90-Year-Old Vet Works Outside Pushing Carts At A Louisiana Grocery Store To Supplement Social Security — Public Helps Raise Retirement Funds

Dillon McCormick, a 90-year-old Air Force veteran, was working pushing carts at a Louisiana grocery store to cover his living expenses.

Former New Orleans news anchor, Karen Swensen, spotted him working on Memorial Day in the sweltering heat. Moved by his situation, Swensen decided to take action.

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McCormick told Swensen he needs about $2,500 a month to survive but only receives $1,100 from Social Security, prompting him to take a job pushing carts. Inspired to help, Swensen launched a GoFundMe campaign on his behalf. Within 24 hours, more than $200,000 has been raised.

The fundraiser gained additional support when Today co-host Hoda Kotb shared the link, encouraging her followers to contribute. The overwhelming response now allows McCormick to retire comfortably.

McCormick, born in 1933, served in various U.S. states and Greenland during his Air Force career. He thanked donors, calling the support "like a miracle."

Swensen is thrilled that McCormick can now "live out his days in comfort and security," thanks to the generosity of strangers.

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The situation highlights a broader trend in the U.S., where more Americans are working past 75. Improved health care has enabled many older adults to extend their working lives. Although a small fraction of the workforce, this demographic is the fastest-growing segment. Today, roughly 11 million older adults are working, a number that has nearly quadrupled since the mid-1980s.

Workers aged 75 and older now represent 9% of their age group in the workforce, up from 4% in 1987. While they earn slightly less than the older workforce, they have experienced similar wage growth.

Unfortunately, McCormick and many others aren't working simply because they enjoy it; they work out of necessity. 

According to the Social Security Administration, the average Social Security check was $1,776 as of April 2024. Managing expenses can be challenging for retirees, as the average spending for those aged 65 and older is approximately $52,141 per year or $4,345 per month. This covers housing, food, health care, and other necessities.

Housing alone accounts for a significant portion, with older adults spending about $18,872 annually. Health care is another significant expense, averaging $7,030 per year. Transportation, food, and utilities also contribute significantly to the overall costs. These figures highlight the financial pressures many retirees face, necessitating additional income or savings to cover their living expenses.

Consulting a financial advisor can help plan for retirement and avoid the necessity of working into advanced age, ensuring a more secure and comfortable future like McCormick's newfound stability.

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