Are we really doing enough for our veterans in senior living?

I hope you all had a relaxing and enjoyable Memorial Day weekend. I was able to get away for a bit, but senior living is never far from my mind.

With Memorial Day just two days ago, I thought it would be appropriate to mention who I ran into at the Argentum conference two weeks ago. Taking time out from retirement and sailing the world, Rick Grimes (former CEO of ALFA/Argentum and a veteran) was helping man the exhibit booth for Patriot Angels, an organization that helps veterans get the benefits they deserve. One benefit, which was new to me, is called the Aid and Attendance benefit through the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Apparently, veterans can obtain up to $2,200 per month with this benefit that can be applied to the costs of a senior living community. But most vets and many senior living communities seem to be unaware of this benefit. What a shame for all concerned.

There are other organizations that help vets, such as Luke’s Wings, which provides air travel for families to visit vets in the hospital, or in the case of seniors, when they are in hospice care. Again, that’s one I had never heard of.

So next year, while you are relaxing or watching your local Memorial Day parade, think about our veterans, the sacrifices they have made, and what the senior living industry can do for them. Thank you. And Rick, watch out for those pirates off the coast of Panama.