Friday, September 23, 2016

Author Sue Ellis Charms Readers Again

Sue Ellis, an eminent writer who also is a retired postal worker at Rockford, has two more chaming stories published; a fiction story, Lovely Mend, at  Mused Bella Online Literary Review,  and an essay, Remembering Billly, at Clever Magazine.

Sue is a member of Internet Writing Workshop , and thanked Prose-P, for critiques on both.

Read more Yahoo's at Internet Writing

You'll find Sue's stories in earlier posts such as,  Worley–Spotlight, published by Idaho Magazine.

MUSED - Bella Online Literary, published Going Home, by Sue Ellis, in their Summer 2014 Volume 8, Issue 2. This story gives life to a house built on the Palouse in 1909 while weaving into it the vagaries of raising a family in Waverly, Washington. She also portrays the vintage home in it's new life today.

Readers who are familiar with Ellis's charming stories won't want to miss this one in which she outdoes her usual superior evocative and charming style.

Another earlier story, a very short piece of fiction, is published in the Short Takes at Persimmon Tree, where you'll need to scroll down to read her story about a tree-faller, enticingly titled
Burned Pancakes. 

Also, enjoy Sue Ellis' stories that have been highlighted here in past issues:

Life on the Palouse History - A Bucket of Dirt Clods, published in Poor Mojo's Almanac(k) Classics 2000-2011.

Living On The Edge, published at Blue Lyra Review.

Friends a delightful poem about her great-granddaughter Mici and a year-old Labrador pup.

Poetry and Short Stories by Sue Ellis Published , includes links to a few of her delightful stories, published at a variety of venues.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Changes in Who Decides Your Medical Treatment

What my husband and I perceive from recent appointments with several doctors is that doctor's no longer make the decision on what treatment is best for their patient.

Instead, they provide their patient with information and then the patient must choose what he or she wants for their lifestyle.

I liken this new way to handing a person an artist’s palette, some tubes of paint, plus pastel chalks, charcoal, watercolors, brushes, and other artist's tools, and telling the person to create the picture they envision. Or, put a person into a shop full of equipment and tools and tell the person to create what they want!!

It’s true that the good old days recalled by any elderly person, of going to your doctor and having him or her diagnose your illness and provide proper treatment has been replaced. Nowadays, the patient is questioned, is sent for tests, and then the doctor gives a diagnosis based on the tests rather than how the patient feels.
This is followed by one or more referrals to specialists ~ who then describe the problem to the patient and offer choices of treatment options  ~ for the patient to decide what is the proper treatment for them so that they will achieve the lifestyle they prefer.

Your doctor’s online Patient Portal may or may not help you with this "NEW" way of doctoring. When we asked if having a Patient Portal was mandatory, the receptionist told us it is not mandatory for a patient to have one, but doctors without a high enough percentage of patients who do have a Patient Portal are fined by the government. Whether or not that’s true, we don’t know.

What is your Patient Portal and is it important?
Yes, your Patient Portal is important to you. However, there are many types. Standardization of the technology in the healthcare services industry have been slowed down due to internal factors, such as resistance to changes in medical practice patterns, new costs to train staff and ongoing costs to maintain the validity and relevance of computerized order systems, and concerns revolving around compliance with future medical standards.

Your doctor’s office will help you set up your Patient Portal, which provides you with online access to your medical records. When you’ve mastered setting up the portal, which requires a “Signin” name and a “password”, become acquainted with how to navigate it; how it works, where you find what you want to know, how information is edited, and how to contact your medic. has an excellent download for frequently asked questions (FAQ). Scroll to "FAQs about the Patient Portal (for Patients)" and click the Download. Save it on your computer so you can refer to it when you need answers.

Among other things, Patient Portals basically include:
  •  Appointments, past and upcoming.
  •  Tests and their results
  •  Patient's medical history & patient’s family medical histories
  •  Patients medications, current and past
Beware: Unless you’re educated in reading test results yours won’t tell you what you need to know. However, test results can be a real asset for patients who research, and research, and research until they match their symptoms precisely with a disease or disorder.

Online research can lead to organizations and groups that specialize in disorders you’ve never heard of, and therefore, be hugely beneficial ~ if you study them closely.

Nevertheless, many websites you find can also be dangerously misleading and provide false information. Proceed with caution.

Pay heed to these new changes, because whether you like them or not, it is how medical treatment works today, and it behooves the patient to understand them as fully as possible.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Costly Facts About Medicare Observation and Outpatient Hospital Admittance

I've always been skeptical of email fowards. You know the ones, FWD: followed by some subject that holds little or no interest. However, the title on this FWD, Hospital Stay - Important please read, indicated a topic that interests me. So I read it.

Having recently been admitted to a couple of hospitals for medical observation myself, with Medicare covering all of the hospital and doctor charges except pharmacy, I didn’t believe what the writer described.

However, after doing intensive research, I found the circumstances that made his saga ring true.

Following instructions at bottom of page 40 in the 2016 Medicare & You publication, I studied the important, lengthy explanation. Are You a Hospital Inpatient or Outpatient?

Scroll down to see how it applies to this man’s experience! Observation in an intensive care unit, ICU, is not covered by Medicare. My advice? Study your 2016 Medicare & You book, because it spells out the circumstances under the various categories on admittance, including "observation", are not covered.

Read also, "Your Medicare coverage choices".

The following is the original FWD: Hospital Stay - Important please read. SENIORS BETTER READ THIS!!! from a senior gentleman in Mesa , Arizona:
"Family, Friends, Neighbors, and former Classmates, I just found myself in the middle of a medical situation that made it very clear that "the Affordable Care Act" is neither affordable, nor do they care. 
"I'll go back about seven years ago to a fairly radical prostate surgery that I underwent. The Urologist who performed the surgery was very concerned that it was cancer, though I wasn't told this until the lab report revealed it was benign.

"Since that procedure, I have experienced numerous urinary tract infections, UTI's. Since I had never had a "UTI" prior to the prostate surgery, I assumed that it is one of the side effects from surgery, an assumption since confirmed by my Family Doctor.

"The weekend of March 8-9, I was experiencing all the symptoms of another UTI. By Monday afternoon the infection had hit with full force.  Knowing that all I needed was an antibiotic, I went to an Urgent Care Center in Mesa, AZ, to provide a specimen a requirement for getting the prescription. After waiting 45 minutes to see the Doctor, I started getting very nauseous and light-headed.

"I went to the Receptionist to ask where the  bathroom was, as I felt that I was going to throw up. I was told that I would have to wait for the Doctor because I would have to leave a specimen, and they didn't want me in the bathroom without first seeing him.

"That was when the lights went out. My next awareness was that of finding myself on the floor (in the waiting room) having violent dry heaves, and very confused.  At this point, I tried to stand up but couldn't make it, and they made it very clear they weren't going to let me get up until the ambulance got there.

"By the way, when you're waiting to see the Doctor and you pass out, you get very prompt attention.

"Now, "the rest of the story", and the reason for sending this to so many of you. I was taken to the nearest hospital, to emergency. Once there, I was transported to an emergency Examination room.

"Once I had removed my clothes and donned one of those lovely hospital gowns, I finally got to see a Doctor.  I asked "what is going on?  I'm just having a UTI. Just get me the proper medication and let me go home."

"He told me that my symptoms presented the possibility of sepsis, a potentially deadly migration of toxins, and that they needed to run several tests to determine how far the infection had migrated. For the next 3 hours, I was subjected to several tests, blood draws, EKG's, and demands for specimens.

"At about 7:30 [p.m.], the nurse came back to my room to inform me that one of the tests takes 1- 2 days to complete. I asked if they [the results] could be emailed, at which point she informed me that I wouldn't need them emailed because I wasn't going anywhere. I did tell her I wanted to see the doctor because I had no intention of staying overnight.

"Now, this is what I want each of you to understand. Please read these next sentences carefully.

"The doctor finally came in to inform me that he was going to admit me.  I said, "Are you admitting me for treatment or for observation?"

"He told me that I would be admitted for observation.

"I said, "Doctor, correct me if I'm wrong, but if you admit me for observation, my Medicare will not pay anything. This due to the Affordable Care Act."

"He said, "That's right, it won't."

"I grabbed my bag of clothing and said, "Then I'm going home."

"He said you're really too sick to be going home, but I understand your position. This health program is going to hit seniors especially hard.

"The doctor then left the room and I started getting dressed.  I was just getting ready to put my shoes on when another doctor [the closer] came into the room. He saw me dressed and said, "Where do you think you are going?"

"I simply said "I'm going home."

"To which he replied, quite vociferously, "No you aren't."

"I said, "Doc, you and I both know that under the "Affordable Care Act" anyone on  Medicare who is admitted to a hospital for observation will be responsible for the bill. Medicare won't pay a cent." At which point he nodded in affirmation.

"I said, "You will either admit me for a specific treatment or you won't admit me."

"Realizing he wasn't going to win this one, he said he would prepare my release papers. A few minutes later, the discharge nurse came to my room to have me sign the necessary papers, relieving them from any responsibility.  I told her I wasn't trying to be obstinate, but I wasn't going to be burdened with the full [financial]responsibility for my hospital stay.

"After making sure the door was closed, she said, "I don't blame you at all, I would do the same thing."  She went on to say, "You wouldn't believe the people who elect to leave for the same reasons, people who are deathly sick, people who have to be wheeled out on a gurney."

"She further said, "The 'Affordable Care Act' is going to be a disaster for seniors. Yet, if you are in this country illegally, and have no coverage, you will be covered in full."

"This is not Internet hype folks, this is real. I just experienced it personally. Moving right along, this gets worse. Today I went to a [required] follow-up appointment with my Arizona Family Practitioner.  Since my white count was pretty high, the follow-up was important.

"During the visit, I shared the experience at emergency, and that I had refused to be admitted. His response was "I don't blame you at all, I would have done the same thing." He went on to say that the colonoscopy and other procedures are probably going to be dropped from coverage for those over 70."

"I told him that I had heard that the "Affordable Care Act" would no longer pay for cancer treatment for those 76 and older, is that true? His understanding is that it is true. The more I  hear, and experience the Affordable Care Act, the more I'm beginning to see that we seniors are nothing more than an inconvenience, and the sooner they can get rid of us, the better off they'll be.

"We can have an impact on this debacle by letting everyone in Congress know that their responsibility is to their constituents, not the president and not the lobbyists. We need to let them ALL know that they are in office to serve and to look after the BEST INTERESTS of "we the people," their employers, and not to become self-serving bureaucrats who serve only out of greed. And if they don't seem to understand this simple  logic, we'll fire them.

"REMEMBER: Demand [that]your hospital admission is for TREATMENT and NOT for OBSERVATION! Don't believe this? Ask your doctor.


"Lord, keep your arm around my shoulder and your hand over my mouth.”

My advice? Study these: 
Are You a Hospital Inpatient or Outpatient? and ,"Your Medicare coverage choices".
When you need help, these agencies have typically provided information about their state's SHIP programs. First, Locate your local Area Agency on Aging by visiting Elder Care Locator. Once on the site, enter your zip code or city/state, and your local agency should populate.

Also, towards the bottom of the search results, the contact information of the SHIP programs in that territory or state are typically displayed.

Another resource that you may find useful in locating SHIP information for your locality is,

Good luck!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Freeman HS Alumni Received Special Recognition at Navy Week in Kansas City, MO

Roy Vanek, Senior Chief Explosive Ordnance Disposal, assigned to Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group (EODGRU) had a prominent role in the success of Navy Week, held in Kansas City, MO.

On August 17th, America's Navy wrote, "[Sailors from] The world's largest Navy arrived to the "City of Fountains," Aug. 17, 2015 to begin Kansas City Navy Week, a week-long series of community and
outreach events."

Vanek received special recognition from Vice Admiral William Hilarides, commander of the Naval Sea Systems Command, and Mayor Sly James for his performances.

Video #1 and Video #2  feature Roy and his EOD crew. 
Roy wrote, "The first video is of me giving an interview with the reporter in a bombsuit.  The second video is a photos of me and my team diving in the aquarium and interacting with the kids.  I'm the diver in the full wetsuit with the long sleeves and pants." Spectators watched the  exciting events taking place inside the aquarium.

Navy EOD is this is a dangerous job, requiring both intelligence and courage. Many Kansas City news media published stories depicting one of Roy's more enjoyable assignments. Two stories are in America's Navy, "EOD Sailors Make a Splash at the Kansas City Sea Life Aquarium", and here .

After parting from his classmates and football team members when he graduated from Freeman High School at Freeman, Wash., Roy joined the Navy EOD 19 years ago, when he was 17.

Newsroom America  published the following story, written by By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Jennifer Gold, Navy Office of Community Outreach.

EOD assignments have taken Vanek all over the world. Some of his assignments have been guarding the President of the United States, and guarding visiting foreign dignitaries. Additionally, he has participated in many critical EOD missions, and also trained EOD units in other countries.
KSHB (NBC) August 18, 2015,
Action News Midday.

WDAF (FOX) August 21, 2015 FOX 4 News at 6AM

Freeman High School can be proud of the part their school system played in Senior Chief Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Roy Vanek's success.

Independence School District, August 18, 2015, (
Article and Photos), Highly-Skilled Navy Explosives Technicians Meet ISD JROTC, PLTW Students.

The Examiner, August 20, 2015, By: Mike Genet
Navy team visits schools to promote
STEM studies.
Recently returned from Guam, where he met his wife, Chubasca "Bas", they are currently stationed in San Diego, CA. Vanek has numerous relatives and friends in the eastern Washington, northern Idaho, and western Montana region, all of whom, like the nation, appreciate his service.


Friday, July 10, 2015

Always Ask Before Being Admitted to a Hospital ~ Am I An Outpatient? Or Am I An Inpatient?

When being admitted to hospital, no matter the reason, you will be confronted with a bewildering array of paperwork. You may be unaware that 'admitted' includes two categories -- 'inpatient' and 'outpatient.' If you have Medicare Part A, Part B and Part D insurance policies YOU SHOULD ASK - "Am I an inpatient or outpatient?"

You do not have a choice, because Medicare sets the criteria. However, you should know because being an outpatient could be costly to you. Medicare rules define medications for which you have a prescription from your doctor as "Prescriptions (Self-Administered Drugs)." As an outpatient you are responsible for payment when a "self-administered" drug is given to you from the hospital pharmacy.
"Their cost can be extremely prohibitive, and in many cases Medicare members discover an outpatient is responsible for the hospital fees for those prescription drugs too late," Rod Haynes, Centers for Medicare Medicaid Services (CMS)/ Consortium for Medicare Health Plans Operations (CMHPO) Region 10, said.
This government publication explains how it works. 

You need to be very clear about which prescription drugs your Medicare-D insurer covers, and the conditions under which they pay, or in some instances, DO NOT PAY. This is vital knowledge before allowing the hospital to remove any self-administered drugs you've brought with you. Medicare rules stipulate,
"If you bring your prescription(s) from home, we [the hospital] are required to obtain approval from your physician prior to use. In addition, a hospital pharmacist must verify and certify the medication before it can be used in the hospital. There is a small fee for the medication verification."

There is no standing Medicare rule mandating that hospitals must allow patients to bring in their prescriptions when receiving care. Individual hospitals may or may not choose to permit this practice.
Why will prescription drugs you've brought (whether you're a patient in the ER or in a hospital bed) be sent home, leaving you to take medications from the hospital pharmacy instead? In most hospitals today there is no procedure whereby you can be charged a small fee and allowed to save substantial sums; the difference between what you will be charged for the hospital pharmacy's medications and your brought-from-home prescriptions. Even though they are identical.

Sean E. Dobbin, PharmD, Director of Pharmacy, Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center & Children's Hospital, explained that hospitals use digital-coding systems, much like the bar codes on items sold in stores. Hospital digital-codes coordinate your every medical procedure, including the medications you're given.

When a nurse scans the band attached to your wrist, it must match the digital-code on the medication being given. Although hospital administrators are concerned about the resulting high cost to patients, hospitals have not yet designed an efficient method to enter prescription drugs brought to the hospital by patients into their digital-coding system.
Complexities preventing this include: How can a hospital pharmacist ascertain the patient brought prescriptions that,
  • Have been stored properly?
  • Aren't from an expired batch?
  • Are the strength the doctor prescribed?
  • Or that dosage changes haven't been made since the prescription was written?
Hospital pharmacy fees for one dose can equal or exceed the price of a thirty-day supply of the identical medication sold at your pharmacy -- a substantial difference for which your Medicare-D insurer may not reimburse you.

Many diseases require medications that are catastrophically costly, yet vital to the patient. To miss even one dose may be highly risky or even deadly, but it's up to each hospital whether or not to accept the risk/liability of a patient bringing their prescriptions from home. Before relinquishing your medications, insist on meeting with the hospital pharmacist prior to taking any medication. This way, rules can be agreed on in advance regarding your self-administered drugs, or any drugs you know your Medicare-D has restrictions for.
The Medicare Rules also stipulate, "As a courtesy, we will bill your supplemental insurance on an "assignment" basis. This means we will ask the insurance company to pay us directly. Any amount not covered by your insurance will be your responsibility."
This does not apply to medications in the self-administered category. According to a finanial counselor at Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center and Children's Hospital, Spokane, WA, it means the hospital may bill for covered medications under Medicare Part A Supplement Plan. Hospitals do not bill insurance companies for self-administered prescription drugs received from the hospital pharmacy that are covered by Medicare-D insurance. The patient is billed and bears the responsibility to file a claim for reimbursement from their insurer.
Haynes said Part D is a separate matter entirely. "While hospital pharmacies are technically permitted to contract with Part D plan, it is very rare for them to do so because of financial constraints. If a hospital is willing to submit a patient's Outpatient drug claims to his or her Part D plan for reimbursement prior to billing the patient directly, such an arrangement would be entirely up to the hospital pharmacy. There is no Medicare rule mandating that the hospital do this," he said. The patient is left to suffer the consequences – or seek relief.

If for any reason you haven't reached an agreement with the hospital pharmacy beforehand, as soon as you receive their bill for the self-administered drugs you were given as an Outpatient, promptly talk to the hospital's Financial Counselor and to the Director of Pharmacy. Explain circumstances you feel should be considered, and request an adjustment. There are 'conditions' the hospital can apply to mitigate the charges.

If you need to file a claim for reimbursement from your Medicare D insurer, obtained the Prescription Drug Claim Form from the hospital's Outpatient Pharmacy Billing Department. The hospital pharmacist needs to fill out a form for each self-administered drug the hospital has billed for. Send your claim for reimbursement from your Medicare-D insurer before that insurer's deadline; keep copies.

If your claim is denied, attach copies from  your original claim and file an appeal. If a medication is not covered under your Medicare-D policy present the facts to the hospital's Director of Pharmacy and requested a review by that department. The charges may be mitigated and dismissed because of 'conditions' that meet certain criteria at that hospital.

If your insurance doesn't cover the costs, and you fail to get remediation from the hospital pharmacy, meet with the hospital's Financial Counselor. You may qualify for financial assistance, or at least be able to arrange an acceptable payment plan.

Sources:, the Official U.S. Government site for Medicare.
Search self administered drugs to get a the (pdf) Publication, "Self Administered Drugs" It explains how Medicare covers self-administered drugs given in hospital outpatient settings.
Here you can find 118 Publications that answer Medicare questions.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

"Worley Spotlight," by Sue Ellis Published in July "Idaho Magazine"

Fans of former Palouse resident, author Sue Ellis, can enjoy another of her charming stories, Worley–Spotlight, published by Idaho Magazine.

Congratulations, Sue!

Fellow Internet Writing Workshop  [IWW], member, Paul Fein, had this to say,
"Sue, I thoroughly enjoyed your engaging, authoritative piece."

His favorite sentence for pure writing in Worley Spotlight is:
"By then they were stoop-shouldered from years of leaning into a task, and their faces were creased like roadmaps to kindness."
Paul also said,
"Readers will really appreciate the history you've given them."
 He cited the following paragraphs in particular:
"The many businesses that lined Worley’s main street are dramatically fewer than they used to be, unable to complete with the nearby casino or the lure of better bargains within a forty-minute drive to either Coeur d’Alene or Spokane."
"The Grange is a fraternal organization whose roots go back to 1867. The brainchild of Oliver Kelley, it was created at the urging of President Andrew Johnson as a means of bringing people of the southern and northern states back together after the Civil War. It succeeded. A lot of good was accomplished by the cooperation of dues-paying members over the years."
Tennis fans applaud Paul Fein's websites, Paul Fein's Tennis Confidential and Greatest Tennis Quotes, Insights and Zingers .

Monday, May 25, 2015

How to Find Your Ancestors in Limited Edition Regional History Books

Until Karen Drain read a newspaper account about her Honberger ancestors in Behind These Mountains , she said,
“I knew only that they were present for part of Heron’s history, for good or for bad! I found your books through genealogy research. My ancestor is listed in a newspaper clipping you included in a book.
When I found the listed page, I thought that the books would provide great reading material for my [91-year-old] Great Uncle Jack, who is helping me build the family tree. [And] my thoughts of buying your books in hardcopy were my only hope of sharing them with him."
She’d read the 1919 Sanders County Independent Ledger account of a “saloon keeper” whose business had been robbed. She contacted me. I connected her with people still living in the Heron area who might be helpful. Through them, she touched bases with others who also added to her knowledge about her family connection to former Heronites.
Karen said,
“Heidi [Dettwiler], Phoebe Harker, Linda Rocheleau, Fredi Pargeter, and Helen Meadows have all reached out to me and I am so humbled by everyone’s generosity in assisting me in my family search. You all are so wonderful!”
However, the Behind These Mountains trilogy she wanted to purchase has become rare out-of-print collectible books. Like most regional history books, they were limited editions; 1,000 volume 1 copies and only 500 copies of volumes 2 and 3.
Until I told her about requesting books through Inter-library loan, Karen wasn’t aware of that library service.  A librarian searches for them and when located, requests a copy that library clients can check out to read.
In 2009, Kindle editions of Behind These Mountains, Volumes I, II & III became available. Since there are about 1,000 vintage photographs from homesteader’s private albums in them I also offer .pdf formatted editions of the trilogy on a DVD for $50. The .pdf editions are a popular choice for those wanting print books because I include permission for a buyer to print [or have printed] a personal copy of each approximately 1200 page book. Karen elected to buy the DVD.
“I received my DVD today,” she wrote, “and I cannot wait to begin reading [on her computer’s large screen]! My hope is to print out a chapter at a time and send it to my great Uncle Jack. .. My thought is that he will have something to look forward to every week as I send him one or two chapters at a time.

I believe I mentioned that Jack is 91 and he doesn’t even have a working television, let alone a computer. His phone is not a fancy one either so hardcopy is the only way for him to read your book. I want to [print and] send a few chapters at a time so he has something to look forward to and he will check his mail more often than he does! Thank you so much for sharing all of your research!”
Her uncle plans to save the printed chapters and someday return them to Karen.
As she began reading the .pdf copies on her computer, Karen discovered Heron was beset in 1909 by smallpox brought in by a child who had returned from visiting relatives back east. Coincidentally, her relative, Flora Emma Honberger Dingley, died in Heron in January 1909. Now she wonders if smallpox caused Mrs. Dingley’s demise.
In a post on my Bygone Montanans blogspot, which is designed to help people with their genealogy research, I shared family information and photos of the Honberger and Dingley ancestors in Heron, that Karen had sent.
She responded, 
“Thank you for sharing my family history in your blog. Perhaps another family member will read it and add to the information. We are shaking the bushes, so to speak… We are very thankful to find you and your work.”
Laura Becquart, David Miller, Cindy Raynor, Tracey Lewis and Teresa Morkert are also among those who found the regional Montana history online.
When he got in touch, David said, 
Laura also emailed, 
“My name is Laura Becquart and I am interested in purchasing the pdf printable version of Behind These Mountains. I already have the book for volume 1 [original out-of-print edition], and it contains quite a few pictures. Do you know if the pdf version will contain pictures as well? Also, is the $50 for all three volumes?"
When I replied, she responded,
“Oh, this is too cool - I think I'm actually talking to Mona herself! You even signed my original edition of volume 1. My great uncle Lank (Loren Jameson) was able to get a signed copy for both my Mom and I. My Mom is Lucille Jenkins, the grand-daughter of Lucy Jenkins from Noxon.
My brother was trying to find volume 2 and 3 for my Mom for Mother's Day. I told him I would look around on the Internet and see if I could find anything for him. Of course, there wasn't anything out there, but I did stumble upon your Behind These Mountains website. 
Would it be acceptable for me to mail you a check? I'm fine waiting for you to cash the check before you would mail me the pdf file.”
We emailed back and forth as I related personal memories of times my husband and I enjoyed with her ancestors during the 60-years we lived near Noxon. Her check arrived and the DVD went in the mail the next day.

Tracey Lewis found ancestors in my books, connected with living kinfolk she learned about using Internet reseach, and traveled hundreds of miles to meet some of them in person. As the families connected, they used emails, phone calls and letters, to discover other members of the family tree, and organized a grand family reunion for fhose they found.

We learned much about our Gremaux family ancestors from a little-known out-of-print book in a library in Indiana. More information about that branch, and also the Vanek branch of our family tree, is located in a library in Lewistown, Montana. Many northwestern Montana settlers relocated to the lower Clark Fork River valley from the Plentywood area in Montana. The library there hosts detailed accounts of their lives.
How can you find your ancestors?
  • Locate a library or museum in a town where an ancestor lived. Ask if any regional history books have been published. Request any that you find through Inter-library-loan. 
  • Ask if there is a talking book or digital version. Many old books have been republished in a digital book, or online.
  • Type family names into several online search engines. Each may return different results.
  • Utilize You won’t need to subscribe to if your local library has access that you can use free.
  • Research ancestors through The Church of Latter Day Saints’ genealogy resources. is an excellent resource for locating books, periodicals and authors. The website has a powerful search engine, and is intended to provide convenient access to a large quantity of high-quality content material, mostly published over the last 150 years in America and England. It accesses over one million readable items, and titles of another million items not readable due to copyright.

You, too, might find and learn more about your ancestors in a little known regional history book. In doing so, you'll also make a author as happy as I am ~ knowing my work connects families.You may also have a grand reunion, like Tracey Lewis and her kinfolk, of family tree members you have yet to meet.