Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Gina White dodges Florida winds again

BJ Composing retiree Gina White, who lives in Venice, Florida, dodged a bullet when the tornados slapped the Gulf Coast this week.

Gina, widow of former Composing foreman Dave White, wrote:

“No problems here. Lots of wind and rain and a tornado on U.S. 41 about a mile from here.”

A tornado landed on Siesta Key, where I’ve been winterizing for two decades on the world’s #1 beach adjacent to Sarasota, 15 miles from Gina’s house.

Two were killed in Duette, which is 40 miles from Venice.
Gina is used to dodging Florida’s scary weather. Her and Dave one year had Hurricane Charley hit to the west of their home and Hurricane Frances to the east of their home in the same hurricane season.

Dave passed away in December 2012. He was the one who filed the first healthcare lawsuit against the BJ that led to the 2012 victory by 45 retired printers and 5 Guild retirees, restoring them to their retirement-day coverage.

The settlement came four month before Dave died, but was implemented Jan. 1, 2013, a few weeks after Dave passed away. However, Gina and others, including myself ($16,001 check) received reimbursements for health care overpayments going back to 2005.

Gina explained in a BJ Alums article a few years back how Dave got to writing the $2,500 check that got the ball rolling:

Dave met Lou Smith at the Island House Condominium in the early 90's where he was working as grounds manager. Lou was a condo owner and every year when he would come down, he and Dave would mess around together.

So now, every year at Christmas, we send Lou several bottles of 1905 salad dressing from the Columbia Restaurant at St. Armand's and he sends a pointsettia.

When we needed an attorney's advice and help on the lawsuit, we called Lou to see if anything could be done. He referred us to his "labor law" expert, Allen Anderson. This was in 2005 when the BJ first started messing with us. Of course, there was nothing that we could do then.

Then 4 years ago, in another conversation with Allen, he informed us that there had been some judgments in these type of cases that might be favorable to us.

And, then you know the rest of the story.

45 former BJ printers and 6 newsroom folks, including me, owe Dave White a major debt of gratitude.  I know from my own experience that it is saving me about $3,000 a year in improved coverage, on top of the hefty reimbursement for my prescription costs.


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