The Story of Robert Blocksom: 87 Years Old and Looking for a Job
There are some who work because it’s their passion, but for the most of us a job is the only way to earn enough dough to cover our expenditure. Robert Blocksom is now 87 years old, and his wife’s mounting medical bills have prompted him to look for a job at this age. Before his retirement, he worked as a financial planner, but this time he is aiming to carve a career as a truck driver.
According to an interview with PEOPLE, Jelaine Blocksom, who is Robert’s wife, has been suffering from a few medical conditions. Apart from the fact that she now finds it difficult to walk, Jelaine has also suffered from breast cancer in the past and has now been give the diagnosis of asthma, which has made breathing difficult for her. Because of her condition, she often has to visit the hospital.
To cover the ever-increasing medical bills, the pair have been forced to sell off a lot of their personal possessions, including their mobile trailer. Even their house had to go, and they now live in an apartment, although that has made moving around her property much easier for Jelaine, who is also 87 years of age.
An Increasing Trend
Robert Blocksom is not the only 85+ American to have re-joined the workforce. According to statistics revealed by News 5, an increasing number of Americans in that age group are coming back to work.
The last twelve months alone saw 255,000 men and women in their 80s coming out of retirement, according to statistics reported by the Washington Post. The nature of the jobs which these seniors are securing for themselves range from becoming a farmer to accountants to truckers, among other such jobs which don’t require a lot of physical movement.
Why Robert Is Choosing to Become A Truck Driver
In an interview given to WEWS, Robert revealed that driving has always been a passion for him and the opportunity to make money out of his passion sounds like a great thing. His decision to become a truck driver is certainly welcomed by the trucking industry, considering the fact that it is facing a dearth of truck drivers at this time.
With the rapidly increasing popularity of online commerce chains such as Amazon, the demand for truck drivers is increasing proportionately as well because more and more items need to be transported from one part of the country to the other.
Although it sounds like a great thing that Robert is capitalizing on his passion and transforming it into a source of income for himself and his wife, Jelaine does not like the fact that Robert is having to return back to work because of her increasing medical expense. Although Jelaine tries to contribute as much as she can to the household, making meals for Robert if nothing else, she recognizes that this job is Robert’s solution to their impending problems, and she is ready to support him.
Senior Citizens Are Facing A Difficult Time
It seems that the days when senior citizens could rest and enjoy their lifelong earnings after turning 65 have gone. A study by the Social Science Research Network analysed the years between 1991 and 2016 and found out that the rate of bankruptcy being filed by senior citizens has seen an increase of 204% during these years.
Analysing the reasons behind such a steep incline, the study revealed that senior citizens were mostly filing for bankruptcy because of inability to bear medical expenditure, which is made worse as their incomes decline, both from ever-reducing amounts given out in pensions, and from not having any more work.
The Future for Robert
As for now, Robert hopes the trucking business is not too hectic for him and keeps him around his wife by making him work locally within his region. He is committed to working on the weekends as well so that he has more time to take care of Jelaine every day.
Truck drivers are known to have extremely hectic work schedules, but Robert is confident he’ll make it work. He starts classes to train as a commercial driver in the month of September.
If you want to support the couple with their medical expenses, there is a GoFundMe page which you can use to donate.
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