WXXI AM News

Coming up on Connections: Monday, May 27

May 24, 2019

First hour: Marketplace special - "Brains and Losses: The bottom line on aging and financial vulnerability"

Second hour: Special rebroadcast - Jeff Spevak on his new book, "22 Minutes" 

We bring you special programming on this Memorial Day. In our first hour, neuroscientists and gerontologists see evidence that people become more vulnerable to financial exploitation as they age. Con artists, fraudsters, even family, friends, and caregivers take money from seniors and abuse their trust. According to researchers, the shame of these crimes prevents victims from reporting or talking about them, creating a crucial public policy issue. Marketplace Morning Report host David Brancaccio presents immersive storytelling to explore the evidence for what doctors are calling "Age-Related Financial Vulnerability." The Marketplace team presents stories of fraud victims and their families from across the U.S., including a 78-year-old substitute school nurse, who lost more than $230,000 in what started as a computer support scam, and mushroomed into a blizzard of gift card purchases and a bank transfer to Nepal. Supported by a wide range of nationally-recognized experts – from the Stanford Center on Longevity, to an elder justice advocate recognized by a MacArthur Foundation "genius" grant, to the grandson of the New York philanthropist at the center of the most high-profile case of elder financial fraud this century – "Brains and Losses" presents solutions journalism for audiences who want to protect themselves and their loved ones as they grow older.

Then in our second hour, a special Connections rebroadcast. Local writer Jeff Spevak has a new book out. It's called "22 Minutes" and it tells the story of Ernie Coleman, a sailor, carpenter, and Navy veteran who survived the worst defeat in U.S. Navy history. Spevak calls him a common man who lived through uncommon circumstances. We sit down with Spevak to discuss how he told Coleman's story when Coleman himself refused to talk about the tragedy that haunted him. We also discuss the trauma many veterans, like Coleman, face.