When I met Gabby Giffords in September 2010, she was gracious enough to spend a few minutes talking to me. I told her I was an insurance agent and that I was grateful for her vote in support of the health care reform bill. She listened attentively as I described my experience with people who could not get health insurance because of pre-existing conditions.
Congresswoman Giffords looked me in the eye and told me the vote on health care reform was probably the most important vote she would ever make in Congress. She said she knew it might cost her the 2010 election, but, “so be it”, because something had to be done to fix our health care and health insurance systems.
Congresswoman Giffords knew her vote on health care reform could cost her her job, but she showed courage and conviction with her vote. Thank you, Gabby.
After the dust settled from the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (which ended on December 31st), I was planning to make an appointment with Gabe Zimmerman because of the wonderful things I had heard about him from one of my clients.
Velda, my client, lives on a very limited income and has multiple health issues. Velda told me that Gabe had always been there to help her when she had problems with bureaucracies like Medicare, AHCCCS (Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System), and the insurance company that runs her Medicare Advantage plan.
Gabe had invited Velda to the Saturday get-together with Congresswoman Giffords. He wanted Gabby to hear Velda’s story about struggling to afford the co-pays that come with Medicare Advantage plans when she lives on a very limited income.
Velda couldn’t attend the Saturday meeting because of an illness in her family. She called me Saturday night to say she was devastated to learn that her hero, Gabe Zimmerman, had died in the Saturday morning attack. Gabe Zimmerman made a big difference in Velda’s life, and I wish I could have met him.