The Times West Virginian

Opinion

May 2, 2014

Seniors’ safety today can help ensure their health for years to come

The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that of Marion County’s nearly 57,000 residents in 2012, 17 percent were 65 years old or older.

That was higher than the state average of 16 percent.

And it makes the fact that May is observed as Older Americans Month even more important.

Older adults have made countless contributions and sacrifices to ensure a better life for future generations. As President Barack Obama said in his proclamation of Older Americans Month earlier this week, “With decades of experience and unyielding enthusiasm, seniors continue to lift up our neighborhoods, offer perspective on pressing challenges and serve as role models to our next generation — proving Americans never stop making a difference or giving back.”

That’s certainly true in Marion County. Our senior citizens serve on boards, mentor youth in the community and find countless other ways to give back. They play a valuable role in moving this region forward, and it’s a role they have taken on regardless of their age.

But it’s not just happening in Marion County. For more than 50 years, communities across the United States have shown their gratitude by celebrating Older Americans Month each May. It’s not only a way to recognize older Americans for their contributions, but it serves as a demonstration of the nation’s commitment to helping senior citizens stay healthy and active.

The theme of this year’s Older Americans Month is “Safe Today. Healthy Tomorrow,” which focuses on injury prevention and safety. Organizers say it’s all in an effort to encourage the nation’s older adults to protect themselves and remain active and independent for as long as possible.

It’s an important issue. As the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Community Living suggests, older adults are at a much higher risk of unintentional injury and even death than the rest of the population, and unintentional injuries to this population result in at least 6 million medically treated injuries and more than 30,000 deaths every year.

This year’s theme highlights the importance of making the extra effort to be safe. Seniors’ safety today can help ensure their health for years to come, leading to healthier and longer lives.

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Opinion
  • Vehicles and motorcycles must share the road safely

    The days are long. The weather is superb. There’s plenty of leisure time in these lazy days of summer.
    It’s the perfect time to take a long motorcycle ride.
    It’s also the perfect opportunity for us to take the time to remind not only riders but drivers of the need to share the road. And we feel compelled to mention it because just within the month of July, there have been two motorcycle-versus-car accidents within the City of Fairmont alone — one with severe injuries sustained by the motorcyclist and the other with less serious injury.

    July 23, 2014

  • Too many taking too few steps to protect selves from skin cancer

    July 22, 2014

  • Distracted driving: It isn’t worth fine or a life

    Today marks the day that police agencies from six states are joining forces to crack down on one thing — distracted driving.
    And they will focus on that traffic violation for a solid week, with the stepped-up effort to curb distracted driving wrapping up on Saturday, July 26.

    July 20, 2014

  • COLUMN: Are we people watchers or people judgers?

    Let me tell you about my little friend Robby. Well, actually, it’s more about his family and especially his mom. I didn’t get her name. I heard Robby’s name quite a bit, though, during a trip home from Birmingham, Alabama.
    I noticed the family in the Birmingham airport immediately. They were just the kind of family you’d notice.

    July 20, 2014

  • Relish the rich bounty of state’s diverse, unique food traditions

    This week, a group of federal officials on a three-day culinary tour of the state visited the Greenbrier Valley to find out what most of us here already know — we have a rich food tradition in West Virginia.
    The group was made up of officials from the Appalachian Regional Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    July 18, 2014

  • Soup Opera in need of your support again this time of year

    It’s happening again.
    It usually always happens about this time each year. Sometimes it’s a little earlier and sometimes a little later.
    But Soup Opera executive director Shelia Tennant knows it will come — usually in July. And she’s never that surprised about it.

    July 17, 2014

  • County honors men who gave all in helping their community

    The next time you’re driving in the Rivesville area, you might notice new signs on two of the area’s bridges.
    Those signs, which bear the names of Alex Angelino and Denzil O. Lockard, were unveiled Saturday in honor of the men whose names they display, two men who died while serving their communities.
    The bridge on U.S. 19 over Paw Paw Creek was named to honor Lockard, while the bridge on U.S. 19 over Pharaoh Run Creek was named to honor Angelino. Lockard, a former Rivesville police chief, died in 1958 at the age of 48 while directing traffic. Angelino, a Rivesville firefighter, died at the age of 43 of a heart attack while fighting a fire in 1966.

    July 16, 2014

  • State must learn to keep costs down and perform more efficiently on less

    The West Virginia state government began its budget year last Tuesday with a small surplus of $40 million — less than 1 percent of its annual tax revenues — thanks only to dipping into its savings.
    Let’s not do that again.

    July 15, 2014

  • Long-range vision with transportation has been made to be thing of proud past

    Last week’s closure of Fairmont’s Fourth Street Bridge is a symbol of a problem that must be fixed.
    The United States should be proud of the vision its leaders once displayed to address the country’s transportation needs.
    Back in 1954, for example, President Dwight D. Eisenhower announced his goal of an interstate highway system — something that transformed the country.

    July 13, 2014

  • COLUMN: Who would leave animal in sweltering car?

    I was standing and debating between two brands of a product in a big box store when I heard a call over the intercom:
    “Will the owner of a green Cavalier with a dog inside please report to the lawn and garden center.”
    I shook my head. I hate seeing dogs in cars waiting while their owners shop. About five minutes later, there was another announcement over the intercom.

    July 13, 2014

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