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Thursday, 23 May 2013 13:53

Letters to the Editor

By Staff Report | News

Dear Editor:

AARP applauds the recent article bringing attention to the widespread problem of elder abuse (“Local Elder Abuse Forum Brings Common Issues to Light,” May 9, 2013).

Unfortunately, the case involving the exploitation of “Irene” by her own son is not too uncommon these days. Family members are more often than not the perpetrators of elder abuse—and about one of every five Americans age 65 and older has been swindled, according to the Investor Protection Trust Elder Fraud survey.

AARP New York encourages people to be on the lookout for the warning signs of abuse: unexplained bank withdrawals, unauthorized use of credit or ATM cards, stolen or “misplaced” cards or checkbooks, checks written as “cash,” “loan” or “gift,” abrupt changes in a will or other documents, unexplained transfer of assets, disappearance of valuables, the sudden appearance of a previously uninvolved relative claiming a right to an elder’s affairs or possessions, and new signers on accounts.

There are also some crucial ways elderly can protect themselves, including checking references and credentials before hiring anyone, keeping information about your finances away from workers, limiting power of attorney, getting to know your banker, staying in contact with neighbors, family and friends, refusing to sign blank checks or any document you don’t understand, asking for details in writing and getting a second opinion before making a financial decision, and paying with checks or credit cards to keep a paper trail. 

Financial abusers count on silence. If you believe you’re being victimized, or if you suspect a loved one or an elderly neighbor is a victim, call your local police department or tell someone immediately.

Erin Mitchell
AARP Associate State Director- Community Outreach
(518) 447-6715


Dear Editor:

Memorial Day is one of respect, honor, gratitude and admiration. It has a special meaning for all of us. The old saying that freedom isn’t free rings load and clear.

In February 2009, 1st Lt. Jared W. Southworth was killed in action in Afghanistan. He left behind a wife, four young children and a loving extended family. Like so many others who have fallen, Jared laid down his life so we can enjoy ours.

What many see as a motto, “God, Family and Country,” was a way of life to Jared and so many others like PFC David Taylor Miller, Capt. John J. McKenna IV and Lance Cpt. Anthony J. Denier. The courage and dedication to put oneself in harm’s way is something only a few are willing to do. Let us never forget selfless sacrifice. We owe them all a debt we can never repay.

Although it has broken our hearts to have lost a loved one, we can take comfort in the fact that Jared, like so many, wanted to be there defending our country. Like all who have fallen before them and will fall in the future, let us give thanks for those American Heroes.

Not only on this day, but every day, let us honor and salute our fallen brothers and sisters who have truly given us the land of the free and home of the brave. As many hearts ache for their loss, as does ours, let their memories never fade.

Patti Southworth
Town of Ballston Supervisor


Dear Editor:

Americans should take their hats off and salute all of the honor guards that continue to serve their country long after their military is over. 

These dedicated veterans from all wars continue to stay active and perform the military rites that honor our veterans in their time of need. This takes place on a daily basis at all national cemeteries and other cemeteries. I say “Thank you, thank you!” for your continued service to our fallen heroes. Our country and families of these fallen, departed, brave veterans thank you. We can’t say enough for your kind deeds and service to our country. 

Sid Gordon 
Saratoga Springs

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