September 2, 2014

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Monroe County Veterans Services Information 8/28/14 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Gary Lake, Veterans Service Officer   
Thursday, August 28, 2014 7:31 AM

This month’s article is designed to help you understand what pension benefits are now available to service connected veterans, disabled wartime veterans who are unemployable or over 65 years old, and widows of wartime veterans.  Our office has been able to assist numerous veterans and widows apply for benefits so far this year.  It concerns me that so many veterans are not aware or receiving benefits that they have earned.  If you are a veteran and have not visited our office and been briefed on your entitlements I encourage you stop in at your convenience.  Our office will advise each veteran or dependent of eligibility to benefits.  We can assist you in making an application to the VA for any entitlements.

Service-Connected Disability Compensation: The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Compensation is a program that pays monthly benefits to veterans who are disabled as the result of injury or disease incurred in or aggravated during military service, in the line of duty.  Monetary benefits are authorized based upon the severity of the disability.

Veterans who are currently receiving service-connected disability compensation are entitled to make application for an increase if their current disability has worsened.  Also in many cases secondary disabilities are recognized as a direct result of a service connected disability.  It is possible that disability ratings can be reduced if it is found by medical evidence that your disability has gotten better.  Statutory protections exist if the disability has improved.  In order to apply for an increase, it is necessary that the veteran show medical proof of a worsened condition.

Those veterans who have service-connected disabilities evaluated at 30% or more are entitled to additional VA benefits and allowances for dependents.  Additional amounts are also payable for a spouse who is in need of the aid and attendance of another person.

NOTE:  The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced effective September 23, 2008 that Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease as a service-connected condition.  Also as of November 1, 2010 the following three conditions have been added to the list of service-connected disabilities based on their presumed exposure to Agent Orange:  B Cell (hairy cell) Leukemia, Parkinson Disease, and Ischemic Heart Disease.  

OSU Extension: Safe Canning PDF Print E-mail
Written by Kristen Corry   
Thursday, August 21, 2014 7:51 AM

Current USDA recommendations for safely canning foods at home have been determined by following approved methods and tested recipes. One of the most commonly-canned foods is tomatoes. Today these versatile and high-yielding vegetables come in many varieties with varying acidic levels. Therefore, it is recommended that you acidify tomato products when canning in a water bath. Citric acid, lemon juice, or vinegar helps obtain required pH (acid levels). Acid can be added directly to the jars before filling with the product. Add 2 tablespoons of bottled lemon juice or 1/2 teaspoon of citric acid per quart of tomatoes. For pints, use 1 tablespoon bottled lemon juice or 1/4 teaspoon citric acid. Four tablespoons of 5% vinegar per quart can also be used instead of lemon juice or citric acid but may cause undesirable flavor changes. You may choose to add sugar to offset any acidic taste, if desired.

The USDA recommends only using tested recipes to ensure your family’s safety. However, some safe variations can be made. You may:

Change the amount of salt, except for pickles. Salt is used as a flavoring agent, so it can be added or reduced as preferred. However, when pickling, salt acts as a preservative and adds crispness. 

Everyday Leadership 8/14/14 PDF Print E-mail
Written by R. Glenn Ray, Ph.D   
Wednesday, August 13, 2014 4:33 PM

When the days grew long at the edge of summer, the boys of Malaga found time to play Kick the Can.  The game consumed hours on end with time outs for a Mountain Dew or the boys to return home for meals.  Kick the Can originated at 4-H club meetings or spontaneously in the church yard at the center of town extending into the early hours of darkness.  When the sun went down, the game became more exciting.

Usually six to a dozen boys were in the game.  One boy was selected to be “It” by any of a variety of means.  His job was to guard the can placed in an open area while capturing the other players.  Players were considered captured when the boy playing “It” touched them or called out their names and their hiding places while touching the can.  The game began with a designated player kicking the can as far as he could.    While the boy who was “It” retrieved the can and replaced it on the base, all the other players ran for safe hiding places on the perimeter of the open area.  Each boy’s objective was to run in and kick the can, which released all captured boys.  As you can imagine, the game could go on indefinitely.  Everyone knew the game was over when all the boys had been captured or a stalemate occurred and one boy called out “Olly Olly in Free.”

The skill required by all players was speed and creativity in their choices of hiding places.  The boy playing “It” had to search at the edge of the field yet be fast enough to intercept those trying to kick the can.  The rest of the boys had to be fast enough to beat the “It” to the can.  One strategy was for two boys to race for the can from different directions.  Another strategy was to lure the boy playing “It” farther and farther out to allow other boys to reach the can.  

Exploring Your Heritage 8/7/14 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Karen Romick, Monroe Chapter OGS   
Wednesday, August 06, 2014 4:35 PM

Last month we looked at some of the ways that you can find the maiden name of your female ancestors. We discussed the obvious sources of marriage records, church records, will and estates.

Census records can yield clues. Look at the neighbors living around your ancestors.  Our ancestors didn't travel far to find their "better half."    Beginning in 1850, the relationship between the people in the house  to the head of household is recorded. Sometimes the relationship is explicitly stated, such as in the 1870 census when Drusilla Belford is identified as the mother-in-law of Adam Henthorn.   In a puzzling situation on my family tree, Daniel and Mary Stewart are listed in the 1850 census with their children.  At the bottom of the household listing is Rachel Stewart aged 26. In 1860, Mary is gone and Rachel is the wife. A granddaughter of Rachel and Daniel said Mary and Rachel were sisters. Rachel came to help Mary with the children, and after Mary died, Rachel married Daniel. Rachel's maiden name is listed as Belford on the death records of two of her children. Why was she identified as a Stewart in the 1850 census? Was it just an error on the part of the enumerator? To add to the confusion, Mary Ackley is living with the family in later census. She is listed as a servant in 1860, "living with daughter" in 1870, and a domestic in 1880. If she was Rachel's mother, why was her name Ackley?' Why was she identified as a servant in two of the three census records rather than as Rachel's mother? If anyone can solve this mystery, let me know!

Death records are a wonderful source for maiden names. The bad news is few counties/states used informative death records until the 1900s. In Ohio detailed death records began being used in 1909 when the recording of births and deaths were moved from the Probate Office to the newly-formed Health Department and Bureau of Vital Statistics. 

Monroe County Veterans Services Information 7/31/14 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Gary Lake, Veterans Service Officer   
Wednesday, July 30, 2014 2:50 PM

This month’s article is designed to inform our county veterans and community of potential benefits for service during the Vietnam War, Gulf War, and those exposed to radiation while on active duty.  This year we have been able to assist numerous veterans apply for benefits.   It concerns me that so many veterans are not aware or receiving benefits that they are entitled.  It is important that each veteran evaluate their own physical condition and seek assistance from our office and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to determine if they have any entitlements.

The Veterans Administration is concerned that many Vietnam veterans may regard certain diseases associated with aging, such as prostate cancer or mellitus type II diabetes, as just another illness rather than as the results of their military service in Southeast Asia.  The VA wants these Vietnam veterans to know that they may be eligible for compensation and healthcare for certain diseases associated with Agent Orange, the defoliant sprayed to unmask enemy hiding places in the jungles throughout Vietnam.

As of today, only a small percentage of the 2.6 million men and women who served in Vietnam may be aware of medical conditions they may have due to Agent Orange exposure.  VA presumes that all military personnel who served in Vietnam were exposed to Agent Orange and federal law presumes that certain illnesses are a result of that exposure.  This so-called “presumptive policy” simplifies the process of receiving compensation for these diseases since VA forgoes the normal requirements of proving that an illness began or was worsened during military service.

The Department of Veterans Affairs, effective July 9, 2002, has added Diabetes Mellitus Type II as a presumptive condition for in-country Vietnam veterans who served during the period of January 9, 1962, through May 7, 1975, and who have “adult onset diabetes mellitus”.  In addition Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL) was added to the list of presumptive conditions as of January 23, 2003.  As of November 1, 2010 the following three conditions have been added to the list:  B cell (hairy cell) leukemia, Parkinson Disease, and Ischemic Heart Disease.   These veterans are now eligible for service-connected disability compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) based on their presumed exposure to Agent Orange or other herbicides.