As we drove down the road I asked her was she married and she said yes for 57 years. She said I miss my husband so I assumed wrongly he had passed away. She then followed up by saying I get the bus to see him every other day. I asked her where was, again mistakenly thinking she was visiting his grave. She told me he was in a local facility “ a memory care facility” as he suffered from dementia for the past seven years. I asked her how long he had been in the facility and she said five years. Her eyes filled with tears. I said that must be financially draining and she said it was. We continued chatting and she told me her husband was a world war two vet . I asked her had she applied for the veteran assistance program and she said, ” What’s that” ? I told her, her husband was entitled to benefits and she said no one had ever told her that before.
She said the facility never asked her that either when her husband was admitted. It always amazes me how we don't reach out to our seniors to truly help them. This lady’ s husband is entitled to over $2000 per month and she would then get the benefit after he passes. A benefit that would help pay for her taxi fees to visit him every other day for the last five years in addition to his facility costs.
If you are married to a vet please go the link on my recommendations page and call the number listed . Our veterans deserve what is due to them and as a society we need to do a better job educating them. All of this took fifteen minutes. Let's all slow down and offer the best at the time it's needed.
As Thanksgiving comes close and the Christmas season, please watch out for your elderly neighbours, isolation a silent killer. Conversation and human interaction is so very important. Extend a hand and you never know what will unfold.