adults in Douglas, Sarpy, Dodge, Cass, and Washington counties? • Maybe you have a story idea for the New Horizons?
Send your questions,comments, story ideas, etc. to
DHHS.ENOA@nebraska.gov We appreciate your interest in ENOA and the New Horizons.
Shannon hangs up press pass after award-winning career By Nick Schinker Contributing Writer
ews can be different things to different people. For the past 45 years, news has been everything to Rose Ann Shannon. From her first assignment as an intern at Omaha’s KMTV in 1973, to her award-winning work as an on-air reporter, photographer, video editor, producer, anchor, and assignment manager, to 24 years as news director at KETV, Shannon is the longest-running feature in Omaha broadcast journalism. If there were such a thing as a press pass, Shannon officially hung hers up as of March 1. Looking back on her impressive career during an interview at KETV with her husband of 43 years, longtime Omaha World-Herald photographer Phil Johnson seated at the same table, Shannon said the news stories she remembers most are because of the people she will never forget. “There are some that you never get out of your head,” she says. “There was a fire in an Omaha Housing Authority complex. Some kids had been playing with matches or a lighter. They had pushed a bed up against the door in the apartment, and the firefighters couldn’t get in the room. “I remember a fireman brought a small bundle outside in his arms, wrapped carefully in a blanket. He gently handed that bundle off to another firefighter, then he went over and sat on the curb and cried. “At a time like that, you have to push ahead and do your job,” she says, “but afterward, that image never goes away.”
f Shannon were destined to become a television journalist, no one told her. One of five children born to Raymond and Vivian Shannon, she grew up in the Benson neighborhood. “If there was anything that really stands out, it was the freedom we had as kids,” she recalls. “Our mother was always very protective, putting on pressure to behave and stay near home. But we had the freedom to play.” She recalls taking the city bus downtown to have lunch at the counter at Brandeis, and ice skating in a parking lot the pastor would flood every winter behind the gymnasium at Pius X Church. “It’s funny how many people I run into that remember that, and remember it fondly,” Shannon says. She went to high school at Omaha Marian. “It was a wonderful place,” she says. “We were taught that there were no limits put on you as a woman. The expectations at Marian were that you are going to do something. The school and everyone there were very invested in our futures and our successes.” Shannon recalls in particular Sister Terese Lux who taught biology and science. “It was her expectation
Photo by Phil Johnson
Rose Ann attended Omaha’s Marian High School and the University of Nebraska at Omaha. that we do college level work. I think that does put you on a different track.” Marian High accounts for several facets in Rose Ann’s life and career. Years later, she and Johnson met while at the school covering Marian Field Day events, her for a television report, him for the WorldHerald. Still undecided on a career after high school, Shannon enrolled at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. “I changed my major quite a few times,” she recalls. “I had an interest in everything, but not enough in any one thing for a career – which describes a reporter to a T.”
Her father worked at Northwestern Bell Telephone Co. in the construction division for 45 years. Shannon got a part-time job there as a long-distance operator, and one day a film crew at the UNO television station interviewed her about her work. Being on one side of the camera sparked a curiosity about being on the other side. She signed up for journalism classes, and one of her teachers was the recently-deceased Joe McCartney. The public relations director at Union Pacific, McCartney taught journalism and photography at UNO for 15 years. “If he couldn’t inspire you to be a journalist, no one
could,” Shannon says. “I took every class I could from him.” That included a news film and documentary class, during which one of her projects was a video of a circus. Accidentally during the editing process, a cutaway image of a man applauding was inserted, well, incorrectly. “It was flipped, so every time it showed this guy clapping, he was upside down,” Shannon says, chuckling. “Joe gave me an A for creativity.” When an opportunity for an internship at KMTV came along, McCartney urged Shannon to apply. “He gave me the best advice. He --Please turn to page 11.
Rose Ann enjoyed competing with other stations, OWH --Continued from page 10. said, ‘If they ask you if you can do something, say ‘yes.’ And if you don’t know how to do it, then you better figure it out.’”
hannon had to figure out a lot of things in her career. Like how to assert her presence in a field dominated by men. How to adapt to new technologies. Even how to keep some elements of her work secret from her newspaper photographer husband. “When I first came on and saw there were no other women in the newsroom, I thought to myself, ‘Surely, some will show up.’” Shannon recalls. “Because of what I’d been taught, it never crossed my mind that there should be any limitation on what I wanted to do.” While the newsroom seemed like a men’s club, Shannon said she encountered no sexism or prejudice. “The guys were fabulous. Any pressure I felt was self-imposed. And, back then, the viewers didn’t really care for women report-
ers.” Gradually, the field has evolved. Many women at KETV and throughout the industry have taken on management positions. “It takes time to get to that level,” Rose Ann says. “Man or woman, you don’t just walk in the door straight out of school and have someone say, ‘OK, you’re the news director.’” Technology has advanced the industry from a place where only the cable news networks were 24/7 to where around-the-clock coverage is expected at the local level as well. “Everyone is in a 24-hour cycle now,” she says. “People in news are working harder than ever because the public demands it.” She says she was fortunate to enter the business when she did. “I was on the ground floor of the tech changes that came along. I learned right along with everyone else. Now, the kids come on the job and have to be ready to go, day one.” Shannon says there is nothing wrong with having four television news stations
Photo by Phil Johnson
Nebraska Congressman Don Bacon honored Shannon for her 45 years in television news and for becoming Omaha’s first female TV news director. in Omaha. “I like competition. It keeps you on your toes. I (also) like competing with the newspaper. Our mission is to serve the com-
munity, and I think competition is good for Omaha.” According to KETV, every newscast on Omaha’s Channel 7 ranks as a top10 rated newscast in the top 100 markets of ABC affiliates, with the 10 p.m. newscast leading at No. 1. Shannon says KETV works hard to remain competitive. “We’re dominant,” she says, “but we’re not complacent.” Some days, that competition didn’t end when she walked in the door at home. Having her husband at the state’s largest newspaper meant she had to keep a few things, like pending coverage or in-depth projects, to herself. So did Johnson. “There were some things we just couldn’t reveal to each other or it would put one of us in a bad position,” Shannon says. “But it wasn’t just with Phil. So many of your close friends also work in news, you have to figure out what you can talk about and what you can’t.”
N Shannon and her husband Phil Johnson in the KETV studio lobby. At times, Rose Ann said she had to avoid talking about the station’s news coverage with Johnson, a photographer for The Omaha World-Herald.
either Rose Ann nor Phil, both of whom were inducted into the Omaha Press Club Hall of Fame in 2012, has to worry too much about keeping news secrets any more. Their time is their own to enjoy together. The week after her retirement, the couple went skiing in Colorado, where Shannon’s sister lives. Rose Ann will also have time to garden, read, and cook. And there will be
trips to Oregon to see their daughter, Michaella, and grandsons, Aidan and Adam. “We work out,” Shannon says. “We hike. And we have really good friends here. I think above and beyond, that’s what keeps you here. In Omaha, you can see someone for the first time in 40 years and it’s just like you saw them yesterday.” If journalism was the heart of her career the past 45 years, community was the spirit. “At the end of the day, you have to do it for somebody else,” she says. “You do it for the viewers. You do it for the readers. You do it for the community. If you serve the community, you’ll be a lot more successful than if you do it for yourself.” Shannon says she has no regrets. “I love news. I think it’s important. I’m glad I did it. I would not change a thing. It’s just time to step back and let someone younger, perhaps more eager, take it over.” Going forward, Shannon is relegated to chasing fire trucks and staying behind the yellow tape, just like every other civilian. “The next big thing that happens, Phil will lock the door and I’ll probably have to be sedated,” she says, laughing. “I hope I don’t call the newsroom. But I do have an iPhone. I could always send in video.” After all, news isn’t something a journalist walks away from – ever.
Dr. Joseph Miller is appointed to Quality and Practice Commission Think Whole Person Healthcare of Omaha Chief Medical Officer Joseph Miller, MD, FAAFP, has recently been appointed to the Quality and Practice Commission of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP). Dr. Miller is one of 16 family physicians nationally selected to serve on this commission. His four-year term runs until December 2021. “We are experiencing rapid change in the areas of healthcare quality measures and payment reimbursement,” said AAFP President Trisha Sams, MD. “The work of this commission is imperative to advocating for and shaping the changes physicians need in this new environment. We are honored to have Dr. Joseph Miller from Nebraska selected to serve on the commission.” The Quality and Practice Commission is one of eight commissions that direct AAFP policies and programs. The commission provides a venue for the de-
Dr. Joseph Miller velopment of recommended policy and programs related to the practicing family physician. The commission studies and develops recommendations, policies, and programs for family medicine in the following areas: healthcare delivery systems, performance measurement, practice redesign/quality improvement, privileging, health information technology, practice management, private sector advocacy, physician payment, and practice environment. (Think Whole Person Healthcare of Omaha provided this information.)
RSVP RSVP is recruiting men and women age 55 and older for a variety of volunteer opportunities. For more information in Douglas, Sarpy, and Cass counties, please call 402-4446536, ext. 1024. In Dodge and Washington counties, please call 402-721-7780. • The Corrigan Senior Center is looking for volunteers. • The Boys Town Hall of History needs volunteers. • Together Inc. wants volunteers for its food pantry. • The VA Medical Center is looking for volunteers. • The YWCA’s Reach and Rise Mentoring Program wants volunteers to work with children ages 8 to 15. • The Heartland Hope Mission needs volunteers for its food pantry. • The Madonna Rehabilitation Hospital is looking for volunteers for a variety of assignments. • The Low-Income Ministry wants volunteers for its food pantry. • The Blair and Fremont Car-Go Program needs volunteers to drive older adults to their appointments once or twice a week. • Several ENOA senior centers want volunteers for a HorizonAD-2010:HorizonAD-08 2/4/10 8:00 AM Page 1 variety of assignments.
Report: Business leaders need to prepare for the growing older American population
pportunities presented by an aging American population won’t be fully realized unless business leaders act to prepare for this irreversible shift in demography, according to a new report released by the Milken Institute Center for the Future of Aging. The report, Turning Silver Into Gold, includes data and insights from multiple sources and identifies opportunities, innovations, human capital strategies, and forward-looking policies and practices to realize the upside of aging. The report includes commentary from participants at the 2017 Summit on Business and the Future of Aging, which brought together thought leaders from academia, media, business, health, public policy, and the nonprofit sector. “Population aging across the globe presents a great 21st century challenge,” said Paul Irving, chairman of the Milken Institute Center for the Future of Aging, a distinguished scholar in residence at the University of Southern California-Davis School of Gerontology, and principal author of the report. “But the news is not all bad. In fact, the aging population may represent the world’s most compelling business opportunity. As Turning Silver into Gold reveals, older adults represent a massive and growing human capital resource and an attractive consumer market for innovative products and services,” Irving added. The report offers thoughtful, fact-filled assessments of the growing economic power of older adults, the underutilized resource of mature workers, advances that can dramatically extend lifespan, health, and productivity, and a call to action.
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Among the highlights from the report shared: • By the end of this decade, annual consumer spending by age 60 and older adults globally will reach $15 trillion. • Americans over age 50 account for $7.6 trillion in direct spending and related economic activity. • Older Americans dominate 119 out of 123 consumer packaged-goods categories. • More Americans age 65 and older are working than at any time since the turn of the century and spending more time on the job than did their peers in earlier years. • The proportion of people in the working age population worldwide who are age 50 or older will grow from 20 percent in 2010 to 30 percent by 2050. • Older workers in the U.S. have similar or lower injury and illness rates than younger counterparts. • Fewer than half of companies worldwide factor longevity into their strategic planning. “In a world torn by policy and political divides, the leadership mantle is increasingly defaulting to the business community,” the report concludes. “Corporate leaders can speak out and advocate for the interests of older employees and customers, calling their colleagues and peers to action.”
n 2018, the Milken Institute Center for the Future of Aging will launch a new business council to mobilize efforts and address opportunities presented by population aging. The council, composed of senior executives in major national and multinational companies, will develop shared principles, elevate best practices, and advance commitments across sectors to improve the lives of the current generation of older adults and of generations to come. “Although ageist and outdated policies and practices can impede progress, there is hope,” said Peter Mullin, chairman of the M Center of Excellence. “That hope comes from enlightened businesses ready to reach for the opportunities of a new age. By realizing the potential of older adults, they will serve the interests of all their stakeholders and create a better future.” (The Milken Institute provided this information.)
Widowed Persons Group of Omaha
he Widowed Persons Group of Omaha hosts a luncheon the third Monday of each month at 11:30 a.m. at Jericho’s Restaurant, 11732 W. Dodge Rd. For more information, please call 402-426-9690 or 402-493-0452.
Volunteers Assisting Seniors
or more than 41 years, Volunteers Assisting Seniors (VAS) has offered unbiased information, one-on-one counseling, and advocacy to help older adults in eastern Nebraska navigate complex government programs. VAS can review guardian and conservator files for the courts, assist with senior health insurance planning, help file for property tax relief, and provide estate planning workshops. What steps do you need to take to outline plans for your assets when you die? Have you designated who you want to handle your personal and financial affairs in the event you become incapacitated? If you already have an estate plan in place, do you know how often to review it? VAS is offering a basic estate planning workshop to help answer those questions. The workshop will cover lifetime planning (financial and medical powers of attorney, living wills, and succession planning), wills, living or revocable trusts, alternatives and supplements to wills, taxes related to death, and mistakes to avoid in your planning. A volunteer attorney will present the free workshop at the VAS office in the Center Mall, 1941 S. 42nd St., Suite #312. For more information on the next workshop, please call VAS at 402-444-6617.
AS needs volunteers to review the required annual reports submitted by guardians and conservators and report any discrepancies to the court. This opportunity is ideal for someone interested in working with numbers and who has a desire to assist the court in determining if the finances of vulnerable individuals are being managed in their best interest. For more information, please call 402-444-6617.
Dora Bingel Senior Center You’re invited to visit the Dora Bingel Senior Center, 923 N. 38th St., this month for the following: • April 2, 9, 16, 23, & 30: Al-Anon meeting @ 7 p.m. • April 4, 6, 11, 13, 18, 20, 25, & 27: Ceramics @ 9 a.m. • April 4: Holy Communion served @ 10 a.m. • April 6: Free balance clinic from 10 a.m. to noon. • April 9: Book Club @ 10 a.m. • April 18: Foot care clinic from 9 a.m. to noon. Make an appointment by calling 392-1818. • April 19: The Merrymakers present music by Tim Javorsky @ 11:30 a.m. Lunch is $3. • April 20: Hard of Hearing Support group @ 10:30 a.m. • April 25: Birthday party luncheon @ noon. Eat free if you have an April birthday. A nutritious lunch is served on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. A $1 donation is suggested for the meals, other than $3 for Merrymakers. Round-trip transportation is available for $3. Reservations are required 24 hours in advance for all meals. Other activities offered at the facility include: Tuesday: Joy Club Devotions @ 10 a.m., matinee @ 12:30 p.m., and quilting @1 p.m. Wednesday: Devotions @ 10:30 a.m.; bingo @ 12:30 p.m., and Bible study at 12:30 p.m. Friday: Bingo @ 12:30 p.m. For more information, please call 402-898-5854.
Camelot Friendship Center You’re invited to visit the Camelot Friendship Center inside the Camelot Community Center, 9270 Cady Ave., for the following: • April 12: Book Club @ 10:15 a.m. • April 12: VNA presentation @ 11:45 a.m. • April 13: Senior Council meeting @ 12:15 p.m. • April 17: Music by Tim Javorsky sponsored by the Merrymakers. • April 18: Birthday party. • April 19: Jackpot bingo @ 12:15 p.m. Other activities include Tai Chi (Friday @ 10:30 a.m.), bingo, pinochle, card games, other games, crafts, candy making, and scrapbooking. The Camelot Friendship Center is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lunch is served at 11:30 a.m. A $3.50 contribution is suggested for the meal. Reservations are due by noon the business day prior to the lunch you wish to enjoy. For reservations or more information, please call Nathan Kramer @ 402-444-3091.
Everything you need to know about inheritance taxes By William E. Seidler, Jr.
ebraska is one of six states that imposes an inheritance tax on property inherited from a Nebraska resident, or if a decedent was not a Nebraska resident, but who owned property in Nebraska. Even if a beneficiary isn’t a Nebraska resident, the tax is collected. The inheritance tax is calculated and collected in proceedings in the county court of the county where the decedent resided. If they didn’t reside in Nebraska, but had property in Nebraska, then in the county where the property was located. The tax proceeding is prepared by an attorney preparing and filing a petition in the appropriate county court. A worksheet with schedules of property is prepared. Deductions for debts, expenses, and statutory allowances are taken. An allocation of value among the beneficiaries is made. The worksheet is presented to the appropriate county attorney for review. If the county attorney approves, the matter is then presented to a county judge. If the judge approves, then an order is signed, and the tax is paid to the county treasurer. Property included in the inheritance tax calculation includes property owned by a decedent that was transferred to another person because of the decedent’s death. It also includes joint tenancy assets, trust assets, and payable on death accounts. Life insurance policy proceeds paid to someone other than the personal representative of
the estate, however, aren’t included in the inheritance tax calculation. There’s no tax when assets are transferred to a surviving spouse, or to a charity, religious, or educational institution. There’s no tax if the property is transferred to a governmental unit. The rate of tax for transfers to a father, mother, grandfather, grandmother, brother, sister, son, daughter, or lineal descendants is one percent of the clear market value of the property received by each beneficiary. Each of these types of beneficiaries has a $40,000 exemption so inheritance tax is only paid on any amount inherited above $40,000. For uncles, aunts, nieces, and nephews, the rate of tax is 13 percent of the clear market value of the property received. Each of these types of beneficiaries has a $15,0000 exemption. In other words, these beneficiaries only pay inheritance tax on the amount inherited that is above $15,000. In all other cases, the tax rate is 18 percent of the amount inherited, with a $10,000 exemption. The tax is due one year after the decedent’s death. If it isn’t timely paid, interests and penalties will accrue in addition to the tax. (The information contained in this column is general information. Slight changes in individual fact situations may require a material variance in the applicable advice. You should not attempt to solve individual problems based on the advice contained in this column. If you have questions regarding the above, you should contact an attorney.)
Heartland Generations Center You’re invited to visit the Heartland Generations Center – 4318 Fort St. – for the following: • April 3: Dance with Tisha @ 10:30 a.m. • April 4: Movement with Courtney @ 1 p.m. • April 5: Birthday celebrations with music sponsored by the Merrymakers during lunch. • April 6, 10, 13, 23, & 27: Movement with Tisha @ 10:30 a.m. • April 9: WhyArts? @10:30 a.m. • April 12: International Fair at Metropolitan Community College @ 11 a.m. • April 17: Medicare 101 at SaddleBrook Branch Library @ 11:30 a.m. • April 22: Senior Prom at the Field Club @ 4 p.m. • April 25: Cyber Seniors at DoSpace @ 10:30 a.m. Bingo on Wednesdays and Fridays @ 1 p.m. unless another event is planned. The Heartland Generations Center is open weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Lunch is normally served at noon. A $3.50 donation is suggested for the meal. Reservations are due by noon the business day prior to the lunch you wish to attend. Bus transportation is available within select neighborhoods for 50 cents each way. For meal reservations and more information, please call 402-553-5300.
Volunteers ages 18, older needed for Long-term Care Ombudsman Program
he Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging is looking for men and women age 18 and older to join its Long-term Care Ombudsman Program which is co-sponsored by the Nebraska State Ombudsman Program. ENOA’s Long-term Care Ombudsmen volunteer in local long-term care facilities and assisted living communities to protect the residents’ rights, well-being, and quality of life. Long-term Care Ombudsmen must complete 20 hours of initial classroom training and 12 hours of additional training every two years. During the training, the volunteers learn about the residents’ rights, aging issues, Medicare, Medicaid, communication skills, how to investigate the residents’ complaints, the importance of confidentiality, and about the federal and state rules, regulations, and laws regarding Nebraska’s long-term care facilities and assisted living communities.
efore being assigned to a long-term care facility or an assisted living community, new volunteers will make four visits to a site with an experienced Ombudsman Advocate to learn more about what the program entails. After a three-month probationary period, the new volunteers are certified as Ombudsman Advocates. Certified Ombudsman Advocates will be assigned to a long-term care facility or an assisted living community where they’ll visit for two hours a week to meet with administrators, residents, and the residents’ family members to address concerns. For more information about ENOA’s Long-term Care Ombudsman Program, please call Beth at 402-444-6536. Law Offices of Charles E. Dorwart, J.D. 36 years of legal experience • Wills • Living Trusts • Probate • Healthcare and Financial Powers of Attorney • In-home consultations • Free Initial consultation 10104 Essex Court • Suite 100 Omaha, NE 68114 Office: (402) 558-1404 • Fax: (402) 779-7498 email@example.com
Volunteers needed The Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging is looking for volunteer drivers for its Meals on Wheels Program.
By Melinda Myers
Look for dollar size to six-inch diameter spots of bleached or light tan grass if you healthy lawn is your best defense suspect Dollar Spot. Infected leaves have against lawn diseases and other white lesions with reddish tan margins that problems. But when the weather often resemble an hourglass. Over and unfavors the disease more than your lawn, der fertilization, drought, water on the grass problems can occur. blades for an extended time, and mowing Reduce the risk of disease by keeping too low all increase the risk of this disease. your lawn healthy. Mow high to encourage Closely examine lawns with a reddish deeply rooted grass that is more drought hue to confirm the presence of rust disease. tolerant and resistant to disease probRust infected lawns are covered with an orlems. Water early in the day so the grass, ange or yellowish powder, the fungal spores leaves, and blades dry quickly and less that can leave an orange residue on your water is lost to evaporation. shoes. Newly seeded and lawns weakened Apply the right type and amount of fertil- by inadequate fertilization and drought are izer at the proper time to limit the risk of most susceptible. disease. Regular fertilization, three to four Stay alert for leaf spot diseases that can times per year, encourages better results attack lawns. Avoid excess fertilization and since most soils don’t contain the essential watering in late afternoon and evenings. nutrients for optimum growth. Once you discover a disease, visit Avoid high nitrogen quick release fertilmilorganite.com for more detailed inforizers that promote lush succulent growth mation and photos to help with diagnosis. that’s more susceptible to disease. Instead Correct your lawn care practices to speed use a low nitrogen slow release fertilizer recovery and avoid problems in the future. like Milorganite (milorganite.com) that Proper care and reseeding dead areas with promotes steady growth that’s more drought disease-resistant grass varieties is usually tolerant and resistant to disease. enough to manage the disease. Take a closer look at the lawn if you Be sure you need a fungicide before suspect a disease problem. As the snow reapplying. These chemicals are costly, the cedes in northern lawns, watch for circular results can be disappointing, and when used gray to straw colored areas of matted grass improperly they can be harmful to pollinacaused by snow mold. Use a leaf rake to tors and the environment. lift the matted grass, remove leaf litter, and Further speed recovery with a change in reduce the risk of this disease. Keep mowmowing habits. Continue to mow high, but ing throughout the fall and avoid heavy cut the healthy portions of your lawn first. fertilization late in the year. Then cut the grass in the diseased areas. Monitor lawns for Brown Patch when Once done, use a disinfectant to clean the temperatures and humidity rise and grass mower blades then rinse with clear water. remains wet for long periods of time. InThis along with collecting and disposing fected lawns will have somewhat circular of clippings from the diseased areas of the patches of thin light brown grass. Look for lawn reduces the risk of spreading the diswhite cottony strands of fungal mycelium ease the next time you mow. early in the morning on dew covered lawns. Provide proper care and monitor your Check grass blades for small irregular lawn throughout the growing season. tan spots with dark brown borders on the Discovering problems early means better individual grass blades. Avoid heavy fertil- results with less effort on your part. ization with fast release fertilizer in early (Myers has written more than 20 gardenspring and summer. ing books.)
Douglas County Historical Society You’re invited to attend programs this month sponsored by the Douglas County Historical Society. On April 8 at 2 p.m., Gary Bowen will present History and Reconstruction of M’s Pub. The program will be held in Building 10, Room 110 on the historic Fort Omaha campus, 30th and Fort streets. Admission is free for Douglas County Historical Society members or $5 for non DCHS members.
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Please RSVP by calling 402-455-9990. On Tuesdays and Thursdays during April, a program titled History & Appreciation of Antiques is presented from 9:30 a.m. to noon or 1:30 to 4 p.m. at the Gen. Crook House Museum, 5730 N. 30th St. #11B. The cost of the four-class series is $32 for DCHS members and $64 for nonmembers. Please RSVP by calling 402-455-9990.
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Eclectic Book Review Club The Eclectic Book Review Club, founded in 1949, has announced its Spring 2018 schedule. • April 17: Meredith Fuller will review her recent book Quarry.
• May 15: Emily Getzschman from the Omaha Public Library will review Kathleen Rooney’s book Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk. The monthly meetings, which include lunch and the book review, are held at noon at the Field Club, 3615 Woolworth Ave. The cost is $13 per person per month. To reserve a seat, please call Rita at 402-553-3147. The reservation deadline is the Monday morning prior to the Tuesday meeting.
ENOA recruiting older men, women to serve as Foster Grandparents, Senior Companions
Hearing loss group to meet on April 10
Men and women age 55 and older who want to earn a tax-free stipend while making an impact in their community are encouraged to join the Senior Companion Program and the Foster Grandparent Program. Sponsored locally by the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging, the SCP and FGP are national programs of the Corporation for National and Community Service through the Senior Service Corps. Senior Companions help other older adults maintain their independence by visiting them at home to discuss the news, read mail, play cards, run errands, etc. Foster Grandparents serve as positive role models for children who need special attention with education, healthcare, and social de-
The Omaha Area Hearing Loss Association of America, a support group for hard of hearing adults, will next meet on Tuesday, April 10 at Dundee Presbyterian Church, 5312 Underwood Ave. Participants are asked to enter the church on the Happy Hollow Blvd. (east) side. The 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. meeting will feature social time and a speaker. The Omaha Area Hearing Loss Association of America meets the second Tuesday of the month from September through December and from March through August. You’re encouraged to like the Omaha Area Hearing Loss Association of America on Facebook. For more information, please contact Beth Ellsworth at beth.ellsworth@ nebraska.gov or Verla Hamilton at 402-558-6449.
velopment in schools, Head Start programs, and child development centers. SCP and FGP volunteers must meet income guidelines and complete an enrollment process that includes references and background checks. In exchange for volunteering 15 hours or more per week, Foster Grandparents and Senior Companions receive a $2.65 an hour tax-free stipend, mileage reimbursement, an annual physical examination, supplemental accident insurance coverage, and other benefits including an annual recognition luncheon. The stipend does not interfere with rent, disability, Medicaid, or other benefits. For more information on the FGP and SCP, please call 402-444-6536.
Car-Go Transportation Program
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he Retired and Senior Volunteer Program is recruiting volunteers age 55 and older to provide free transportation services for older adults in Fremont and Blair. “We’re especially interested in providing transportation services for military veterans,” said Pat Tanner, who coordinates the RSVP for the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging. Sponsored locally by ENOA, RSVP is a national program of the Corporation for National and Community Service through the Senior Service Corps. RSVP staff members who serve in Dodge, Washington, Douglas, Sarpy, and Cass counties realize many older men and women live alone, are on fixed incomes, are no longer able to operate their own vehicle, and don’t have family members available to drive them to their various appointments. In response, RSVP’s Car-Go Project offers free transportation for men and women age 55 and older in Blair and Fremont through volunteers age 55 and older who use their own vehicles. Free rides can be given to medical appointments, pharmacies, grocery stores, beauty parlors, barbershops, banks, and other personal business locations. Rides for persons who use wheelchairs (must be able to transfer themselves) will be considered on a case-by-case basis. The Car-Go Project – which isn’t available to nursing home residents – operates in Fremont and Blair Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information on becoming a volunteer driver or to make a reservation (24 hours notice is required) for a ride, please call RSVP’s Fremont office at 402-721-7780.
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New Horizons Club gains new members $25 Carole Yanovich Dolores Neal Jacqueline Loth $10 Mary Ann Dyer Frederick Crom Reflects donations received through March 23, 2018.
Collaboration between New Cassel, St. Gerald’s
Students, older adults share Stations of the Cross
he second-grade classes from St. Gerald’s Catholic School – 7857 Lakeview St. in Ralston – shared their faith with the Franciscan Adult Day Centre participants, and the staff and residents at New Cassel Retirement Center – 900 N. 90th St. – with a special Stations of the Cross presentation in March. The 30 students used a PowerPoint presentation and posters relating each station to everyday living as the residents and staff looked on. St. Gerald’s second-grade teachers JoAnn Wanek and Amanda Ackerman’s commitment to teaching Jesus Christ’s message was expressed with each beautiful word spoken by the children. “This was the best presentation of the Stations of the Cross I have even seen,” said New Cassel resident Betty Goodwin. “We were blessed to have
the children at New Cassel and we are grateful for the Lenten gift they shared with all of us,” said New Cassel Foundation President Cindy Petrich. “Afterward, the residents held the hands of the children and thanked them for their work and preparation.” The students were filled with joy and smiles as they meet with the older adults. The children returned to school with a few treats and memories of a morning filled with love.
New Cassel resident Geraldine Kuhn with St. Gerald’s second-grader Ava Stuart.
Knowing the signs of elder abuse By Lindsey Kreikemeier
dentifying when an older adult is being harmed or abused by another person can be difficult. According to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, the different types of abuse that older adults may experience include physical abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, financial exploitation, and self-neglect. Signs that abuse, neglect, or exploitation is taking place in an older person’s life may appear as unusual activity or no signs of movement in the person’s home. Other signs may include:
• The older man or woman isn’t dressed appropriately for the weather. • Mail and newspapers start to pile up when the person is supposed to be home. • Injuries that don’t match the explanation given. • The older adult’s basic needs aren’t being met, or caregivers and relatives may appear overly interested in the older adult’s finances. In a 2010 study by Beach, Schulz, Castle, and Rosen, African-American older adults were shown to face a higher frequency of financial exploitation than non-African American older adults. The study indicated the majority of the exploita-
tion wasn’t committed by family or people the victim trusted, but by strangers. This could be a danger to those older men and women who live alone and are more vulnerable to scams or financial-related scams. If an older man or woman feels they’re being exploited, neglected, abused, or if another person suspects someone they know is being abused or harmed, they should call Adult Protective Services at (toll-free) 1-800652-1999. (Kreikemeier is a Master’s of Social Work student in the University of Nebraska-Omaha’s Grace Abbott School of Social Work.)
Medical equipment exchange scheduled for April 21, 22 If you have medical equipment you’d like to give away or if you need medical equipment not cov-
ered by insurance, you’re invited to attend the Lose It & Reuse It Medical Equipment Exchange on Saturday,
April 21 and Sunday, April 22 at Metropolitan Community College’s Fort Omaha campus, 5300 N. 30th St. On Saturday, April 21 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., participants can drop off their medical equipment. The items will be cleaned and prepared for the free exchange on Sunday, April 22 from noon to 4 p.m. The exchange program will not accept mattresses, open medical supplies, needles, or prescription medications. For more information, please call 402-595-1613.
Audiologist identifies causes of, treatment for ringing in your ears
or many, the quest for a quiet space is about more than finding a noise-free room to gather one’s thoughts. Nearly 10 percent of the United States population, about 25 million Americans, has experienced tinnitus (ringing in the ears) lasting at least five minutes in the past year, according to the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. Board certified audiologist Dr. Leisa Lyles-DeLeon shares tips on the best ways to deal with ringing in the ears. Tinnitus refers to the perception of sound when no external sounds are actually present. Often described as a constant “ringing in the ears,” tinnitus can present itself as a variation of different types of sounds. This may range from sounds of whistling to swooshing and buzzing. Tinnitus isn’t a disease, but rather a symptom of an underlying problem. Treatment begins with identifying its cause. Common causes of tinnitus include: • Auditory trauma. Exposure to loud noises can trigger tinnitus. This is common in situations of occupational noise. Think construction workers, landscapers, or musicians. Workers in these fields can regularly face noise decimals upwards of 95+. Hearing is put in harm’s way when constant exposure over 85 decimals occurs. • Age-related hearing loss. Age is the strongest predictor of hearing loss among adults age 20 to 69, with the greatest amount of hearing loss in the 60 to 69 age group. Tinnitus can result directly from hearing loss. • Earwax build-up. Excessive wax in the ear can cause tinnitus. The earwax that our bodies naturally produce helps clean, protect, and lubricate our ears. However, when too much wax builds in our ears, our eardrums can become irritated and hearing loss may occur, which can lead to tinnitus. If you’re experiencing noise in your ears that extends for a period of time you should consider the following: • An appointment with your physician. While less common, tinnitus can be an early indicator of a serious medical condition. It’s best to receive a full check-up by your physician to eliminate more serious concerns. • Hearing aids. Particularly for those also suffering from hearing loss, hearing aids can reduce the impact of tinnitus. When improving your actual hearing, your tinnitus may become less noticeable. If you’re not suffering from hearing loss, an audiologist can fit you with a tinnitus masker. This device looks like a hearing aid, but instead produces sounds that “mask” tinnitus. These sounds make the tinnitus more tolerable. White noise, such as the steady whir of a fan, can help mask tinnitus. The same is true for pink noise, which refers to a balanced mix of high and low frequencies (e.g. waves crashing or leaves rustling). These devices can be particularly helpful at night while sleeping and can be found for as low as $20. There are also apps that can be streamed on your phone or tablet for as little as $2. While this can be a more costly option (it’s typically not covered by insurance), tinnitus retraining therapy has shown positive results for those suffering from tinnitus. It uses a combination of sound therapy and counseling to try and reduce a patient’s focus on tinnitus. The objective is to disassociate tinnitus with negative occurrences and associate it with positive occurrences. This can help reduce stress often associated with tinnitus, which can make it worse. Cases of tinnitus vary greatly. In some cases, it’s hardly noticeable until someone brings it up in conversation. On the other end of the spectrum, it can be so disruptive it interferes with every part of your day. Ultimately, if you’re feeling bothered in any way by noise in your ears, you should immediately schedule an appointment with your doctor.
Depression, suicide... --Continued from page 2. tering medications. The best suicide treatment is with the Improving Mood-Promoting Access to Collaborative Treatment for Depression in Primary Care (IMPACT) program, according to Lapierre. After completing this program, individuals showed a significantly lower rate of depression and suicidal thoughts. These individuals also experienced a better quality of life with less functional impairments. Lapierre said clinical treatment including the use of medications to treat depression showed great improvement in individuals who had reduced thoughts of suicide and death. Lapierre’s team also found cognitivebehavioral therapy is helpful with newly retired men and women by exploring options that add meaning to their life. The process helps people set, plan, and realize personal retirement goals. The researchers said strategies that raise the quality of life and make aging positive are innovative and promising ways to prevent suicide in older adults. These strategies may improve empowerment, coping and adaptive behavior, flexibility, social skills, self-esteem, sense of belonging, reasons for living, hope, meaning in life, religion, spirituality, and humor. Therapists, support groups, and hotline numbers are good resources for individuals experiencing signs of depression and/ or suicide. The telephone number for the Friendship Line is 1-800-971-0016. (Ruhge is a Master’s student in the University of Nebraska-Omaha’s Grace Abbott School of Social Work.)
Corrigan Senior Center
he National Active and Retired Federal Employees’ Chapter 144 meets the first Wednesday of each month at 11:30 a.m. at the Amazing Pizza Machine, 13955 S Plz. For more information, please call 402292-1156. The National Active and Retired Federal Employees’ Aksarben Chapter 1370 meets the second Wednesday of each month at 11:30 a.m. at the Amazing Pizza Machine, 13955 S Plz. For more information, please call 402342-4351.
You’re invited to visit the Corrigan Senior Center, 3819 X St., this month for: • April 2: Kick off to Let’s Walk @11:45a.m. • April 11: Watch a George Strait DVD @ 11 a.m. • April 11: Corrigan Council Meeting @2 p.m. • April 12: April birthday party featuring music by Billy Troy sponsored by the Merrymakers @ 11 a.m. • April 19: Music by Johnny Ray Gomez @11 a.m. • April 23: VNA presentation on the health benefits of plants and pets @ 11 a.m. • April 27: Kieran answers questions and provides information about the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging’s services @ 10:30 a.m. The Corrigan Senior Center has a kiln for sale for $100. The buyer must be able to haul the kiln away from the senior center. The Corrigan Senior Center is open weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Lunch is served at noon. A $3.50 contribution is normally suggested for the meal. Reservations are normally due by noon the business day prior to the meal you wish to enjoy. For meal reservations or more information, please contact Michelle Jolley @ 402-731-7210 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Omaha Computer Users Group meets at Abrahams Library
ou’re invited to join the Omaha Computer Users Group, an organization dedicated to helping men and women age 50 and older learn about their computers regardless of their skill level. OCUG meets the third Saturday of each month from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Abrahams Library, 5011 N. 90th St. Participants will have access to a projector connected to a computer with Microsoft Windows 10 to show users how to solve their computer problems. For more information, please call Phill Sherbon at 402-333-6529.
The Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging has been providing programs and services for older adults in Douglas, Sarpy, Dodge, Cass, and Washington counties since 1974.
Smoke, carbon monoxide detectors
The Omaha Fire Department’s Public Education and Affairs Department will install free smoke and/or carbon monoxide detectors inside the residences of area homeowners. To have a free smoke and/or carbon monoxide detector installed inside your home, send your name, address, and telephone number to: Omaha Fire Department Smoke/Carbon Monoxide Requests 1516 Jackson St. Omaha, Neb. 68102 For more information, please call 402-444-3560.
CONCERT Sunday, April 15, 2018 2 p.m.
Doors open at 1 p.m. • Concert at 2 p.m. Reception immediately following the concert
Joslyn Witherspoon Concert Hall 2200 Dodge Street
th Annual Antique
Tickets: $20 for Concert with Pie Reception For concert only: $10 | Under 6 Free
Show & Sale
For ticket information call Chris at 444-6536 ext. 1021
St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church
84th and Pacific Street, Omaha, Nebraska
A’s C af t S
Serving homemade meals & fresh baked desserts
Friday, April 6, 2018 • 10am to 7pm Saturday, April 7, 2018 • 10am to 4pm $3 Admission • Door Prizes
With featured guest vocalist
FREE PARKING April 2018
Farm Credit Services of America makes donation to, provides volunteers for ENOA’s SeniorHelp Program
ric Moore of Farm Credit Services of America recently presented a check for $1,000 to the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging’s SeniorHelp Program.
Moore led a group of 10 FCSA volunteers that provided 47 man-hours of service working with the SeniorHelp Program to clean the overgrown yard of an 84-year-old ENOA client last fall.
Florence AARP The Florence AARP chapter meets monthly at Mountview Presbyterian Church, 5308 Hartman Ave. The programs begin each month with a noon lunch followed by a speaker. For reservations, please call Gerry Goldsborough at 402-571-0971. Rides to the meeting are available by calling Ruth Kruse at 402453-4825. Here are the programs through August: • April 16: Ira Combs North Omaha Area Health • May 21 Mickey Wilroth & Water Garrow Impersonations • June 18 Theresa Jordan CareMatrix
Eric Moore of Farm Credit Services of America presented a check for $1,000 recently to the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging’s SeniorHelp Program. Accepting the check were SeniorHelp Coordinator Karen Kelly (left) and ENOA Volunteer Services Director Mary Parker.
• July 16 Dr. Gabriel Long AWAKEN Chiropractic • August 20: Johnny Ray Gomez Music with Humor
National Safety Council
he National Safety Council of Nebraska is offering a comprehensive three-hour driving assessment class for older adults by appointment. The Senior Driving Program, which costs $300, is designed to keep older adults driving safely on Nebraska’s roads for as long as possible. Participants will be able to assess and improve their driving skills to reduce risk to themselves, their passengers, and to other drivers.
he classes, which are held at the National Safety Council of Nebraska’s office, 11620 M Cir., offer a driving skills self-assessment, behind the wheel driving with state-certified instructors, driving tips, an evaluation, and recommendations. To learn more or to register for the Senior Driving Program, please call 402898-7371 or go online to email@example.com.
Dealing with Vision Loss? We Can Help! Continue Doing the Things You Love! FREE resources and training to help you: Use computers and the internet - pay bills, read the news and stay connected Use a smartphone - arrange a ride, call or text family, get the weather Use magnification tools - read printed material Stay active with recreation and cultural programs
All Ability Levels Welcome! Call 402.614.3331 or visit outlookne.org Page 18
Alzheimer’s support groups The Alzheimer’s Association Nebraska Chapter offers several caregiver support groups and specialty support groups in Cass, Douglas, Washington, Dodge, and Sarpy counties. These support groups offer valuable space and educational opportunities for families impacted by Alzheimer’s disease or a related form of dementia to engage and learn. For more information about any of the groups listed below, please call 800-272-3900. DODGE COUNTY • FREMONT Second Tuesday @ 5:30 p.m. The Heritage at Shalimar Gardens 749 E. 29th St. DOUGLAS COUNTY • OMAHA Second Thursday @ 10 a.m. Second Thursday @ 5:30 p.m. Country House Residences 5030 S. 155th St. Call Christina @ 402-980-4995 for free adult day services. Every other Monday @ 7 p.m. Brighton Gardens 9220 Western Ave. First & third Monday @ 1:30 p.m. New Cassel’s Franciscan Centre 900 N. 90th St. Call Melanie @ 402-393-2113 for free adult day services. Third Tuesday @ 5 p.m. Immanuel Fontenelle First floor classroom 6809 N 68th Plz. Second Tuesday @ 6:45 p.m. For caregivers of individuals with an intellectual disabilty/dementia. Barbara Weitz Center 6001 Dodge St. (UNO campus)
First Thursday @ 6:45 p.m. King of Kings Lutheran Church CORE Conference Room 11615 I St. Call Karen @ 402-584-9088 to arrange for adult day services. Third Tuesday @ 6 p.m. Temple Israel 13111 Sterling Ridge Dr. SARPY COUNTY • BELLEVUE Third Monday @ 7 p.m. Bellevue Senior Center 109 W. 22nd Ave. First Wednesday @ 1 p.m. Eastern Nebraska Vets Home (Vets and non-vets welcome) 12505 S. 40th St. • PAPILLION Fourth Thursday @ 6 p.m. Hillcrest Grand Lodge 6021 Grand Lodge Ave. WASHINGTON COUNTY • BLAIR Third Wednesday @ 6 p.m. Memorial Community Hospital Howard Conference Room 810 N. 22nd St.
The New Horizons is brought to you each month by the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging.
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AARP offering driving course AARP is offering a new four-hour, research-based Smart Driver Course for older adults. By completing the course, participants will learn research-based driving safety strategies that can reduce the likelihood of having an accident; understand the links between the driver, the vehicle, and the road environment, and how this awareness encourages safer driving; learn how aging, medications, alcohol, and health-related issues affect driving ability and ways to allow for these changes; increase confidence; know how to share the road safely with other drivers, and learn the newest safety and advance features in vehicles. The fee is $15 for AARP members and $20 for nonAARP members. No tests or examinations are involved, course completion certificates are provided, and auto insurance discounts may apply. Here’s this month’s schedule: April 11 @ noon Bloomfield Forum 9804 Nicholas St. Call 402-390-9991 to register
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Stephens’ return home brings back childhood memories much like those of others growing up in the smaller and slower-paced Napa of the 1950s and 1960s. He made friends at Phillips Elementary School, graduated from Napa High in 1969, then did a two-year Navy tour as a medic supporting Marines deployed to Vietnam. But while he came home to Napa in 1971, work and love eventually would lead him away. A brief first marriage took him to nearby Sonoma before a truckdriving job led him over the Interstates to Texas, Illinois, and New York. A second Photo by J. L. Sousa/Napa Valley Register marriage uprooted him from Roy at the house his ancestors built around 1845. the North Bay altogether, as By Howard Yune and graveyards little noticed he followed his spouse to The Napa Valley Register by passers-by, they pointed her hometown of Omaha. to the earliest years of settlehere was so much his- ment in what would become tephens’ reminiscenctory at the Old Adobe, eastern Napa. es were interrupted by and so little time left Don Cayetano Juarez, a the arrival of a visitor. for its builder’s descendant soldier serving the Mexican A dark-haired man not quite to return to it. government that then conhalf his age strolled toward He arrived on a breezy, trolled California, received the Old Adobe porch and sunny Monday afternoon – the Rancho Tulocay land introduced himself: Justin a stocky and bearded man grant in 1840, more than Altamura, whose developer leaning heavily on his cane, 88,000 acres east of the grandfather, George, had inching his legs forward Napa River. Around 1845 bought the landmark four from a rented car only as he built a house of adobe on years earlier. fast as his failing heart his landholdings, using the Asked by Stephens what would allow. Slowly he labor of Native Americans the building might become made his way to the porch, who put up other structures once the work was finished, a female caregiver close by that perished with time. This the 31-year-old Altamura his elbow, before easing his mud-walled home would volunteered that a restaurant frame to a seated position in become the last surviving could move in, or perhaps front of the walls of brown structure in the city-to-be the office of a group like mudbrick. from the days before the Napa County Landmarks. Napa was the city where Mexican-American War. But whatever its future tenhis life began nearly 67 ant, he quickly added, he years ago, the place where y the time Roy promised to keep the place he had grown up, even if Stephens was born looking fresher – and more little trace of his boyhood in August 1951, five original – than it had in memories could be seen generations removed from decades. amid the auto showrooms, his ancestor, his family’s Since taking charge of the chain restaurants, and the home was no longer at Old Adobe, a team of workfour-lane traffic rushing what had become known ers had removed additions past. as the Old Adobe, but a to the building, exposed But he knew the town less remarkable Muir Street original wood beams and from the time before this bungalow he shared with his even painstakingly mixed modern panorama had parents and two brothers. mud-based mortar to shore existed. His forebears’ roots Though Cayetano Juarez up the bonds between the ran deeper still, to the very and his 11 children had aging bricks. Whitewash beginnings of the settlement lived for years in their coated the outer walls; in– all the way back to this, adobe home, by the 1920s side walls were plastered in the oldest building in Napa. it had become home to a mud, sand, and pine needles. The home raised by his series of roadhouses, bars, “I want it to stay the way great-great-great-grandfaand restaurants that would it is,” Altamura told his visither, Don Cayetano Juarez. occupy it for generations. tor. “I don’t want others to The man whose landhold Even so, young Roy still mess with it.” ings had become part of a had relatives close by in What Cayetano Juarez’s frontier town in a newborn Napa, even more than a cen- descendant returned to state. tury after Cayetano Juarez was a landmark brighter, The past – his family’s had established his estates. cleaner, and truer to itself past – was nearly gone, but “My great-aunt’s house, than it had been for decades. not quite. And he had come you could smell it a mile Gone, above all, was the to see it, in what he was sure away for all the olive trees dilapidation he remembered would be the last year of his there,” he remembered with some bitterness from life. of her home near Trancas unhappy long-ago visits to “I’m sad, yet honored,” Street to the north. “And it the watering holes that had Roy Cayetano Juarez Stewas all Mexican food there filled the space. phens said finally. “It’s still – she’d spend all week get Worse than the shabhere.” ting the place ready for her biness that had set in, in Before words like Caynext get-together.” Stephens’ eyes, was the lack etano, Juarez, and Tulocay Family legacy aside, of any acknowledgement of were the names of streets Roy’s childhood passed his ancestors who had built
the place. Surely a plaque or marker could be installed to let those walking in know who its builder had been? Altamura readily agreed with that sentiment. “People my age, it’s not even registering what they’re looking at, how old it is,” he said. “I hope that now, people will start asking about why this building is how it is, start asking about its history.”
ebraska had become home to Roy Stephens, but in 2008, time began to run out on him. A serious heart attack was followed by a quintuple bypass and three aortic aneurysms that “I should not have made it through,” he said. “Now my heart is on its very last legs – I can’t even have anesthesia,” he said. “The doctors say I’ve got six months, maybe eight at the very most. I can feel it slipping away now, every once in a while. My balance sucks. My memory’s going. I’ve become one with my recliner and DirecTV and Netflix.” For more than a year he dreamed of heading west one more time, to reconnect with what roots remained of his hometown and his family. But the money for such a journey was nowhere to be found, not for a dying man who needed someone caring for him at his side. Napa had moved on in his absence, becoming a hub of the valley’s winery tourism. House prices and rents had moved on – upward – even faster. “Even if I wanted to come back and spend the last few months here, I couldn’t afford to live here,” said Stephens. “That’s one of the saddest things I can think of – that I can’t even afford to live in my own hometown.” Then, unexpectedly, the chance came. Danielle Bliven, a care manager for the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging, who was working with Stephens, set up a call to him by the Dreamweaver Foundation. Created in 2012 by Ron and Jeanie Carson, the Omaha-based nonprofit uses donated funds to fulfill the wishes of lowerincome older adults with terminal illnesses. By early December 2017, a Dreamweaver coordinator, Ashley Weirich, was on the phone with Stephens and his caregiver Julie Choma to hear their story and learn what his final wish would be. Of more than 100 older adults the group has aided, some had asked to see the ocean or take an Alaskan cruise, while others too frail to travel had been treated to a fancy banquet with up to 50 family members flown into town – new suits, ties, and all. “He served our country and was on front lines, helping people medically, so we wanted to do something for him,” recalled Weirich. “She asked me: If you had one wish, what would it be?” said Stephens. “And I said, ‘To go home.’” Dreamweavers would indeed make Stephens’ wish come true, footing the $5,500 bill in airfare, room, board, and a rental car – and even new clothes – for him and Choma to return to the Bay Area. Stephens had barely five days to tour his old Napa home turf, which three aunts and several cousins still call home, before he and his caregiver had to fly back to Nebraska. Some of the family guideposts were gone, like the house his grandfather, father, and uncle had built on First Avenue in Coombsville. Others had survived, like a photo album he thumbed through while visiting the Phillips School, even if he could no longer recognize which boyish face had been his. A few old hangouts were as vital as ever. “I miss Butter Cream after all these years and they tell me it hasn’t changed one iota.” he said. But (a recent) Monday was a day for Stephens to go back to the source of his family, and of his hometown. “That’s what I came back to see,” he said afterward of his visit to the Old Adobe. “I wanted to touch my roots again.” Deep in thought outside the abode his forebear had built more than 170 years before, he had let his mind backtrack to family get-togethers, school chums now dead, and the simple pleasures of going into the fields with cousins to drink, sing, strum guitars, and, in his cagey words, “create havoc.” Then he had felt something in his eyes, and it wasn’t smoke. “I didn’t know it was going to hit as hard as it did,” the scion of Don Cayetano Juarez said. “I had to keep wiping my tears away.”
Published on Mar 30, 2018
New Horizons is a publication of the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging. Distributed free to people over age 60 in Douglas, Sarpy, Dodge, Wash...