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Old 07-29-2010, 07:54 AM
 
Location: Maine
28 posts, read 64,676 times
Reputation: 60

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Hey folks,

I'm currently serving in the US Navy and will be retiring in 2 years so we are starting to look for a state to settle down in. Maine is on our short list but I have some questions and would really like to hear from other former military members or retiree's who have made Maine their permanent home.

To start things off. How well are military personnel perceived in Maine? Would my family feel welcome?

Is Maine an affordable state to live in? Another words will my retirement check go far?

Are there any special state programs available to assist veterans in finding employment? Spouses?

I should add that I was born and raised in the southern part of the state, and have always dreamed of returning to the state I've always loved and missed. I'm still a Mainer at heart....

"The County" has always appealed to me... More so now as I seek peace and tranquility.
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Old 07-29-2010, 06:28 PM
 
Location: Northern Maine
10,264 posts, read 16,636,542 times
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I was a Naval Aviator. There are more veterans per capita in Maine than any other state. They like us. We like them. There are still patriots in Maine. They walk among us. The wives like it too. Next week we'll be married 46 years and we moved around in the Navy. Navy wives are awesome.

Our heating costs are high, but our air conditioning costs are low. It's a wash. There are veteran outreach services run by the state. I don't know of any for wives.

"I'm still a Mainer at heart....

"The County" has always appealed to me... More so now as I seek peace and tranquility."

"The County" has changed less than any other part of Maine while you were serving our country.
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Old 07-29-2010, 09:59 PM
 
Location: Caribou, Me.
6,933 posts, read 5,029,716 times
Reputation: 5218
We are strong supporters of our military folks here in the County. In many ways. Alot of retied Loring Air Force Base folks retired here partly because of that.
And it is very affordable here.
I do believe the VA has a program here to help vets with employment.
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Old 07-30-2010, 04:34 AM
 
Location: 3.5 sq mile island ant nest next to Canada
3,034 posts, read 5,393,514 times
Reputation: 2165
From this old retiree to you: thanks for being there for us. We appreciate it. C'mon back north. You'll enjoy the hospitality. You won't get rich but....
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Old 07-30-2010, 06:21 AM
 
Location: Delaware
388 posts, read 929,160 times
Reputation: 349
my 2 cents....we are retired Navy also, stationed in the 60's at BNAS, lived in Topsham. After retirement we came to ME, Bath area. I must warn you that taxes will eat into your retirement pay, unlike other states we had lived in which do not or lightly tax pensions. The eminent closing of BNAS next year will end great shopping at the NEX and the Commissary over in Topsham. You will however be welcomed, ME loves its veterans.
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Old 07-30-2010, 06:49 AM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
33,180 posts, read 54,431,241 times
Reputation: 23667
FreeAmerica-

Welcome.

I retired from the Navy in 2001, and moved to Maine.

We have really enjoyed our move to Maine.

Military personnel are liked here much more so than they were in many other places where we have lived.

Maine can be a very affordable state to live in. Most of Maine enjoys fairly low home prices and taxes. Most of Maine is rural. However there are also some areas where home prices are kept high and taxes can be high.

My Dw works on-base at the Commissary in Bangor.

A military career can be stressful. If you step right into a slow-paced peaceful lifestyle you may have 'issues', I have seen this among other retirees. If you can go into an intermediary phase, where for 4 to 5 years you can take on slightly less stress, it may help. We were a foster-home and I became Mister Mom to five uncontrollable products of our society. Now looking back I can see where it was good for me to have a few years of that before I went into building a homestead in an Un-Organized Township.
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Old 07-31-2010, 09:16 AM
 
Location: Maine
28 posts, read 64,676 times
Reputation: 60
Well it's good to hear that Maine still appreciates its veterans.

We really have no idea which town we would like to live in or near at this point. We know it won't be southern Maine due to the higher cost of living there. We've researched several towns in Aroostook County and a few down east towns. Presque Isle, Houtlon, Caribou, and a small coastal town called Addison. We are about 95% certain that Maine is where we'll end up. My wife plans on working and I'm hoping to enjoy a few years off with no stress. Finding a job to augment my retire pay will large factor in our decision making process. Our goal isn't to get rich. We just want to have what we need and raise our kids in a safe place.

I know what you mean Forest about going from full speed to stop right away. I've known people who have had issues doing this. In my case I can't wait to just focus on my kids and and being able to just take care of an old house some where quiet.
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Old 07-31-2010, 11:52 AM
 
1,594 posts, read 3,781,621 times
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Welcome home!

There's a VA hospital in Togus, just outside Augusta, if that's a factor in your decision making. House prices are dropping all over Maine these days, but southern Maine is still the higher end of the spectrum. In Aroostook County I would suggest looking in the Caribou/Limestone area; there's still a community of ex-Loring AFB retirees there you can tap into. Bangor and Brunswick also have relatively large military retiree communities and services, the remnants of previous military bases. I'm pretty sure Togus VA runs a van service from the Bangor area down to the hospital and back on a regular basis.

I'm not aware of much in the way of veteran's services in Washington County.

Job hunting is tough all over right now. It all depends on what you're willing to settle for.
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Old 07-31-2010, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
33,180 posts, read 54,431,241 times
Reputation: 23667
RE:Togus

Togus is great for vets. Our system offers little in the way of long-term medical treatment for vets. I know many vets who use Togus and they are very thankful for having Togus.

However as US Servicemembers, retirees have Tricare [three different options] and in Maine we have a Tricare-underwritten regional health insurance provider called Martins Point.

By using Tricare or Martins Point we can have local civilian doctors as our PCPs. We can go into any civilian hospital anywhere and be treated by doctors [with medical degrees].

After having been in Maine for 5 years, we have not seen any restrictions [yet] on where we could be treated. The quality of care is way better, light-years better, then what had been provided to us while on Active Duty and through the VA.

The VA is great in the context of, if the VA did not exist then the treatment provided to our vets would truly be miserable.

However in the context of retired US servicemembers with Tricare / Martins Point; we can have all of our medical treatment provided by civilian doctors. Civilian doctors are far superior to medics with 6-weeks of training.

After having spent decades with medics providing all of my health care, and that of my wife and children; having been operated on by medics, bones set, wives giving birth, etc.

I can not express, I fail in words to say, how great and how wonderful it is to now have doctors with medical degrees providing health care for my family.

I would never recommend any military retiree to go anywhere near Mil-Med nor the VA; not when we have civilian doctors available to us.

I can site many examples or both sides of this topic. The treatment provided by medics with 6-weeks of training verses the treatment that doctors with medical degrees provide. But in the effort to remain on-topic I shall refrain myself.

FreeAmerica- welcome to Maine.

I recommend that you tour all of Maine [well at least each region North of Bath] and make your decision after having seen all that Maine has to offer.

If you swing by here, I will gladly pour you a beer.
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Old 08-01-2010, 05:31 PM
 
Location: Maine
28 posts, read 64,676 times
Reputation: 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by forest beekeeper View Post
RE:Togus

Togus is great for vets. Our system offers little in the way of long-term medical treatment for vets. I know many vets who use Togus and they are very thankful for having Togus.

However as US Servicemembers, retirees have Tricare [three different options] and in Maine we have a Tricare-underwritten regional health insurance provider called Martins Point.

By using Tricare or Martins Point we can have local civilian doctors as our PCPs. We can go into any civilian hospital anywhere and be treated by doctors [with medical degrees].

After having been in Maine for 5 years, we have not seen any restrictions [yet] on where we could be treated. The quality of care is way better, light-years better, then what had been provided to us while on Active Duty and through the VA.

The VA is great in the context of, if the VA did not exist then the treatment provided to our vets would truly be miserable.

However in the context of retired US servicemembers with Tricare / Martins Point; we can have all of our medical treatment provided by civilian doctors. Civilian doctors are far superior to medics with 6-weeks of training.

After having spent decades with medics providing all of my health care, and that of my wife and children; having been operated on by medics, bones set, wives giving birth, etc.

I can not express, I fail in words to say, how great and how wonderful it is to now have doctors with medical degrees providing health care for my family.

I would never recommend any military retiree to go anywhere near Mil-Med nor the VA; not when we have civilian doctors available to us.

I can site many examples or both sides of this topic. The treatment provided by medics with 6-weeks of training verses the treatment that doctors with medical degrees provide. But in the effort to remain on-topic I shall refrain myself.

FreeAmerica- welcome to Maine.

I recommend that you tour all of Maine [well at least each region North of Bath] and make your decision after having seen all that Maine has to offer.


Forest,

Where is Martins Point located? I was hoping someone would chime in about medical options for veterans. I haven't done the research yet on post Navy tri-care yet.

Next time we get to Maine to visit family we plan on driving up north to spend a few days looking around. I'm getting ready to deploy again soon so I also need to get TAPS class scheduled at some point. Two years seems like a long ways off but it's really just around the corner. Feels like we have a lot to get done.

It's funny. At this point in my career I thought I would have anxiety about retirng but I really can't wait to put the Navy behind me and settle down somewhere.
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