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Taylor takes seniors' safety very seriously

March 13, 2006|by MARLO BARNHART

When R. Wayne Taylor retired in 1995 after working for CSX for 39 years, he wanted to find an outlet for his energy and his expertise.

"I had worked with a lot of police agencies over the years while I was investigating corporate fraud for CSX," Taylor said. So when Triad was formed 10 years ago, he saw it as a good opportunity to contribute to the community.

The Triad organization partners the three police agencies in Washington County with seniors for the purpose of improving the quality of life and protection for older citizens. AARP also has been actively involved from the start.

"Ten years ago, I saw a notice in the newspaper, so I called someone and then went to a meeting," Taylor said. The original organizers who are still active include Taylor, Mary Della-Toffalo, Catherine Wright, Arlene Messersmith and the group's adviser, Washington County Sheriff's Deputy 1st Class Jim Holsinger.

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The group focuses on improving the lives of seniors. The members promoted a program called Seniors Calling Seniors to check up on people living alone in their homes, Taylor said.

Refrigerator cards and wallet cards containing vital medical information were printed so if emergency personnel had to respond to a senior's home, that information would be readily available.

"We distribute them to doctors' offices and pharmacies in a little holder," Taylor said.

Washington County Hospital helps Triad pay for printing the cards.

Taylor said Triad requests money each year from the Washington County Gaming Commission. Most recently, Triad received $2,000 to help support its work.

Triad also provides dolls for children who have been involved in accidents or other incidents where cuddling a soft toy can be soothing.

One of the crucial goals of Triad, Taylor said, is to provide seminars several times a year to help seniors deal with fraud, medical concerns, Alzheimer's Disease, safety and other topics.

The next scheduled seminar is March 16, during which an overview of Alzheimer's and dementia will be given. The free seminar begins at 1:30 p.m. at AMVETS Post 10 on Frederick Street.

Triad also is helping train 20 volunteers about elder abuse prevention in nursing homes. Holsinger is instructing the class, Taylor said.

Born in Washington County, Taylor, 73, graduated from Hagerstown High School in 1949. He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1952-56, and later was in the Air Force Reserve and the West Virginia Air Guard for 35 years, retiring as a colonel.

Taylor and his wife, Nancie, have one son, William.

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