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Creating a survivor’s file

Tuesday, May 27, 2014 — Whether your marriage was in the early days of military service or long after retirement, one of the most difficult situations you’ll face is dealing with the death of your retired military spouse. Nothing can make this mission easy, but being prepared can help ensure you do what you need to when the time comes. A file with all the veteran’s important papers won’t help if it’s in an unlabeled file drawer or on a computer protected with a password you don’t have. Similarly, funeral wishes can’t be followed if the cemetery selected has since closed to new burials.

Survivor’s files at a minimum will need your Social Security number and copy of your DD-214. Make sure your survivor’s file includes information on any VA payment or claim you’ve filed with the VA. Include a copy of your latest Retiree Account Statement and highlight the section that shows if you did or did not enroll in a Survivors Benefit Plan and, if you did enroll, what category of beneficiary you enrolled (for example, spouse or former spouse).

Credence uncertainty should not stop the pool’s progress

Tuesday, May 27, 2014 — According to some city and county leaders, a community swimming pool is the top priority for Susanville and Lassen County residents. That statement may overreach a bit, but many, including hundreds of local children who have collected Pennies for the Pool for years, believe a community swimming pool is an absolute necessity.

Lassen County Supervisor Jim Chapman and Susanville City Councilmember Brian Wilson came up with a plan to create the Honey Lake Valley Recreation Authority — with a board comprised of two members of the Lassen County Board of Supervisors, two members from the Susanville City Council and a fifth appointed public member. The supervisors and the city council both agreed to fund the newly formed recreation authority with up to $200,000 every year for the next 15 years. At the authority’s direction, Jared Hancock, the authority’s executive director, and other county and city staff members created an ambitious plan to bring a swimming pool to our community as quickly as possible.

Lounging for a couple of days at Camp Layman

Tuesday, May 27, 2014 — My girlfriend, Cindie, and I celebrated our 15th anniversary together with a romantic weekend stay at Camp Layman in Plumas County.

While the camp of 13 rustic cabins lies near the base of an entire mountainside washed away by hydraulic gold miners — I’m guessing in the 1880s — it was built to house railroad workers in the 1920s. It’s kind of sad to see a mountainside blasted and washed clean of soil right down to the bedrock. In more than 100 years not much has taken root on the barren hillside. I wonder how many more generations it will take for the mountain to recover, if ever. Obviously, the days of green thought were far off in the future back then, and sometimes I wonder if we’re doing any better today. But I guess that’s a topic for another My Turn at some future date.

Exploring historic buildings is my new passion

Tuesday, May 27, 2014 — There is something striking and mesmerizing about walking into a building harboring a century of memories.

Earlier this month, sports editor Maddie and I embarked on a mini adventure, touring a piece of Lassen County neither of us had visited. We were able to visit the historic Winje’s Emporium and Hotel in Doyle.

As I walked down the hallway of the recently renovated and redecorated rooms on the second floor of the historical Doyle monument, I found myself wishing I could have experienced the building in its prime when it was the only lodging and gas station between Susanville and Reno.

Aid and Attendance benefit available

Tuesday, May 20, 2014 — Aid and Attendance is a special monthly pension benefit available to wartime veterans and surviving spouses of deceased wartime veterans who have in-home care or who live in nursing homes or assisted-living facilities.The basic criteria for the Aid and Attendance benefit include the inability to feed oneself, to dress and undress without assistance or to take care of one’s own bodily needs.

People who are bedridden or need help to adjust special prosthetic or orthopedic devices may also be eligible, as well as those who have a physical or mental injury or illness that requires regular assistance to protect them from hazards or dangers in their daily environment.


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