Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, May 15, 2021

MVNews this week:  Page 10

Mountain View News Saturday, May 15, 2021 Mountain View News Saturday, May 15, 2021 10 

Dear Savvy Senior: 

What can you tell me about lung cancer screenings? I was 

a big smoker but quit years ago, so I’m wondering if I 

should be checked out. Former Smoker 

Dear Former Smoker: 

Lung cancer screening is used to detect the presence of lung cancer in otherwise healthy people with 
a high risk of lung cancer. Should you be screened? It depends on your age and your smoking history. 
Here’s what you should know. 

Screening Recommendations 

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force – an independent panel of medical experts that advises the 
government on health policies – recently expanded their recommendations for lung cancer screenings. 
They are now recommending annual screenings for high-risk adults between the ages of 50 and 
80 who have at least a 20-pack year history who currently smoke or who have quit within the past 
15 years. This is a change from the 2013 recommendation that referred to patients ages 55 to 80 with 
30-year pack histories. 

A 20-pack year history is the equivalent of smoking one pack a day for 20 years or two packs a day 
for 10 years. 

In 2020, lung cancer killed more than 135,000 Americans making it the deadliest of all possible cancers. 
In fact, more people die of lung cancer than of colon, breast and prostate cancers combined. 

Lung cancer also occurs predominantly in older adults. About two out of every three people diagnosed 
with lung cancer are 65 or older. 

You’ll also be happy to know that most health insurance plans cover lung cancer screenings to high-
risk patients, as does Medicare up to age 77. 

Screening Pros and Cons 

Doctors use a low-dose computed tomography scan (also called a low-dose CT scan, or LDCT) of the 
lungs to look for lung cancer. If lung cancer is detected at an early stage, it’s more likely to be cured 
with treatment. But a LDCT isn’t recommended for every high-risk patient. 

LDCT scans have a high rate of false positives, which means that many will undergo additional (and 
unnecessary) screening or medical procedures, such as another scan three, six, or even 12 months 
later to check for changes in the shape or size of the suspicious area (an indication of tumor growth). 
For some patients, the anxiety or worry that goes along with waiting can be a real issue. 

Or you may need a biopsy (removal of a small amount of lung tissue), which has risks, especially 
for those with underlying health conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or emphysema. 
For example, in people with emphysema, there’s a chance of a lung collapsing during the 

If you meet the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force criteria for high-risk lung cancer, the University 
of Michigan offers a free online tool (see to help you decide if you should get 
an LDCT. It’s also important to discuss the benefits and risks with your primary care doctor before 
making a decision. 

Tips for Testing 

If you and your doctor determine that you should be screened, look for an imaging facility whose staff 
follows American College of Radiology requirements when performing low-dose CT scans. You can 
find accredited facilities at 

This can help to ensure an accurate read of your scans by a highly trained, board-certified or board-
eligible radiologist. 

You may need a referral from your primary care provider. Most insurance companies, including 
Medicare require this before they’ll cover the cost of screening. 

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit Jim Miller 
is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book. 


Almost Three Years After Her Death, 
Aretha Franklin’s Poor Estate PlanningContinues to Haunt Her Family—Part 2 

Aretha Franklin passed away due to pancreatic cancer in her Detroit 
home on August 16, 2018. At the time, it was widely believed 
she didn’t have a will. As a result, Michigan law stipulated her 
assets would be divided equally among her four adult sons, and 
they agreed to designate their cousin—Franklin’s niece, Sabrina 
Owens—as the estate’s executor. 
Three Wills, a Sofa, and a Spiral NotebookBut in May 2019, nine months after Aretha’s death, Sabrina discovered three different handwritten 
wills while cleaning out the late singer’s home. According to reports, the three documents—
two of which were dated from 2010 and found in a locked cabinet and one dated 
from 2014 which was scribbled in a spiral notebook found under her sofa cushions—contain 
conflicting instructions for how the singer wanted her assets divided and whom she 
wanted as her executor. 

Family Unity Falls Apart

In addition to causing infighting between the brothers, the resulting court battle between 
them also led Sabrina to quit as executor. In January 2020, Sabrina filed her resignation with 
the court, noting that the family feud “is not what [Aretha] would have wanted for us.” With 
Sabrina gone, in March 2020, Oakland County Probate Court Judge Jennifer Callaghan 
appointed an attorney as temporary personal representative for the estate and scheduled 
a hearing for June 2020 to determine whether any of the three handwritten wills can be 
deemed valid. 

A Fourth Will AppearsThe ensuing pandemic caused the 2020 trail to be delayed—and in the interim, yet another 
will was uncovered. This latest version of her will, which was filed in probate court in March 
2021, provides yet more conflicting from Aretha but is stamped as “draft” and unsigned. 

It remains unclear exactly how this document was obtained and why it took so long to 
come to light. And although the fourth will was not signed by Aretha, Michigan law allows 
a deceased person's "intent to be recognized even if the documents are defective in execution." 
As such, the judge scheduled a trial for August 2021 to determine whether any of 
the documents that have been found can be deemed a valid will and therefore govern the 
Queen of Soul’s estate. 

An Incomplete and Inadequate Plan

Based on all the different versions of her will, it’s clear that Aretha cared deeply about her 
four sons and other family members, and she wanted her loved ones to benefit from her 
wealth and other assets. However, she didn’t take her estate planning as seriously as she 
should have. 

What’s more, regardless of which - if any - of Aretha’s wills are ruled valid, her estate is still 
on the hook for millions in back taxes and enormous legal fees. Add to that her sons’ hostility 
towards each other since she died, and it becomes all too clear that Aretha could have 
done a much better job at estate planning. 

With the proper planning, the legendary singer’s loved ones would have had immediate access 
to her assets upon her death, avoiding the need for court involvement altogether and 
she would have kept the contents and terms of her estate totally private. 

Dedicated to empowering your family, building your wealth and defining your legacy, A local attorney and 
father, Marc Garlett is on a mission to help parents protect what they love most. 

His office is located at 55 Auburn Avenue, Sierra Madre, CA 91024. Schedule anappointment to sit down and talk about ensuring a legacy of love and financial security foryour family by calling 626.355.4000 or visit for more information. 


HAPPY BIRTHDAY! …May Birthdays* 

Beth Copti, Marilyn Diaz, Anne Schryver, Jo Ann Williams, Paul Hagan, Lenore Crilly 
Joann Serrato-Chi, Harriett Lyle, Jean Coleman, Birgitta Gerlinger, Donna Mathieson, 
Luciana Rosenzweig, Linda Wochnik, Marian Woodford, Debbie Sheridan, Joanne 
Anthony, Carole Axline, Kika Downey, Shirley Hall, Annie Scalzo, Janet Ten Eyck, Jane 
Thomas, Ray Burley. * To add your name to this distinguished list, please call the paper 
at 626.355.2737. YEAR of birth not required 


Every Monday and Wednesday, 10-10:45 amChair yoga with Paul is coming back! Class be held in the Covered Pavilion in Memorial 
Park in front of the Senior Center. Please join us for some gentle stretching, yoga, balance exercise and overall 
relaxation. Classes will maintain a distance of 6 ft between participants. ALL participants must be wearing 
masks for the duration of the class. All equipment used will be sanitized after each use before it is stored. Each 
participant is responsible for providing their own water, masks and needed equipment or supplies for each class. 
Class size is limited so please call 264-8923 to reserve your spot. 


If you are in need of assistance with your 2020 taxes please know that help is a phone call away. Don Brunner, Tax 
Saver, is not accepting in person consultations at the moment but available for a phone or email consult. Please 
call him at 626-447-8829 or email 

Have you ever thought about trying your hand at writing? Do you have an idea for a book and no idea how to 
begin? This program may be for you! Katy Nishimoto, Senior Editor with Random House, has graciously volunteered 
her time to lead this incredible writers workshop for seniors. Program participants will be given a prompt, 
a 10 minute writing task and a group reading. Discussions, readings and feedback to help guide your creative 
thinking into creative writing. If you have interest in writing nonfiction, a memoir, fiction or poetry then please 
call or email today to reserve your spot. Class will be limited to 10 participants. No writing skills or experience is 
required. Call Lawren Heinz at 626-355-7394 to reserve your spot and receive class information. 

Tuesday, May 18 at 11:00 am Join Lawren in making a delightful, colorful and artistic nail polish marbled mug! 
All supplies will be provided for you and we will meet in the Hart Park House patio. Please wear clothes you don’t 
mind getting nail polish on. To reserve your spot or ask questions please call Lawren Heinz at (626) 355-7394 or 
send an email to 


 Do you have any ideas for programming? Is there a class or club you would like to see in our Senior Community? 
Please call or email Lawren Heinz with ideas or questions. 626-355-5278 x 704 lheinz@cityofsierramadre. 

 City staff are monitoring email communication daily, and although employees are minimizing direct engagement 
and interfacing less with the community, please note that voice messages, emails, and social media responses 
are being addressed in the most efficient and timely manner. If at any time additional information 
is needed, please contact City Hall Administrative Services at (626) 355-7135, Monday-Thursday from 7:30a 

– 5:30p, as they are taking messages and e-mailing the appropriate per-son. For messages that may trickle in 
otherwise, please note our team is remotely checking voicemail daily at the Community Services Department, 
(626) 355-5278 x702. 
The City of Sierra Madre is following these procedures to provide current communication in light of COVID-19 
and keep the Senior Community and families informed of essential information and resources. City staff are 
monitoring email communication daily, and although employees are minimizing direct engagement and practicing 
social distancing in the community, please note that voice messages, emails, and social media responses are 
being addressed in the most efficient and timely manner.
If at any moment additional information is needed, please contact City Hall Administrative Services at (626) 
355-7135, Monday-Thursday from 7:30a – 5:30p, as they are taking messages and e-mailing the appropriate 

For messages that may trickle in otherwise, please note our team is remotely checking voicemail daily at the 
Community Services Department, (626) 355-5278 x702.
Community Services Department will continue email communication with Senior residents and aging community 

If you know of family members or neighbors who may benefit from accessing information electronically, and 
to receive the department’s Seniors Newsletter via email but may not otherwise have been included on an email 
group list, please send your request with email address to the following team members: Lawren Heinz Lheinz@ and Clarissa Lowe
City Social Media will continue via Facebook as well as Instagram, and information sharing will include updates 

as details becomes available. 


A Weekly Religion Column by Rev. James Snyder 


Nobody is perfect except maybe 
the Gracious Mistress of the 
Parsonage comes close.
I've never caught her in some 
imperfection, or if I had, nobody would know 
it from me. 
There is such an obsession today for people to be 
perfect. And, of course, their definition of perfect 
is what they are. They judge everybody by 
themselves, which is insane in itself.
Often my wife will catch me in something and 
say, "Are you acting like a knucklehead?"
If only she knew I wasn't acting. The simple 
fact is, I don't know everything I'm supposed 
to know. I don't know what I'm not supposed to 
know. It gets rather confusing after a while, and 
it slips over into the area of knuckleheadhood.
When it comes to fixing things, I am the classic 
knucklehead. If something is broken, I can make 
it more broken in just a few minutes.
If the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage sees 
something broken, she can fix it in the twinkling 
of an eye. I married her because of that twinkle 
in her eye. At the time I didn’t know what it really 
On occasion, I've been with her when she took 
her van to the repair shop. It is the most delightful 
experience I could ever have.
When the repair person sees my wife coming in, 
he thinks she is just a woman. Boy, is he in for a 
She takes the repair person to her vehicle and explains, 
in detail, what is wrong with the vehicle 
and how to fix it. 
She will say to him, "I can fix it; I just don't have 
the time today."
He will look at her; rubbing his chin as he looks 
at me. Then he will explain to my wife what 
needs to be done and how he's going to do it.
Wrong step.
Again, she will tell him exactly what's wrong and 
exactly what he needs to do to fix it. Then she 
will say, "If it's not fixed the way I tell you, I am 
not going to pay for it."
Fortunately, for him, he fixes it precisely the way 
she wants it. Another life saved. 
Where she got all that knowledge about a vehicle, 
I do not know. I never question; I always go 
along. After all, she has saved me a lot of money 
by fixing things herself.
One time there was something wrong with our 
air conditioning, and the repairman came to fix 
it. Again, she told him exactly what was wrong 
with it. 
Then she walked away. In a few moments, he 
came back and said, "I'm going to have to go to 
my garage and get a tool I need to fix this." 

She looked at him and said, “What tool do you 
"Oh, you would not know what it is. It's something 
special for my work."
"Tell me what it is; maybe I have it."
He laughed a hearty chuckle and then told her 
the tool he needs. 
"I have that tool. Let me go to my garage and 
get it and bring it to you, and you won't have to 
leave; you can fix it right away."
He looked at her, rubbed his chin, looked at me, 
and then took the tool she brought to him. He 
walked to where he was doing his repair work, 
shaking his head every step of the way.
When it comes to work like this, I am a professional 
knucklehead for sure. I wouldn't know 
one tool from another, which can get me into 
We are closing in on the 50th anniversary of our 
wedding. I have yet to find something she can’t 
fix. And believe me, I have broken a lot of things 
throughout our life.
One time, the front bumper on my truck was 
broken and sagging. I told my wife that I would 
take it to the repair shop to get it fixed.
“No,” she said as she walked back into the house, 
“let me fix it for you.” 
Well, in a few minutes, she came out with several 
very large paperclips, and in a few moments, she 
had the bumper clipped to the truck.
"There," she said, "it's fixed; you don't have to 
take it to the repair shop."
I left very heartily, knowing that the paperclips 
did not fix the problem, but I did not want to tell 
her in front of her. I thought I would play out the 
game until the paperclips fell off.
That was three years ago, and they're still in 
I still don't know how that works. But, as a 
knucklehead, I'm not going to pursue it and end 
up in a swamp of insanity. If it works, it works.
The other week I tripped and fell and thankfully 
did not break any bones. My fear is if I break 
my arm, she will want to fix it right away. I'm 
not saying she can't fix it, but I don't want to go 
Perhaps this is why our marriage is so good. She 
has fixed everything that was broken, and I think 
she has done most of them behind my back.
As I thought of this, I was reminded of one of 
my favorite Bible verses. "Can two walk together, 
except they be agreed?” (Amos 3:3).
To “walk together in agreement” is probably the 
most wonderful thing about a marriage. 

Dr. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, 
1471 Pine Road, Ocala, FL 34472. 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 
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