Blog Archives

Kids Go to Court for Their Dad


Another very sad story about elder abuse….. I am visualizing the day when stories like this are the exception rather than the norm. When will someone in charge wake up and actually do something? My fear is they will not until it is too late, and they themselves are the victims of these tragedies….  

 

Editor, writer and director

Imagine waking to an unfamiliar hospital-looking room. You recognize no one; you can’t remember how you got there. Everyone you ask lies. No matter how logically you ask, they will not tell you why you’ve been imprisoned; but from the looks on their faces, you begin to fear you will never get out. You will die here.

This is not a Kafkaesque torture scene. It is happening here in America, to my 87-year old father. He, and five and a half million other Americans, has Alzheimer’s.

Growing up in Rockford, in the ’50s and early ’60s, my Dad, Rod MacDonald, was well known in his trademark red beret as TV personality “Roddy Mac.” The popular kid’s show was just a side-line for Dad, as he also wrote, produced, and sold television and radio ads at WREX Channel 13; he was also an actor, a musician, a WW2 veteran, and typical Dad who did lots of chauffeuring and dispensing petty cash. He worked a lot, as all Dads did then, and he and our mother Virginia MacDonald were for decades, until Ginny’s death of cancer in 1987, a driving force behind the inception and success of the Rockford theatre scene.

After Ginny died, Dad remarried and seemed happy. He and his wife continued to act, and travel occasionally to New York and Chicago to visit theatre friends and see shows. But his memory problems began to become apparent; he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

For a few years the disease did not seem to make that much of an impact on his daily life, although he did quit driving and later, going to the gym. Then a year ago, my sister began getting paid to stay with him during the day, while Dad’s wife worked. Sarah and Dad did crosswords, drank coffee, sang songs, and took naps.

Then I heard Dad’s wife was talking about putting him in a nursing home. My sister and I both offered to take dad home with us and care for him, but were told that wasn’t feasible.

Within weeks, Dad was on the waiting list of the Illinois Veteran’s Home in La Salle, Illinois, about two hours from Rockford. Sarah initiated a tour of the facility, which was not the awful B movie nightmare they’d imagined; the staff seemed caring and the facility modern and adequate. We were told Dad would adjust. We were told there were no restrictions on visiting: we would be able to take Dad out for a walk, a sandwich on a park bench, even on vacation if his doctor agreed.

But he was adamant he didn’t want to go, he wanted to be with his family.

They all said leaving him there was awful. “It was the hardest thing I ever did,” said his wife. “Don’t leave me here, please,” Dad cried.

Read More here Kids Go to Court for Their Dad

Nominate Gary Harvey for Veterans Hall of Fame


 Please nominate Gary Harvey for New York State Veterans Hall of Fame. Sara Harvey would like to do something special for her husband who is isolated in a nursing home after suffering a traumatic brain injury. There is not a better gift she can give him. Unfortunately, Gary has an abusive guardian who will not allow him to hold his wife’s hand and his wife is not allowed to hold his or kiss him. However, she is allowed to visit him for a maximum of four hours each week. During that time, Sara reads to Gary and talks to him about everyday life. He knows when she is there and reacts to different things she tells him. Gary is a proud US veteran and proudly served his country during the Vietnam War. This would honor him and fill his heart with pride. Please take a few minutes to go to this link and make the nomination. It will only cost you a few minutes of your time. Please message me if you have any questions.

His address is 555 St. Joseph’s Blvd. Elmira NY 14901. Gary Harvey served in the Army as a Special Force Ranger during the Vietnam War. He was honored with a National Service Defense Medal and as an expert M-16 rifleman.

SENATOR O’MARA ASKS FOR LOCAL NOMINATIONS FOR VETERANS’ HALL OF FAME

Albany, N.Y., April 4—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) announced today that he’s seeking nominations for the New York State Senate’s “Veterans’ Hall of Fame,” an online tribute to the military and civilian lives of distinguished veterans from across New York State.

“So many veterans served our nation courageously and honorably, and then returned home to lift the lives of our local communities.  The Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame is just one more way to give a local veteran a well-deserved and well-earned expression of our gratitude and admiration,” said O’Mara, who represents New York’s 58th Senate District encompassing Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben and Yates counties, and part of Tompkins County (the city and town of Ithaca, and the towns of Enfield, Newfield and Ulysses).

The Senate established its Veterans’ Hall of Fame in 2005.  It’s designed to honor New York veterans whose service in the United States Armed Forces is accompanied by service to the community and accomplishments as a civilian, and includes veterans representing Senate districts from throughout New York State.  Senators conduct induction ceremonies within their respective legislative districts and at the Capitol coinciding with veterans-related observances throughout the year.  

  This year’s Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Albany is planned for Tuesday, May 21, 2013, just before the Memorial Day weekend observances. 

O’Mara is accepting nominations for this year’s inductee until Friday, April 26, 2013. 

Nomination letters, which should include a short biography highlighting the nominee’s military and civilian service and achievements, can be sent to O’Mara’s Albany office: Room 812, Legislative Office Building, Albany, New York  12247. 

 

Nomination letters can also be e-mailed to: omara@nysenate.gov.

 

Or nominations can be submitted online using the form below.

 

The following area veterans have been inducted into the Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame by O’Mara:

— Philip C. Smith, a highly decorated Korean War combat veteran and well-known figure in Schuyler County government and veterans’ affairs as the former director of the Schuyler County Veterans’ Service Agency, was a Hall of Fame inductee in 2011; and

— J. Arthur “Archie” Kieffer, longtime Chemung County historian and a World War II combat veteran, was honored at a ceremony at the Chemung Valley History Museum in Elmira last May.    

Other area veterans who are Hall of Fame members are the late Frank C. “Fritz” Pesesky, a veteran of World War II and former director of the Chemung County Veterans Service Office (2005); William K. Kastner, a Vietnam veteran and longtime director of the Steuben County Veterans Service Agency (2006); and the late Robert Laskaris, a highly decorated combat veteran and well-known figure in Chemung County veterans’ affairs (2008).

Click on link below for nomination form >>>  

Veterans Hall of Fame

 

 

%d bloggers like this: