Author Archives: Dave Freeman

Day trips in & around Sierra Vista

Fort Huachuca:

Welcome to Fort Huachuca, home of the U.S. Army Intelligence Center and the U.S. Army Network Enterprise Technology Command (NETCOM)/9th Army Signal Command. Located in Cochise County, in southeast Arizona, about 15 miles north of the border with Mexico,

Garden Canyon – Garden Canyon is the site of ongoing archeological studies at a prehistoric village near the mouth of the canyon. At higher elevations there is rock art, which includes black and red rock paintings possibly dating to the 12th century A.D. There is also eye-catching white eagle paintings believed to have been done by the Apache artist in the 18th century. This scenic area within Fort Huachuca contains some of the most diverse plant and animal life in the Huachuca Mountains.

Huachuca Canyon – no fee- nice picnic area

 

Fort Huachuca Museum

A national historic landmark, this is the custodian of the southwestern military history. The fascinating history of the U.S. Army and the Southwest comes alive in displays and dramas. Hours are 9 AM to 4 PM weekdays, 1 PM to 4 PM weekends. Call 520-533-5736 or 520 533-3402.

Fort Huachuca Army Intelligence Museum — this Museum traces the Army Intelligence history and other military intelligence gathering equipment from early US military service.. Open Monday through Friday 9 AM to 4 PM. Saturday and Sunday 1 AM to 4 PM. Free. 520 533 – 1107

Buffalo Corral Riding Stables – has horses to rent for groups or individuals by the hour. . Hours of operation are Thursday through Sunday, 9 A.M. – 4 P.M. the last horse out for open riding is 2:45. For more information call     520-533-5220.

Old Post Cemetery, Fort Huachuca – If you like local tales that only tombstones can tell, the Old Post Cemetery is a must see for both the graveyard history buff and the vacationing family looking for local color during a leisurely stroll. Tip: Be sure to check the backs of gravestones for information that can often be more interesting than what is engraved on the front.

Parker Canyon LakeThe 300-acre Parker Canyon Lake recreation area is located in the western foothills of the Huachuca Mountains, 30 miles southeast of Sonoita on Arizona highway 83. There is a campground and a maintained hiking trail which circles the lake.  The 80-acre lake offers both cold- and warm-water fish, including stocked rainbow trout and resident bass, sunfish and catfish.  Directions: Go out the West gate at Ft Huachuca and turn left all the way to the end of the road. Great place to visit and have fun. About a 30 min drive. Free (520) 378-0311.

Sierra Vista:

Located in Cochise County, Sierra Vista is the main commercial, cultural and recreational hub of the area. At an elevation of 4,623 feet, Sierra Vista’s abundant sunshine and clean air combine to make this city a comfortable and pleasant place to live. Also called the humming bird capitol of the world! It is also located at the Main gate to Ft. Huachuca.     Website: http://www.ci.sierra-vista.az.us/cms1

 

Henry F. Hauser Museum

The museum reports on the history and environment of the Greater Sierra Vista Area. A must see complement to the Fort Huachuca Museums. 2950 E. Tacoma Street Sierra Vista AZ 85635 (520) 417-6980 x 560 Open Monday-Friday 9 am to 5 pm. Open Saturdays, October-March, 10:00 am to 2 pm.

Ramsey Canyon Preserve

owned and operated by the Nature Conservatory Ramsey Canyon Preserve the most popular natural viewing areas in the southwest Arizona.

Situated on the East slope of the Huachuca Mountains the 300 acre preserve is home to more than 200 species of rare and engage teenagers plants and animals, including birds that snakes frogs ferns and lilies.

From April through September significant number of migratory hummingbirds are attracted to Ramsey Canyon   To reach Ramsey Canyon take Arizona Highway 92 S. from Sierra Vista to the 327 mile marker turn right onto Ramsey Canyon Road and follow it to its end. The road is paid to it a few yards of the preserve.  . Call 520-378-2785.

http://www.nature.org/wherewework/northamerica/states/arizona/preserves/art1973.html

 

 

Carr Canyon Road (Forest Road 368)
If you look up at the Huachuca Mountains from the town of Sierra Vista, a band of sheer cliffs bends and curves across the face of the mountain range. The relatively flat area above is called the Carr Reef. That is the Carr Canyon Road, the only road into the upper reaches of the Huachuca Range.

This narrow, winding road was built at the turn of the century , to open up Carr Canyon provides the reward of extraordinary views of Sierra Vista, the San Pedro Valley, and a number of surrounding mountains. You’ll find an extensive network of trails that lead throughout the Huachuca Range. www.fs.fed.us/r3/coronado/forest/recreation/scenic_drives/carr_cyn.shtml

 

Our Lady of the Sierras Shrine
High on a hill in the Huachuca Mountains, a 75 foot Celtic Cross beckons visitors to come closer, a large angel with open arms welcomes visitors to the Shrine. Our Lady of the Sierra Shrine. Free admission. Open daily 9 am to sunset. website: http://www.ourladyofthesierras.org/

 

 

San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area

San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area

 

 

 

 

 

 

The San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area, 40 miles of lush riparian vegetation, features an abundance of plant and animal life. The SPRNCA runs along the San Pedro River, from the Mexican border nearly to Saint David and has ten access points. In addition to wildlife the NCA contains the sites of several mining towns, such as Charleston, Millville, Fairbank and Contention City. Evidence of prehistoric cultures can be found at the Murray Springs Clovis Site and the ruins of a Spanish presidio represent the colonial period. The Nature Conservancy has listed the San Pedro as one of the 10 “Last Great Places” in the U.S. The area is generally closed to private vehicular traffic, except by special permit. Find visitor information at the San Pedro House on Hwy 90, 6 miles east of Sierra Vista or call the Bureau of Land Management .

website: http://www.blm.gov/az/st/en/prog/blm_special_areas/ncarea/sprnca.html

 

 

Coronado National Memorial :

The Coronado National Monument is located in Southeast Arizona along the Mexican Border. It consists of 4750 Acres of Oak Woodland and mountainous terrain. It is through this area that Francisco Vasquez de Coronado and his expedition traveled in their search for the fabled “seven cities of Cibola (Gold)” from 1540 to 1542. The national monument has a visitor’s center with a small museum/gift shop, take the Memorial Road to the end.. 520-366-5515. The Visit is free. Great Views of Arizona and Mexico. Take your camera!          website: http://www.nps.gov/coro

 

Murray Springs Clovis Site & Trail

This BLM (Bureau of Land Management) archaeological site was first discovered in 1966. The trail is 1/3 mile long and offers 10 exhibits on life in the Ice Age. Only bones and teeth of the large animals like mommoths, mastodons, giant ground sloths and saber-toothed cats can be found here today.. From Sierra Vista, go east on highway 90 about 4 miles from the intersection of highway 90 and highway 92, to Moson road. Go left (north) 1.1 mile to the entrance road on the right (east). (520) 439-6400

website: http://www.blm.gov/az/st/en/prog/recreation/cultural/murray.html

Cochise County:

Cochise County’s history shaped Arizona and much of the American West

Get away to the heart of Cochise County, Arizona, the Land of Legends.  Wyatt Earp, the Apache leader Cochise, and the famous Buffalo Soldiers all made history here.. In Cochise county you’ll experience the Old West, military history, birding, hiking, the lush Sonoran desert, restored mining towns and much more.

Website: http://www.explorecochise.com

 

Bisbee :

Once the most prosperous Arizona copper mining town, Bisbee is now a modern artist colony perched on picturesque hillsides. Next visit the lavender open pit mine, historic brewery gulch with many scenic bars and many fascinating galleries and shops. About 30 miles east-southeast of Sierra Vista, this landmark offers visitors a unique sense of living history. See the open pit mining or ride the tour trains to experience the history of copper mining in Arizona. Visit the many specialty shops featuring arts crafts: Mary delights and antiques. Bisbee is the seat of Cochise County government and Arizona Main Street city. For information call 520-432 -5421.     Website: http://www.discoverbisbee.com

Queen mine tour — mine tours daily from the historic mining district and circuit surface mine tours. Historic walking tour and Cochise then tours. Write a tram 1500 feet underground and learn about era in Arizona copper mine. 520-4322-07192

Copper Queen Hotel .  Western historic themed rooms  are available and it has a nice restaurant and bar.

Antiques — many antique an old book are stores on the main street

Bisbee Mining and Historical Museum

Exhibits highlight social issues and the daily lives of Bisbee residents nearly a century ago as well as the practice and technology of mining. Fees: Adults $7.50, Seniors (60+) $6.50, Children 16 and under $3.00

website: http://www.bisbeemuseum.org/

Tombstone:

“The town too tough to die” was home of Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday and the Clayton’s. The famous OK Corral is still there. Website: http://www.tombstone.org

 

So is scenic Boot Hill Cemetery and daily staged live shootouts. Tombstone has many exhibits, restaurants, old stores, rides and numerous historic buildings are available for you to see.  Allow at least a half day for fun and exploration. Make sure you take your camera, as you see many historical rascals prowling the street and bars.

Six Gun City – free gunfights the 12 Noon and three o’clock Wednesday through Sunday only confide where you can sit on public tables or food and drink in out of hot sun.

Birdcage Theater – feel free to learn the history of shady Tombstone.

Tombstone Courthouse State historic Park

The original Cochise County courthouse built in 1822 now houses an extensive Museum. Exhibits depict knowledge of famous shootout between the Earp’s and the Clayton gang but also mining and ranching life, which was the life blood of the County. On the second floor is a complete 1880s courtroom. The courthouse also house the jail and visitors can step out into the prisoners exercise yard and do the wooden gallows. A must see in anyone interested in the authentic old West. One dollar for children $4 for 16-year-olds and adults 520-457-3311

Big Nose Kate’s Salon . Enjoy the lighted atmosphere inside Big Nose Kate’s with a long bar and restaurant. It has Beautiful glass murals and offers a store downstairs. Get in from the heat and have a cool drink or sarsaparilla.

Douglas:

Douglas was founded almost 100 years ago. The city of Douglas is characterized by a wealth of distinguished architecture deed to the first quarter of the century. The Gadsden Hotel is the best known of these structures, but architecture and history aficionados also one of visit church square, historical residential district Douglas Williams house museum in the unique Sonora row houses.

Website: http://www.douglasaz.gov

The Gadsden Hotel — listed in the National Register of Historic Places, this opulent hotel was built in 1907. The lobby with sweeping Italian marble staircase where they say Poncho Villa rode his horse up  the steps, features a Victorian chandelier , authentic Tiffany vaulted skylights and a 42 foot stained-glass mural. The hotel offers a restaurant and historical bar. It is located at 1046 G Ave. in Douglas. Phone 520-364-4481

Slaughter Ranch and Museum

During his lifetime, John Slaughter was a Confederate soldier, Texas Ranger, rancher and Sheriff of Cochise County. As a rancher he had to contend with the Chiricahua Apache Indians and their leader Geronimo. He was one of the founders of the city of Douglas. Walt Disney produced a 2 hour program on the life and times of John Slaughter. View the surrounding valley, ranch and sprawling ranch house. John H. slaughter acquired some 65,000 acres of the old San Bernardino land-grant from an air of the original owner. Refusing to seek a third term, Slaughter moved out to the ranch with his family spent the last three decades of his life there. Glimpses into the life of a turn-of-the-century quintal cattle baron as you see the home, wash house, icehouse, granary and commissary. From Douglas take 15th St., East. It becomes the Geronimo Trail. Take this road east approximately 15 miles. Museum is open to the public Wednesday through Sunday 10 AM to 3 PM admission is three dollars per adult

website: http://www.vtc.net/~sranch/

Benson:

Benson sits astride Highway 10 And Hwy. 90 leading to Fort Huachuca and Sierra Vista. Website: http://www.bensonvisitorcenter.com/

 

San Pedro Valley Arts and Historical Museum

Located at 180 S. San Pedro St. in Benson, AZ , 30 miles northeast of Sierra Vista.
Gift shop, museum and art gallery. Displays are of antiques, collectibles, and art exhibits. Open Tuesday – Friday, 10 am – 4 pm, Saturday 10 am – 2 pm, Summer hours 10 am – 2 pm, closed August. (520) 586-3070

 

Kartchner Caverns State Park
In addition to the caverns, this new Arizona state park offers a Discovery Center, campground, above-ground hiking trails, and a hummingbird garden. The hummingbird garden attracts many beautiful butterflies as well as birds. Located on Highway 90, about 10 miles south of the #302 exit from Interstate 10,Kartchner Caverns State Park is open daily, 7:30 am to 6 pm. An entrance day-use fee of $l0 per vehicle (4 people) . The Caves are another fee and you have to register weeks in advance,

Website: http://www.pr.state.az.us/Parks/KACA/index.html

Gammons Gulch:

Re-creation of an 1890’s Town and Mining Camp. Located 12 miles north of Benson. Take Pomerene Rd. to Cascabel Rd. Continue to Mile Marker 6. Shortly you will come to E. Rockspring Road. Hours: Sept.-May: 9 till 4, Wed thru Sun., call ahead to guarantee availability. Closed June thru August, reservations only during these months.

website: http://www.gammonsgulch.com/

 

Cochise’s Stronghold:

Cochise of the Chiricahua Apaches used this natural granite fortress is a haven from the US Calvary. Today the lush wooded area offers picnicking camping and hiking trails. Located 10 miles west of Sunsites.  520-364-3468   website: http://www.cochisestronghold.com

 

Fort Bowie national historic site — established during the Civil War on a former overall mail route, Fort Bowie played a key role in the pursuit of Geronimo and his band of Apaches. Visitors can hike approximately 3 miles to the site of the original Fort, passing the remains of the old Butterfield stage Coach House displays of the visitor Center highlight the colorful history of the Fort  Call 520-874-2500

website: http://www.nps.gov/fobo

 

 

Chiricahua National Monument :

Unique rock formations in the traditional territory of the Chiricahua Apaches a great hiking camping area visitor and sent a visitor’s center and campground are available $4  per vehicle for entrance 520-824-3560 website: http://www.nps.gov/chir

St. David: Pecans are grown in this small quaint town.  It has a monastery with a yearly crafts Festival at the monastery.

Sonoita and Elgin :

Arizona’s southern mountains offer areas for world-class vineyards. You’ll find several wineries in this Sonoita area. Website: http://www.sonoitaelginchamber.org

Sonoita offers the “Steak Out” restaurant. Good steaks and ribs for all.

Patagonia:

Patagonia shares the same coolness of the 4000 foot altitude with Sierra Vista. Patagonia sits astride the Arizona Trail in the Santa Rita Mountains. With a popular under 1000 population in the geography which precludes expansion Patagonia is a peaceful historic town with shops and restaurants. Pentagon offers a circus of curb recreation at Lake Patagonia is a few minutes from Mexico a visit to Lake Patagonia is an easy one day trip from Sierra Vista. Website: http://www.patagoniaaz.com

 

Nogales:

Nogales is about an hour away. This border town crossing into Mexico is the main entry from Southern Arizona to Sonora Mexico and Baja California. To just visit Mexico Park on the American side near McDonald’s (it is a small fee) and walk across. Shopping is only a block away.  Don’t buy anything right away, walk a few blocks ask about prices and buy on the way back. Great restaurants and shops you bargain for everything. You will need a US passport to get back into the United States, since the laws have changed. Military members should check restrictions with your post command. There has been some drug related violence along the border in the last couple of years.

Website:  http://www.cityofnogales.net

 

Tumacacori National Historic Park

An early Spanish colonial mission surrounded by 47 acres of parkland. The mission, now in ruins, was first founded by Father Kino in 1691. This park adjoins the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail. Fees apply.

website: http://www.nps.gov/tuma/

 

Tubac Presidio State Historic Park

Remnants of the military fort established at Tubac in 1752 are featured in an underground display. Exhibits in the Visitor Center illustrate Tubac’s multi-cultural history. An 18th century Santo figure, four-and-a-half-feet tall and depicting St. Francis Xavier, has been painstakingly restored and is on display. Tubac. Open daily 8-5, closed Christmas. Fees apply.

website: http://azstateparks.com/Parks/TUPR/index.html

 

Local Ghost Towns:

Charleston Ghost Town

Eight miles southwest of Tombstone. In its heyday, it was tougher than Tombstone. The U.S. Army used Charleston as a training site for house-to-house combat during WWII. The remains of this wild river camp were virtually obliterated; only a few scattered sheets of tin and heaps of adobe rubble remain today. Park at the San Pedro River Bridge on Charleston Road. Walk north 1/2 mile to ruins.

 

Pearce (partial Ghost Town )

One mile off U.S. 191 from a point 19 miles south of Willcox. This old gold camp once had a population of 2,000 — all of them well supported by the wealth of the Commonwealth mine. Johnny Pearce discovered the mine in 1894. In its heyday, the old Commonwealth was the richest gold digging in southern Arizona. Contains operating store and post office, with many vacant adobes, mine and mill ruins.

 

Fairbank Ghost Town

Fairbank is a “ghost town” located within the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area (SPRNCA), along the San Pedro River. Its life as a town began with the construction of a railroad in 1881, and it soon became an important depot as well as the closest railroad stop to Tombstone, then one of the largest western cities. Still standing are some buildings, such as the Adobe Commercial Building and The Small House. The newly refurbished Schoolhouse includes a museum, open Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm. Hours are subject to change. Free admission, donations welcome

 

Gleeson Ghost Town

16 miles east of Tombstone. Even before the arrival of Spaniards in this area, Indians were mining turquoise near the present site of Gleeson. John Gleeson prospected the area in 1880s. Later, Tiffany’s mined the same blue gem while other interests mined copper, lead and zinc. Contains picturesque ruins, cemetery.  There are still people living in Gleeson.  Please be courteous and respect private property rights.

 

Harshaw Ghost Town

Santa Cruz County; 10 miles southeast of Patagonia. Settled about 1875, this place soon boasted a newspaper, “The Bullion,” saloons, numerous stores, with 100 working mines nearby. Contains stone, adobe ruins, cemetery.

 

Mowry Ghost Town

Santa Cruz County; 15 miles southeast of Patagonia. This small town grew up around an old silver, lead and zinc mine purchased in late 1850’s by Lt. Sylvester Mowry, U.S. Army. Lt. Mowry’s operations were cut short in 1862 when he was charged with supplying lead for confederate bullets. He was jailed at Fort Yuma, and his mine was confiscated by Uncle Sam. Contains extensive ruins.

 

D-Day Guidance

Planning for the day of one’s death is often avoided until it’s too late, causing unnecessary additional grief and anxiety for survivors!

For those who have not prepared a Letter of Instruction (LOI)to address those issues that are not addressed in such documents as Wills, General or Durable Power of Attorney, Instructions to Physician (aka a Living Will), Revocable Trusts and associated Letter of Instructions (LOI); the following is a format for documenting the types of issues and data that are recommended for inclusion in an LOI for your spouse and/or other heirs.

 

If you should decide to do this, save this file to your “My Documents” folder (or wherever you save this kind of personal information).

 

Or merely copy the outline below, paste it as a new document, name it “LOI John and Jane Doe” or a name of your choosing, and date it in the header so that you know when the last electronic update has been made.

 

In either case, you should then begin adapting it as your LOI according to the instructions imbedded in the format, and show as much detail as you determine would be useful in helping your spouse or other heirs put closure on your affairs.

 

Begin by adapting/filling in the details and add or delete specifics as applicable to develop your personal LOI. You should sign and date the LOI and place it in your D-Day (Day of Demise, or title of your choosing) Folder along with other important documents such as your DD-214, last years tax returns, tax estimates for this year, and other applicable documents as mentioned throughout the instructions below. Minor changes can then be done in pencil on a signed hard copy until you decide to update the LOI. You should discard any previous LOIs when you update and print and sign a new version of your LOI – which should be done at least annually.

 

Changes since the last version posted at this website are shown in red in this February 2010 update.

 

 

 

Feel free to pass this on to others who may be interested.

 

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­

John Doe and Mary (nee maiden name) Doe

LETTER OF INSTRUCTION

 

John Doe:  SSAN 123-45-6789

Mary (nee maiden name) Doe:  SSAN 987-65-4321

Address:

Home Phone:

Cell Phone(s):

Living Children, addresses and phone numbers:

a. x

b. x

 

The most current original of this and related documents are located in a D-Day Folder, located in:

 

 

INDEX:

 

Section

A.   Persons/Institutions to notify upon death.

B.   Burial and Funeral Instructions.

C.   Location of Important Papers.

D.   Location of Safe Deposit Boxes

E.   Memberships.

F.   Life and Accident Insurance Policies.

G.   Other Insurance Policies.

H.   Insurance Information on Other Members.

I.    Social Security Numbers.

J.   Bank and Credit Union Accounts.

K.   Bonds.

L.   Shares of Stock, IRAs, and Financial Management Accounts.

M.   Pension, Annuities, and Profit Sharing Plans.

N.   Credit Cards.

O.   Monetary Obligations.

P.   Automobiles.

Q.   Location of Personal Effects.

R.   Matters Relating to House & Other Real Estate Investments

S     Rent or Leases.

T.   Veteran Instructions.

U.   Other Instructions.

V.   Income Tax Filing Information.

 

A. Persons/Institutions to notify upon death.

 

1. Persons to notify:

a. Immediately upon the death of John or Jane Doe:

 

(1) x

(2) x

 

b. Upon the death of a Military retiree, also notify:

 

(1) Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS)

U.S. Military Retirement Pay          (1-800-321-1080)

PO Box 7130        Report death to> (1-800-269-5170)*

London, KY 40742-7130

 

* Notify DFAS of John’s Death and initiate actions to start the Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) Annuity for Jane if applicable. All of the paperwork associated with this can be done at the “Casualty Assistance” office in bldg 21421 at Fort Huachuca. However, none of the paperwork can be done until you have the death certificate in hand, and you must have John’s retirement DD Form 214 (DD-214) “Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty” and latest Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) “Retiree Account Statement” (recommended but not essential ) with you when you go to the Casualty Assistance office. Both Located in D-Day folder.

 

* Upon notification of a retiree’s death, DFAS will take action to recoup retired pay for all of the month of death if the notification was received too late to stop that deposit on the first business day following the month of death. They will take action to withdraw this amount from the financial institution in which the payment was deposited. As part of the process for reporting the death to DFAS, a form will be filled out to initiate action for DFAS to provide the retiree’s pay to the survivor for the number of days the retiree lived during the month of death.  This payment will be in the form of Department of Treasury check mailed to the survivor or heir.

 

If Jane is entitled to SBP, her SBP benefit will be effective the day following the retiree’s death. It is estimated to be ($xxx) per month, 55% of John’s benefit at time of death. A TRICARE Delta Dental Insurance premium (about $32/month and usually increases every year), if enrolled, will need to be deducted from that amount. Federal Income Tax Withholding (FITW) & State Income Tax Withholdings (SITW) will be required to cover SBP income plus any investment income for which no tax is withheld. It is estimated that will need to be about $xxxx FITW per month and about $xxx SITW per month from her SBP annuity. This will have to be done at the time she completes the forms to start SBP. For FITW, she will need to fill out an IRS Form W-4P “Withholding Certificate for Pensions or Annuity Payments” (blank copy in D-Day folder) showing Marital status as Single with “O” Allowances plus an additional $xxx (as may be necessary) per month withholding. For SITW, if they will not let you designate a flat $xxx per month withholding she will need to complete an Arizona Form A-4P (copy in D-Day folder) and check 15% if that is an option, or the next higher percentage. This FITW and SITW and additional Social Security FITW (see Social Security Widow’s benefit below for additional FITW that will be needed) are estimated to be sufficient for John’s year of death (when Jane can still file as married) and the following year in which Jane will have to file as single.

 

(2) TRICARE Retiree Delta Dental of California Program (if enrolled) Group No: 0004601, Subgroup No: 0004. Place a sample EOB in D-Day Folder. 1-888-838-8737*

 

*Notify date of death regarding John’s participation. Stop John’s participation and billing to DFAS retired Pay. Arrange for continuation of the TRICARE Retiree Dental Program (TRDP) plan for Jane and billing to her SBP Annuity from DFAS if it can’t be done as noted above during the processing of her application for SBP.

 

 

(3)  Social Security Administration (1-800-772-1213 or

601 East Twelfth Street  1-800-537-7005)*

Kansas City, MO 64106-2859

or

Social Security (520) 364-1241

520 12TH Street

Douglas, AZ 85607

 

*Funeral Home may take care of all or part of this. If not, notify Social Security Administration (SSA) of John’s Death Regarding John’s Claim No. 123-45-6789A (John’s SSAN). John’s benefit stops at the beginning of the month of his death.

 

If Jane’s Social Security benefits have been based upon John’s earnings because half of his benefit was more than a full benefit based upon her earnings, she will have been receiving benefits equal to one half of John’s earnings under Claim No. 123-45-6789B (John’s SSAN). Her new benefit will be what John had been receiving and will become effective on the first day of the month of John’s death. Jane’s Social Security (SS) claim number and Medicare (MC) claim numbers will both change from 123-45-6789B (spouse entitled to SS & MC under husband’s earnings) to 123-45-6789D (widow entitled to SS & MC based upon husband’s earnings). That does not change her Social Security number, which will always be 987-65-4321. It only changes the benefits claim number.

 

If the Social Security benefits that Jane has been receiving, based upon her own earnings under her Claim No. 987-65-4321A, are less than what John’s benefits were at the time of his death, she will begin receiving the amount that he had been receiving and her claim number will be changed to 123-45-6789D (widow entitled to SS & MC based upon husband’s earnings).

 

Copies of the latest Social Security Administration “Your New Benefit Amount” statements and Social Security Cards for both John & Jane should be located in the D-Day Folder. There is no good reason, or requirement to carry Social Security cards in a wallet or purse

 

If death occurs near the end of a month, it may be too late to stop automatic deposit of respective old benefits, in which case SSA will advise how they will reconcile differences which may require some repayment by Jane after crediting the $250 SSA Death Benefit that she will be entitled to that will be applied to the reconciliation.

 

If her new benefit is based upon John’s earnings, her new benefit should be 100% of John’s benefit at the time of his death, estimated to be about $xxxx beginning 1 Jan next year minus Medicare Part-B cost and Federal Income Tax Withholding (FITW). The amount of FITW that will need to be withhold from her Social Security income is estimated to be about $xxx per month (in addition to the $xxxx FITW per month that will need to be withheld from her Military SBP). A $xxx FITW will be needed from Jane’s Social Security benefit.

 

While the total of $xxxx FITW from SBP plus $xxx FITW from Social Security widow’s benefit per month and $xxx SITW from SBP per month may appear high, it will be needed to cover existing investment and other potential income that has no FITW or SITW withholding.

 

 

(4) Other Retirement or Annuity Plans:

 

 

(5) Veterans Administration

520) 378-0531

Sierra Vista, AZ 85650

 

Take a copy of John’s DD-214, Death Certificate, and a Current annual Dept of Veterans Affairs “Annual Insurance Policy Statement” (VA Form 29-0258 for instance if you should have a NSLI insurance policy), located in the D-Day folder, to a Veterans Benefits Counselor (VBC) at the Southern Arizona Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery or a Veteran Service Organization (VFW, Legion, DAV, etc.) Service Officer. If applicable to your situation, this documents show that John has been having premiums of for example $13.20/mo deducted from his retired pay for a $5,000 Government Life Insurance Policy (the VA form 29-0258 shows the annual status on John’s National Service Life Insurance {NSLI}, policy Number V 1234 56 78 even though the NSLI terminology does not appear on the Annual Insurance Policy Statement). The VBC or Service Officer will provide the necessary forms to apply for cashing in the policy and claiming a burial allowance, and will fax the applications to VA and provide you a copy of the application. VA Form 29-0258 is located in D-Day folder.  See Para. F. below also.

 

(5) Notify the following Business Associates as follows:

 

(6) Notify Other Persons as follows:

 

A. (cont’d)Persons/Institutions to notify upon death.

 

1. Persons to notify:

 

C. Upon the death of Jane, in case John is incapacitated, notify:

 

(1) Social Security Administration     (1-800-772-1213 or 1-800-537-7005*)

601 East Twelfth Street

Kansas City, MO 64106-2859

or

Social Security    (520) 364- 1241

520 12TH Street

Douglas, AZ 85607

 

*Funeral Home may take care of all or part of this. Notify Date of Death Regarding: Jane’s claim number 987-65-4321A if she has been receiving benefits based upon her earning, or under Jane’s claim No. 123-45-6789B if she had been receiving benefits based upon John’s earnings, to initiate action to stop Jane’s benefits.

 

 

(2) Delta Dental Plan of California (TRICARE Retiree   Dental Program, if enrolled) See TRICARE Dental EOB in D-Day Folder.                     1-888-838-8737

Notify date of death regarding Jane’s participation. Stop the participation and billing of Jane’s monthly premiums to John’s DFAS retired Pay. Arrange continuation of plan for John (if enrolled) and continue billing to his Retired Pay from DFAS.

 

(3)

 

(4)

 

2. Church: xx

 

3. Funeral Home: xx

 

4. Relatives: (if not addressed above)

 

5. Accountant: xx

 

6. Employer: xx

 

7. Lawyer: xx

 

8. Business Associates: xx

 

9. Other Persons. xx

 

B. Burial and Funeral Instructions.

Take your D-Day Folder with you to the Funeral home.

 

1. Cemetery plot location. Desire Crematorium Vault at Southern Arizona Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery adjacent to Fort Huachuca/Sierra Vista, AZ. Entrance located on Buffalo Soldier Trail at Golflinks Road. Arrangements can be made through the funeral director, with DD 214 in hand.

 

2. Facts needed by funeral director:

 

For John Doe

DOB:

Place of Birth (POB):

Spouse: Jane (maiden name) Doe

Married:

 

a.   Father’s Name:     DOB:    POB:

Deceased:

Place of Burial:

Military Service:

 

b.   Mother’s Name:      DOB:    POB:

Deceased:

Place of Burial

Military Service:

 

c.   Military Service (John):

Date Enlisted USAF:            John has an indefinite expiration date Military ID card.

Foreign Service:

Date Commissioned (OCS) 2/Lt USAF:

Foreign Service:

Foreign Service:

Promoted to Col/USAF:        w/DOR

Retired at:              Effective:

Retired in the grade of Colonel (USAF) under

Department of the Air Force Special Order Number:

dated:   with 38 Years, 11 Months, and 9 Days of Active Service for Pay and Retirement, and with Service per 10 USC 1405.

SSAN and final Military Serial Number:

123-45-6789

Other Military Serial Numbers:

Enlisted/USAF:

AF23456789 (22 Jul 1948-21 Jun 1957)

Commissioned/USAF:

AO3456789 21 Jun 1957 (Reserve Appt)

56789A    26 Apr 1960 (Regular Appt)

FR56789    (21 Jun 64)

123456789FR (10 Oct 69)

Awards and Decorations:

 

d.   Length of residence in the United States: Whole Life, except for dates of Military foreign service (above).

e.   Length of time residing in Arizona: Jan 1980 to Oct 1984. Established Arizona residency 1 July 1987.

f.   Social Security Number:  123-45-6789

g.   Occupation: Electrical Engineer.

h.   Special Wishes and Desires: Donate usable organs, and remains to be cremated.

 

For JANE(maiden name) DOE

DOB:

POB:

Spouse: John Doe

Married:

 

Military ID card needs to be renewed to an indefinite expiration date if over age 75 before current card expires, and it must also be reissued at the time of John’s death.

 

a.   Father’s Name:

DOB:

POB:

Deceased:

Buried:

Military Service:

 

b.   Mother’s Name:

DOB:

POB:

Deceased:

Buried:

Military Service:

c. Length of residence in the United States: Whole Life, except when accompanying John on assignments to: e.g., Timbuktu 1968-1970, Turkistan 1974-1975, etc.

 

d. Length of time residing in Arizona:

e. Established Arizona residency:

f. Social Security Number: 987-65-4321

g. Occupation: Domestic engineer

h. Special Wishes and Desires: e.g., Remains to be cremated.

 

3. Words to be inscribed on Grave Marker or Crematory Vault door:

 

For John:

John Doe

Colonel, USAF (Retired)

22 Jul 1948 – 30 Jun 1987

b. 3 Feb 1930 – d.

 

For Jane:

JANE (Maiden name) DOE

Faithful and Loving Wife and Mother

b. 3 Feb 1925 – d.

 

4. Disposition of remains: Inter cremains at Southern Arizona Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery (adjacent to Fort Huachuca/Sierra Vista, AZ)

 

C. Location of Important Documents, as applicable:

 

1. Declaration of Trust and Amendments –

2. Wills –

3. General Durable Power of Attorney –

4. Health Care Durable Power of Attorney –

5. Instructions to Physician (aka Living Will) –

6. Letter of Instructions (this document)-

7. Insurance Policies –

8. Bankbooks –

9. Checkbooks –

10. Certificates of Deposit (CDs) –

11. Stock Certificates –

12. Bonds –

13. Social Security Cards and “Your New Benefit Amount” statements: (received in late Dec or early Jan every year)

14. Medicare Cards: –

Note: Jane’s original Medicare card (issued on 2-1-90 was under her Social Security number with an ‘M’ suffix: 987-65-4321M. Her current Medicare card (issued in 1995 when John turned 65) is under John’s Social Security with a ‘B’ suffix: 123-45-6789B. Current Medicare cards are in Safe Deposit Box #_____ (or in D-Day Folder as applicable).

15. Automobile titles and registration documents:

a. Titles: –

b. Registrations: Located in vehicles.

16. Titles, deeds, and other relevant papers relating to real property –

17. Birth and Baptism Certificates – D-Day Folder

18. Marriage Certificate – D-Day Folder

19. Divorce Decree(s) –

20. Military Records – D-Day Folder and –

21. Naturalization Papers or Alien Registration Card –

22. Income Tax Returns – (latest should be in D-Day Folder)

23. Credit Cards – Wallets/purse, and in –

24. Mortgage and other outstanding loans –

25. Bank Statements and cancelled checks –

26. Important Warranties –

27. Important receipts, such as receipts for home improvements that add to basis for home investment –

28. Other Legal papers:

a. Adoption Papers –

b. Death Certificate – For:

c.

29. x

30. x

 

D. Location of Safe Deposit Box(s) (#    ).

1. Location:

2. Registered in the name(s):

Upon John’s death you need to verify that any alternate is still shown on the records and show here:

4. Keys are located:

5. List of contents by envelope #, e.g. in Box No._____:

#1. U.S. Savings Bonds

#2. Automobile Titles

#3. Personal Liability Ins. Policy#

#4. Home Owners Ins. Policy#

#5. Property Deeds (list them)

#6. Birth Certificates – (List names 🙂

#7. College/University Transcripts

#8. Marriage License

#9. Adoption Papers if applicable

#10. Divorce Papers if applicable

#11. VA Form 4-1870 (Home Loan Eligibility dated)

#12. AF Form 806 (Election of Options under Uniformed Services Contingency Option Act)

#13. Households Goods Inventory (w/color photos and slides)

#14. Military Orders (assignments, promotions etc.)

#15.

#16.

6. List of contents by envelope #,  e.g. in Box No._____:

#a.

 

 

E. Memberships. (For example)

1.  Non-Commissioned Officers Association (NCOA), Life Mbr (# ).

2.  Air Force Association (AFA), Life Mbr (# ).

3.  University Alumni Association, (Class of 1968), Life Mbr (# ).

4.  National War College Alumni Association, (Class of 1978) Life Mbr (# ).

5.  Military Officers Association of America (MOAA), Life Mbr (# ).

6.  Veterans of Foreign Wars, Life Mbr (# )

7.  American Association of Retired Persons (AARP),  Mbr (#) paid to:

8.  American Legion Post 52, Mbr (# ) paid to:

9.  Association of Old Crows (AOC), (Mbr # )paid to:

10.    Sons of the American Revolution (National Number: ) paid to:

11.     etc.

 

F. Life and Accidental Death Insurance Policies.

(Policies in Safe Deposit box and: (Env. #)

 

1.  National Service Life Insurance (NSLI)  (John)

Veterans Administration Insurance Center

Department of Veterans Affairs (1-800-669-8477)

P. O. Box 8079 or 42954

Philadelphia, PA 19101-2954

Env. #____ Safe deposit box. Term Policy # F234567 (reduced to $5000 in 1990)

($13.20 Monthly premium deducted from DFAS Retired Pay) See Para. A.1.a.(4) above for instructions on filing a claim for this insurance.

 

2.  Military Association policies  (John)

a.  x

b.  x

 

3.  Other Life Insurance policies (John)

a.  x

b.  x

 

4. Cancelled Policies, as applicable  (John)

Cancelled effective 1 Feb 2006, for the record to preclude any questions if an old policy is found in a file.

 

5. Military Association policies  (Jane)

a.  x

b.  b

 

6. Other Life Insurance policies (Jane)

a.  x

b.  x

 

7. Cancelled Policies, as applicable  (Jane)

Cancelled effective 1 Feb 2006, for the record to preclude any questions if an old policy is found in a file.

 

 

8. Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) Insurance, and some free Life Insurance. Located in the following numbered (#) envelopes in the ­­­____________ and ___________:

# . Allstate Insurance Co. AD 1-800-736-2242)

# . Air Force Association AD (John $500 -Free)

# . WWW Credit Union AD (john $1000 and Jane $500 -Free if acct balance is greater than $500)

# . XXX FCU) AD&D

# . YYY FCU AD

# . ZZZ Bank AD

# . Legionnaire Insurance Trust AD

# . etc

 

9. x

 

 

G. Other Insurance Policies.

 

1. Homeowner’s Policy & Liability Insurance: (Billed in April)

Armed Forces Insurance Exchange (1-800-255-6792)

P.O. Box G                      (913) 651-5100)

Fort Leavenworth, KS 66027-0428

Policy Number 123456 (Envelopes 10, 11, & 12 in SDB, and in

 

2. Automobile Insurance Policy: (Billed in Mar & Sep)

United Services Automobile Association

9800 Fredericksburg Road     (1-800-531-8111)

San Antonio, TX 78288-001

Policy Number 012 34 56 in Cars & in –

 

3. Long Term Care (LTC):

 

H. Insurance Information on Other Family Members.

 

1.

 

I. Social Security Numbers. John & Jane started drawing SS benefits in Mar 2000

 

John Doe           123-45-6789 (Medicare # 123-45-6789A)

Jane (maiden name) Doe  987-65-4321 (Medicare Part B and Social Security Benefits are under 123-45-6789B, if Applicable)

 

(Call 1-800-537-7005 for information on filing claims, and notification of death, and see details above)

 

J. Bank Accounts.

 

1. Checking/Savings Accounts & Certificates of Deposit

(Statements located in:

and with IRS records in:

 

a. XXX Bank

Address:

Local Phone number:

Corporate Number:

Safe Deposit Box #

Primary Owner:

Joint Owner:

 

 

b. YYY Bank

Address:

Local Phone number:

Corporate Number:

Safe Deposit Box #

Primary Owner:

Joint Owner:

 

e.

 

2. Credit Unions/Federal Credit Unions (FCUs)

(Statements located in:

and with IRS records in:

 

 

a. XXX FCU

Address:

Local Phone number:

Corporate Number:

Safe Deposit Box #

Primary Owner:

Joint Owner:

 

 

b. YYY FCU

Address:

Local Phone number:

Corporate Number:

Safe Deposit Box #

Primary Owner:

Joint Owner:

 

 

c. ZZZ FCU

Account # Closed Dec 2008, for the record

 

d.  x

 

e.  x

 

3. X

 

 

K. Bonds.

U.S.Savings Bonds Issued in the name:

Beneficiary:

(Value of these bonds in excess of $xx,xxx may be taxable when cashed in by the beneficiary).

These will mature incrementally (will no longer accrue dividends) between       and      if they are not cashed in before then (Located in Safe Deposit Box).

 

L. Shares of Stock, IRAs, and Financial Management Accounts.

 

1. (Financial Management Institution) Include addresses and Phone numbers and location of documents:

 

a. x

 

b. x

 

2.    x.  .

 

3.    Roth and/or Traditional IRAs: Statements located in:

 

See www.irs.gov IRS Pub 590 if any questions arise when rolling over John’s IRAs to an IRA in Jane’s name.

 

JOHN – XXX Federal Credit Union (and details)

 

JANE – YYY Federal Credit Union (and details)

 

4.    x

 

5.    x

 

 

M. Pension, Annuities, and Profit Sharing Plans.

1. Military Retirement:(1-800-321-1080) or (1-216-522-5955)

Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS)

US Military Retirement Pay

PO Box 7130

London, KY 40742-7130

SSAN 123-45-6789 (Monthly check to XXX Bank Checking Account)

Notify DFAS ASAP (see Para A.1.b.{1} above) with Date of Death, and to initiate start of Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) for Jane.

 

Military allotments for Insurance policies need to be cancelled with DFAS (shown on back of annual Retiree Account Statement) upon filing claims for insurance payments upon John’s Demise.

2. Pensions:

a.  x

b.  x

c.  x

 

3.  ANNUITIES:

a. x.

b. x

c. x

 

4. SOCIAL SECURITY:

a.  John – Direct deposit to xxx Bank Ckg Acct

b.  Jane – Direct deposit yyy Bank Ckg. Acct. Jane’s new benefit should continue to be deposited in the yyy Bank Account upon John’s demise.

 

N.Credit Cards.

Cards are in wallets/purse and as shown below:

1. Master card #______________  located in

Call ________________________ to close out/cancel.

2. Visa Card #______________ located in

Call ________________________ to close out/cancel.

3. Discover Card # __________ located in

Call ________________________ to close out/cancel.

4. x

5. x

 

O. Monetary Obligations:

 

a. x

b. x

 

P.Automobiles.

They are titled as:

Titles are in Safe Deposit Box.

a. 1995 Oldsmobile 98 (Metallic Bronze)

VIN _________________  Lic AZ #ABC 123

(License renewal due Apr 2010)

 

c.  1987 Chevrolet S-10 Blazer (Metallic Bronze)

VIN __________________  Lic AZ #DEF 456

(License renewal due Jun 2010)

 

d. X

 

 

Q. Location of Personal Effects.

 

All located at:

 

R. Matters Relating to House & Other Real Estate Investments.

 

1. Residence:

 

2. Other Recorded Property:

 

S. Rentals or Leases:

 

T. Veteran Instructions. See Section A for Military retired pay/Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) details, Section B for Military Service and Veterans Cemetery burial details, and Section F for National Service Life Insurance (NSLI) Life Insurance Policy.

 

U. Other Instructions.

 

a. x

 

b. x

 

V. Income Tax Filing Information.

 

a.  A copy of the latest Federal Tax Return and State Tax Return are included in the D-Day file, along with a version that shows estimates for preparing joint federal and state tax returns for the current year.

 

The latter can be done by completing a Federal Form 1040-ES “Estimated Tax for Individuals”, down loadable at the www.irs.gov website.

 

It is even more useful to a survivor if you fill out a complete set of tax forms (down loadable from the www.irs.gov website) that were used for your last tax return with estimated figures for the current year to develop an estimate for filing a joint tax return for the year of death of a spouse, which is permitted.

It is recommended that this be done as soon as practical after filing your most recent tax return, while all of the details are fresh in your memory. You can do this with last years forms, as next years forms will not be available until later in the year. For example, line through 2009 on the forms and enter 2010 so that it is clear what this set of forms are for. This can also be done for your estimated State Tax Return by down loading the applicable forms from the http://www.revenue.state.az.us/ website. If you do all of this in pencil, it will be easy to update the estimates as you get closer to the end of the year.  If FITW and SITW are being withheld from all or most sources of income (including interest and dividends on major investments), the estimate for the current year will potentially work out close to what the survivor, who will be able to file as his/her a joint return for the year the spouse dies, will be required to file. See Section A.1.c above if additional FITW and SITW are required

 

It is further recommended that you follow this same process to prepare a set of Tax Return forms that estimate what the survivor’s income and tax liability will be for the year following the death of a spouse. For example use a set of last years forms (2009) to estimate the survivors tax liability filing as a single taxpayer for 2011 income, as would be required if the spouse died any time in 2010.

 

b.  Last Years annual or end of year DFAS, Social Security, Pension/Annuity, and Financial Institution statements, and related Form 1099s are located in:

 

c.  The evolving year Financial Institution statements are located in:

 

d.  Form 1099s, that will be received in Jan of next year, need to be assembled with the above referenced Financial Institution statement for use in preparing yours or your survivor’s tax return for this year.

 

END OF INSTRUCTIONS

 

 

(signature)                  (signature)

John Doe                      Jane (maiden name) Doe

Date ___________________     Date ____________________