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Honoring, educating in Older Americans Month
Senior moments
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I’ve been writing this column consistently for more than a year, and at the end of each article is my name and title, along with information on how to contact me.  
What’s interesting about my byline is my title.
Although I am the executive director for The Suites at Station Exchange, a senior-living community, we have had no residents to care for because our community has been under construction for the last nine months.  
I’m happy to report that The Suites at Station Exchange now is ready for residents. It has been a long time coming, and now I once again can do what I feel I do best: lead a team of wonderful, caring people who will provide love and support to a special group of citizens — our older Americans.  
It seems fitting that we are opening our doors this month, as May is Older Americans Month. According to, this special celebration of seniors originated in 1963 when there were only 17 million people age 65 and older living in the United States. It started out as Senior Citizens Month under President John F. Kennedy and was designated Older Americans Month in 1980 under President Jimmy Carter.
Today, according to Census information on, there are more than 40 million senior citizens living in the U.S. Historically, Older Americans Month has been a time to acknowledge the contributions of older adults to our country, in particular those who defended Old Glory. Every president since JFK has issued a formal proclamation during or before the month of May asking that the entire nation honor and give tribute in some way to older persons in their communities.
As we get ready to open our community that will be dedicated to serving seniors, we also desire to pay tribute to all older Americans who continue to press on and live life with energy and purpose. Please join us at 5:30 p.m. May 20 as we celebrate both our seniors and our grand opening, complete with a ribbon cutting led by Mayor Fowler and The Richmond Hill-Bryan County Chamber of Commerce.
This year’s theme for the month is “Safe Today, Healthy Tomorrow.”  The top safety issues for our seniors continue to be concerns regarding falls, burns, accidental poisoning, automobile accidents and issues with safe medication administration.
Consider the fact that falls (and complications from falls) are a top cause of death for woman age 75 and older, and for men age 80 and above. If there is one thing we can do to help our older Americans, it would be involving them in a comprehensive fall prevention program.  
Falls are not something we should expect to happen just because we are getting older. Many times, the reason we struggle doing anything is because we’ve stopped doing everything. We have to change this attitude.
To learn more about fall prevention strategies and healthy, active lifestyles, join us May 20 and we’ll celebrate the opening of our new senior residence and our older Americans.

DeLong is the executive director of The Suites at Station Exchange. Call him at 912-531-7867 or go to

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