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VFW Washington Weekly - August 31, 2012

Posted at 10:32 AM on Tuesday, September 4, 2012 by State Blogmaster

In this issue:

1. VFW Applauds White House Effort to Combat Suicide
2. VFW Active at Republican Convention
3. VA Increases Vets Retraining Assistance Program
4. Combating Veterans' Homelessness
5. VFW Hears from Marine Corps Commandant
6. Army and NFL Discuss TBI
7. Five MIAs Return Home

1. VFW Applauds White House Effort to Combat Suicide: Today, the President signed an executive order designed to curb military and veteran suicide and improve the delivery of mental health resources to our nation's heroes. The executive order, "Improving Access to Mental Health Services for Veterans, Service Members and Military Families," which President Obama is scheduled to announce during a visit to Fort Bliss in Texas, includes nearly a dozen specific initiatives designed to improve mental health resources and intervention tools. National Commander John E. Hamilton, noted the VFW support for the president's vision to prevent military suicides and improve mental health care delivery, but also expressed concerns about potential funding shortfalls to accomplish the president's goals. Click here for the VFW's Press release: http://www.vfw.org/News-and-Events/Articles/2012-Articles/VFW-Applauds-White-House-Efforts-to-Stop-Military-Suicide/

2. VFW Active at Republican Convention: VFW Representatives attending the Republican National Convention (RNC) listened to key note speakers and spoke with delegates on critical issues like veterans mental and behavioral health, accurate claims processing and helping service members secure educational, employment and entrepreneurship opportunities. The VFW will also be represented at next week's Democratic National Convention in Charlotte to ensure the voice of veterans, service members and their families remains a key priority during Campaign 2012. Leading both delegations will be VFW Legislative Director Ray Kelley. Stay informed throughout by reading blog postings at: www.vfwonthehill.org/

3. VA Increases Vets Retraining Assistance Program: This week, VA announced that have filled 36,000 of the 45,000 job training openings available under the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) passed as a part of the VOW to Heroes Act. An additional 55,000 openings will be available October 1, 2012. VRAP provides up to $1,473 a month in GI Bill benefits for those taking full-time courses to learn the skills necessary to land a job. VFW was instrumental in getting the provision passed as a part of the comprehensive jobs bill and encourages veterans eligible to apply online. Click here for more information: http://www.benefits.va.gov/VOW/

4. Combating Veterans' Homelessness: Veterans' homelessness is a national problem that is best solved at the local level. As such, the VA recently launched a new online ordering portal for communities and national partners to order free informational material and promotional items ranging from brochures and posters to wallet cards, drawstring bags and hygiene kits, among other items. Share the portal link with your VFW members and Posts and with others in your community to help spread the word. For more information or to place an order, go to http://www.va.gov/homeless/materials_center.asp.

5. VFW Hears from Marine Corps Commandant: This week, VFW attended a Press Club event where Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos spoke on a number of issues important to the Corps. Leading the list was the continuing success of combat operations in Afghanistan and the transfer of responsibilities over to Afghan national security forces. Following his remarks, Amos fielded questions from the audience on a variety of military quality-of-life and force readiness issues ranging from fiscal responsibility and budget constraints on the Marines Corps, to women serving in combat, suicide, and sexual assault. When asked about potential across-the-board cuts to the Defense budget, Amos said he believed the Marine Corps would be hit disproportionately hard, considering the size of the force and the value it delivers to the U.S. military. Amos also said that the greatest challenge for the Corps moving forward would be ensuring the force remains balanced through a period of fiscal austerity. To learn more about Amos' remarks and to view C-SPAN's full coverage of the event, click here: http://www.vfwonthehill.org/2012/08/vfw-hears-from-marine-commandant.html?m=1

6. Army and NFL Discuss TBI: Earlier this week, Army representatives hosted NFL leaders at West Point to discuss how they can affect positive change surrounding Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) and concussions. The military, alongside the NFL have continued conversations regarding the Soldier-Athlete commitment to education and awareness of these serious injuries. To watch the discussion, click here: http://www.dvidshub.net/webcast/2578#.UD5iiqCoz1l.

7. Five MIAs Return Home: The Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office recently announced the identification of remains belonging to one airmen and four soldiers who had been missing in action since World War II, Korea and Vietnam. Returned home are:
* Army Air Forces 1st Lt. Harry W. Eck, of Minot Ward, N.D. On Sept. 13, 1944, Eck and eight other crewmembers were aboard a B-17G Flying Fortress that crashed near Neustaedt-on-the-Werra, Germany. Only one of the nine crewmen is known to have successfully parachuted out of the aircraft before in crashed.
* Army Cpl. Kenneth R. Block, 22, of Ann Arbor, Mich. In late November 1950, Block and elements of the 31st Regimental Combat Team, known as "Task Force Faith," were advancing along the eastern banks of the Chosin Reservoir in North Korea when they came under attack. On Dec. 3, Block and many other Americans would be listed as missing in action as a result of the heavy fighting.
* Army Sgt. 1st Class William T. Brown, 24, of La Habra, Calif.; Sgt. 1st Class Donald M. Shue, 20, of Kannapolis, N.C.; and Sgt. 1st Class Gunther H. Wald, 25, of Palisades Park, N.J. On Nov. 3, 1969, the men and six Vietnamese soldiers were part of a Special Forces reconnaissance patrol that was ambushed while operating in Quang Tri Province near the Vietnam-Laos border.
Read more about their recovery and identification at http://www.dtic.mil/dpmo/news/news_releases/.

Veterans Crisis Line

Posted at 12:26 PM on Saturday, May 14, 2011 by State Blogmaster

The Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) is unique because all of our members have served overseas in a combat zone. Our nation is in debt to all of those who served, and we understand that returning home and reintegrating into society can cause stress in many aspects of life. Because of this, VFW is participating in a campaign with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to increase awareness of the Veterans Crisis Line (1-800-273-8255 and Press 1).

The campaign revolves around the confidential Veterans Crisis Line (formerly the Veterans Suicide Prevention Hotline), establishing a unique identity designed to lower the threshold for Veterans and their families to make that critical call for help.

The line, available 24 hours a day and seven days a week, has answered more than 390,000 calls and has made more than 13,000 life-saving rescues since its launch.

The campaign is a national outreach effort to increase awareness and use of the confidential Veterans Crisis Line and online chat service, support and promote broader VA suicide prevention efforts, and promote help-seeking behaviors among Veterans.

Read more

VFW Names 2011 WebAward Winners

Posted at 12:11 PM on Saturday, May 14, 2011 by State Blogmaster

The VFW Communications Department has selected the winners of the 2011 VFW WebAward Competition.

This year nearly 60 entries were received. Judging was based on navigation, load time, design and overall content. Entries were divided into two separate categories: VFW Departments and VFW Posts/Districts.

The first-place winner in the Department category is the Department of Wisconsin. Second place has been awarded to the Department of Pacific Areas.

In the Post/District category, Post 5702 has been named this year’s first-place winner, with Post 5727 being awarded second place.

This year’s contest proved especially difficult to judge due to the number of quality websites submitted by our Posts, Departments and Districts.

Everyone who submitted an entry deserves praise for their hard work and creativity. Please continue to keep up the good work! We look forward to next year’s competition.

(via VFW.org)

Join the VFW

Posted at 10:07 AM on Monday, February 28, 2011 by State Blogmaster

Why join…. 

 We are all Americans who have served in war time…

We all know the sacrifice…

We all agree we need to look out for our fellow veterans

We are all patriots…


We could actually have some fun…

2011 Voice of Democracy and Patriot's Pen Raffle Winners Announced

Posted at 09:07 AM on Wednesday, February 23, 2011 by State Blogmaster

Our congratulations go the winners of the Department of NC 2011 Voice of Democracy and Patriot's Pen raffle winners-

1st Place $10,000        Jerry F. Hairston of Jacksonville

2nd Place $2,000         Adam D. Clark of Pembroke

3rd Place $1,000         Jimmie Caudill of North Wilkesboro

$500 winners  Felix Summerlin, Jr of Goldsboro and Thomas C. Weeks of Lillington


VFW Against TRICARE Increase Plans

Posted at 12:55 PM on Thursday, February 17, 2011 by State Blogmaster

WASHINGTON (February 16, 2011) In the rollout of their fiscal year 2012 budget submission, the Department of Defense on Monday announced plans to offset huge Tricare medical program expenses by increasing the annual enrollment fees paid by working-age military retirees first by 13 percent, then by linking future increases to double-digit medical inflation. The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is against both plans.

VFW National Commander Richard L. Eubank, a retired Marine and Vietnam combat veteran from Eugene, Ore., believes tying future increases to medical inflation is an escalator clause that will raise Tricare premiums so high that retirees will disenroll and look elsewhere for coverage.

"Asking someone to voluntarily give up 20 or more years of their youth on the simple promise of a pension and lifelong medical care for themselves and their spouses is a cost this nation and our government should be more than willing to bear," he said. "Any changes to how military retirees are treated will send an ominous signal to hundreds of thousands of servicemen and women who may be contemplating military careers."

(via VFW.org)

Little Known Legacy Membership Information

Posted at 04:17 PM on Tuesday, January 25, 2011 by State Blogmaster

Good information for your post Quartermaster--

When you become a "Legacy Life Member" in the VFW, you are also a "Life Member".

Each year, your post will receive two membership rebates for your membership.

One for being a "Life Member" and another for being a "Legacy Life Member". After you are gone, your post will continue to receive an annual rebate for your "Legacy Life Membership"



North Carolina "The VFW Leader" Newspaper

Posted at 10:30 AM on Wednesday, December 29, 2010 by State Blogmaster in VFW Leader


For a copy of the DECEMBER 2010 "The VFW Leader", click: HERE


Click the link to read the leader: (Must have Adobe Reader). It make a moment to load, depending on the size of the newspaper.

 If you do not get "The VFW Leader" in the mail, let me know. Your address may have been changed. In most cases, "The VFW Leader" will not be forwarded by the post office. E-mail me at:  blogmaster@nc.vfwwebmail.com 

 The pages of advertising have been deleted from the online edition.


2011-2012 Voice of Democracy and Patriot's Themes are Announced

Posted at 07:28 PM on Thursday, December 16, 2010 by State Blogmaster

The Voice of Democracy theme for the 2011-2012 membership year is: "Is There Pride in Serving in Our Military?"

The Patriots Pen theme for the 2011-2012 membership year is: "Are You Proud of Your Country?"

Applications and forms will be posted as soon as their are available.

Give WWW.MYHEALTH.VA.GOV a Chance. It Works!

Posted at 04:11 PM on Friday, December 10, 2010 by State Blogmaster in VA Information and News

Dear Veteran:

The VA Mid-Atlantic Health Care Network cares about you and your health.   We want you to know about an important tool that’s available to you. It’s My HealtheVet, an online Personal Health Record just for you.

 On this site you can monitor your vital signs, fill your prescriptions, track your diet and exercise, graph your health readings, record your family’s medical history and much more!

 We hope you will visit   www.myhealth.va.gov   to learn more.  If you have questions, please contact your local VA facility which will be glad to assist you.

 Thank you for allowing us to provide for your health care needs. 

VA Mid-Atlantic Health Care Network

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