Helping Veterans and Their Spouses Qualify for the VA Pension Benefit

One amazing and rewarding aspect of helping veterans and their spouses qualify for the VA pension benefit is learning about their lives and hearing their stories.


 Caregiver Orlando FL - Helping Veterans and Their Spouses Qualify for the VA Pension Benefit

This is a picture of one of our very first clients, Mae, posing with her one and only caregiver from our agency, her beloved Paula. The photo in this picture is a portrait of Mae’s handsome husband, Severio.


When I met this couple, Severio had just celebrated his 100th birthday. Severio truly was a remarkable man. He spoke 8 languages fluently. At 100, he spent part of each day keeping up with current events by reading newspapers in different languages on his i-Mac computer. When I met him, Severio didn’t have some of the records he needed to apply for his VA benefit. I helped him obtain their marriage certificate. In the process of tracking that down, I learned lots of fun facts about their early courtship and their 1945 wedding! Severio was well-organized and he kept lots of his military records, but he didn’t have the exact discharge paper he needed. I helped him complete a detailed form so the VA could locate his discharge records. In the process, I learned that Severio was working in the dining room of a Merchant Marine vessel in the spring of 1944 that docked at the Port of London. His ship stayed in port for over a month while all the mariners were put up in a hotel. It turned out that the military was investigating their backgrounds to be sure they were suitable to participate in a secret mission–taking the troops to the beaches of Normandy on D-Day! At age 100, Severio still remembered D-Day well. He was very proud of his role, and deservedly so. Years later, the U.S. decided to consider merchant mariners who were commissioned for active duty in the U.S. Coast Guard during war time to be eligible for full veterans benefits.

Unfortunately Severio didn’t make it to his 101st birthday. His much younger bride Mae became a widow after 73 short years of blissful marriage. Fortunately, Flourish in Place, with the help of the Veterans Benefits Group, succeeded in transferring their couples benefit to the “surviving spouse” benefit to provide aid and attendance for Mae, so Mae and her Flourish caregiver Paula are still together to this day!

If you or an aging loved-one are considering in-home Caregiver Services in Orlando FL, please contact the caring staff at Flourish in Place Home Care Solutions today.  Proudly serving Orange, Osceola, Seminole, and Brevard Counties. Call 407-845-9797.


About Kim Lee

Robert “Kim” Lee and Melanie Ann Lee founded Flourish in Place to help seniors and adults with disabilities thrive and flourish while leading dignified and independent lives in the comfort and safety of their own homes. Kim and Melanie raised three remarkable children while helping care for Melanie’s wonderful mother, Kathryn, who lived a rich life despite dealing with bipolar disorder all her life and suffering later from post-polio syndrome. Melanie has cared for her intellectually disabled older sister for the past 18 years as Melinda’s court-appointed plenary guardian. Kim’s mother, Betsy, suffers from severe dementia. She lives in her own home with the help of compassionate family members as well as paid caregivers. Kim and Melanie’s life experiences caring for others influenced their desire to help people not merely “age in place” -- but flourish at home. Kim and Melanie are both Certified Senior Care Managers. Kim Lee is the President and Administrator. Kim earned his B.S. in Psychology from Duke University and his J.D. from the College of William and Mary School of Law. Kim practiced law as a shareholder for the prominent Orlando firm of Lowndes, Drosdick, et al. for many years, and then as Chair of the Commercial Litigation Department for Bogin, Munns & Munns. In 2001, Kim joined Rotech Healthcare Inc., a national Durable Medical Equipment company with annual sales of $500 million. The Rotech Board appointed him Chief Legal Officer in 2013. Kim has chaired a nonprofit board and volunteered in many capacities, including key leadership roles in his downtown Orlando church. As leader of Flourish in Place, Kim combines many years of legal experience as an attorney, and business acumen as a national healthcare company senior executive, with a strong passion for the mission of helping others flourish.
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