New York (PRWEB) November 14, 2007
Deception, corruption, exploitation and manipulation collide in Paradise Costs: A Victim's Daughter Fights Back Against Elder Abuse, the heart-wrenching story of an infirm, 80-year-old man with Alzheimer's who was taken from his family, stripped of his assets and exploited despite the pleas of his next of kin.
What makes this story even more compelling? It's not fiction.
Mario Masiello, a hearing-impaired, honorably discharged, World War II veteran retired from the New York City Transit Authority and relocated to the quaint town of Walterboro, South Carolina to realize his life-long dream of utopian living. Twenty years later, his blissful life was ravaged by the death of his wife and by several illnesses including diabetes, Alzheimer's and depression. Paradise Costs tells the chilling true story of the last years of his life when he was "grandpa-napped" from his family by neighbors and "friends."
"I never thought this type of betrayal and brutality could happen in my family," says Irene A. Masiello, Paradise Costs author and Mario's daughter. "My experience has made me realize how little people know about the deadly American pandemic that is elder abuse."
The American Psychological Association estimates that approximately 2.1 million senior citizens are victims of physical and psychological neglect and abuse every year. However, the numbers are grossly misleading for too many cases go unreported while most people are unaware or under-informed of elder abuse's broader definitions.
In this gripping personal narrative the author gives a voice to countless victims who suffer and die in silence while the staggering issues paint a gruesome picture. Driven by more grim statistics from national elder advocacy groups stating there may be an additional 25 million cases of elder exploitation, Irene shares her family's story. In a bold stance, she drives home the pervasiveness of elder abuse, neglect and exploitation by offering her father's suspicious forensic report to readers to exemplify a terrifying reality. Even more important, she offers a viable solution to the problem that allows every American to be pro-active in helping to eradicate this social ill.
"As difficult as the aftermath of this tragedy has been, I am determined not to let my father's death be in vain," says Irene. "My goal now is to take my story to the nation and raise awareness of this deplorable social ill that's plaguing America."
Irene's objective is to provide a voice to the millions of victims that fall through the cracks every year. As readers accompany the Masiello family along their horrific journey they can't help but recognize and call for legislation that could prevent their own families from being victimized by this fast-growing phenomenon. It's robbing our seniors of their dignity and right to life while causing pain and hardship for their loved ones.
In an effort to create a reality-writing campaign, prefabricated "tear-out" letters and petitions to government officials are contained in Paradise Costs, and are available as free downloads at the book's website, http://www.paradisecosts.com. Readers can follow simple directions on how to e-mail legislators right from the site.
"I'm urging participation via our interactive book to lobby legislators to pass the Elder Justice Act [EJA] now on the floor of both Houses of Congress," says the author. "Hopefully, others will be spared the suffering my father was forced to endure and their families will not have to look on helplessly in horror as mine did."
Masiello is urging national reform addressing elder issues and continued support to implement, amend and enforce the EJA. A portion of her proceeds from her book will be donated to a non-profit organization supporting that cause.
For more information, please visit http://www.ParadiseCosts.com or contact Vine Communications at (305) 447-8678.