Journalist, Buddhist monk, MIT graduate, and well-known advocate for the aging, Martin Bayne has had a colorful career. At the age of nineteen, while working at the Times Herald Record, he was contacted by the mother of a soldier serving in Vietnam. Her request that he help bring her son home to be with his father during open heart surgery catapulted Bayne into the world of advocacy. He arranged a meeting at the Pentagon with Lt. Col. John C. Payne, MD, in the Office of the US Army Surgeon General, and within a week, the soldier, John Fasanello of Florida, NY, was on a plane home.
A year later, motivated by a need to discover the source of self-compassion, Bayne entered Shasta Abbey, a Soto Zen Buddhist monastery, where he spent his next years learning to “sleep when tired and eat when hungry”—skills that would prove essential when he was immobilized after being hit by a car at the age of 31. Alive, yet unwilling to spend his time shaking his fist at the sky, he obtained his brokers license and began to market socially responsible funds as he recovered from his injuries. In 1992, a decade before most Americans were even remotely aware of a problem with their long-term health care system (LTC), and with the experience of protracted disability fresh in his mind, Bayne began publishing a newsletter and website under the nom de plume Mr. Long-Term Care. The website quickly grew to become one of the nation’s most trusted sources of information on long-term care. Additionally, Bayne was CEO and cofounder of New York Long-Term Care Brokers, one of the nation’s largest LTC insurance brokers. In the nineties, at the peak of his professional career and personal eldercare advocacy, Bayne was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. For the past ten years he has lived in an assisted living facility.