The January column included an item (page 73) that described a way to repair Word. After it ran, I realized there is a faster, easier way to do the job.
So if any Office application appears in need of repair, open Control Panel and click on Add or Remove Programs. Then cursor down to the Microsoft Office item, and click on Change. Be careful not to accidentally click on Remove (see screenshot).
After a brief pause, this screen will appear:
Click on Reinstall or Repair and this screen will appear:
Click on Detect and Repair errors in my Office installation and be sure to place a check at Restore my Start Menu Shortcuts. The operation will take several minutes, after which time your applications will be as good as new without loss of shortcuts.