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> WWII Vet Freezes To Death
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CelticRadio 
Posted: 26-Jan-2009, 10:55 PM
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If you have elderly neighbors make sure to check on them during this cold. Terrible news about this WWII vet:

http://www.wnem.com/news/18566890/detail.html#-

He froze to death in his own home..........

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flora 
Posted: 26-Jan-2009, 11:08 PM
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It breaks my heart to see this. Something needs to be done about the policies.

I have received a utilities bill here in Florida for someone in Michigan because they misread the zipcode. I wrote a letter enclosing the bill so they would have proof that they didn't receive their bill to pay on time. It is a sad day when we are too busy to make personal contact with customers.

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Rindy 
Posted: 26-Jan-2009, 11:56 PM
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I heard this on the news today and I think it is just terrible poor man. Like Celtic Radio said keep you eyes out for your neighbors. gee.. so sad. This country is better than this and we need to start proving it.

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Camac
Posted: 27-Jan-2009, 08:18 AM
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Rindy;

I find this hard to comprehend that any elderly person let alone a vet should freeze to death in their own home. Our DVA (Dept. of Veteran Affairs) and the Legion, are pretty good at looking after our Vets, not perfect, and there would be a terrible hue and cry if this happened here. I am not saying it couldn't happen but something like that would end up on the floor of Parliament and the Minister would be taken to task. Canada has always been pretty good at looking after its' Vets. I know for a fact that if a Vet is having problems, any problems and it is reported the Legion will step in and help, no questions asked.

"For he who sheds his blood with me is my Brother".



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stoirmeil 
Posted: 27-Jan-2009, 10:01 AM
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The report says that the utility company really didn't do anything wrong according to procedure, but I don't know how they could have done it wronger by the common sense human element. A person at that age and living alone is almost certain to be forgetful, limited of income, quite possibly depressed. In fact, if he wasn't intrinsically depressed, just being too cold can produce a clinical type of depression. There is no way their policy of shutoff should ever have extended to him. What amazes, angers and saddens me is that no one at the utility had the common sense or empathy to lob a call in to some kind of social service when the shutoff was imminent. Surely the billing records must have had some information that this was a senior citizen. Some human at a desk with a phone -- somebody like flora, who has the brains and the heart to piece together what's happening and act on the small but vital thing it takes to remedy it.

I feel bad for the neighbor who finally twigged to what was happening when he saw the frost on the windows. Sometimes old reclusive people resist neighborly overtures, and it's hard to make and keep contact, but it is going to trouble that person for a long time that he should have done something.
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Camac
Posted: 27-Jan-2009, 10:22 AM
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stoirmeil;;
Its the law in Ontario that utilities cannot be shut off in winter to any household that has elderly, sick, or young children. Usually what happens is the utillities report non-payments to the social service people. Our system is also somewhat different in that the utillities are run by the town or region and the gas and heating oil companies are strongly regulated by government. They get paid but by social services in these cases. Also in the case of Vets, DVA, and the Legion become involved. Also to give an example of how well the Vets are looked after, I have an Uncle with Altzheimer who is living in a Legion Hospice in Victoria B.C. Between his
company pension, government pension, old age and vets pension he get $7,200.00 per month tax free and all his expenses are paid.


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stoirmeil 
Posted: 27-Jan-2009, 10:29 AM
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QUOTE (Camac @ 27-Jan-2009, 10:22 AM)
stoirmeil;;
Its the law in Ontario that utilities cannot be shut off in winter to any household that has elderly, sick, or young children. Usually what happens is the utillities report non-payments to the social service people. Our system is also somewhat different in that the utillities are run by the town or region and the gas and heating oil companies are strongly regulated by government. They get paid but by social services in these cases.

Well, there you have it. You can't have social services that are equally profit-driven services -- one or the other has to take precedence. When it's potentially life or death, it would seem it's a no-brainer which it should be in an enlightened society.

Ah, crap. I am minded of what Gandhi said when he was asked what he thought of Western civilization. He said he thought it would be a good idea.
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Patch 
Posted: 28-Jan-2009, 10:08 AM
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QUOTE (stoirmeil @ 27-Jan-2009, 11:29 AM)
I am minded of what Gandhi said when he was asked what he thought of Western civilization. He said he thought it would be a good idea.

Gandhi was a man of few but meaningful words. I had a collection of quotes attributed to him but lost them in a fire. Maybe that could be a new topic.

Slàinte,    

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Jillian 
Posted: 28-Jan-2009, 10:27 PM
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QUOTE
The report says that the utility company really didn't do anything wrong according to procedure, but I don't know how they could have done it wronger by the common sense human element. A person at that age and living alone is almost certain to be forgetful, limited of income, quite possibly depressed. In fact, if he wasn't intrinsically depressed, just being too cold can produce a clinical type of depression. There is no way their policy of shutoff should ever have extended to him. What amazes, angers and saddens me is that no one at the utility had the common sense or empathy to lob a call in to some kind of social service when the shutoff was imminent. Surely the billing records must have had some information that this was a senior citizen. Some human at a desk with a phone -- somebody like flora, who has the brains and the heart to piece together what's happening and act on the small but vital thing it takes to remedy it.

I feel bad for the neighbor who finally twigged to what was happening when he saw the frost on the windows. Sometimes old reclusive people resist neighborly overtures, and it's hard to make and keep contact, but it is going to trouble that person for a long time that he should have done something.


Ditto Stoirmeil.

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Patch 
Posted: 29-Jan-2009, 09:39 AM
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The article I read indicated that it was a city owned utility. Worse things have happened in government. Records would have been available but one has to take the time to look. It appears the City did this for years and was comfortable with it. Probably so comfortable that they never checked information but the delinquency. It appears that he had some heat until the limiter blew its breakers and then he had nothing. Why did they not check after they installed it? It appeared that he was trying to use a heating pad and his oven to stay warm so he would have died slowly and painfully. One would wonder too if he had family.

I have three neighbors that I seldom see in the winter. One is 80 and the other is a couple, one unemployed and the other under employed. I watch their chimneys for signs of heat rising. (birds will perch on the warm bricks also)

Our postal service watches too and reports anything out of the ordinary.

Whether we like it or not, "we are our brothers keeper."

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flora 
Posted: 29-Jan-2009, 11:44 AM
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My son stopped by yesterday who works for the power department of a nearby city. He asked me if I had heard of the story and looking at him I knew this was bothering him. He said that they do not turn power off in the winter. Granted we are not in danger like those up North, but why don't they have the same policy?

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Patch 
Posted: 29-Jan-2009, 12:20 PM
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My electric utility has a program where those with medical conditions can, after submitting medical documentation, have a payment "arrangement" worked out. I do not know anyone who has taken advantage of it so do not know if it is actually helpful!

Slàinte,    

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Patch 
Posted: 29-Jan-2009, 03:25 PM
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I saw in todays news that they found stacks of bills on his table with money paper clipped to each one. They noted that he had not been seen outside of his house for some time. I would guess that memory, physical disability, pride or maybe all three contributed!!

It is sad that these things happen!

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valpal59 
Posted: 29-Jan-2009, 04:25 PM
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This has made me really sad and scared for my mother. Will have to call my sister and threaten her with an a$$ whipping if she doesn't check on mother everyday. I call her everyday, but it is hard to know if she is telling me the truth or just what she thinks I want to hear.

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Camac
Posted: 29-Jan-2009, 04:34 PM
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My heart goes out to that old Vet. and I pray to the Creator to welcome him to the Hall of Heros. I have written both post and poems on Death and I am not afraid of it, what I am terrified of is dying alone.

ALL HONOUR TO THE FALLEN


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