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Personal security

gives peace of mind to seniors and families

Ardmore Telephone Company

Photos by David Brewer

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rdmore resident J.B. Shumate is an independent man. At 93 years old, he’s handled everything life could throw at him, including a stint in the Royal Canadian Air Force during World War II. But this winter, a routine trip to the trash can made him realize that a little help never hurts. Shumate lost his balance and fell while taking out the trash. “It bruised me up a little bit, but nothing serious,” he says. Even though he wasn’t injured, he still couldn’t get back to his feet. “I was alone,” he says. “I was so fortunate that one of my friends was coming by.” The friend dropped by in a few minutes and after finding Shumate on the ground, helped him up. “I don’t know what I would have done if they hadn’t come by,” Shumate says. “I probably would have just laid there until someone came. They helped me in the house — and I decided I needed one of those buttons.” Very soon after the fall, Shumate signed up for one of Ardmore Telephone Company’s Personal Home Safety Systems. The system includes a pendant or wristband, a base and 24-hour monitoring so that if Shumate were to fall again, he could summon help by pressing the button on the device. The pendant or wristband is connected wirelessly to the base station in the home and will connect to nearby family members or emergency personnel when it’s activated. Now Shumate, who had considered the system when he had fallen three previous times, is an outspoken supporter of the security system. “It feels good to have it there in case I need it,” he says. He’s even tried to convince his 72-year-old daughter to get one. “I think everybody should have them,” he says. “Young people fall, too.” Statistics back up his opinion. According to the Center for Dis-

When J.B. Shumate fell while taking out the trash, he decided to get a personal security system. ease Control, one in three adults 65 or older will fall in a given year, and falls are the leading cause of injury and death among seniors. People like Shumate who are older than 75 are four to five times more likely to fall than younger seniors. The CDC says even the fear of falling can cause some seniors to limit their activities, which can lead to reduced mobility and poor physical condition. “As loved ones get older, they want to keep their independence, and who can blame them?” says Ray Widner, operations manager for Ardmore Telephone. “The Personal Home Safety System allows them to keep that freedom, but gives them and their families the peace of mind to know that if they get in trouble, the system is there for them.”  May/June 2013 | 9

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