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Chester County Edition

December 2012

Vol. 9 No. 12

Memories in the Mail Local History Preserved in Vast Postcard Collection By Chelsea Shank Bob Sallade loves the thrill of the hunt. And as a deltiologist—that is, someone who collects postcards—he takes every opportunity that he can to hunt for postcards to add to his collection. Sallade, 63, has a collection of between 4,000 and 5,000 postcards. Collecting postcards is tied with coin collecting as the second most popular hobby, next to collecting stamps, said Sallade. He started his collection about six years ago. “I went to flea markets for other reasons and I picked up five old postcards … and that’s what started it,” Sallade said. As a native of Central Pennsylvania, he takes a personal interest in the history of the area and enjoys finding postcards featuring old buildings that are no longer around and others that are still standing. “My thrill is getting different scenes,” said Sallade. He has postcards of a former recreational facility called Playland, which had a roller skating rink and swimming pool where Sallade spent time as a teenager. There are others in his collection of an old judicial center, the Wrightsville Bridge, and hotels and motels that are no longer in operation. “That’s the interesting part—seeing what your town used to look like,” said Sallade. please see MEMORIES page 12 Postcard collector Bob Sallade preserves images of days gone by in dozens of binders stored at his home.


Welcoming the New Year page 8

Vaccination Options for Seniors page 10

Such Is Life

Broccoli and Happy Endings Saralee Perel y husband, Bob, attracts lunatics. One is a stand-alone screwball. Hey, I heard that! It’s not me. It’s our 6-year-old cat, Murphy. Of course we adore him, and he’s the happiest being we’ve ever known. Murphy’s not just dimwitted; he’s also a thief. But he swipes things that no cat with even half a brain would want. Well, I’m not being fair. Murphy doesn’t have half a brain. There should be a sign over his head that reads: “Vacancy.” He’s lightning fast. One night, in a flash, he jumped on the table, grabbed an entire crown of broccoli that was twice the size of his head, and raced away with it, all the while scarfing it down so that none of our other cats could have what every cat dreams of (sarcastic): broccoli. His favorite food group? Dust balls. Yes, we vacuum. They appear out of


nowhere like Bob’s ex-brother-in-law recently took a disastrous turn on a late who’s suddenly in our living room Sunday night. Bob put a pill on the wanting to counter for borrow our dog, more cash. Gracie. This Murphy pill is so has an bitter that no incessant pet will take desire to it unless rip tape off owners UPS boxes. disguise it in When I something extract the tasteful. But tape from Murphy his throat, made a he doesn’t beeline to it notice. and ate it. Can you We called imagine a poison Murphy sticking your hotline. We fingers 3 inches down your cat’s throat were told he needed to get to a 24-hour without him even caring you’re doing it? emergency veterinary hospital Murphy’s race to eat everything immediately. I’m disabled and can’t move

late at night. Bob rushed Murphy to the vet. We figured they’d pump his stomach and send him home. We were wrong. Bob called me from his cell after the vet saw Murphy. “He has to stay here three days. They made him vomit, but the toxin is still in his system.” He was sobbing. “He could lose all kidney function.” “Did the vet say he could die?” “Yes.” I felt as much anguish for Bob as I did for Murphy. He went on, “Murphy’s so innocent,” he said, crying harder. “I hate myself for letting this happen.” “Oh, Sweets, you didn’t mean for this to happen. I wish I was sitting next to you.” We cried without speaking. Then I said, “Don’t drive. Not when you’re like this.” Then I called the vet. I asked her for emotional guidance for Bob.

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She said, “This happens all the time. It happened with me and my cat. He needs to forgive himself. It’s impossible to prevent these things 100 percent. Plus, I’ve never heard of a cat who’d want to eat a pill, especially one that tastes so awful.” “Bob’s in your parking lot. Would you please go to him and tell him what you told me?” And she did. Three days later, Murphy came home happy and healthy. When the vet called and asked about him, I incorrectly assumed she knew about Murphy’s insane antics. “He’s back to normal. He just presented me with a dust ball the size of

a Burger King Triple Whopper! Isn’t that great?” “What?” “Don’t worry,” I said, and then cemented myself as a bonehead. “Nobody’s getting near my broccoli again!” She asked to speak to Bob. I said, “He’s busy. UPS came. Bob’s racing like a cyclone, ripping tape off the boxes before disaster hits. You know what he’s like around UPS tape.” She sounded confused. “Bob?” I laughed, “Not Bob—” Before I could explain she interrupted, “Please have him call me.” Bob’s role as a caregiver is not a role

he asked for, but one he feels blessed to have. He takes care of me with my spinal cord issues, our old pet duck who’s arthritic, our young border collie who can never run again because of a genetic spinal problem, and our very sick cat, Josie, to whom Bob administers IV fluids daily. “How could I be so lucky?” Bob says, every single day of his life. Yesterday at dawn, as the light gently filled our bedroom, I slowly turned over to see which of Bob’s brood was in the protection of his arms. He was cradling beautiful Murphy, who was sound asleep on his back in the crook of Bob’s armpit.

Bob’s eyes were open but I didn’t say a word. I knew he was preserving the precious moments for as long as he could before Murphy would wake up. I watched as Murphy opened his eyes then curled his paw under his chin. I heard him purr when he closed his eyes again, preferring to remain in the safety of Bob’s arm for just a little while longer. And so, snuggling next to Bob, I closed my eyes again too. 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

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 Eye Care Services Chester County Eye Care Associates (484) 723-2055 Financial Services Internal Revenue Service (800) 829-3676

Funeral & Cremation Services Auer Cremation Services of PA, Inc. (800) 720-8221

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

Danjolell Memorial Homes & Crematory (610) 356-4200 Health & Medical Services Alzheimer’s Association (800) 272-3900 American Cancer Society (800) 227-2345 American Heart Association (610) 940-9540 Arthritis Foundation (215) 665-9200

Housing Eastwood Village Homes, LLC (717) 397-3138 Housing Assistance Community Impact Legal Services (610) 380-7111

CVS/pharmacy Physicians Gateway Medical Associates (610) 423-8181 Senior Centers

Housing Authority of Phoenixville (610) 933-8801

Downingtown (610) 269-3939

Lawyer Referral Service (610) 429-1500

Coatesville VA Medical Center (610) 383-7711

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

Great Valley (610) 647-1311 Kennett Square (610) 444-4819 Oxford (610) 932-5244 Phoenixville (610) 935-1515

Total Access (800) 651-5666 Nutrition

National Osteoporosis Foundation (800) 223-9994

Meals on Wheels Chester County Inc. (610) 430-8500

PACE (800) 225-7223

Pennsylvania Hunger Action Center (800) 366-3997

Senior Healthlink (610) 431-1852


Coatesville (610) 383-6900

Legal Services

Gateway Medical Associates (610) 594-7590

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

Housing Authority of Chester County (610) 436-9200

Center for Disease Control Prevention (888) 232-3228

Domestic Violence (800) 799-7233

Orthotics & Prosthetics

Office of Aging

Surrey Services for Seniors (610) 647-6404 Wayne (610) 688-6246 West Chester (610) 431-4242

Chester County Department of Aging Services (610) 344-6350 Not an all-inclusive list of advertisers in your area.

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December 2012


Salute to a Veteran

He Flew in 3 Raids on the Dreaded Oil Fields at Ploesti

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December 2012

Robert D. Wilcox hat he didn’t know was that the first raid against this critical target had been one of the costliest for the USAAF in the European Theater, with 53 aircraft and 660 aircrewmen lost. It had been the worst loss ever suffered by the USAAF in a single mission. Ploesti was a cluster of nine oil refineries around Ploesti, Romania, that produced one-third of the oil that powered the German war machine. It was so critically important to the German war effort that it was guarded by 50,000 German troops and, literally, hundreds of anti-aircraft guns. It had been bombed many times by American bombers from Libya, then from Italy, by the time Fred Lowery and his B-17 crew arrived in their base at Foggia, Italy, and found that Ploesti was to be their first mission. Did they realize how hazardous that mission would be? “I guess the officers might have learned that in their briefing,” he says. “But the other enlisted men and I had no idea. “We were being checked out on our first mission, and we all flew on different crews, to give us some experience before flying in combat together as a crew. I learned after the mission that our navigator and bombardier had been shot down and had become prisoners of war. Worse still, our waist gunner had been killed by flak. “We were then all split up and sent to different crews, as needed. Only once did I ever fly again with any of our original crew, and that was on my 17th and final mission. My original copilot had become a first pilot, and he flew the mission to bomb an oil refinery near Vienna. “Strangely enough,” he explains, “I came closer to buying the farm on that mission than on any other. For the first time, we had with us a guy who was operating a ‘flak jammer.’ This was a device that confused the radar that guided the German ack-ack guns. “While we were flying at 28,000


50plus SeniorNews

Frederick C. Lowery (at right, standing) with his original B-17 crew in training.

feet, he kicked me and pointed to my main oxygen line. It had been severed by flak, so, although I was breathing, what I didn’t realize was that I wasn’t getting any oxygen. I was able to quickly uncouple my oxygen line and couple it to his. If it hadn’t been for him, I surely would have died.” Lowery wouldn’t have been there at all if he hadn’t been called by the draft board when he was 18 years old and still a senior in high school. His father was a minister, and Lowery had grown up in a strictly religious home. So he says he was rather looking forward to striking out on his own. The Army sent him to Miami for basic training, then to Sioux Falls, S.D., for radio school. It was then to Yuma, Ariz., for gunnery school, and to Salt Lake City to join a B-17 crew. After combat training at Biloxi, Miss., the crew flew to Newfoundland and the Azores on their way to their base in Foggia, Italy. Thinking back to the missions he flew, he says, “We were really lucky. We really had to worry only about flak. The German fighter planes had

been decimated by the time we got there. We never saw a one. Once, flak knocked out one of our engines and we fell behind the group until we were all alone. Our tail gunner then found a fighter coming at us. But, when it got closer, we found it was one of ours. So I never got to fire a gun.” Lowery returned to the U.S. in late 1944 and served at several bases before being discharged as a tech sergeant at Fort Indiantown Gap in 1948. He returned home, entered Franklin and Marshall College, and earned a B.A. in history in January 1950. He then entered seminary at the Dallas Theological Seminary, earning a Master of Theology degree in 1954. He joined the Army Reserve in 1957 as a first lieutenant and served as chaplain at many bases and hospitals before retiring from the Reserve as a lieutenant colonel in 1995. In civilian life, he served as minister of a United Brethren Church for 27 years. In retirement, he was asked if he would be interested in serving as minister for his father’s church. He readily accepted the call and served there for 16 more years before settling in a retirement community with his wife, Cora Jean. Lowery says that, despite his years since then, he still thinks of those exciting, dangerous months of missions over Europe as if they were yesterday. Colonel Wilcox flew a B-17 bomber in Europe in World War II.

In honor of World War II vets ... and in memory of the attack on Pearl Harbor

Chester County

Calendar of Events Chester County Department of Parks and Recreation

Senior Center Activities

Coatesville Area Senior Center – (610) 383-6900 22 N. Fifth Ave., Coatesville –

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

Support Groups

Free and open to the public

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

Dec. 10, 7 to 8 p.m. Cancer Support Group: Double Hope of Chester County Calvary Fellowship Church 95 W. Devon Drive, Downingtown (484) 319-8167 Dec. 10 and 24, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Caregiver Support Group Adult Care of Chester County 201 Sharp Lane, Exton (610) 363-8044

Dec. 4, 2 p.m. Grief Support Group Phoenixville Senior Center 153 Church St., Phoenixville (610) 327-7216 Dec. 5, 6 p.m. Memory Loss and Dementia Support Group Sunrise Assisted Living of Paoli 324 W. Lancaster Ave., Malvern (610) 251-9994

Dec. 12, noon Family Caregiver Support Group Sarah Care 425 Technology Drive, Suite 200, Malvern (610) 251-0801 Dec. 18, 6 p.m. Family Caregiver Support Group Sunrise of Westtown 501 Skiles Blvd., West Chester (610) 399-4464

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

Community Programs

Free and open to the public

Dec. 1 and 2, 1 to 5 p.m. Model Railroad Open House Schuylkill Valley Model Railroad Club 400 S. Main St., Phoenixville (610) 935-1126

Dec. 3, 6:30 p.m. Exton PC Club – Open House Chester County Library Struble Room 450 Exton Square Parkway, Exton (484) 876-1221

Dec. 11, 11 a.m. New Century Club Meeting (Women’s Charity Club) Days Hotel 943 S. High St., West Chester (610) 436-9158

Dec. 1 and 15, 5 to 10 p.m. Bingo Nights Marine Corps League Detachment 430 Chestnut St., Downingtown (610) 431-2234

Dec. 4, 11:30 a.m. West Chester University Retirees Luncheon For restaurant location, please email

Dec. 14, 7:30 p.m. Holiday Concert: Keystone Brass Quintet Tel Hai Retirement Community Chapel 1200 Tel Hai Circle, Honey Brook (610) 273-9333

What’s Happening? Give Us the Scoop! Please send us your press releases so we can let our readers know about free events occurring in Chester County! Email preferred to:


help you get the word out!

(610) 675-6240

Downingtown Senior Center – (610) 269-3939 983 E. Lancaster Ave., Downingtown Great Valley Senior Center – (610) 889-2121 47 Church Road, Malvern Kennett Area Senior Center – (610) 444-4819 427 S. Walnut St., Kennett Square Dec. 13, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. – Free Blood Pressure Screening Dec. 13, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. – Country Christmas Show Dec. 16, 1 to 3:15 p.m. – Sunday Dinner with Friends 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 – Just a snippet of what you may be missing … please call or visit their website for more information.

Clean Your Air with the Right Houseplants Clean air is essential to good health at home and in the workplace. One simple way to keep the air you breathe fresh and free of odors and chemicals is to keep a few houseplants around. They’ll clean the atmosphere and make your surroundings more pleasant and relaxing. Pick up some of these: English ivy. This climbing vine grows in hanging baskets and low planters, and it helps clear away formaldehyde. (Be aware that it requires regular misting, especially during the winter months.) Peace lily. A flowering plant, the peace lily will eradicate toxins like acetone, benzene, and ammonia from the air. Remember to wash the leaves every one in awhile. Rubber plant. This plant is hardy enough to survive cool temperatures and low light, making it ideal even if you’re not particularly good with plants. Like the English ivy, it acts to reduce formaldehyde in the air as long as it gets plenty of water.

50plus SeniorNews

December 2012


Older But Not Wiser

Who Do I Look Like? Sy Rosen uring the past year I have been told several times by people younger than me that I look like someone. No, not the same someone, many different someones. I’ve been told I look like Billy Graham, Billy Crystal, Hugh Hefner (even though I don’t wear pajamas in public), Bob Dylan, Tony Bennett, and Ed Koch (the former mayor of New York). In addition, just the other day I had an extremely weird conversation with a middle-aged guy at the checkout line at the supermarket. “You look like that actor,” he told me. “What actor?” I asked. “You know, that actor.” “Oh, him.” At this point I just wanted to get out of the supermarket and away from this guy. However, he was relentless.


“He’s in a lot of comedies but he also does serious pictures, you know, with heart.” “So he has a lot of range,” I said. “Exactly. You look like the actor with a lot of range.” “OK, great,” I replied. “I’ll make sure I see the next picture he’s in.” “I’m pretty sure he’s dead.” “So I looked like him before he passed away?” I asked. “Yeah, he probably doesn’t look too good now.” At first this whole series of “lookalike” events was kind of amusing to me, and then I realized what might be happening. It’s not that I look like a celebrity, even though I’d love to go on tour as Bob Dylan. It’s that people younger than us think that we seniors all look alike. All they see is the gray hair and the wrinkles. They

Thank You, Columnists! 50plus Senior News continues to bring important information as well as entertaining articles to the 50+ community. We at On-Line Publishers would like to express our sincere gratitude and appreciation to the editorial contributors of 50plus Senior News: Angelo Coniglio (The Search for Our Ancestry) Wendell Fowler (Preventive Measures) Al Goodman (Beyond the Battlefield ) Andrea Gross (Traveltizers) Dr. Lori (Art and Antiques) Gloria May (NurseNews) Clyde McMillan-Gamber (The Beauty in Nature) Jim Miller (The Savvy Senior) Candace O’Donnell (Balancing Act) Victor Parachin (Fragments of History) Saralee Perel (Such is Life) Dr. Leonard Perry (The Green Mountain Gardener) W.E. Reinka (Silver Threads) Ted Rickard (The Squint-Eyed Senior) Sy Rosen (Older But Not Wiser) Pat Sinclair (Recipes for Two) Walt Sonneville (My 22 Cents’ Worth) Robert Wilcox (Salute to a Veteran) Judith Zausner (Creativity Matters)

December 2012

50plus SeniorNews

tattoo. I’ve seen guys with Chinese lettering tattooed on their arms or neck. I could have a have tattoo that says AARP. I have a feeling no one’s ever done that. And then, all of the sudden, the insanity stopped. I’d like to think that it was a sudden burst of maturity on my part, but actually it was the fear of the tattoo needle that brought me to my senses. I realized that if some younger people can’t tell us apart, that’s their problem. We seniors are definitely unique individuals with unique looks. I, for example, am just a regular guy who happens to look like Cary Grant. Hey, the guy at the supermarket couldn’t remember the actor’s name, so I get to fill in the blanks. Note: If you’re looking at my picture now and trying to figure out who I really look like—it was taken seven years ago and in the right light (semi-darkness).

On-Line Publishers, Inc. & 50plus Senior News just earned 6 national awards!

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Second Place – Profile

It is through the varied interests and considerable talents of our contributors and freelance writers that such a range of informative and entertaining content is available to read each month. The pages of 50plus Senior News are enriched by your contributions.


probably also see the turkey neck, but let’s not dwell on that. Or maybe, and this is even worse, as we get older we do all start to look alike. We become kind of … a generic version of what we once were. I guess if this is true, there’s one semi-positive side effect—all the cool guys I envied in high school now look like me. Ironically, when I was a teenager I desperately wanted to look like everybody else. I just wanted to blend in. However, now I wanted to fight this anonymity. I started to think of ways to make myself stand out. I was thinking of wearing something all the time, like a scarf, that would become my trademark. But then I would be known as “the guy with the scarf ” and I don’t want to take second billing to an article of clothing. Then I thought of maybe getting a

“Around the World and Back Again” by Lynda Hudzick

Third Place – General Excellence (717) 285-1350 • (717) 770-0140 • (610) 675-6240 •

Social Security News

Benefit Increase Announced, Office Hours Reduced Dec. 31, 2012. maximum) will increase to $113,700 Some other changes that take effect in from $110,100. January of each Of the estimated 163 year are based on Increased payments to the increase in million workers average wages. who will pay more than 8 million SSI Social Security Based on that beneficiaries will begin increase, the taxes in 2013, nearly 10 million maximum on Dec. 31, 2012. amount of will pay higher earnings subject taxes as a result of to the Social Security tax (taxable the increase in the taxable maximum.

Monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for nearly 62 million Americans will increase 1.7 percent in 2013, the Social Security Administration announced recently. The 1.7 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits that more than 56 million Social Security beneficiaries receive in January 2013. Increased payments to more than 8 million SSI beneficiaries will begin on

Information about Medicare changes for 2013, when announced, will be available at For some beneficiaries, their Social Security increase may be partially or completely offset by increases in Medicare premiums. The Social Security Act provides for how the COLA is calculated. To read more, please visit cola.

*** Effective Nov. 19, all Social Security offices are open to the public Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.—a reduction of 30 minutes each weekday. In addition, beginning Jan. 2, 2013, the office will close to the public at noon every Wednesday. While agency employees will continue to work their regular hours, this shorter

public window will allow them to complete face-to-face interviews and process claims work without incurring the cost of overtime. The significantly reduced funding provided by Congress under the continuing resolution for the first six months of the fiscal year makes it impossible for the agency to provide the

overtime needed to handle service to the public as it has done in the past. Most Social Security services do not require a visit to a local office. Many services—including applying for retirement, disability, or Medicare benefits; signing up for direct deposit; replacing a Medicare card; obtaining a proof of income letter; or informing us

of a change of address or telephone number—are conveniently available at or by dialing the toll-free number, (800) 772-1213. People who are deaf or hard-ofhearing may call the TTY number, (800) 325-0778. Many online services also are available in Spanish at

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610.296.9555 50plus SeniorNews

December 2012


Travel Appetizers: Stories that Whet the Appetite for Travel


Welcoming the New Year with Double the Fun By Andrea Gross Photo courtesy of Savannah Riverboat Cruises

Traditional stern-wheel riverboats offer a unique party spot for New Year’s Eve revelers in Savannah.

The clock strikes midnight. Fireworks explode. Confetti fills the air. And I get a chance to make a whole new set of resolutions, some of which I may even keep. How can I not like New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day? What’s more, if celebrating once is nice, wouldn’t twice be even better? Squeezing two such festivities into one year takes planning, but it can be done. First, welcome the new year on Dec. 31 and Jan. 1, the dates set by the internationally accepted Gregorian calendar. Then, several weeks later, partake in a traditional Chinese New Year’s celebration, the date of which is set according to the age-old Chinese calendar. (In 2013, Chinese New Year will fall on Feb. 10.) Here, two places that celebrate the new year in very different ways.

Photo courtesy of

More than 2,000 people partake in a New Year’s Day Polar Plunge near Savannah. Lion dancers provide entertainment during New Year’s Day festivities.

Savannah, Ga. As midnight approaches, people make their way to the upper deck of the three-tiered riverboat. They’ve been partying for more than three hours— dancing to live music, feasting on hors d’oeuvres and a buffet of elegant offerings. Now, as fireworks from nearby Tybee Island color the sky, it’s time to welcome the new year. On shore, Savannah’s famed City Market, a four-block area of restored buildings, is filled with landlubbers who are enjoying the city’s biggest street party. Some are dining in one of the many restaurants; others are enjoying the free entertainment outside. Then the countdown begins, and a man lifts his son to his shoulders for a better view of the fireworks. Another man lifts his drink as the band strikes up “Auld Lang Syne.” The new year has officially begun. The next day, more than 2,000 people, presumably recovered from the previous night’s revelry, gather on Tybee

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On-Line Publishers, Inc. and 50plus Senior News would like to extend a heartfelt thank-you to all of the individual and senior group volunteers who donated their time and efforts at our 2012 50plus EXPOs. Because of your assistance, we were able to bring the contents and the mission of 50plus Senior News to life for the residents of Central Pennsylvania!


December 2012

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9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Hershey Lodge

Date and location to be announced

West Chocolate Avenue & University Drive, Hershey

Limited Sponsorship Opportunities Available 717.285.1350 717.770.0140 610.675.6240

Elaborate flower booths are set up in malls.

Arrange Cemetery Property in Advance of Need A True Gift of Love Sound Financial Planning Young dancers prepare to entertain people who are shopping for holiday presents at a Richmond mall. Hot pot dinners are favorites throughout the year.

Island for the Polar Plunge, an event that raises money for a local charity. In addition to swimming caps, which range from ordinary-plain to frivolously freaky, they are outfitted in glittery capes, feather boas, bathrobes, PJs, and, occasionally, regular old bikinis and briefs. At noon they race for the water, emerging a few minutes later, shivering and smiling. “I’ve washed off the sins of the past. Now I’m ready to enjoy the new year,” says one woman. She wraps her arms about herself, smiles, and disappears into the crowd of cold, but cleansed, folks. Richmond, British Columbia Three thousand miles away, people in Richmond, British Columbia, have just finished packing away the piney boughs and glass ornaments that represent the Western holiday season when they begin preparing for the traditional Chinese New Year’s celebration. In Richmond, this second welcoming of the new year is a very, very big deal. This isn’t surprising, given that the city boasts North America’s highest percentage of people of Chinese heritage outside of China. Walking the streets of the area known as the Golden Village—a four-squareblock enclave that is home to more than 400 Asian restaurants and three Asianthemed malls—it’s easy to believe you’re in China, except that there’s no smog, the water is safe to drink, and most people understand English. Festivities begin approximately two weeks before New Year’s Day, as malls set up special booths where vendors hawk elaborate flower arrangements and special holiday treats. At Landsdowne

Mall, women make paper fish and lanterns; children perform dances and demonstrate their skill in martial arts; and expert calligraphers make banners that are used to decorate homes and public places. On New Year’s Eve, restaurants serve multicourse feasts where each food has a special meaning. Since pork symbolizes good luck, Shanghai River Restaurant prepares bamboo baskets filled with xiao long bao (steamed dumplings filled with minced pork and jellied broth). “These are packages of good fortune,” says the waiter. Seafood dishes are supposed to bring prosperity because in ancient times only the wealthy could afford such treats, while eating long, uncut noodles foretells a long life. Sweet, sticky rice is served as a reminder that families should “stick together” and support one another. After dinner, many folks go to the Aberdeen Mall, where the new year is welcomed with speeches, lion dancing, and lots and lots of confetti. Others go to the Kuan Yin Temple of the International Buddhist Society, which is modeled in part after the Forbidden City in Beijing. It is considered by many to be one of the most magnificent Buddhist temples in North America. There, they greet the new year with prayer, many even staying overnight in order to be among the first to receive blessings in the new year. By noon on New Year’s Day, thousands of folks have congregated at the temple for a prayer ceremony and vegetarian lunch. “Yes,” I say to myself as I munch on some bamboo shoots, “it’s definitely nice to celebrate twice.” Photos © Irv Green; story by Andrea Gross (

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December 2012


Savvy Senior

Vaccination Options for Seniors This Flu Season Jim Miller Dear Savvy Senior, Are there any new or different types of vaccines being recommended to seniors this flu season? – Health-Conscious Carol Dear Carol, There are actually several different types of flu shots available to seniors this year, along with a new FDA-approved shot for pneumonia. Here are your options. Flu Shots Just as they do every year, the CDC strongly recommends a seasonal flu shot to almost everyone, but it’s especially important for seniors who are more vulnerable. The flu puts more than 200,000 people in the hospital each year and kills around 24,000—90 percent of whom are seniors.

This year, all seniors 65 and older have two flu vaccine options from which to choose: a traditional flu shot or a shot of Fluzone High-Dose. The high-dose vaccine contains four times the amount of antigen (the part of the vaccine that prompts the body to make antibody) as a regular flu shot does, which creates a stronger immune response for better protection. And if you’re under age 65, your two options are a regular flu shot or a shot of Fluzone Intradermal. The intradermal

vaccine uses a shorter, thinner needle to inject the vaccine just under the skin, rather than deeper in the muscle like standard flu shots. If you’re squeamish about needles, this is a nice option. You also need to be aware that if you’re allergic to chicken eggs or if you have had a severe reaction to a flu vaccine in the past, you should not get vaccinated without consulting your doctor first. To locate a vaccination site that offers regular, high-dose, and intradermal flu

shots, ask your doctor or pharmacist or check the online flu-shot locator ( Most chains like CVS, Walgreens, Safeway, Kmart, Walmart, Rite Aid, and Kroger offer all types of shots. You’ll also be happy to know that if you’re a Medicare beneficiary, Part B will cover 100 percent of the costs of any flu shot. But if you’re not covered, you can expect to pay around $25 to $35 for a regular or intradermal flu shot or $50 to $60 for a shot of the high-dose. Pneumonia Vaccine The other important vaccination the CDC recommends to seniors—especially this time of year—is the pneumococcal vaccine for pneumonia and meningitis. Pneumococcal diseases hospitalize around 300,000 U.S. seniors each year and kill around 5,000.

Give someone you love the gift that entertains, informs, and inspires, month after month! Or renew an existing subscription! Get a 12-month subscription to 50plus Senior News for just $10. Mail form to: 50plus Senior News, 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512 Please start a gift subscription for: Beginning (month) _________________________ Name ___________________________________ Street ___________________________________ Apt. ____________________________________ City/State ________________________________ Zip _____________________________________ Sign card from: Your name _______________________________ Street ___________________________________ Apt. ____________________________________ City/State ________________________________ Zip _____________________________________ Your phone number ________________________ Paper (or papers/$10 per edition): Expires 12/31/12  Chester  Cumberland  Dauphin

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The CDC currently recommends all seniors 65 or older get a one-time-only shot of the vaccine Pneumovax, as well as those under 65 who smoke or have chronic health conditions like asthma, lung and heart disease, diabetes, or a weakened immune system. Pneumovax, which protects against 23 strains of the pneumococcal disease, is also covered 100 percent under Medicare Part B, and you can get it on the same day you get your flu shot. If you’re not covered by insurance, this vaccine costs around $45 to $85 at retail clinics. You also need to know that this year, there’s an alternative pneumococcal

vaccine available to people age 50 and older called Prevnar 13. This vaccine, which has been available to children for several years, may provide seniors longerlasting and better protection against pneumonia than Pneumovax. Talk to your doctor to determine which pneumonia vaccine is best for you. Prevnar 13 is also covered by most insurers, including Medicare Part B, but if you aren’t covered, the shot runs between $100 and $150. Jim Miller is a regular contributor to the NBC Today show and author of The Savvy Senior Book.

Video Games Not Just for Grandkids

Have you photographed a smile that just begs to be shared? At the Trinity House in Berwyn, something unexpected has been transpiring since they were introduced to the Nintendo Wii gaming console, by Suma Home Care Inc. These residents, most of whom have never picked up a video game controller in their life, suddenly can’t put the controller down. Today’s seniors are taking over a world formerly ruled by their grandkids—video games. Within the last five years, studies have found that adults aged 60-70 years saw an improvement in multiple cognitive functions by playing

strategic video games. Memory loss, a common complaint among seniors, has been shown to improve after playing video games. Seniors that regularly play Wii Bowling socialize more and stay fit at the same time. While many seniors have struggles picking up a bowling ball or remaining as active as they once were, video games are helping them to stay young while remaining comfortable. Video games are also a great way for seniors to bond with their grandchildren and younger adults in their family.

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:

50plus Senior News Smile of the Month 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512 Digital photos must be at least 4x6'' with a resolution of 300 dpi. No professional photos, please. Please include a SASE if you would like to have your photo returned.

If you have local news you’d like considered for

Around Town, please email

50plus SeniorNews

December 2012


LIHEAP Now Open Eligible Pennsylvania residents are encouraged to apply for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which helps low-income people pay their heating bills through home energy assistance grants and crisis grants. Cash grants are awarded based on household income, family size, type of heating fuel, and region. Crisis grants are provided in the event of a heating emergency, including broken heating equipment or leaking lines that must be fixed or replaced, lack of fuel, termination of utility service, or danger of being without fuel or of having utility service terminated. In most counties, assistance with home heating crisis situations is available 24 hours a day. The Department of Public Welfare is sending all LIHEAP clients who applied online last year a postcard notice


encouraging them to reapply online. In the past, the department sent only paper applications to all prospective clients, even if those individuals applied online the previous year. Prior applicants who did not apply online last year will still be mailed paper applications. By way of the new postcard, clients will be provided with a preregistration number, giving them access to an online application that has already been filled out using last year’s data. Clients will simply have to ensure online information is correct and update anything that may have changed, such as an address. All online applications are sent straight to the county office to determine eligibility, thereby eliminating mail and hand processing time. For more information or to apply online, visit

1 person – $16,755 2 people – $22,695 3 people – $28,635 4 people – $34,575 5 people – $40,515 6 people – $46,455 7 people – $52,395 8 people – $58,335 9 people – $64,275 10 people – $70,215 (For each additional person, add $5,940.)

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Many people he shows his collection to do not know that when Milton

Hershey first started manufacturing Hershey’s chocolate bars, he included

Time is a Priceless Gift Do you know a 50+ volunteer who gives selflessly to others? Tell us what makes him or her so special and we will consider them for 50plus Senior News’

Volunteer Spotlight! Submissions should be 200 words or fewer and photos are encouraged. Email preferred to or mail nominations to 50plus Senior News, Volunteer Spotlight, 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512.


Household sizes and maximum income limits for LIHEAP’s 2012-13 season:

December 2012

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postcards with them as a way to advertise, Sallade said. “There are a total of 78 different ones and I have 77,” he said. “I’m missing one but it is hard to locate.” Besides finding the last of the postcards from Hershey’s chocolate bars, Sallade said that he has no set goal or finish line in sight for his postcard collection. Selling postcards is a popular way to regroup collections and make room for more, or to simply make a profit, but for now his collection remains a hobby that he enjoys. Sallade has been retired for five years from his job as a florist. His grandfather started the business in 1898 and Sallade said he worked there since he could hold a broom in his hand. He majored in horticulture at Ohio State University before returning to the family business. Since retiring, Sallade and his wife, Caryn, have had more time to travel to places like Canada and Ireland, and he purchases postcards everywhere that he goes. He has paid as little as 10 cents for a postcard and as much as $250, he said. Looking for them at flea markets is more fun and the price is usually better as well, said Sallade. But sometimes postcards he finds for sale online are only a few dollars. “It is something that varies considerably,” Sallade said. While the bulk of his postcard

collection is from what Sallade calls “the golden age of postcards,” between 1900 and 1915, he certainly does not shy away from new postcards. “I buy new ones too, because some day they are going to be old,” he said. He stores the postcards in notebooks that have plastic liners to protect each card and has the chance to display the cards at his postcard club’s monthly meetings. Sallade is president of the club. He is also one of the youngest members, with the average age of the 45 club members being between 65 and 70 years. The club has been around for more than 30 years and meets monthly at a local church. “We welcome anybody to come to visit,” said Sallade. “We have a speaker every month or sometimes we do a display. This month everyone will be displaying their Thanksgiving or Christmas postcards.” Sometimes the club holds events where vendors come to purchase postcards from the club members. He said there are postcard clubs that meet in York, Lancaster, and Carlisle. And although so much of the world is switching to digital, postcard collectors like Sallade say that the postcard is something that will always be around. “I think there is always an interest in a postcard of some place where someone went to visit,” said Sallade.

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Assisted Living Residences/Personal Care Homes

To tal

Additional Comments

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Brandywine Senior Living at Longwood 301 Victoria Gardens Drive Kennett Square, PA 19348 484-734-6200

Garden Spot Village 433 South Kinzer Avenue New Holland, PA 17557 717-355-6272

Homeland Center 1901 North Fifth Street Harrisburg, PA 17102-1598 717-221-7727

Mennonite Home Communities 1520 Harrisburg Pike Lancaster, PA 17601 717-393-1301

The Middletown Home — Crescent View Personal Care 999 West Harrisburg Pike Middletown, PA 17057 717-944-3351

Normandie Ridge Senior Living Community 1700 Normandie Drive York, PA 17408 717-764-6262









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50plus SeniorNews

December 2012


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Book Review

Jackie O: On the Couch Inside the Mind and Life of Jackie Kennedy Onassis By Alma H. Bond, Ph.D. fascinating psycho-biography, Jackie O: On the Couch takes readers into the mind of Jacqueline Lee Bouvier Kennedy Onassis through a first-person, autobiographical narrative. The book delves into Jackie’s childhood and helps the reader understand how and why she became the person she was. It also explores JFK’s background and the ways it affected his marriage. Jackie’s deep love for Jack, the cat-andmouse game he played before their engagement, his early inattentiveness, the difficult years they spent together, along with details of his outrageous womanizing and their happier times at the White House late in the marriage—


all are viewed through her eyes. A poignant description of Jack’s assassination and funeral is recounted. The book also looks into the widow Jackie’s need for Aristotle Onassis. She debunks the idea that she married Ari purely for his money. The joyful early years and the gradual collapse of the marriage are described, as is Ari’s death. Jackie’s successful entry into the publishing world, and how the work helped to define her, follows. A new

Jackie emerges, who is probably closer to the one she would have become had she not been first lady. Her new persona allows her to form the best relationship of her life, with the elderly, stout, and adoring Maurice Tempelsman, who gave her the love, devotion, and constancy she never received from her two husbands. The book also carefully follows the progress of the non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma disease that led to Jackie’s death at age

63—from her fierce denial to the gradual acceptance that she would not survive. Jackie O: On the Couch is available from, Barnes & Noble, and directly from Bancroft Press at About the Author Alma H. Bond received her Ph.D. from Columbia University and became a highly successful psychoanalyst for 37 years in New York City. Jackie O: On the Couch, the first of her On the Couch series to be published, received a Pinnacle Book Achievement Award and Finalist International Book Award. She has also had 19 other books published. She lives in Carlisle, Pa.

Calling All Authors If you have written and published a book and would like 50plus Senior News to feature a Book Review, please submit a synopsis of the book (350 words or fewer) and a short autobiography (80 words or fewer). A copy of the book is required for review. Discretion is advised. Please send to: On-Line Publishers, Inc., Megan Joyce, 3912 Abel Drive, Columbia, PA 17512. For more information, please email ADVERTISEMENT

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December 2012


An active, pain-free future is waiting for you. Spine, Bone & Joint Institutes: for a quicker response to your orthopedic and spine needs Designed by patients and caregivers, our new Spine and Orthopedic unit at Harrisburg Hospital offers the most advanced, sophisticated technology in a comfortable, patient-focused, family-oriented environment. Everything, from the spacious rooms with flat-screen TVs to an innovative call button system, was created to get you back on your feet as quickly as possible.

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December 2012

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Chester County 50plus Senior News December 2012  

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