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Posted at 07:42 AM on Wednesday, September 14, 2011 by post9384America’s largest organization of combat veterans has elected a Vietnam War veteran to head the 1.5 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States.
Richard L. DeNoyer, a resident of Middleton, Massachusetts, was elected VFW Commander-in-Chief on September 1, 2011, during the 112th VFW National Convention, held August 27 – September 1, in San Antonio, Texas.
Click here to read DeNoyer's acceptance speech.
Also elected were John Hamilton, Senior Vice Commander-in-Chief, of St. Augustine, Florida, and William Thien, Junior Vice Commander-in-Chief, of Georgetown, Indiana.
Several major measures affecting the operation of the Veterans of Foreign Wars were also approved during the business sesssion. Click here to read a summary by North Carolina VFW Member Ken Sellers. For more information on convention events, visit the VFW.org Summary page.
And finally, watch the slideshow below for some random photos from the convention.
Posted at 11:38 AM on Monday, August 22, 2011 by post9384
KANSAS CITY, Mo., August 22, 2011 - The White House will not be sending a representative to the Veterans of Foreign Wars 112th National Convention in San Antonio, Texas, drawing harsh criticism and a rebuke from the leadership of the nation's largest combat veteran's organization.
"The VFW has had a long-standing tradition of inviting the sitting president to address our convention. We want to know where he stands on veterans' affairs, and we want those remarks made in public and on the record," said Richard L. Eubank, the national commander of the nearly 2 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. and its Auxiliaries.
"When the President is unable to attend, it has always been customary for the White House to choose a high-level administration official as an alternative speaker," Eubank continued. "It is an insult of the highest magnitude that for the first time in the history of the VFW, the White House has apparently decided that this great and iconic organization of combat veterans and all of its members are not worthy of its notice by not at least offering a first-tier speaker from the administration."
Eubank, a Marine Corps retiree and Vietnam combat veteran from Eugene, Ore., was also critical of Texas Governor, Rick Perry; "The VFW also has a tradition of inviting the governor of the host state where its annual convention is being held to come and welcome and greet our convention delegates. Although Governor Perry was similarly sent an invitation 3 months ago, apparently our invitation was deemed not important enough for the governor’s office to at least accept or decline the invitation. Governor Perry's candidacy for president does not provide him an excuse for bad manners. The White House and Governor Perry can rest assured that the 2 million members of the VFW and its Auxiliaries will remember this discourteous treatment for a very long time to come."
Annually, the VFW's National Convention plays host to a number of other speakers as well, including prominent members of the Cabinet, military and civic leaders, business leaders and a host of everyday people honored for their exemplary service.
Posted at 09:34 PM on Tuesday, August 2, 2011 by post9384Dear VFW, Ladies Auxiliary and Supporters:
The president this afternoon signed congressional legislation to raise the federal debt limit and reduce government spending. The larger question is now how this all impacts veterans, service members, their families and survivors.
The measure passed by the Senate today and in the House yesterday will raise the $14.3 trillion debt limit by at least $2.1 trillion. An additional $500 billion could come in the fall, provided two-thirds of Congress approves. The final increase, expected early next year, would provide the Treasury enough borrowing power to pay its bills into 2013.
The deal also calls for sharp cuts in agency spending --- about $917 billion over the next decade --- starting with a $25 billion reduction in fiscal year 2012, which begins Oct. 1, with a second set of reductions coming later this year via a special committee charged with wringing at least $1.2 trillion more over the next decade. If the committee fails to act --- or if Congress does not adopt its recommendations by Dec. 23 --- government spending would be cut across the board by the same amount, with the reductions split 50:50 between security and non-security programs.
Either way, many DOD and VA programs and services could be negatively impacted, which would counteract everything the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. has worked hard to create over the past 112 years. The VFW and our supporters cannot let this happen.
On the VFW website is a list of 10 services and programs the organization believes are most vulnerable to being cut or curtailed in order to help pay for 10 years of war. The "10 for 10" list will form the basis of VFW's legislative efforts and calls to action to its membership and grassroots supporters. Now is the time to re-engage with your members of Congress.
Yours in Comradeship,
ROBERT E. WALLACE
VFW Washington Office
Posted at 11:27 PM on Monday, July 25, 2011 by post9384(via The Pentagon Channel)
Posted at 11:11 PM on Tuesday, July 5, 2011 by post9384
KANSAS CITY, Mo., July 1, 2011 - The national commander of America's largest and oldest major combat veterans' organization is appalled over allegations of religious censorship at one of the nation’s national cemeteries, calling it a case of “bureaucracy running amok.”
“This is a point in case of bureaucracy…or rather, a classic example of a bureaucrat running amok. In spite of VA policy, the cemetery director is making up her own rules and has imposed hurtful, unilateral restrictions of her own choosing,” said Richard L. Eubank, the national commander of the 2.1 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. and its Auxiliaries.Texas-based Liberty Institute has filed suit on behalf of the VFW, American Legion, and The National Memorial Ladies over allegations of religious hostility and unlawful censorship by the VA and its director of the Houston National Cemetery. "They've told the VFW and the American Legion that they cannot have prayer during the burial services of our veterans, unless the family requests it in writing and submits the prayer for pre-approval," said Liberty Institute general counsel Jeff Mateer.
Posted at 12:26 PM on Saturday, May 14, 2011 by post9384In This Issue:
1. Defense Bill Includes TRICARE Increases
2. New Vet Employment-Transition Bill
3. House Hearings
4. Korean War MIA Identified
1. Defense Bill Includes TRICARE Increases: The House Armed Services Committee approved its version of the FY 2012 National Defense Authorization Act this week. The $533 billion defense bill (H.R. 1540) provides a 1.6-percent military pay increase, reduces the SBP-DIC offset for survivors, and would increase TRICARE fees for working-age military retirees. Beginning with FY 2013, the committee voted to link future TRICARE increases to annual cost-of-living-adjustments, or COLAs, which has been zero for military retirees for the past two years. The committee did not vote to prohibit a fee increase for FY 2012, which now opens the door for DOD to raise TRICARE fees by 13 percent this fall. The VFW will continue to oppose all TRICARE fee increases. Military retirees paid for their healthcare through long and faithful service; for their children being uprooted repeatedly from school; for their spouses not being able to have full careers; for their homes accumulating no equity; and for some, for not being fully marketable because they served so many years in uniform. The House, then the Senate, have to agree on the bill before it goes to the president for his signature. The VFW urges you to redouble your efforts and get your representatives to reject the TRICARE increase when the bill comes up for a floor vote, and to contact your senators to reject the proposal if it makes it through the House. To take action against the proposed TRICARE increase, go to http://capwiz.com/vfw/issues/
2. New Vet Employment/Transition Bill: Senate VA Committee Chairman Patty Murray (D-WA) introduced VFW-supported legislation to aggressively improve the unemployment rate among veterans. S.951, the Hiring Heroes Act of 2011, would require the Departments of Defense, VA and Labor to work together to improve the Transition Assistance Program and to identify barriers in translating military jobs into civilian employment. The bill hopes to offer unique job skills training, create new direct federal hiring authority, and improve veteran mentorship programs in the private sector. According to Labor Department statistics, about 27 percent of veterans ages 20-24 are currently unemployed. Read the committee press release at http://veterans.senate.gov/
3. House Hearings: The House VA Committee cleared several VFW-supported bills, which now move to the House floor for a vote. They include:
* HR 1383, Restoring GI Bill Fairness Act of 2011, to grandfather veterans attending private schools who were adversely affected by the changes made in the GI Bill last Congress. It also increases the cap to $27,000 from $17,500 for students already enrolled in private schools under Chapter 33.
* HR 1657, legislation that would improve VA's enforcement of service-disabled, veteran-owned small business contracting.
* HR 1441, a bill to ban reserving burial and interment locations at Arlington National Cemetery, and clears the way for a memorial on Chaplains Hill to honor Jewish chaplains who died defending our country.
* HR 1407, The Veterans Cost of Living Adjustment Act of 2011, would provide a cost-of-living increase to veterans' disability compensation rates and other benefits. It would also provide a five-year extension to VA adaptive grants program for severely wounded veterans residing in a family member's home.
For more information visit the committee website at http://veterans.house.gov/.
4. Korean War MIA Identified: The Defense POW/Missing Personnel Office announced identification of remains belonging to Army Cpl. Primo C. Carnabuci, of Old Saybrook, Conn. On Nov. 1, 1950, Carnabuci's unit, the 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division, was forced to conduct a fighting withdrawal from their position along the Kuryong River, near Unsan, North Korea. He was among almost 600 men to be reported missing from the battle. Read more at http://www.defense.gov/
Posted at 12:19 PM on Saturday, May 14, 2011 by post9384
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.