Lebanon County Edition
Vol. 8 No. 8
PA State Senior Idol Returns for 2013 Talent Competition Moves to Early Fall for 8th Year By Megan Joyce
Tammy Estep, left, and Curtis Mease, right, will be auditioning for the eighth annual PA STATE SENIOR IDOL competition this fall.
The eighth installment of the annual PA STATE SENIOR IDOL competition— which showcases the talent of the commonwealth’s over-50 performers—has arrived, but with a few changes. Most notably, the SENIOR IDOL “season” has been moved from spring to early fall. Also, vocal, instrumental, dance, or comedic acts will be able to audition during morning, afternoon, or evening time slots. But the heart of the event is still the same, as are the motivations fueling its contestants: a passion for entertaining, for sharing talent, and for bringing happiness to others in doing so. Curtis Mease was first introduced to music in elementary school. After piano lessons didn’t pan out, he moved on to the slide trombone and baritone horn, playing in the school band. During this time he discovered his vocal instrument as well, singing in church choir, high school glee club, and several district and regional chorus festivals. And, during his four years in the Navy in the early 1960s, Mease sang in the naval base Blue Jackets choir until he was assigned to a ship. But then, for the next few decades—during which he attended Penn State please see IDOL page 13
City Slickers in the Wyoming Wilds page 8
What to Consider Before Joining a Clinical Trial page 14
You bring the talent, We’ll provide the stage! Do you dance … sing … play an instrument … perform magic … do comedy? Do you think you’ve got what it takes to be called PA STATE SENIOR IDOL? Then we’re looking for you!
Pennsylvanians over 50 are invited to audition for the eighth annual PA STATE SENIOR IDOL competition at one of these locations:
Tuesday, August 27
Thursday, September 5
Holiday Inn Harrisburg East
Heritage Hotel – Lancaster
4751 Lindle Road, Harrisburg, PA 17111
500 Centerville Road, Lancaster, PA 17601
(Morning/Early Afternoon Auditions)
Win a limousine trip to New York City with dinner and a Broadway show! Finals to be held on October 14, 2013 at: Dutch Apple Dinner Theatre 510 Centerville Road, Lancaster, PA 17601 • (717) 898-1900
For more information, updates, or an application:
911 Photo Graphics
717.285.1350 • www.SeniorIdolPA.com
Diane Dayton of Dayton Communications
Resource Directory This Resource Directory recognizes advertisers who have made an extended commitment to your health and well-being.
Emergency Numbers Poison Control Center (800) 222-1222
Hearing Services Hearing & Ear Care Center, LLC 200 Schneider Drive, Suite 1, Lebanon (717) 274-3851
Housing Assistance Hope (Helping Our People in Emergencies) (717) 272-4400
Melnick, Moffitt, and Mesaros 927 Russell Drive, Lebanon (717) 274-9775
Housing Assistance & Resources Program (HARP) (717) 273-9328
Pennsylvania Office for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (800) 233-3008 V/TTY
Lebanon County Housing & Redevelopment Authorities (717) 274-1401
Lebanon County Area Agency on Aging Meals on Wheels (717) 273-9262
Hospitals Good Samaritan Hospital 252 S. Fourth St., Lebanon (717) 270-7500
Insurance Medicare Hotline (800) 638-6833
Salvation Army (717) 273-2655
Medical Society of Lebanon County (717) 270-7500
Legal Services Pennsylvania Bar Association (717) 238-6715
Health & Medical Services Alzheimer’s Association (717) 651-5020
Hotlines Energy Assistance (800) 692-7462
American Cancer Society (717) 231-4582
Environmental Protection Agency Emergency Hotline (800) 541-2050
Food Resources Food & Clothing Bank (717) 274-2490 Food Stamps (800) 692-7462 Hope/Christian Ministries (717) 272-4400
American Diabetes Association (717) 657-4310 American Heart Association/ American Stroke Association (717) 207-4265
IRS Income Tax Assistance (800) 829-1040 Medicaid (800) 692-7462
American Lung Association (717) 541-5864
Medicare (800) 382-1274
Arthritis Foundation (717) 274-0754
PA Crime Stoppers (800) 472-8477
Bureau of Blindness and Visual Services (717) 787-7500
PennDOT (800) 932-4600
CONTACT Helpline (717) 652-4400
Recycling (800) 346-4242
Kidney Foundation (717) 652-8123
Social Security Information (800) 772-1213
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (717) 652-6520
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (800) 827-1000
Lupus Foundation (888) 215-8787
Retirement Communities StoneRidge Retirement Living (717) 866-3204 Senior Centers Annville Senior Community Center (717) 867-1796 Maple Street Senior Community Center (717) 273-1048 Myerstown Senior Community Center (717) 866-6786 Northern Lebanon County Senior Community Center (717) 865-0944 Palmyra Senior Community Center (717) 838-8237
Neurosurgery & Physiatry Lancaster NeuroScience & Spine Associates 1510 Cornwall Road, Lebanon (717) 454-0061 or (800) 628-2080
Senior Center of Lebanon Valley (717) 274-3451 Southern Lebanon County Senior Community Center (717) 274-7541
Office of Aging Lebanon County Area Agency on Aging (717) 273-9262
Veterans Services Governor’s Veterans Outreach (717) 234-1681
Pharmacies CVS/pharmacy www.cvs.com
Lebanon VA Medical Center 1700 S. Lincoln Ave., Lebanon (717) 228-6000 or (800) 409-8771
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Does Worrying Ever Help? Saralee Perel y husband, Bob, gets the brunt of my worry storms. Yet he still loves me. “You hungry?” I said. “Not really.” “What’s wrong?” I grabbed the thermometer from my keychain. “Nothing. Will you please stop being you for let’s say, four minutes a day?” “Well, sue me for caring.” “I’m sorry. Let’s eat. Fried food sound good?” “Not if it’s fried in canola oil.” He sighed. “What’s wrong with canola oil?” “A canola is a Canadian ola—that’s Spanish for tomato, which is in the deadly nightshade family. And deadly nightshade is poisonous. No canolas!” “Canola oil is made from seeds of the field mustard plant.” “Oh.” We drove to a vegetable stand. “Bob, I’m worried you have a stomachache.” “I don’t. I do, however, have one huge pain in the—neck.” Many years ago, Leo Buscaglia wrote, “Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow; it only saps today of its joy.” Yesterday I called the billing department at a huge hospital and spoke with a gal named Dianne. She could tell I was freaking out about my bill.
50plus Senior News is published by On-Line Publishers, Inc. and is distributed monthly among senior centers, retirement communities, banks, grocers, libraries and other outlets serving the senior community. On-Line Publishers, Inc. will not knowingly accept or publish advertising which may be fraudulent or misleading in nature. Views expressed in opinion stories, contributions, articles and letters are not necessarily the views of the publisher. The appearance of advertisements for products or services does not constitute an endorsement of the particular product or service. The publisher will not be responsible for mistakes in advertisements unless notified within five days of publication. On-Line Publishers, Inc. reserves the right to revise or reject any and all advertising. No part of this publication may be reproduced or reprinted without permission of On-Line Publishers, Inc. We will not knowingly publish any advertisement or information not in compliance with the Federal Fair Housing Act, Pennsylvania State laws or other local laws.
She ever-so-gently said, “You can choose to worry yourself sick about problems or not. That same problem is still going to be there either way.” Earlier this year, we received an audit notice from the IRS incorrectly stating we owed $8,000. Bob persevered through phone calls with 45-minute wait times, emails, faxes,
Saralee and Bob, June 2013
and a zillion trips to the bank, as well as certified letters. And he won. He never worried about the audit, the $8,000 we don’t have, the paperwork, or the ludicrous process of reaching a human being, so to speak, at the IRS. “How do you not worry, Bob?” “In the long run, most problems won’t matter. Plus, I always say, ‘Wait to worry.’ If I didn’t win with the IRS, I would have worried then.” What he does worry about is me.
My walking problem makes me fragile. Frankly, like most of us, Bob is having an overall harder time as we get older. “I worry about the future,” he said tearfully. “It’s almost too sad to think about.” I told him, “It’s only too sad because it’s so beautiful.” I touched his arm. “Don’t miss me while I’m here.” He was still tearful. “Sweets,” I said, “thinking about losing our dog didn’t make it any better when she died. It was just as painful. Look at this day. Here we are, so lucky to live near the seashore in our tiny, cozy home. Don’t miss today by worrying about something inevitable that you can’t control.” I took his hand and led him to the bedroom, where we spent an entire hour doing what people in love do when they are spending a glorious day together near a seaside town: Googling “fried seafood.” Then we went to a local shanty and gorged ourselves on fried shrimp. Made with canola oil. 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 www.saraleeperel.com or email email@example.com.
1 in 5 Adults Meets Physical Activity Guidelines About 20 percent of U.S. adults are meeting both the aerobic and muscle-strengthening components of the federal government’s physical activity recommendations, according to a report published recently in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, a journal of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The data is based on self-reported
information from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, an annual phone survey of adults aged 18 and over conducted by state health departments. The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommend that adults get at least 2.5 hours a week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, such as walking; or one hour
and 15 minutes a week of vigorousintensity aerobic activity, such as jogging; or a combination of both. The guidelines also recommend that adults do muscle-strengthening activities, such as pushups, sit-ups, or activities using resistance bands or weights. These activities should please see GUIDELINES page 11
My 22 Cents’ Worth
Taboos in the Land of the Free Walt Sonneville aboos confront us in every sector of life. They permeate society—in households, offices, religion, supermarkets, within ethnicities, and elsewhere. Each sector has its own prescribed norms. We are told Americans live in “the land of the free,” but even in our homes it can take the truly brave to defy taboos. As some taboos collapse, others emerge to fill the ranks. A household can be thought of as a “sovereign jurisdiction,” often governed by a monarch who establishes taboos. Some of these prohibitions are anticipated by visitors. Others are ambiguous or incomprehensible. Men must leave the toilet seat down in a mixed-sex household. That maxim is accepted by most. Bathroom sinks must not be left to give the appearance of a “wet bar.” Fair enough. But a ban against wearing shoes in the house can arouse resistance by guests wearing socks that do not match or have holes. Enforcement of taboos within many households is both certain and swift. Taboos in supermarkets are understood but rarely enforced. Prohibitions limiting the number of items in the express checkout line or writing checks in the cash-only line are silently waived. Taboo enforcement can be expected in offices. It is inadvisable for an entry-level employee to address the chief executive or a senior executive by that person’s first name. If a common-use refrigerator stores food brought by employees for their personal consumption, others sampling the fare can lead to an embarrassing scene. Society’s taboos underwritten by law provoke periodic legal challenges. Gay marriage, marriage between first cousins, medical marijuana, military women barred from certain combat situations, and assisted suicide are prohibitions that divide public opinion. Taboos decreed by custom, but unsupported by law, fade as attitudes
toward them moderate. Men emoting tears in public, considered unmanly in decades past, has had a change in perception. Breastfeeding infants in public is fading as a “morality” issue. Topics considered inappropriate for television commercials, such as bladder incontinence and erectile dysfunction, are now accepted, however begrudgingly, by viewers. There are countless examples of traditional taboos that persist. Women smoking cigars, jokes about mothers-in-law, burping in public, cellular calls during meetings, and the “onefinger salute” come to mind. Society traditionally regarded tattoos as distasteful, suited only for drunks and sailors. Life Magazine in 1936 estimated that 6 percent of Americans had a tattoo. Tattooing lost much of its appeal during the decades immediately following World War II. Perhaps the practice of the Nazis tattooing concentration-camp prisoners inhibited its acceptability. Tattoos in the past decade have seen growing acceptance. Harris Polls in 2008 estimated that 14 percent of Americans had one or more tattoos, prevalent mostly among those in the 25-39 age group. Over the past decades, new taboos have emerged as others fade. Wary mothers often exhibit apprehension when their toddlers receive unwelcomed admiration from strangers. When rejection is indicated, the admirer feels a melancholic separation from the youngest generation. We live in “the land of the free,” but take care where you tread. You may, perhaps unwittingly, have violated a taboo. Walt Sonneville, a retired market-research analyst, is the author of My 22 Cents’ Worth: The Higher-Valued Opinion of a Senior Citizen and A Musing Moment: Meditative Essays on Life and Learning, books of personal-opinion essays, free of partisan and sectarian viewpoints. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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How Fixing Cataracts Can Improve Your Health Remember the old song lyric: “The foot bone’s connected to the leg bone?” Well, here’s an interesting connection— better vision could lead to a 16 percent lower risk of hip fractures. Sure, fixing cataracts can restore clear, colorful vision, but according to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, having cataract surgery lowers the risk of breaking a hip as well in adults 65 and older. “Seeing helps you navigate a new environment and helps with balance,” lead investigator Dr. Anne L. Coleman of Brown University told the New York Times. “You really need your eyes and vision to help you stay stable.” Older patients and those who were very ill benefited the most from having cataracts removed, with a 23 to 28 percent reduced risk of hip fractures. Cataracts are more treatable than ever. That’s good news, considering half of all Americans will be diagnosed with cataracts by age 80. Cataract surgery has come a very long way over the last 50 years. What was once a complicated surgery with a twoweek hospital stay is now a simple
outpatient procedure that takes a few Medications, eye drops, exercises, and minutes. eating healthy can’t reverse cataracts. The About 3 million people have cataracts only effective way to correct a cataract is removed in to remove the the U.S. clouded each year, lens with making it minor one of the surgery. It most becomes a common matter of procedures. “when” The rather than eye’s “if ” you cloudy lens should have is removed the and procedure replaced done. with an This artificial study intraocular suggests lens. that acting Traditional earlier may lenses can Photo Credit: (c) jamstockfoto – Fotolia help correct prevent distance vision, but newer, advancedother health problems that accompany poor vision, such as falls. Cataract technology lenses can also help correct surgery can also mean more independpreexisting eye conditions like ence, as better vision allows you to astigmatism and age-related presbyopia. confidently do more everyday things on These newer intraocular lenses can potentially eliminate the need for glasses. your own.
August is Cataract Awareness Month
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only half of the estimated 61 million adults at high risk for serious vision loss visited an eye care professional in the last year. To make sure you are protecting your eye health, follow these simple steps. Everyone 50 or older should get yearly comprehensive eye exams. This allows for detection of eye diseases in early stages, before you experience vision problems, some of which may be permanent. Adults over 50 should be mindful of symptoms of common age-related eye diseases, such as cataracts, the leading cause of reversible blindness in the U.S. Blurry vision and needing more light to read even while wearing glasses can be early signs. In later stages, you may experience poor night vision, colors looking dull, difficulty with glares or halos, and double vision. Seniors should talk to their doctors and visit the National Institutes of Health National Eye Institute website (www.nei.nih.gov) to learn about cataracts and treatment options. Source: Courtesy of Alcon Labs
ONE GIANT STEP FOR MANKIND!
This may not be the same story you’re thinking of. This one’s about a young, itinerant engineer with job assignments in two states: Decorah, Iowa, and Lancaster, PA.
Sept. 18, 2013 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
The step he is considering is marriage!
York Expo Center Memorial Hall East 334 Carlisle Avenue, York
Bob Hansen is smitten by two young women in Iowa, and one in Lancaster, PA. But he has to find a full-time job and decide which of the three young women to pursue.
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Limited Sponsorship Opportunities Available 717.285.1350 717.770.0140 610.675.6240
Masthof Bookstore – 219 Mill Road, Morgantown, PA 19543
Use a gallon of gas and take a beautiful 9-mile trip through Amish and Mennonite farm country on Route 23 between Blue Ball and Morgantown. This stretch of road, which follows an old Native American trade route, was declared “The Conestoga Ridge Road Heritage Byway” in the fall of 2012. Stop off in Morgantown at the Masthof Bookstore (first road after Old Village Inn) and pick up a copy of Choices and Decisions and a local history book. www.50plusSeniorNewsPA.com
CCRC Continuing Care Retirement Communities
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 lives, with much of their future care already figured out — which equals both comfort and peace of mind.
The listings with a shaded background have additional information about their center in a display advertisement in this edition. Bethany Village
Calvary Fellowship Homes
Chapel Pointe at Carlisle
502 Elizabeth Drive Lancaster, PA 17601 Marlene Morris Marketing Director (717) 393-0711 www.calvaryhomes.org
770 South Hanover Street Carlisle, PA 17013 Linda Amsley Director of Marketing/Admissions (717) 713-2201 www.chapelpointe.com
1 Boyd Street Cornwall, PA 17016 Anne Peiffer V.P. for PR & Development (717) 274-8092 www.cornwallmanor.org
1901 North Fifth Street Harrisburg, PA 17102-1598 Barry S. Ramper II, N.H.A. President/CEO (717) 221-7902 www.homelandcenter.org
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 www.homesteadvillage.org
Normandie Ridge Senior Living Community
Pleasant View Retirement Community
St. Anne’s Retirement Community
1700 Normandie Drive York, PA 17408 Joyce Singer Director of Sales & Marketing (717) 718-0937 www.normandieridge.org
544 North Penryn Road Manheim, PA 17545 Amanda Eckinger Communications Coordinator (717) 664-6207 www.pleasantviewrc.org
3952 Columbia Avenue West Hempfield Township, PA 17512 Christina E. Gallagher Director of Marketing (717) 285-6112 www.stannesretirementcommunity.com
StoneRidge Retirement Living
Willow Valley Communities
Woodcrest Villa Mennonite Home Communities
325 Wesley Drive Mechanicsburg, PA 17055 Stephanie Lightfoot Director of Sales & Marketing (717) 766-0279 www.bethanyvillage.org
440 East Lincoln Avenue Myerstown, PA 17067 Stacia Keith Director of Sales (717) 866-3553 www.stoneridgeretirement.com
600 Willow Valley Square Lancaster, PA 17602 Kristin Hambleton Manager of Sales (717) 464-6800 (800) 770-5445 www.willowvalleycommunities.org
2001 Harrisburg Pike Lancaster, PA 17601 Connie Buckwalter Director of Marketing (717) 390-4126 www.woodcrestvilla.org
The CCRC Communities listed are sponsoring this message. This is not an all-inclusive list.
Travel Appetizers: Stories that Whet the Appetite for Travel
City Slickers in the Wyoming Wilds By Andrea Gross
he sign says we’re entering paradise. I’m skeptical. The six of us—my husband, me, our son, our daughter-in-law, and their two children—are about to spend a week at a top-rated guest ranch. Back in December when we’d made the reservations, we’d all agreed that this would be a perfect experience for our intergenerational group, but now I’m having second thoughts. We’re city-folks through and through—better at driving four-lane highways than riding four-legged creatures, more familiar with walking through manicured parks than hiking on canyon trails. And we’re used to plucking fish from market showcases, not from mountain streams. But here we are, on a mountain road in north-central Wyoming. We round a curve, and I catch my first glimpse of Paradise Guest Ranch. It’s in a valley
The ranch is surrounded by a million acres of unspoiled land.
Most folks go on at least one trail ride a day; many go on two.
Newcomers to the ranch can take their time getting acquainted with the horses.
A 9-year-old girl who takes ballet dancing in the city becomes a fan of square dancing during her week at the ranch.
surrounded by more than a million acres of Bighorn National Forest, and with the hills awash with wildflowers, it’s breathtakingly beautiful. Then I see the corral, and I feel a rumble in the pit of my stomach. The kids—aged 9 and 6—have never been on a horse; the rest of us have a combined total of, perhaps, 10 hours of horsebackriding experience. Will we be the only novices in a group of experts? The answer becomes clear the next morning when we go to the stables for our first horseback ride. Everyone else is wearing a cowboy hat or riding helmet. We, on the other hand, are decked out in baseball caps and bonnets. Oh, dear! We exhaust the first wrangler when he tries to take us out on the trail. Grandson can’t make his horse move. Daughter-in-law’s horse goes backward when she pulls too hard on the reigns. I can’t make mine stop eating. But that afternoon, a second wrangler takes us into the arena for a course in horseback riding basics.
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Granddaughter’s journal, day one: My horse’s name is Pollywog. I thought the horse would know what to do, but today I found out that I’m the one who’s supposed to know what to do. The next morning we ride a trail— across a stream, up a rocky mountain path, through a meadow, back to the stables. Grandson declares that “now we’re really cowboys.” By Wednesday we’re beginning to feel like pros. Granddaughter’s journal, day four:
The ranch is at an altitude of 8,000 feet, making a walk in the woods a huff-puff experience for some.
While experienced fishermen go on all-day outings to more remote locations, others choose to practice on the ranch proper.
I think I’ve learned Pollywog’s personality, which is that sometimes he wants to do things his way. But now I can sometimes make him do things my way. The week progresses, offering us a mix of family time and individual time. We ride together and eat together, but in between we can each explore our own interests. Daughter-in-law and I take a long (for us) hike—proudly puffing our way along trails that rise to an elevation of nearly 8,000 feet. Son tries his hand at flyfishing, and Husband finishes two books and starts a third. The kids spend offhorse time doing crafts or swimming in the pool. After dinner the counselors entertain the kids while the adults have a chance to
Guests of all ages tend to gather around the swimming pool in late afternoon.
get to know each other. Out of 12 groups, five are adults-only; the rest have children ranging from toddlers to teens. Only three, like us, are first-timers. Every day we learn something new. One day we have a lesson on wildflowers. Another day we hear stories of Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid, who had
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an “Outlaw Cave” nearby. And another time we watch a moose moseying around the grounds near the fishing pond. Saturday is Rodeo Day, a chance for the kids to show off their equestrian skills. “Mount your horse.” Grandson is too short to do it alone—
a ranger has to lift him on—but he grabs the reigns like a pro. “Circle the barrels.” No problem. “Weave between the poles.” Granddaughter does it at a trot. Six days has transformed them both from Western Wimps to Cowboy Champs. But it’s at the square dance where Granddaughter really shines. Blond hair flying, she allemandes left and circles right. Wrangler Dave grabs Grandson’s hand. “Come on, Buddy. Let’s dance!” he calls, as he propels a grinning Grandson ’round the room. Then, the next morning, we have our first crisis. None of us wants to leave. “Wait! We have to go down to the barn to say goodbye to Pollywog.” “Wait! We have to take one more picture of the fishing pond.” Wait, wait, wait! It takes us two hours to say our goodbyes and get into the car. Grandson’s comment, day seven: I like to watch sports, and Wyoming doesn’t have any professional sports teams. But that’s OK. It’s still paradise. www.paradiseranch.com Photos © Irv Green unless otherwise noted; story by Andrea Gross (www.andreagross.com).
Melnick, Moffitt & Mesaros ENT Associates bring Baha 3 System to Lebanon County for those with special hearing needs Do you only hear from one ear? Have you tried a hearing aid without success? The Baha 3 System may help you! Unlike a hearing aid, the Baha 3 System is an implantable boneconduction hearing system that uses the body’s natural ability to conduct sound. Bone, like air, conducts sound vibrations. Typical hearing aids rely on air conduction and a functioning middle ear. But in cases where the middle ear is blocked or damaged, a bone-conduction system may be a better option. The Baha implant is surgically
placed behind the non-functioning ear. After approximately three months for adults, or six months for children, it bonds with the bone around it — forming a permanent structure with the living bone. Once this occurs, a sound processor is attached that enables the recipient to hear. Melnick, Moffitt & Mesaros ENT Associates, in Lebanon, is able to evaluate and fit candidates with the Baha 3 System. The doctors and staff have been providing excellent healthcare for 23 years. Call Melnick, Moffitt & Mesaros at 274-9775 to learn more about the Baha 3 System.
MELNICK, MOFFITT & MESAROS ENT ASSOCIATES www.StoneRidgeRetirement.com www.50plusSeniorNewsPA.com
Salute to a Veteran
In the Iraq War, He Flew the First 250 Marines Home Robert D. Wilcox
enneth Smith’s family had a military tradition. His father had been a machinist’s mate on an LST in World War II and had survived drifting in the Pacific for three months after a Japanese attack had disabled his LST’s power and communications. His much-decorated Irish grandfather had earned the French Legion of Honor and the Croix de Guerre for extraordinary valor and extreme heroism in battle during the bloody Battle of the Somme during World War I, where the British force had suffered 60,000 casualties on the very first day of the battle. So it seemed quite natural for Smith to join the military as well. He had entered Millersville University in the fall of 1969 and then transferred to the University of Houston, where he
graduated with a BS in civil engineering and construction technology in 1975. He had enlisted in the Navy officers program in 1974 while still in school and attended the Naval Aviation Officer Candidate School (AOCS). Upon graduation, he was commissioned as an ensign. He earned his coveted “Navy Wings of Gold” at Pensacola in 1977
Capt. Kenneth A. Smith in the B-767 he flew to airlift troops from Iraq.
and was soon flying the Douglas A-4 Skyhawk, a 675 mph jet fighter. He still thinks admiringly of that particular aircraft. Grinning, he says, “You could barely touch the stick, and it would snap roll. It was any fighter pilot’s dream of an airplane.” After flying a number of different kinds of jets and
making 785 carrier landings, he left the Navy as a lieutenant in 1985. He was then hired by American Airlines and flew the Boeing 727. That led to his becoming a captain and spending nine years flying Boeing 767s to major cities around the world. He had stayed in the Naval Reserve and, in August of 1990, he was recalled during the Gulf War. He flew American troops to many hotspots around the globe. He remembers once flying to Izmir, Turkey, where he picked up Seal Team 6, which became world-famous years later when they killed Osama bin Laden. His airplane was a McDonnellDouglas C-9B with a female flight attendant. Smith says that they had some difficulty with the Turks before they were cleared to leave. And, when they straightened that out,
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he says he told agreed to go, the flight flying a Boeing attendant that 767 on the he had good contract flight news and bad that flew the news. The first 250 good news Marines back was that the to the U.S. Turks had Had it been cleared them a nonstop to leave, but flight? The Douglas A-4 Skyhawk that the bad news “Not really,” Lt. Smith flew in the U.S. Navy. was that he he says. “The had had to 767 could have agree to sell her to them. made the 14-hour flight nonstop, but it Smiling at the memory, he says, “She was a civilian airplane without in-flight didn’t seem to feel that that was so fueling capability, so it was prudent for funny.” us to make one refueling stop at a The Seal Team 6 that they picked up friendly country en route.” was returning from a clandestine Another factor that made flight in mission, and he returned them to a Iraq difficult was the constant heat. The training base in Scotland. He retired hotter air is, the less lift it offers to from the Navy Reserve in 1994 as a aircraft. Jets like the ones he flew were lieutenant commander and returned to red-lined at 120 degrees, and American Airlines. temperatures of 105 were routine in In 2005, he retired from American Iraq. and moved with his wife to Ireland, He and his co-pilot were responsible where they bought a home in the same for planning the routes through which village where his grandfather had grown later flight could enter and exit Iraq with up. reasonable safety. That made further It was there that he learned of North flights routine. American Airlines, a company that flew And that, in turn, made possible the military charter flights on Boeing 757 airlifting of all 30,000 troops, as and 767 aircraft. It was a perfect fit for promised. By 2010, Smith had flown him, and in 2007 he joined the hundreds of flights for North American, company. not only to Iraq, but often also Shortly after taking office for his first delivering troops to many other term, President Obama had promised to locations around the globe. bring all American combat forces home After retiring in the fall of 2010, he from the War in Iraq by Dec. 31, 2010. and his wife returned to Central He set a goal to return the first 30,000 Pennsylvania to live. He had known the troops in the month of August. And area, of course, from his college days at North American was picked to start the Millersville, and he says he just could process. not picture a more perfect place to Some pilots were wary of flying to spend his retirement years. Iraq, intimidated by the real possibility of being shot down by insurgents armed Colonel Wilcox flew a B-17 bomber in Europe in World War II. with shoulder-firing missiles. But Smith
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involve all major muscle groups and be done on two or more days per week. The report finds that nationwide nearly 50 percent of adults are getting the recommended amounts of aerobic activity and about 30 percent are engaging in the recommended musclestrengthening activity. “Although only 20 percent of adults are meeting the overall physical activity recommendations, it is encouraging that half the adults in the United States are meeting the aerobic guidelines and a third are meeting the musclestrengthening recommendations,” said www.50plusSeniorNewsPA.com
Carmen D. Harris, M.P.H, epidemiologist in CDC’s physical activity and health branch. The report also found differences among states and the District of Columbia. The rates of adults meeting the overall guidelines ranged from 27 percent in Colorado to 13 percent in Tennessee and West Virginia. The West (24 percent) and the Northeast (21 percent) had the highest proportion of adults who met the guidelines. Women, Hispanics, older adults, and obese adults were all less likely to meet the guidelines.
Calendar of Events
Lebanon County Department of Parks and Recreation All events held at the Park at Governor Dick unless noted. Aug. 3, 1 to 2 p.m. – “Nature in Slow Motion” Video Presentation
Aug. 4, 1 to 4 p.m. – Music on the Porch: Bluegrass and Country Music Jam Aug. 9, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. – “Damsels and Dragons (Flies, That Is)” Presentation
Lebanon County Library Programs Annville Free Library, 216 E. Main St., Annville, (717) 867-1802 Lebanon Community Library, 125 N. Seventh St., (717) 273-7624 Matthews Public Library, 102 W. Main St., Fredericksburg, (717) 865-5523 Myerstown Community Library, 199 N. College St., Myerstown, (717) 866-2800 Palmyra Public Library, 325 S. Railroad St., (717) 838-1347 Richland Community Library, 111 E. Main St., Richland, (717) 866-4939
Programs and Support Groups
Free and open to the public
Aug. 28, 6 to 7 p.m. – Personal Care Family Support Group, Linden Village, 100 Tuck Court, Lebanon, (717) 274-7400 If you have an event you would like to include, please email information to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration.
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 Lebanon County! Email preferred to: email@example.com help you get the word out!
Senior Center Activities
Annville Senior Community Center – (717) 867-1796 200 S. White Oak St., Annville Aug. 15, 5 p.m. – Fundraiser Night at Infinito’s Aug. 21, 10:30 a.m. – End of Summer Picnic at Coleman’s Park Aug. 28, 1 p.m. – Summer Musical Revue at Mt. Gretna Timbers Maple Street Community Center – (717) 273-1048 710 Maple St., Lebanon Aug. 2, 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. – Bus Trip: Bill’s Produce and Red Lion Café for Lunch Aug. 5, 9 a.m. – Yoga Class with Phyllis Aug. 14, 3 p.m. – Carpool to Live Garden Restaurant Myerstown Senior Community Center – (717) 866-6786 51 W. Stoever Ave., Myerstown Aug. 1, 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Bus Trip: Treats & Treasures Tour Aug. 9, 1:30 p.m. – Pinochle Card Party Aug. 29, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Bus Trip: Allenberry Dinner Theatre for Hairspray Northern Lebanon Senior Community Center – (717) 865-0944 335 N. Lancaster St., Jonestown – www.jonestownpa.org/senior.html Aug. 7, 12:30 p.m. – Lunch Bunch at Red Lion Restaurant Aug. 14, 12:30 p.m. – Lunch Bunch at Bob Evan’s in Hummelstown Aug. 22, 8:30 a.m. – Breakfast Bunch at Dutch Way Palmyra Senior Community Center – (717) 838-8237 101 S. Railroad St., Palmyra Aug. 2, 11:30 a.m. – Lunch Club at Soda Jerk Aug. 21, 10:45 a.m. – Root Beer Float Social Aug. 28, 10:45 a.m. – Microwave Oven & Food Safety Consumer Education and Discussion Southern Lebanon Senior Community Center – (717) 274-7541 Midway Church of the Brethren, 13 Evergreen Road, Lebanon Privately Owned Centers Senior Center of Lebanon Valley, Inc. – (717) 274-3451 710 Maple St., Lebanon Washington Arms – (717) 274-4104 303 Chestnut St., Lebanon Please call or visit the centers’ websites for additional activities.
2013’s More Unusual Billionaires Earth is home to 1,426 billionaires, according to Forbes magazine. Some of them are familiar and fairly normal folks (Carlos Slim, Warren Buffet), but others are a little more colorful. Forbes recently shared some of the more outlandish stories of 2013’s richest people: God is a billionaire. Not that God— God Nisanov, who was born in Azerbijan, currently resides in Moscow and built his $3 billion fortune in real estate.
Money buys you love? Jeff Greene, who also made his billions in real estate deals, spent $1 million on his wedding at an estate he bought for $35 million and then spent $15 million renovating. His best man? Boxer Mike Tyson.
Ozilhan collects pens—and currently owns more than 3,000 of them. He can afford them because his worth is $1.6 billion, thanks to being the producer of the most popular beer in Turkey, a brew known as Efes.
Money supports some unusual hobbies. Tuncay
Win some, lose some. Brazilian entrepreneur Eike
Batista remains on the Forbes list of billionaires in 2013 despite having lost some $8.8 billion since last year. That comes out to more than $53 million a day, or $2 million an hour. Money doesn’t solve all problems. Pharmacy billionaire Stewart Rahr was reportedly banned for life from New York’s celebrity sushi restaurant Nobu for a meltdown that occurred when he couldn’t get his favorite table.
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and embarked on a longtime job driving an 18-wheeler—Mease’s voice went quiet. “For the next 45 years, I was merely a listener, a spectator, until a couple years ago when a karaoke experience revealed I had not lost my singing voice,” Mease said. On that occasion, Mease’s rendition of Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World” was so well received that he became motivated to resume singing, adding to his repertoire songs made popular by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Elvis Presley, Willie Nelson, and Neil Diamond. Now retired, Mease still drives a truck part time and is active on the karaoke circuit. He continues to be amazed and heartened by the multigenerational encouragement from his audience members. “The songs I’ve chosen at karaoke have been enthusiastically received by those close to my own age and, surprisingly, by younger people as well,” Mease said. “I thought my choices from among the ‘crooning ballad’ type of music from yesteryear were a refreshing departure from the more often heard ‘pop rock’ of today.” Mease hopes the exposure he gains through the PA STATE SENIOR IDOL competition can boost his performance “hobby” into a second part-time career, with gigs at parties, reunions, or retirement centers. He would also like to continue to cultivate his “Sinatra touch.” “I seem to have been able to pick up his timing and phrasing,” Mease said, “and I can relate ever so realistically to the life themes he sang about.” A recurring “life theme” among people with a gift for singing is that they often don’t remember exactly when they started doing it—or a time when they didn’t. Such is the case for Tammy Estep, who estimates she may have begun exercising her pipes around age 5. Her vocal gifts were likely passed down to her from her mother, who was slated to appear on The Ted Mack Original Amateur Hour in the ’50s— until her father forbid her from going. “I think if she would have auditioned, she would have been a music star, and I probably wouldn’t be here!” Estep said. Estep sang all throughout her school years; her guitar was “always strapped” to her, and she performed at every school event. Four months before she was set to begin attending East www.50plusSeniorNewsPA.com
Stroudsburg University, Estep was asked to sing lead for a local band. “Much to my parents’ dismay, I accepted that offer and ditched college,” Estep said. “While there have been many occasions that I have regretted that decision, my music career as a guitar soloist and as a member of several bands with some very talented people spanned over 18 years of my life.” In addition to those years with various bands, Estep spent eight years as a solo performer. Her style leans toward a Bonnie Raitt or Linda Ronstadt sound, she said. Estep also traveled to Nashville in the 1980s as a contestant on You Can Be a Star, where, in one round, she actually beat now-famous country musician Aaron Tippin. Tippin went on to win the competition in 1985. Currently a branch manager for a local financial institution, Estep has stepped away from singing for the last several years but is eager to rekindle both the happiness it brings her and the joy she sees others receive from her music. “There are a lot of people over 50 that I’ve met in my lifetime who are from this area and who are extraordinarily talented,” she said. “And they’re still [performing]; I think that’s commendable.” She added that she is embarking on her upcoming SENIOR IDOL experience not just for herself, but also for those fellow musicians she’s worked with along the way. “I have so many people I know that I’ve played with over the years. I’m kind of doing this for them—because we worked very hard when we played,” she said. “It was many weekends, many late nights driving home, and I’m doing it for all those people that sacrificed so we could have a good time.” Morning and early-afternoon auditions for the 2013 PA STATE SENIOR IDOL competition will be held Tuesday, Aug. 27, at the Holiday Inn Harrisburg – East, 4751 Lindle Road, Harrisburg. Afternoon and evening auditions will be held Thursday, Sept. 5, at the Heritage Hotel – Lancaster, 500 Centerville Road, Lancaster. For more information, call (717) 2851350 or check out www.SeniorIdolPA .com to see clips from previous years or to download an application. If your business would like to support the 50-plus community, please call to learn more about sponsorship opportunities.
One Book, One Community 2013 Book Announcement Please join 93 libraries and their community partners in celebrating the 2013 One Book, One Community book announcement and reception.
Wednesday, August 21 at 4 p.m. Red Land Community Public Library 48 Robin Hood Drive Etters, Pa. 17319
RSVP by August 14, 2013 to Mary Beth Long at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (717) 938-5599
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What to Consider Before Joining a Clinical Trial Jim Miller Dear Savvy Senior, What can you tell me about clinical trials and how to go about finding one? My wife has a chronic condition, and we’re interested in trying anything that may be able to help her. – Looking For Help Dear Looking, Each year, hundreds of thousands of Americans participate in clinical trials in hopes of gaining access to the latest, and possibly greatest, but not yet on the market treatments for all types of illnesses. But, you need to be aware that clinical trials can vary greatly in what they’re designed to do, so be careful to choose one that can actually benefit your wife. Here’s what you should know about clinical trials, along with some tips for
locating one. Clinical Trials A clinical trial is the scientific term for a test or research study of a drug, device, or medical procedure using people. These trials— sponsored by drug companies, doctors, hospitals, and the federal government— are conducted to learn whether a new treatment is safe and if it works. But, keep in mind that these new treatments are also unproven, so there may be risks too.
Also be aware that all clinical trials have certain eligibility criteria (age, gender, health status, etc.) that your wife must meet in order to be accepted. And before taking part in a trial, she’ll be asked to sign an informed consent agreement. She can also leave a study at any time.
lots of questions. Here are some to get you started.
Things to Know Before deciding to participate in a trial, you and your wife need to first discuss it with her doctor. Then, schedule an appointment with the study’s medical team and ask
• What kinds of tests and treatments does the study involve, and how often and where they are performed?
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• What’s the purpose of the study and can it improve your wife’s condition? You may be surprised to know that many drug or procedural trials are not designed to find a cure or improve a patient’s health, but only to provide scientific data. • What are the risks? Some treatments can have side effects that are unpleasant, serious, and even life threatening.
• Is the experimental treatment in the study being compared with a standard treatment or a placebo? Keep in mind
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that if your wife gets the placebo, she’ll be getting no treatment at all.
• If the treatment works, can your wife keep using it after the study?
• Who’s paying for the study? Will you have any costs, and if so, will your insurance plan or Medicare cover the rest? Sponsors of trials generally pay most of the costs, but not always.
Find a Trial Every year, there are more than 100,000 clinical trials conducted in the U.S. You can find them at conditionfocused organizations like the American Cancer Society or the Alzheimer’s Association, or by asking her doctor, who may be monitoring trials in his or her specialty.
• What if something goes wrong during or after the trial and your wife needs extra medical care? Who pays?
Or, use the National Institutes of Health’s clinical trials website (www.clinicaltrials.gov). This site contains a comprehensive database of federally and privately supported clinical studies in the U.S. and abroad on a wide range of diseases and conditions, including information about each trial’s purpose, who may participate, locations, and phone numbers for more details. If, however, you don’t have Internet access or could use some help finding
the right trial, use the Center for Information and Study on Clinical Research Participation (www.ciscrp.org). This is a nonprofit organization that will take your wife’s information over the phone and do a thorough clinical-trials search for you and mail or email you the results in a few days. Call (877) 6334376 for assistance. Jim Miller is a regular contributor to the NBC Today show and author of The Savvy Senior Book. www.savvysenior.org
Pa. Ranked 17th in National Senior Health Report America’s Health Rankings® Senior Report shows Minnesota at the top of the list of healthiest states for older adults. Vermont is ranked second and New Hampshire is third, followed by Massachusetts and Iowa. Mississippi is ranked 50th as the least healthy state for older adults. Oklahoma, Louisiana, West Virginia, and Arkansas complete the bottom five states. Pennsylvania ranked 17th overall. In 2013, 28 percent of Pennsylvanians over 65 are obese; 9.1 percent are smokers; 80.5 of diabetics are receiving appropriate disease management; and
32.4 percent are physically inactive. By contrast, 23.7 percent of Minnesotans over age 65 are considered obese, versus 27.9 percent of Mississippians. Of Minnesota’s seniors, 8.6 percent smoke; the rate is 10
percent for Mississippi. Minnesota came in at 83 percent for diabetes management, versus 74.1 percent in Mississippi. Finally, 28.9 percent of Minnesota seniors are physically inactive, versus
38.1 percent of seniors in Mississippi. The 34 measures that comprise America’s Health Rankings® Senior Report are of two types: determinants and outcomes. Determinants represent those actions that can affect the future health of the population, whereas outcomes represent what has already occurred either through death or disease. View the entire report online at www.americashealthrankings.org. Source: America’s Health Rankings® Senior Report. 2013 United Health Foundation. All Rights Reserved. ©
“National Penn Bank has been involved with the Chester County 50plus EXPO for several years, and we look forward to participating in this well-attended event every year. This event is very well organized, and it is clear that this is a 50plus-oriented event by the variety of vendors who participate. As a vendor, I am pleased with the amenities provided to us, including adequate space for our booth. Also, the event staff and volunteers are very attentive and readily available to help you with anything you need. Adel Ducine, vice president, National Penn Bank
I would recommend this event to anyone with a service to provide to the 50plus market.”
For more information, call 717.285.1350 or visit www.50plusExpoPA.com www.50plusSeniorNewsPA.com
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50plus Senior News — a monthly publication for and about the 50+ community — offers information on entertainment, travel, healthy living, fi...