Page 20 THE MALDEN ADVOCATE–Friday, June 7, 2024 avvya yavvy eniiooravvy S iorn or v y io Surviving Spouses Dear Savvy Senior, I understand that the Veterans Administration has a benefi t that can help veterans and spouses with long-term care costs. We recently had to move my elderly father into an assisted living memory care facility, and my mother will probably need care too in the near future. What can you tell me? Searching for Aid Dear Searching, The Veterans Administration (VA) does indeed have an underutilized benefi t that can help wartime veterans and their surviving spouses pay for a variety of long-term care costs. This benefi t, called “Aid and Attendance,” is a special pension that’s paid on top of existing VA pensions for eligible veterans and surviving spouses. In 2024, it pays a maximum of $2,727 a month to married veterans; $2,300 a month to single veterans; or $1,478 a month to a surviving spouse. The money is tax free, and can be used to pay for assisted living, memory care, nursing home or inhome care services. Currently, around 156,000 veterans and survivors are receiving the Aid and Attendance benefi t, but many thousands more are eligible who either don’t know about it or don’t think they qualify. Eligibility Requirements To qualify, your dad must have served at least 90 days of active military service with at least one day of service during a period of war, and not have been discharged dishonorably. Single surviving spouses of wartime vets are eligible if their marriage ended due to death. In addition, your dad will also have to meet certain thresholds for medical and fi nancial need to be eligible. To qualify medically he must be either disabled, or over the age of 65 and need help performing basic everyday living tasks such as eating, bathing, dressing or going to the bathroom. Being blind or in a nursing home due to disability or receiving Social Security Disability or SSI also qualifi es him. Single surviving spouses have no age restrictions, but they must require help with basic everyday living tasks to be eligible. To qualify fi nancially your parents “net worth,” which includes assets and annual income combined, must be below $155,356 in 2024. To calculate this, add up your parent’s assets, which includes their personal property (like investments, real estate, etc.) excluding their primary home and vehicles. And tally up their income over the past year (including Social Security, pensions, interest income from investments, annuities, etc.), minus any out-of-pocket medical expenses, prescription drugs, insurance premiums and long-term care costs over that same period of time. The VA also has a three-year lookback to determine if your parents transferred any assets to ensure they would qualify for benefi ts. If so, they may be subject to a penalty period of up to 5 years. How to Apply To apply for Aid and Attendance, you’ll need to fi ll out VA Form 21-2680 and mail it to the Pension Management Center (PMC) for your dad’s state. You’ll need to have your dad’s doctor fi ll out the examination information section. Or you can also apply in person at a VA regional offi ce near your parents. For more information or to download application forms see VA.gov/pension/aid-attendance-housebound. You can also call the VA at 800–827–1000 if you have questions. If you need some help, you can appoint a Veteran Service Offi - cer (VSO), a VA-accredited attorney or claims agent to represent your dad. See VA.gov/ogc/apps/accreditation/index.asp to locate someone. If your dad is eligible, it can take months for his application to be processed, so be patient. You should also know that if your dad’s Aid and Attendance application is approved, the VA will send a lump sum retroactive payment covering the time from the day you fi led the application until the day it was approved. Then your dad receives monthly payments going forward. Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book. iori by Jim Miller Long-Term Care Benefits for Veterans and Judith A. Taylor A longtime resident of Malden, passed away suddenly on Monday, March 4, in her home. Judy was born in 1952, the daughter of John and Marion Taylor. She was raised and educated in Malden, graduating from Malden High School with the Class of 1970. She went on to work for “Ma Bell” as a telephone operator, retiring in 1994 after 20 years with the company. Judy was dedicated to the Colonial Chorus in Reading, MA. She started there in 1984 as a performer, then also worked with the set and props design for which she won several awards! She served as a President of the theater company, taught in their summer drama kids program, and volunteered for years on their board of directors. She was still active in the props departMUSINGS | FROM PAGE 6 up in Las Vegas with plans of renewing their acquaintance. But I digress... much to my delight Malden’s very own Ames Brothers appear midway through the episode. Rod Cameron’s character Lt. Blake walks through the Theatre Restaurant in the Tropicana Lounge and bafangool, Suff olk Square represented! There starts one minute 58 seconds of pure bliss as the black tuxedo clad Joe, Ed, Vic and Gene Ames bust out into the old African American Spiritual “Who Built the Ark?” A little cultural appropriation entails but, what the heck, it was the ’50s (insert smiley face but – disclaimer – smiley face not meant to condone cultural appropriation). The boys are as smooth as silk, cool as cucumbers, just killing this number with some of the sweetest four-part vocal harmonies you will ever hear. Second-best Ed Ames TV appearance right behind the 1965 Johnny Carson spot where, teaching Carson how to throw a tomahawk, Ed makes like a mohel for one of the longest laughs from a studio audience ever recorded on television. Must watch TV. Speaking of the Ames Brothers... little known fact dept.: former State Rep., Mayor of Malden, City Councillor, insurance mogul and rotating host of MATV’s “02148” Ed Lucey once lived at 13 Trayes Ave. after the Ames family moved out in (I believe) 1929. Holy Cow! So much greatness on little ole Trayes Ave.! Kudos to Inna Babitskaya for the really nice job she is doing on these pages chronicling the Ames Brothers’ greatness and their Malden connection. The year 1975 was also a very good year... as reported by the Malden Evening News on Janment. OBITUARIES Judy loved the arts in general, and was herself a skilled artist, who also loved music and theater. Judy had a beautiful singing voice and sang with the Reading Community Singers for many years. In addition, she was a huge lover of cats and treasured each one of her fur babies. She survived by her sister, Jill K. Taylor-Russo and husband James of Maine, her lifelong friend Beth Gorsun Mosier and her husband Al of Reading, and her godsons, Jeff rey S. Mosier of Wilton Manors, FL, and Brian D. Mosier of Somerville, MA, and many dear longtime friends. In addition to her parents, Judy was preceded in death by her sister June Taylor. A memorial service for Judy will be held on June 12th, at 10 AM in the Weir – MacCuish Golden Rule Funeral Home, 144 Salem St., Malden, with interment following in Oak Grove Cemetery, Medford. Donations in Judy's memory may be made to: Colonial uary 6: • Senator Edward M. Kennedy received a warm welcome at the Irish American Club on West St. as he spoke to the Chamber of Commerce about the economy, price stability, unemployment and his opposition to covert U.S. activity in Angola. • New Mayor Pledges “Open Door Policy” – James J Conway (67 Gilbert St.) took the oath of office as mayor of the City of Malden with the Honorable Louis H Glaser presiding. • The Medford Public Library’s Frank Lavine (my uncle and one of the founders of the State of Israel as a sailor on the ship Exodus) and Robert Cipriani were elected to serve on the Civic Advisory Board at the New England Memorial Hospital by C.A.B. and the board of trustees. • Jon Crannell (son of Mr. and Mrs. John Crannell of 378 Lebanon St.) recently earned his football “numerals” at Norwich University in Northfi eld, Vermont. Jon is now retired from the Malden Police Department, is a really good guy, and gave up his football “numerals” many years ago. • Malden High School Alumni Hall of Famer (inducted in 2015) Stanton Sherman helped MHS defeat Medford HS in track, 6125, by beating Medford’s Mike Linnane in a “spectacular” race in the 1000, with a time of 2:29. Malden upped their record to 3-0. • Ruderman’s Furniture at 42 Ferry St. is looking for a Customer Service/Offi ce Clerk. It’s a part-time position and the perfect candidate “must be mature.” As Peter Falk’s iconic TV character Columbo would say, “Just one more thing, sir” – who says Maldonians don’t have a sense of humor?! Our nickname “The City That Fun Forgot?” is ill-advised to say the least; not a kernel of truth to it, I say! With that Chorus Players Inc. P.O. Box 443, Reading, MA 01867. Paula J. (Willcox) James A lifelong resident of Malden, passed away suddenly on Tuesday, June 4, 2024, in Salem. Paula was born in Malden in 1951, the daughter of William and Ruth Willcox. She was raised and educated in Malden, graduating from Malden High School with the Class of 1970. She went on to become an Administrative Assistant, working for a few diff erent fi rms, most notably Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Boston. After marrying her sweetheart, Dennis R. James, the two settled down toOBITUARIES | SEE PAGE 21 said I bring to you this week’s edition of “See Click Fix Can Be Fun to Read.” In the spirit of full disclosure, the protagonist in this little yarn is a friend of mine who I simply adore. Kevin Alkins is the original woofa goofa mamma toofa & one great googly moogly who takes his job as City of Malden Animal Control Offi cer so seriously that he brings it home each night to bed with him. Serious! I fi nd him to be an honorable, hardworking and outstanding Maldonian (what a memory on this guy!) who never fails to bring a smile to my face. Some call him the hardest working man in show biz; I simply call him friend. With that said, take it away, No Name Given: “There is a poor deceased kitty in the street against the curb on Wadsworth St. Called hours ago and Kevin Alcon and animal control are nowhere to be found. This poor cat has no dignity in death. Animal control/ Kevin Alcon needs to do the job he is paid to do instead of getting his nails done on city time.” Just for the record, as far as the nails getting done on the city’s dime, that accusation has only a casual relationship with established facts. Insert smiley face and fuhgeddaboudit! Postscript: Malden mourns, from Linden on the Saugus Branch to deep in the heart of Edgeworth... Bill Nelson, Jean (Tomasello) Condon, Margaret Hammersley, Francis Brown, Ciriaco Dello “Italian Gerry” Iacono, Rocky Brooks and Kevin McKenna. Only time moves on to the next scene, memories remain in the heart forever. —Peter is a longtime Malden resident and a regular contributor to the Malden Advocate. He can be reached at PeteL39@aol.com for comments, compliments or criticisms.

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