SAIL visits Hospice of the Panhandle
At a Brown Bag Luncheon several weeks ago, Julie Yuhasz briefed SAIL members about the mission and work of the Hospice of the Panhandle. Emphasizing that Hospice provides compassionate care to those with life-limiting illness, she invited interested SAIL members to take a tour of the new facility in Kearneysville on old Route 9. Patients may choose to stay at the facility where they receive care in a home-like setting.
Nine SAIL members, John and Helen Burns, Diana Eldridge, Judy Moore, Ted Walton, Jack and Martha Young, Vicky Thomas, and Carolyn Rodis, made the visit this week. Everyone was very impressed by the facility and enjoyed the opportunity to see Julie again.
Also of note are the 26 paintings donated by local Shepherdstown resident, Diana Suttenfield. There is a painting in each of the patient rooms.
Annual Fall Picnic
SAIL celebrated its annual Fall Picnic on Sunday, September 27th, on the front lawn of Elinor and Sherman Ross' lovely home on Shepherd Grade Road. It was a perfect setting to greet old friends and meet new ones. More than 40 members and guests enjoyed a delicious pot-luck super. The weather cooperated and a good time was had by all.
Ted Walton and Martha Young received "kudos" for planning and carrying out the festive event! And of course, we all extend a special to thanks to Elinor and Sherman for hosting the picnic.
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Items of Interests
by Vanessa McGuire, Shepherdstown Chronicle staff
Due to advances in medicine, science and technology, people are living significantly longer lives. In fact, according Administration on Aging, seniors are the fastest-growing population in the world.
by Nanci Hellmich, USA TODAY
Although some people want to move to a warmer climate or exotic locale in retirement, for most folks, their current home is where their heart is.
Watch the eagles that live at the National Conservation Training Center located just outside Shepherdstown as they feed and tend to their new eaglets.
This web site is built with seniors in mind. It contains health and wellness information for older adults and is hosted by the National Institutes of Health.
The Medical Press web site features an article showing that training the elderly in social media improves well-being and combats isolation.
Chief of EMS for the Shepherdstown Volunteer Fire Department Speaks to SAIL
Marshall DeMeritt, Chief of Emergency Medical Services for the Shepherdstown Volunteer Fire Department was the speaker at our brown bag lunch on October 16, 2015. Emergency medical service personnel respond about 4 times more often than fire fighters to our calls. It takes under 9 minutes for responders to arrive at your house after you place the 911 call. The national average is 11 minutes. We can help responders by ensuring the house number is clearly visible from the street. Mr. DeMeritt recommends that everyone have a list of medications and allergies posted just inside the door or on the refrigerator. He also recommends that persons living alone wear a necklace or bracelet with pertinent medical information. Responders also will look for medical information on your smart phone: ICE is one useful app.
The Department can order and install a “Knox box” on your door that contains your house key. This box is opened by the responder with a master key. This enables them to enter without breaking down the door if no one answers. The boxes cost the Department $500. You will be given one for free; the department asks that you return it after you no longer need it, and consider a donation after your death.
Mr. DeMeritt recommended having fire extinguishers in a handy location, checking pressure and recharging them when necessary. The department also will give you smoke detectors and install them for you if you are not able to do so yourself. Smoke detectors should be placed 18” inside the bedroom door. SAIL member Woody Garrett is the go-to person at the department for smoke detectors. Mr. DeMeritt reminded us to check and replace the batteries in the alarms regularly.
We learned that the Shepherdstown Volunteer Fire Department does not benefit from the Jefferson County ambulance tax we pay each year. The responders are dependent on donations and grants. There is a museum of fire fighting in their building. While visiting the museum, the Department would be grateful for donations of money and baked goods.
SAIL members and guests enjoy lunch with Shepherd University students
Martha Young, Pam and John Splaine, and Lara and Gary Engebretson are sharing experiences while having lunch with Shepherd Junior, Melanie Garvey. This luncheon is only one of the many opportunities offered by the Shepherd University Lifelong Learning program.
The community of Shepherdstown hosts a significant population of retirees who attend Shepherd events and support the university with their volunteer efforts. Several years ago, Shepherd officials were contacted by a group of SAIL members about offering a Lifelong Learning program similar to those in place at other universities across the country. The University worked with SAIL and an advisory committee comprised of faculty, staff, and members of the community to conduct a feasibility study that was widely reported on in local media. Not surprisingly, the University found significant interest in the community for this type of program, which offers up to eight classes over the course of six weeks in fall and six weeks in spring.
The Lifelong Learning classes provide a fun and engaging way for retirees to access extended learning, travel, and social opportunities. There are not any quizzes or tests administered but perhaps some homework for added exposure to the topic and good discussions. Participants do not earn credit and do not place any burden on the registrar, faculty, or staff at Shepherd. No course credit is reflected on transcripts or in any way be recognized by the university for any type of academic credential.