Page 1

Chester County Edition

February 2013

Vol. 10 No. 2

Love Songs from Long Ago Local Chorus Director Hopes to Preserve ‘Barbershopping’ By Chelsea Shank Singing has always been a large part of Bruce Van Order’s life, but being part of a barbershop quartet wasn’t something he intentionally set out to do. Today he is the interim director of the White Rose Chorus, a chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society that he has been singing with for 44 years. He sang in choirs all through high school and college. It was during his years at Elizabethtown College as a member of the concert choir that he first had the chance to experiment with singing some barbershop numbers. Van Order, who is now 68, was just beginning his career as a high school guidance counselor when he attended a kickoff event for staff at the beginning of the 1970 school year. It was then that he got discovered—for the White Rose Chorus, that is. “We sang ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’ at my table and someone came up and said, ‘I think you ought to sing barbershop,’” said Van Order, laughing at the memory. “I said, ‘What’s that about?’ And then I went to a rehearsal and sat in the tenor section.” Singing tenor is an advantage, Van Order says, because there are fewer men who sing that part. The four-part harmony that the members of the White Rose Chorus sing includes tenor, second tenor lead, baritone, and bass. please see SONGS page 14 Bruce Van Order has been a member of the White Rose Chorus for 44 years. Back row, from left, Mark Downs, Roger Phillips, Roger Wiegand, and Bob Renjillian. Middle row, from left, Roger Coleman, Dave Kelly, Steve Cowfer, and Vern Baum. Front row, from left, Al Davidson, Van Order, and Ed Simmons.


How to Choose a Charity You Can Trust page 7

Medicare Preventive Services: What’s Free, What’s Not page 10

Salute to a Veteran

The Bosun’s Call Was, ‘Fire. Fire … This is not a drill!’ Robert D. Wilcox t happened aboard the Navy attack aircraft carrier, U.S.S. Shangri-La, in 1961 while the ship was making flank speed off the coast of Florida. Jack Hanley, a native of Central Pennsylvania, was aboard as a Navy dentist, and the ship had been ordered to Galveston, Texas, in the wake of a hurricane that had hit the city hard. The ship’s mission was to give all aid to the devastated area. The ship had been at its pier in Mayport, Fla., when the order to leave immediately for Galveston came through. The ship went to sea at 1700 hours and sped at flank (maximum) speed down the east coast of Florida. Hanley says it was the first time in his two years aboard the ship that it ever went at flank speed, and “a lot of vibration was evident.” The Bosun’s call came as Hanley and


other officers “We were eating carried 85 at 1815 planes, with hours. two nukes “We per plane,” heard the Hanley call from a explains, “so very excited I never saw Bosun to go so many to general people run so quarters,” fast. Several Hanley says. hundred “At first the officers’ hats caller was got left on LT John H. Hanley, standing on the flight deck of the excited the hat rack USS Shangri-La during visitors’ day off Istanbul, Turkey. enough that in the he wasn’t wardroom. sure enough “My aid if it was a drill or not. But, when he station was in the parachute locker along finally got control, he said, ‘This is not a with six hospital corpsmen and dental drill. Fire, Fire, Fire. Fire in the nuclear techs. After we were all in place, the weapons compartment!’ entire ship (air circulation included) was

buttoned up. We sat for 45 minutes in quiet contemplation. I know that my thoughts were about my wife and our two little girls at home, and how big a hole it would make in the ocean floor if all our nuclear weapons detonated at the same time. “When we secured from general quarters, the word got out that the fire was in the wiring to the air conditioners for the nuclear weapons, and it was out. Needless to say, we were all relieved.” The Shangri-La continued around Key West and up the west coast of Florida to Pensacola Naval Air Station, where they tied up at 1200 Wednesday. “While we were there, we loaded helicopters, cots, blankets, water, nurses, and physicians from the Flight Surgeons School,” Hanley says. “It was before women were serving aboard warships, so the nurses were quartered in the junior

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officers’ rooms. The area was guarded by our Marine detachment with live ammunition in their rifles. “We left Pensacola at about 1400 along with the U.S.S. Antietam (the training carrier at Pensacola), loaded as we were. On the way across the Gulf of Mexico, we were joined by a troop ship and two destroyers coming up from Guantanamo, Cuba. Continuing at a speed that was comfortable for the troop ship, we traveled through the night and arrived at dawn, Thursday, off the coast of Galveston. “I went to the observation level to watch the launch at about 0630. It seemed that the choppers couldn’t get off the deck, since the ship was not familiar with these helicopters with this load. They had been overloaded, and when some things were off-loaded, they took

off with docs, needed. Were we nurses, blankets, deflated? Yeah, I’d cots, water, and have to say we Marines armed were. But at least with rifles to it showed how shoot snakes. well the military “In about 20 can respond when minutes, they help is needed.” were on their Hanley left the way back to the Navy in 1962 as a ship, fully lieutenant and loaded. The returned to The USS Shangri-La making its way to its people by that Central home port of Mayport, Fla. time were Pennsylvania to cutting their set up his dental grass, playing cards, and conducting a practice. Before his days in the Navy, he normal life. They didn’t need what we had graduated from Franklin & Marshall brought them from Florida, because College, then earned a DDS from the there were lots of bases (Army, Air Force, Temple University Dental School, and, and Navy) within a couple of hours of as a Navy reservist, served a one-year Galveston to supply everything that was internship at the Navy’s naval station at

Portsmouth, Va. As an aside, when asked how his ship got its unusual name, since Navy carriers were normally named after battles or previous U.S. Navy ships, Hanley explains that it was a first. The Doolittle B-25s that raided Japan had been launched from the U.S.S. Hornet. When President Roosevelt was asked by a newspaper reporter where the Doolittle B-25s had been launched, he answered by saying that the raid had been launched from “Shangri-La,” the fictional faraway land of the James Hilton novel, Lost Horizon. The Hornet later was sunk, so when Hanley’s ship was built to replace it, it was given the name Shangri-La. Colonel Wilcox flew a B-17 bomber in Europe in World War II.

Resource Directory This Resource Directory recognizes advertisers who have made an extended commitment to your health and well-being. Cemeteries Valley Forge Memorial Gardens & Mausoleum (610) 265-1660 Dental Services Family Cosmetic and Implant Dentistry (610) 692-8454 Disasters American Red Cross Greater Brandywine (610) 692-1200 Chester County Emergency Services (610) 344-5000 Salvation Army Coatesville (610) 384-2954 Salvation Army West Chester (610) 696-8746 Emergency Numbers Central PA Poison Center (800) 521-6110 Office of Aging (610) 344-6350/(800) 692-1100 Financial Services Internal Revenue Service (800) 829-3676 Funeral & Cremation Services Danjolell Memorial Homes & Crematory (610) 356-4200

Health & Medical Services Advanced Hearing Aid Audiology (610) 781-9001 Alzheimer’s Association (800) 272-3900 American Cancer Society (800) 227-2345 American Heart Association (610) 940-9540 Arthritis Foundation (215) 665-9200


Orthotics & Prosthetics

Eastwood Village Homes, LLC (717) 397-3138 Housing Assistance Community Impact Legal Services (610) 380-7111 Housing Authority of Chester County (610) 436-9200 Housing Authority of Phoenixville (610) 933-8801 Legal Services

Center for Disease Control Prevention (888) 232-3228

Lawyer Referral Service (610) 429-1500

Coatesville VA Medical Center (610) 383-7711

Legal Aid of Southeastern PA (610) 436-4510 Medical Equipment & Supplies

Domestic Violence (800) 799-7233 National Osteoporosis Foundation (800) 223-9994


Pennsylvania Hunger Action Center (800) 366-3997

Senior Healthlink (610) 431-1852

Office of Aging

Social Security Administration (800) 772-1213 Southeastern PA Medical Institute (610) 446-0662

Pharmacies CVS/pharmacy Physicians Gateway Medical Associates (610) 423-8181 Senior Centers Coatesville (610) 383-6900 Downingtown (610) 269-3939 Great Valley (610) 647-1311 Kennett Square (610) 444-4819

Total Access (800) 651-5666 Meals on Wheels Chester County Inc. (610) 430-8500

PACE (800) 225-7223

Ability Prosthetics and Orthotics, Inc. (610) 873-6733

Chester County Department of Aging Services (610) 344-6350

Oxford (610) 932-5244 Phoenixville (610) 935-1515 Surrey Services for Seniors (610) 647-6404 Wayne (610) 688-6246 West Chester (610) 431-4242

Not an all-inclusive list of advertisers in your area.

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February 2013


Such is Life Corporate Office:

To My Newfound Valentine

3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512 Phone 717.285.1350 • Fax 717.285.1360 Chester County: 610.675.6240 Cumberland County/Dauphin County: 717.770.0140 Berks County/Lancaster County/ Lebanon County/York County: 717.285.1350 E-mail address: Website address:




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February 2013

50plus SeniorNews

Saralee Perel e was seated in the front row of the lecture hall, wearing work boots and jeans. I could see, even from behind my podium, that his sea-blue denim shirt matched the color of his dazzling eyes. It was Thursday, June 10, 1976, the evening of my first lecture on “Life After Divorce,” and many years before I became disabled. So many of us will be either caregivers or the recipients of care in our lifetimes. I wish I had known even a little of what to expect. I put my glasses on, ostensibly to see my notes, but I was able to sneak a quick look to see the blueeyed fellow’s nametag. It read: “Bob.” One year later, he became my husband. After the lecture, we had our first fight. We were in the hallway. Bob asked if he could walk me to my car. “But I don’t even know you,” I said. “How do I know you’re not a mugger just pretending you want to protect me and then in the parking lot, you grab me and steal my purse and my wedding ring?” He leaned against the wall and crossed his arms and his legs in a posture I would see for many years to come. Then he laughed and said, “That whole ridiculous scenario was just so I’d look at your hand and see you’re not married.” “Oh yeah?” I started walking while hiding my smile because he was absolutely right. He caught up with me. “I’m not married either.” “I know that. You’re attending my lectures on divorce, for heaven’s sake.” “That’s quite a presumption. I could be on my second marriage and not want to make the same mistakes.” I tried, unsuccessfully, to resist looking at his left hand. He said, “I already told you I’m not married.”


“You’re arrogant.” “I’m arrogant?” “At least we agree on something,” I said. I did let him walk me to my car—because I really wanted him to. Thirty-three years later, we still have “our song.” It was played at our wedding. I’ll be loving you Always, With a love that’s true Always.

We danced to it at every anniversary, until our 25th. Suddenly, the music in our love stopped as abruptly as my disability occurred. Bob became my caregiver. I felt like a burden, but didn’t tell him. Bob was overwhelmed, but didn’t tell me. We cried by ourselves. If only we had cried together, we’d have grieved and started to heal. No longer best friends, the words to “Always” were meaningless. I should have known what we needed. And that was to talk with each other rather than keeping our feelings inside. Instead, we believed it would be too hurtful to share our heartbreaking thoughts. We both put on an “I’m fine,” façade, but like any façade, it was just a veneer of an outward display. Our inner worlds were shattered. Then one day, a wonderful thing happened: I fell. While trying to get myself up, I started crying. Bob

came quickly to help me. And suddenly he began crying too. That was the day we finally cried together. Tears of love. Tears of healing. On a recent Valentine’s Day, he said, “We have to stay home today because there’s a surprise coming.” He kept looking out the front window, anxiously waiting for heaven-knows-what. I knew it was going to be something other than flowers or candy or he wouldn’t have been so nervous. Finally, there was a knock at our door. I opened it to find four gentlemen who greeted me by name, gave me a beautiful red rose, and marched right into our living room, where they asked us to have a seat on our couch. They stood in a group in front of us and, in magnificent barbershop harmony, sang “Always.” I was overwhelmed with tears while they sang. Bob had secretly arranged for this barbershop quartet to bring this singing valentine to me. With my husband plus some of the fellows helping me, I was able to stand while we had our picture taken. When I was a kid at summer camp and we jumped on the trampoline, we always had a “safety.” That was someone who was there to watch over us—to keep us from harm. And so, when Bob or I need one another, in so many ways that we now do, we are always each other’s safety. Not just for an hour, Not just for a day, Not just for a year, But always. Saralee Perel is an award-winning, nationally syndicated columnist. Her new book is Cracked Nuts & Sentimental Journeys: Stories From a Life Out of Balance. To find out more, visit or email

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The PEERS of Chester Valley Rehabilitation and Nursing Center organized a Toys for Tots drive this holiday season. The residents felt very strongly about doing something special for children. Employees, visitors, and

residents contributed. PEER stands for Pennsylvania’s Empowered Expert Residents. These residents participate in five weeks of classes to become trained advocates in their home.

DASC Receives Holiday Grant Jim Terry, president, Whitford Charitable Trust (right), hands a check for $15,400 to Ben Bruton, president, Downingtown Area Senior Center board of directors (left), to help support the center’s award-winning Active Older Adults health and wellness program.

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February 2013


Calendar of Events

Chester County

Chester County Department of Parks and Recreation

Senior Center Activities

Coatesville Area Senior Center – (610) 383-6900 22 N. Fifth Ave., Coatesville – Tuesdays in February, 1 p.m. – Art Class with Carol Feb. 7, 10:30 a.m. – Valentine’s Day Craft Hour Feb. 13, noon – Birthday Lunch and Jackpot Bingo

Wednesdays in February, 9 to 10 a.m. – Warwick Walkers, Warwick County Park Wednesday and Saturdays in February, 9 to 10 a.m. – Hibernia Hiking Club, Hibernia County Park

Support Groups Tuesdays, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The Wellness Community of Philadelphia: Support Group for People with Cancer The Cancer Center at Paoli Hospital 255 W. Lancaster Ave., Paoli (215) 879-7733 Feb. 5, 2 p.m. Grief Support Group Phoenixville Senior Center 153 Church St., Phoenixville (610) 327-7216

Free and open to the public Feb. 6, 6 p.m. Memory Loss and Dementia Support Group Sunrise Assisted Living of Paoli 324 W. Lancaster Ave., Malvern (610) 251-9994

Feb. 13, noon Family Caregiver Support Group Sarah Care 425 Technology Drive, Suite 200 Malvern (610) 251-0801

Feb. 11 and 25, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Caregiver Support Group Adult Care of Chester County 201 Sharp Lane, Exton (610) 363-8044

Feb. 19, 6 p.m. Family Caregiver Support Group Sunrise of Westtown 501 Skiles Blvd., West Chester (610) 399-4464

Community Programs Feb. 2 and 16, 5 to 10 p.m. Bingo Nights Marine Corps League Detachment 430 Chestnut St., Downingtown (610) 431-2234 Feb. 5, 11:30 a.m. West Chester University Retirees Luncheon For restaurant location, please email Feb. 6, 12:10 p.m. Valley Forge in 2012 and Beyond Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Widener University Exton Campus 825 Springdale Drive West Whiteland Township (484) 713-0088

Downingtown Senior Center – (610) 269-3939 983 E. Lancaster Ave., Downingtown Great Valley Senior Center – (610) 889-2121 47 Church Road, Malvern

Free and open to the public Feb. 20, 12:10 p.m. Eleanor Roosevelt’s Life of Soul Searching and Self-Discovery Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Widener University Exton Campus 825 Springdale Drive West Whiteland Township (484) 713-0088

Feb. 12, 11 a.m. New Century Club Meeting (Women’s Charity Club) Days Hotel 943 S. High St., West Chester (610) 436-9158 Feb. 13, 12:10 p.m. The Art of Organizing Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Widener University Exton Campus 825 Springdale Drive West Whiteland Township (484) 713-0088

Kennett Area Senior Center – (610) 444-4819 427 S. Walnut St., Kennett Square Wednesdays, 10:45 a.m. to noon – Gentle Yoga Class Feb. 24, 1 p.m. – Sunday Dinner with Friends: “Our Valentine’s Dinner” Feb. 26, 11 a.m. to noon – Cataract Presentation Oxford Senior Center – (610) 932-5244 12 E. Locust St., Oxford – Phoenixville Area Senior Center – (610) 935-1515 153 Church St., Phoenixville West Chester Area Senior Center – (610) 431-4242 530 E. Union St., West Chester – Please call or visit the centers’ websites for additional activities.

If you have an event you would like to include, please email information to for consideration.

VA, SSA, and IRS Cut Red Tape for Vets, Survivors


February 2013

Historically, beneficiaries have been required to complete an EVR each year to ensure their pension benefits continued. Under the new initiative, VA will work with the Internal Revenue

50plus SeniorNews

The Department of Veterans Affairs announced recently it is cutting red tape for veterans by eliminating the need for them to complete an annual Eligibility Verification Report (EVR). VA will implement a new process for confirming eligibility for benefits, and staff that had been responsible for processing the old form will instead focus on eliminating the compensation claims backlog.

VA will implement a new process for confirming eligibility for benefits.

Service and the Social Security Administration to verify continued eligibility for pension benefits. All beneficiaries currently receiving VA pension benefits will receive a letter from VA

explaining these changes and providing instructions on how to continue to submit their unreimbursed medical expenses. More information about VA pension benefits is available at Information on other VA benefit programs can be found on the joint Department of Defense/VA Web portal, eBenefits (

Leaving Your Legacy How to Choose a Charity You Can Trust When giving to charity, most donors support charities whose work they see firsthand locally. But in mailboxes every day, there are appeals from many other local and national charities. How can one verify their accuracy? A recent survey by Hope Consulting shows that despite information available from state government agencies, charity watchdogs, and the organization itself, only 30 percent of donors do any research before making a donation. Experts advise potential donors to look more carefully at solicitation letters they receive and seek out third-party information sources. “While the vast majority of charities are trustworthy, not all are what they appear to be—from the unscrupulous, to the well-meaning but poorly run organizations,” warns H. Art Taylor, president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau (BBB) Wise Giving Alliance, which seeks to connect donors to charities they can trust. “If donors want to assure their money will be put to good use, they should spend a little bit of time getting to know more about the organization,” says Taylor. The first step is to take a good, hard look at the charity solicitation you receive in the mail or encounter online. Here are several examples of potential problems a donor may encounter in mail, online, or by phone solicitations: • Appeals that don’t clearly explain

what the charity intends to do about the problem it describes • Envelopes or letters that mimic an invoice in order to get a recipient to open the mailing • Solicitations that devote more attention to gifts or prizes (for example, sweepstakes offerings, address labels, or greeting cards) than the charity’s good work

charitable giving decision based solely on the information in a solicitation,” says Taylor. However, it can be difficult for donors to know what to look for in a charity’s financial statement. This is where a monitoring organization can help. The BBB Wise Giving Alliance is the only major national charity monitoring organization that reviews appeal content

for accuracy and truthfulness as a routine part of its charity reporting efforts. Charities are evaluated against 20 BBB standards for charity accountability that address charity governance, finances, and solicitation practices. A recent survey conducted by Porter Novelli’s ConsumerStyles found that nearly six in 10 say that the charity solicitation mail they receive is either not very or not at all trustworthy. So if there’s any doubt, do your research. Before donating, consider accessing a free report on the charity of your choice at And if your charity isn’t listed, you can ask the BBB Wise Giving Alliance to consider a review of that charity. If you plan to give back to your community, ensure your charitable dollars support organizations that don’t use dodgy fundraising tactics. (StatePoint)

• Overly emotional fundraising letters saying little about the charity itself • Appeals using excessive pressure to get an immediate, on-the-spot donation decision • Telemarketing solicitors who decline to send requested written materials about the charity’s programs and finances “Scrutinizing a charity appeal is crucial, but you should never make a

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Travel Appetizers: Stories that Whet the Appetite for Travel

Rambles Near Atlanta By Andrea Gross

where I’ll find remnants of a thriving Native culture, good art, and enough outdoor activities keep me happily healthy. Here, overviews of three small towns, each within 65 miles of Atlanta:

Cherokee Chief James Vann’s home features beautiful hand carvings, a charming “floating” staircase, and a 12foot mantle.

love old-style books—you know, the kind that are printed on paper and stored on shelves rather than in clouds. Here, in Horton’s, the oldest bookstore in Georgia and the 10th oldest in the nation, books from bestsellers to travel guides are lined on antique shelving that dates back to the store’s founding in 1892. The one-story brick building in Carrollton’s town square was built in the 1880s and has a warm, comfortable atmosphere. I select a book, and the cashier rings it up on a stately brass cash register that has been there since the store’s first owner, N.A. Horton, abandoned paper-and-pencil transactions in 1914. Then I walk through a connecting door to the newsstand, order an icy mocha drink, and sit down to plot my route through northwest Georgia,


To raise money for education, Martha Berry entertained the country’s elite at her home and gardens.

Carrollton’s Quilt and Textile Museum showcases fine works of art by regional quilters.

Rome A general overview: Rome—so named because, like the Italian capital, it is built on seven hills—is the big city of northwest Georgia. As such, it’s a perfect hub for exploring nearby towns and attractions. [] What you’ll love: Time travel back to the early 1800s, when the Cherokee were flourishing in north Georgia. First, visit the Chieftain’s Museum in Rome, a must for those wanting insight into the events leading up to the Cherokees’ forced removal from the eastern United States. Then drive a half hour north to Calhoun to see the Chief Vann House, one that is as elegant as any owned by European settlers. Finally, visit New

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Booth Western Art Museum prides itself on showing art of the American West but also has a fine collection of pieces that depict the American Southeast.

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The 4-Way Lunch, often called the “heart” of Cartersville, is housed in a 1912 building that was once a Coca-Cola drink stand.

Echota State Historic Site near Calhoun, the place where the Trail of Tears officially began. Meander through the magnificent gardens and art-filled home of 19thcentury Southern dynamo Martha Berry. Berry began by teaching impoverished youngsters how to read and went on to establish Berry College, one of the Southeast’s most respected small liberal-arts institutions. Climb the terraced hills of Myrtle Hill Cemetery to see the Tomb of the Known Soldier. Charles W. Graves, an infantryman randomly selected to represent the “Known Dead” of World War I, was slated to be buried in Arlington alongside the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, but at his mother’s request, he instead was interred in his hometown. Carrollton A general overview: This small town of 24,000 people offers down-home life at its best. The pace is slow, the people friendly, and the festivals frequent. [] What you’ll love: While away the hours at Horton’s Bookstore, followed by a leisurely stroll through the historic district. A pamphlet, available at the visitors center, details 18 homes from the 19th century and explains the difference between a balustrade and a bargeboard, a gable and a portico. Admire the handiwork of Southern quilters at the new Quilt and Textile Museum. The museum is fittingly located in an old cotton warehouse. Drive the West Georgia Textile Heritage Trail. This rapidly expanding trail weaves past mills and manufacturing plants that date back to the days when cotton was king. Test your athletic prowess at Banning Mills, organized as a 501(c)3 conservancy. Here you can hike trails, ride horses, kayak rivers, climb the

Guinness-certified world’s tallest climbing wall (140 feet high), and zip along the world’s longest continuous zip line (7 miles long). Cartersville A general overview: Cartersville (population 20,000) is a small town filled with big-city attractions, from top-rated museums to a vibrant downtown. [] What you’ll love: Ogle first-class art at the Booth Western Art Museum, a Smithsonian partner. In addition to contemporary Western art, the museum houses more than 200 Native American artifacts and original letters from every president of the United States. Stare at stars as well as fossils at another Smithsonian affiliate, the Tellus Science Museum. A 120-seat digital planetarium and a full-size replica of a 40-foot Tyrannosaurus Rex make this museum a regional favorite. Visit cleverly named and stocked stores such as Write Downtown, The King’s Knit-Wit, and Swheat Market Deli. Be prepared to spend more time—and money—than you intended at Spring Place Pottery, where owner Gail Freeman showcases her work alongside that of equally talented regional artisans. Gobble classic food at two Cartersville institutions, Ross’s Diner and 4-Way Lunch. Both dish up burgers and hotdogs with all the trimmings; both are packed with locals, especially during lunch. Climb atop the 63-foot hill at the Etowah Indian Mounds State Historic Park, inhabited by Native Americans from 1000 to 1550 A.D. A small museum shows artifacts that help visitors imagine daily life atop and around the mounds. Photos © Irv Green; story by Andrea Gross (

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Savvy Senior

Medicare Preventive Services: What’s Free, What’s Not Jim Miller Dear Savvy Senior, What types of preventive health screenings does Medicare completely cover, and which ones require a coinsurance fee? I’m due to get some preventive tests done, but I want to find out how much I’ll have to pay before I proceed. – Frugal Retiree Dear Frugal, Medicare covers a wide array of preventive services to help you stay healthy, but it’s important to know which services are totally covered and which ones will generate some out-ofpocket costs. Free Services Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, original Medicare now offers many of their preventive health services completely free to beneficiaries. Preventive services include various exams, lab tests, and screenings that help find health problems in their earliest stages when they’re easier to treat. They also include a number of vaccinations and programs for health monitoring, as well as counseling and education to help you take care of your own health. Here’s a quick rundown of the different Medicare preventive services that won’t cost you a cent, along with the eligibility requirements you’ll need to meet to get them. Wellness visits: All Medicare beneficiaries are eligible for two types of preventive wellness visits—one when you’re new to Medicare and one each

year after that. But don’t confuse these with full physical examinations. These are preventionfocused visits that provide only an overview of your health and medical risk factors and serve as a baseline for future care.

Cardiovascular screenings: Free blood tests to check cholesterol, lipid, and triglyceride levels are offered every five years to all Medicare recipients. Diabetes: Screening available twice a year for those at risk.

Colorectal cancer screening: The fecal occult blood test, flexible sigmoidoscopy, or colonoscopy is available to all beneficiaries age 50 or older.

Bone mass measurements: This osteoporosis test is available every two years to those at risk, or more often if medically necessary.

Mammograms: All women with Medicare ages 40 and older can get a free breast cancer screening mammogram every year.

Abdominal aortic aneurysm screening: To check for bulging blood vessels, this test is available to men ages 65 to 75 who have ever smoked.

Pap tests and pelvic exams: These cervical and vaginal cancer screenings are available every two years, or once a year for those at high risk.

Vaccinations: An annual flu shot, a vaccination against pneumonia, and the hepatitis B vaccine are all free to all beneficiaries.

Prostate cancer screenings: Annual PSA blood tests are available to all male beneficiaries age 50 and older.

In addition, Medicare also offers free smoking cessation counseling; medical nutrition therapy to help beneficiaries

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with diabetes or kidney disease; depression screenings; alcohol screening and counseling; obesity screening and counseling; annual cardiovascular risk reduction visits; sexually transmitted infection screening and counseling; and HIV screenings. Cost-Sharing Services Medicare also offers several other preventive services that require some outof-pocket cost-sharing. With these tests, you’ll have to pay 20 percent of the cost of the service (Medicare picks up the other 80 percent), after you’ve met your $147 Part B yearly deductible. The services that fall under this category include digital rectal exams for prostate cancer, glaucoma tests, and diabetes self-management training services. For detailed information on all Medicare preventive services, see, or call Medicare at (800) 633-4227 and ask them to mail you a free copy of Your Guide to Medicare’s Preventive Service (publication 10110). Medicare Advantage If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, you’ll be happy to know that all Advantage plans are also now required to cover the same free preventive services as original Medicare. Jim Miller is a regular contributor to the NBC Today show and author of The Savvy Senior Book.

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February 2013

50plus SeniorNews

CCRC Continuing Care Retirement Communities

Part independent living, part assisted living, and part skilled nursing home, CCRCs offer a tiered approach to the aging process, accommodating residents’ unique and often changing needs. Healthy adults entering a CRCC are able to live independently in a home, apartment, or condominium of their own within the community. When assistance with everyday activities becomes necessary, they can move into personal care, assisted living, rehabilitation, or nursing care facilities. Some CCRCs have designated dementia areas within the community. These units address the progressing needs of people who have any form of dementia. With a wealth of available resources, these communities give older adults the option to live in one location for the duration of their life, with much of their future care already figured out — which equals both comfort and peace of mind.

Bethany Village 325 Wesley Drive Mechanicsburg, PA 17055 Stephanie Lightfoot Director of Sales & Marketing (717) 766-0279 Calvary Fellowship Homes 502 Elizabeth Drive Lancaster, PA 17601 Marlene Morris Marketing Director (717) 393-0711 Chapel Pointe at Carlisle 770 South Hanover Street Carlisle, PA 17013 Linda Amsley Director of Marketing / Admissions (717) 713-2201 Garden Spot Village 433 South Kinzer Avenue New Holland, PA 17557 Scott Miller Chief Marketing Officer (717) 355-6000 Homeland Center 1901 North Fifth Street Harrisburg, PA 17102-1598 Barry S. Ramper II, N.H.A. President/CEO (717) 221-7902

Homestead Village Enhanced Senior Living 1800 Marietta Avenue P.O. Box 3227 Lancaster, PA 17604-3227 Susan L. Doyle Director of Marketing (717) 397-4831 ext. 158 Normandie Ridge Senior Living Community 1700 Normandie Drive York, PA 17408 Joyce Singer Director of Sales & Marketing (717) 718-0937 St. Anne’s Retirement Community 3952 Columbia Avenue Columbia, PA 17512 Christina E. Gallagher Director of Marketing (717) 285-6112 Willow Valley Retirement Communities 600 Willow Valley Square Lancaster, PA 17602 Kristin Hambleton Manager of Sales (717) 464-6800 (800) 770-5445 Woodcrest Villa Mennonite Home Communities 2001 Harrisburg Pike Lancaster, PA 17601 Connie Buckwalter Director of Marketing (717) 390-4126

The CCRC Communities listed are sponsoring this message. This is not an all-inclusive list.

50plus SeniorNews

February 2013


Art and Antiques by Dr. Lori

How to Preserve that Antique Dr. Lori cross the country, many people that attend my antiques appraisal events are shocked to hear about some of the little-known methods used in major museums to preserve and protect precious art and antiques. While museums make a long-term commitment to preserving and protecting objects in their care to educate the public, most of us are equally committed to keeping our family heirlooms and keepsakes in good condition in order to retain their value. Some of the most common ways an object can be harmed include: pests and other insects, pollutants (dust, mold, etc.), temperature and humidity fluctuations, lights or sunshine, and oils from the human touch.


Hands Off For instance, the oils on your hands and the hydrogen sulphide compounds

in the air cause silver to tarnish and will leave a permanent mark on your valuable silver pieces. “Do not touch” signs seem extreme but are necessary when objects are on display in museums. When it comes to collectibles that we live with on a daily basis, it is a good idea to handle with care and handle only occasionally. So, if you must handle an object, don’t handle it too often. Remember, the oils and small dust

particles on your hands can cause permanent damage to your heirlooms and aging treasures.

Photos courtesy of staff of

Handling objects too much, even vintage objects like these Pez dispensers, can cause long-term damage. Don’t use commercial cleaners when dusting old plastics.

Creating Accessible Environments

Climate Control It is best to store your private collections in an area of your home where it is cool and dry. Attics (too hot with poor ventilation), basements (too damp), foyers (where temperature changes are frequent), kitchens (too many cooking

odors and too much heat), bathrooms and laundry rooms (too much moisture and possible mold) are not the best places for art or antiques. Improper climate conditions can stimulate mold growth and cause objects to mildew, dry out, and crack. Devastating Effects Hanging a framed print in a sunny window, storing objects in acidic cardboard boxes, and over-cleaning your antiques can damage your pieces forever. Sunlight is the first culprit that damages most works of art. Heat is a close second. Painted objects, prints, and textiles should not be placed in sunny areas of your home as they are sensitive to light and will be damaged in a few short months. There are few options to repair sun damage and fading once it happens. However, you can prevent heat from

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damaging your antiques. One of the hottest places where you display your collectibles is your china cabinet. The glass doors act like a greenhouse and your objects are baking inside. Be sure to open those doors and let your objects get some good air flow every three months or so. Spray the Rag, Not the Renoir Cleaning a framed work of art, such as a print, seems straightforward. However, there is a right way and a wrong way to clean it. Spray the rag first. Do not spray the cleaner directly onto the glass, as the chemical could drip in between the glass and the work of art and damage it. Beware of Bugs Insects are monsters, killers. They carry bacteria and they will eat and not stop eating until they have damaged your antiques—particularly wooden ones—beyond recognition.

You may stop an infestation by wrapping a small wooden object in acid-free tissue paper and placing the object in a freezer. The bugs will die off in the cold. Also, bugs love dark spaces and close quarters. An easy way to protect your antiques from insects is to clean around your objects regularly, don’t eat food near your collectibles, and use insect traps when necessary. Certain types of art and antiques need special types of care. Be diligent and handle your antiques carefully and you’ll enjoy them for years to come. Ph.D. antiques appraiser, author, and award-winning TV personality, Dr. Lori presents antique appraisal events nationwide. Dr. Lori is the expert appraiser on the hit TV show Auction Kings on Discovery channel, which airs Wednesdays at 10 p.m. Visit, DoctorLori, or call (888) 431-1010.

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Smile of the Month

Arrange Cemetery Property in Advance of Need A True Gift of Love Sound Financial Planning Although your need may be years, even decades, in the future, planning now will allow you to make your own choices, while keeping cost as low as possible by purchasing at today’s prices! Peace of Mind … You’ll be secure in knowing that you have spared your loved ones from added stress, worry, anxiety and expense by purchasing your cemetery services in advance. Affordable Prearrangements … Our counselors will work with you to arrange the best possible cemetery property and services that you will find economically feasible. Inflation Protection … By purchasing your cemetery property in advance, you can lock-in the cost based on today’s prices.

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This month’s smile is titled, “Never too old for Pop Pop’s chair.” It was submitted by Betty Gilchrist of Downingtown.

Edgewood Memorial Park 325 Baltimore Pike • Glen Mills, PA 19342 610.283.8415

Send us your favorite smile—your children, grandchildren, friends, even your “smiling” pet!—and it could be 50plus Senior News’ next Smile of the Month! You can submit your photos (with captions) either digitally to or by mail to:

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February 2013



from page 1

“I liked the sound,” he said. “It is a lot of seventh chords, which means they sing four notes and then there is an implied note.” The tradition of barbershop quartets began when men would gather on the front porches of barbershops, waiting for their appointments to start, said Van Order. “Someone would strike up a song, like ‘Sweet Adeline,’ and the others would fill in the different parts,” Van Order explained. The White Rose Chorus carries on that tradition, singing at local churches, nursing homes, and other events. Their biggest fundraiser each year is the singing valentines service they provide for anyone who would like to wish a loved one a happy Valentine’s Day. Decked out in white jackets and bowties, members of the quartets show up at offices, homes, or public places where their presence is requested in the form of a singing valentine. “We step in and everything stops,” said Van Order. Sometimes people will specify the song they would like them to sing to the person receiving the singing valentine, and other times they will take requests on

the spot. Popular song requests include “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” and “The Story of My Rose.” The element of surprise makes the singing valentines the most fun of all the performances through the course of the year, said Van Order. Workplace deliveries are particularly delightful, because everyone who notices the four matching men is eager to assist them in finding their way to the right person. “You go into a cubicle to sing to someone at work, and it’s like the turtle effect,” said Van Order—everyone is anxiously sticking their heads out to see where the men are going, and as soon as they start singing, everyone wants to know what is going on. “It’s a fun thing and it’s really fun because it is a surprise,” Van Order said. Sometimes the secret is too much suspense for the giver, and the quartet members end up delivering the live songs to someone who has already been told about what they are receiving. Van Order jokes with the recipients that they still have to act surprised, even if the person giving the gift couldn’t keep it a secret. An order for a singing valentine also includes the delivery of a single rose and a

photograph of the person taken with the quartet. Last year the chorus sent out one quartet, but this year they hope to have enough men to mobilize two quartets. New members are always welcome in the White Rose Chorus. It is helpful if the person can sing and read music, said Van Order, but other members can help them to learn if they are not sure how. Listening to each other at practices also helps each member to learn how to sing their part correctly. “It’s not impossible,” Van Order said. “People think it looks easy, but what they do not realize is that for every hour that you sing, there are probably three to four hours of background singing.” The four-decade time commitment to the White Rose Chorus has been worth it for Van Order. “It has been very fulfilling,” he said. “It has been a good run and I highly recommend it to anyone.” Men of all ages are welcome, and Van Order understands that life can be busy for young husbands and fathers especially. But setting aside time to spend on a hobby each week with other men helped him to develop lasting friendships and memories, as well as improving his skills as a singer and continuing the tradition of

an increasingly rare art form. “It does take time and I had the support of my wife and my four kids,” said Van Order. “That made it pretty busy for (my wife), and she was willing to do that.” Since his wife, Martha, passed away in August 2011, Van Order said the camaraderie of the White Rose Chorus has been an important and helpful part of his grieving process. Singing even has medical benefits, such as helping to develop stronger breathing muscles, he said. Van Order was born with asthma but he believes that all of the singing he does plays a large role in helping to keep his asthma in check. Singing relieves stress and it stirs up memories. For Van Order, they are memories like listening to his grandfather and father sing. His grandfather had an excellent voice and could play the violin and piano by ear. His father, on the other hand, “couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket. “But he would still sing,” said Van Order. “I guess it can skip a generation.” For more information about joining the White Rose Chorus and ordering singing valentines, visit or call (717) 767-1862.

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February 2013

50plus SeniorNews

Chester County 50plus Senior News February 2013  

50plus Senior News, published monthly, is offered to provide individuals 50 and over in the Susquehanna and Delaware Valley areas with timel...

Chester County 50plus Senior News February 2013  

50plus Senior News, published monthly, is offered to provide individuals 50 and over in the Susquehanna and Delaware Valley areas with timel...