Patriot Reader Newsletter

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Patriot Reader Newsletter
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St. Augustine, FL
Veterans Council of St. Johns County
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Sgt. Major for those attending. The second event of the month was the Navy Guard Awards ceremony which is held each year at the Flagler College Solarium. Four USCG Coasties were recognized by the St. Augustine Palm Coast Navy League Council with a plaque honoring each one, a letter from Senators Rubio and Nelson and Congressman John Rutherford, and an all expense paid weekend for each one in St. Augustine including $100 spending money. home flag on Independence Day, Wednesday, July 4 to honor our Nation. Bill Dudley, Chairman Veterans Council of St. Johns County Fellow Veterans: It has been several months since I have reported on the progress of our Veterans Treatment Court. As many of you may remember, our Veterans Treatment Court ( VTC ) was stood up in January 2017 under the judicial watch of Judge Howard McGillin. The program has grown exponentially since inception and there are currently 18 veterans in the program with a high of 26 during the past year. The McGillin likes to refer to them are the mentors or he has assigned to these valuable assets to the VTC program. There are now 12 trained mentors in the program providing an invaluable service to the veterans to whom they are assigned. The mentor program is headed up by John Leslie, the mentor coordinator. John has done an outstanding job of putting together a procedures manual, a schedule for each mentor, and conducts frequent training and coordination meetings for the mentors. Cynthia Thompson is the VTC Coordinator and brings a high level of experience and dedication to the program. We are very fortunate to have Cynthia in the program. The Veterans Council is very proud that we were able to assist in bringing this much needed service to St. Johns County and help provide the funds to support the requirements of the program. Two special events occurred during the month of June that are notable to triot Reader. The celebration of the 243rd birthday of the US Army was held at the St. Francis Barracks Officers Club on Thurs. June 14. The Master of Ceremonies for the event was retired Sgt. Major Ray Quinn, our Veterans Council Vice Chairman. It was well attended and a delightful event with a little Army trivia quiz thrown in by the Message from the Chairman Newsletter Date: July, 2018 Volume 7, Issue 7 Clyde Lassen State Veterans Nursing Home Jax National Cemetery Support Committee Missing in America Project Ceremony Vets4Vets Keynote Speaker R. Jenkins, Jr, Post Office in Interlachen Cecil Field POW/MIA Memorial Camp Blanding Honored Vets4Vets Quarterly Gathering Richard M. Bassett, American Hero, passes Andy Ramotnik, WW II Veteran, POW Andrew Coughlan, on a New Mission Tax information from John Mountcastle The Ride Home 2018 Credit Card Processing for Vet groups Nease High School #1 Navy JROTC VVA 1084 Meeting VC SJC May Minutes Battle of Bloody Marsh Marine SGT from Macon GA MOH Story Atlantic Coast Young Marines / Open House Schedule Inside this Edition


2 Clyde E. Lassen State Veterans Nursing Home Clyde E. Lassen celebrated the kick off to summer water balloons, squirt guns and buckets of water. And a special thank you to Community Hospice for sponsoring the ice cream truck!


3 Jacksonville National Cemetery Support Committee Meetings for 2018 At Community Hospice of NE FL. 4266 Sunbeam Rd, Jacksonville, FL 32257 Hadlow Bldg Conference Room A 7:00pm DATES OF 2018 NEXT SCJNC MEETING Monday, Sept 17th Monday, Oct 15th Monday, Nov 5th Monday, Dec 3rd Saturday, Dec 15th Wreaths Across America (Details TBA) All are invited to attend our meetings and become a part of this Committee. The Veterans Council thanks Michael Isam for posting the June Patriot Reader on his Veterans Today website. We realize some of you did not receive it. http://www.nhc


4 Missing in America MISSION STATEMENT The purpose of the Missing in America Project (MIAP) is to locate, identify and inter the unclaimed cremated remains of American veterans through the joint efforts of private, state and federal organizations, and to provide honor, respect and dignity to those who have served this country by securing a final resting place for these forgotten heroes. On Saturday, June 23, 2018, at 10:00AM, MIAP Florida, in cooperation with the StoneMor Cox Gifford Seawinds Funeral Home and Crematory in Vero Beach, interred the unclaimed cremains of 21 veterans and 1 spouse of a veteran, with full military honors, at the Cape Canaveral National Cemetery located at 5525 US 1, Mims, FL 32754. The veterans being interred served during World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and other non war specific periods, eleven in the US Army, two in the Marine Corps., six in the Navy and one spouse, one in the Coast Guard, and one in the Merchant Marine. The longest that any of these being interred has been unclaimed is since 1997. Kathy Church MIAP FL State Coordinator (904) 219 3035




6 Vets4Vets speaker stresses American history He made this statement during the June 9 quarterly gathering of the Vets4Vets at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. ed States while promoting his 100 page book which has been viewed at University of Central Florida, Eastern Florida State College and other educational institutions around the country. that only 12 percent of high school seniors are proficient in American history and civics. In addition, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute tested college seniors at 50 large and small universities around the county and the average grade was an F. A random poll of adults conducted by an internet affiliate of Newsweek magazine, 81 percent of the respondents could not name one power belonging to the federal government.


7 Russell spoke for nearly 11 minutes about the history of the United States and singled out veterans and those that died for the country. men and women currently serving in the military and all veterans, especially those that gave their lives. They should never be far from our hearts. wealthy and most powerful nation in the world. We should also seek that self reliance, free enterprise, ingenuity, sacrifice, hard work and divine providence Russell made it a point that all Americans need to get better acquainted with the history of the United States. history and values which should bind us together, but we can restore these things together on our own, individually, in our families and in organizations such as this. In so doing we will preserve a free country or children and show our gratiRussell, a musician, closed his presentation by playing God Bless America on the saxophone. Submitted by David Treffinger, VVA E Recon Editor


8 Robert H. Jenkins Jr. Post Office The name of U.S. Marine Corps Private First Class Robert H. Jenkins Jr. should never be forgotten. That was messaged at the June 15th dedication of the U.S. Post Office in Interlachen which was named in honor the Vietnam Medal of Honor recipient before a gathering of approximately 125 family members, friends, veterans, military representatives and citizens. Jenkins was serving as a machine gunner with Company C, 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion at Fire Support Base Argonne, south of the Demilitarized Zone on March 5, 1969 when he was killed in action. He was, along with his 12 man recon team, attacked by enemy fire mortars, machine guns and grenades. Jenkins and fellow Marine, Fred Ostrom, took up position in a two man fighting emplacement. When a hand grenade was thrown into the emplacement, Jenkins leaped on top of Ostrom, shielding him from the explosion and absorbing the full impact of the grenade. He was mortally wounded and posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroic art and sacrifice of life. The Medal of Honor was presented to the Jenkins family on April 20, 1970 at the White House by Vice President Spiro T. Agnew. General William Beydler (left photo), Commander, U.S. Marine Corps The plaque that will hang in the Interlachen Post Office in honor of Robert H. Jenkins Jr. and bust that was on loan from sculptor Cliff Leonard of Jacksonville.


9 was awarded by the President of the United States for conspicuous gallantry at the risk of Jenkins is the 247th Marine Corps Medal of Honor recipient with 57 presented from the Vietnam War. ribbon with 13 stars on it. When I see it time stops, really, I drop everyawe and admiration. Today, I stand in awe and admiration of Private First Class Robert H. Jenkins Jr. We all stand in awe and admiration for that fine Marine. He gave his life in service to our great nation, in service to our Corps and in service to his fellow Marines. And he did so to save the life of a fellow Marine. A fellow Marine survived because of Private First Class Jenkins actions and returned to his family and had a family of his own. The bill to get the Post Office dedicated was introduced on Sept. 28, 2017 through the office of U.S. Representative Ted S. Yoho (Florida, 3rd District) and signed by the President on March 23, 2018.


10 heard an interview the other day and they did a survey and they said it was voting, standing up for the pledge of allegiance, standing up for the national anthem. I think one willing to sacrifice their life for their fellow American is probably the greatest display of patriotism in our country. Robert H. Jenkins Jr., a Medal of Honor recipient you heard, who was man of valor, courage and selflessness. Every man or women who sacrificed their life for our freedom deserves the highest praise and commemo r a t i o n W e c a n n o t h o n o r o r t h a n k t h e m e n o u g h f o r t h e s a c r i f i c e t h a t they all, they along with their families, they have made on our behalf. That is the only reason we have the liberties and freedoms we have today are because of the people of that are willing to sign that contract that says went above and beyond his call in the service in Vietnam, as you heard the General says he saved the life of his fellow countryman by shielding him from enemy fire. Robert Jenkins embodies what it means to be a patriot and a friend. We are grateful to Private Jenkins and many more like him that gave the ultimate sacrifice so that we remain the land of the free The Jenkins family and Gold Star family members and members of the group that helped get the Interlachen Post Office dedicated. Submitted by David Treffinger, VVA E Recon Editor


11 Cecil Field POW/MIA National Memorial There are over 82,000 military personnel still missing in action dating back to the World War II. There is a move a foot to redevelop the current Cecil Field POW/MIA Memorial which is located on the west side of Jacksonville and long forgotten into a National POW/MIA Memorial. It would be the first of its kind in the Nation. Missing in Action (MIAs) from all branches of the military. The project which will cost $25 Marco Rubio and Bill Nelson along with U.S. Senator John McCain, a former Vietnam POW from Arizona, U.S. Congressman John Rutherford (Florida 4th District) and the National League of POW. MIA Families. It is projected to five to six year endeavor with initial groundbreaking several years down the road. How did Cecil Field and Jacksonville become the projected site of the national memorial? For one there is no national POW/MIA Memorial in the nation. A non profit was formed because Michael Cassata, the son of a former Navy man who served at day site looked. organize a couple to teams to come out and clean the area up and worked with the City of Jacksonville. We worked with the City of Jacksonville to come with a plan for that property and we In addition, getting more involved with the POW/MIA issue Cassata quickly realized that there was not a national memorial in the country. It was the idea of Sam Houston, retired Navy Captain and former commanding officer at Cecil Field, who announced the closing of Cecil in 1993.


12 Cassata said. was originally dedicated in 1963 and was a part of NAS Cecil Field. The Chapel serves as a focal point in this effort, as we restore the current chapel building. While the chapel will serve as the centerpiece for honoring former POWs and past and present MIAs, this organization will be building a place of education, respite, and reflection of their sacrifices. Currently, there is an existing Memorial Park which is dedicated to those Naval Aviators stationed at NAS Cecil Field during the Vietnam and Desert Storm Wars. Cecil Field was decommissioned as an active naval installation on Sept. 30, 1999. The site currently consists of markers and associated planted trees for each of the 16 pilots play of aircraft, and a granite base seal of this former Master Jet Base. The City of Jacksonville approved a City ordinance to lease this 26 acre property to the organization at the former NAS Cecil Field Master Jet Base (now known as Cecil Commerce Center). the families and service members who wanted to ensure these brave men would never be forgotten. Trees were planted for each pilot and markers added with engravings. A driving force behind establishing the memorial was Mary Hoff, wife of MIA pilot LCDR Michael G. Hoff. Along with other spouses and family members, they assisted in making the memorial a reality. Mary Hoff was also instrumental in developing the universal symbol known as the POW/MIA flag. Besides the American flag, this is the only other flag authorized to fly over the White House and the only other flag that can fly on the same pole as the American flag. Undoubtedly, this flag has become a very important symbol for the POWs and MIAs, their families and friends, and the enduring cause that they will never be forgotten. The Cecil Field National POW/MIA Memorial Park, a 501(c)(3) non profit organization with a mission is to educate the public through awareness of the POW/MIA issues, exhibits, artifacts, videos and memorabilia. The importance of the POW/MIA symbol is to never forget these brave heroes who all have a story to tell and their families seeking their return.


13 Blanding honored for conservation work The Military Conservation Partner Award is given annually to highlight the policies and work of the military installation that is best able to balance conservation and habitat development with their military training. This year, Camp Blanding Joint Training Center near Sparke was showcased as the most environmentally friendly installation for its work conserving and rehabilitating the Red Cockaded Woodpecker, a bird native to the American Southeast considered to be endangered by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. While military training and habitat conservation may seem incompatible, preservation groups and post operations have come together to develop a mutually cooperative and fulfilling partnership. an example for similar military installations, resulting in CBJTRC relocating many endangered species to other underpopulated conservation areas. This relocation project moves animals like the Red Cockaded Woodpecker to sites with dwindling local populations, in hopes of rebuilding endangered populations, and expanding habitats. Catlett. The program is part of an agreement between the military and U.S. Fish and Wildlife known as the Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances. The agreement commits organizations to enacting policies to restore dwindling wildlife stocks in an attempt to keep threatened animals off state and federal endangered species list. "Our partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission allows Camp Blanding to maintain its position as the premier training installation in the southeast while the Florida National Guard maintains its combat readiness and we simultaneously conserve Florida's native wildlife," said Maj. Gen. Michael Calhoun, The Adjutant General of Florida. This cooperation ensures wildlife is protected and Soldiers and Airmen have accessible training grounds to prepare to accomplish their state and federal missions in the case of mobilizations or natural disasters. Submitted by Florida National Guard Public Affairs Office


14 Vets 4 Vets Quarterly Gathering The Vets 4 Vets Quarterly Gathering of Veterans took place on Saturday, June 9 at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. Hundreds of veterans attended, from all wars, including a WW II veteran celebrating his 100th birthday. There were many displays from organizations that help veterans and offer many others. The speakers were from the veteran community or represented organizations that help veterans. The Gathering ended with a complimentary buffet lunch. All are looking forward to the next Quarterly Gathering.


15 Minutes Gathering of Veterans, June 9, 2018 Gathering, 325+ Attendees Speaker: Randolph G. Russell (404) 474 1776 Email: how our Founding Fathers decided to form 1 nation. Need for short overview of American History. This is why he wrote the book. There is also a need for all Maggie Johnson Supervisor of Elections, Military Rep. Email: Ability to Vote Supervisor of Elections upcoming elections in 2018 August 28 (Primary) & Nov. 4 (General). Please vote on these dates. 3 Ways to Vote Early voting, by Mail, in Person on Election Day. Active Duty Military *** Overseas/ other can receive ballot via email/other. Encouraged everyone to consider becoming a POLL WORKER Temp/Paid -USMC Sgt Brian Weber Gung Ho Awardee Blount Island Command Marine, One Marine helping another Marine, donated a kidney to fellow Marine. Presented a Gung Ho Award, NCO Sword, Marine Corps Ring and Challenge Coin by Semper Fidelis Society on behalf of all Veterans in attendance. Theresa Viets Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp Baseball Email : There are many special events planned to include the Jacksonville Military & Vets; Free Game for Veterans June 14, 2018 Shawn Lewis ONU (Special Employment Training for Vets), (904) 328 1600


16 Since 2012, org. started required 3 weeks training to complete job/employment training. 25 groups have completed training. Justin Cayless Transitional story from Marine Corps to Civilian life, (904) 718 0661 2011 separated from Marine Corps. Used multiple vet groups to support post military efforts Women Veterans Her organization was contacted by Suzanne Carson, Director of Operations for Vets4Vets to provide assistance for a local female veteran who contacted them on social media. June 15 food giveaway. 1st Anniversary of Women Veterans building, 6 years providing services to women veterans, Legislation Please consider supporting; working on State resolution for women Women Vets coordinator needs a full time person. Sollie Mitchel US ARMY 100th Birthday Acknowledgement, Birthday Cake and all attendees singing, Happy Birthday to him. 100 year old WWII Veteran Dennis Baker FL Veterans Foundation, Email: FVF@FDVA.STATE.FL.US Is a 501C3 Non Profit located in Tallahassee, FL, FVF worked with 5 Star Vet Center. NE FL Women Vets received $8,000 in assistance. Disabled American Vets received vans, Gave and discussed information on pending legislation that will benefit vets. Mental Health will be a top of list for funding. Aging Vets Assisted Living Facilities In Home Health Care 50/50 Drawing $167.00; Winner Donated $100 to Semper Fidelis Society Buffet Lunch and Networking commenced at 1230


17 These are the flags that were purchased with your Chapter donations, the ALR 5th Dist of FL will present the flags/plaque on July 21 to JNC. The presentation will start at 10:30AM


18 Richard M. Bassett (1928 2018) Richard M. Bassett, age 90, of St. Augustine, went to be with the Lord on Wednesday, June 5, 2018 at his home surrounded by his family. Richard was born to Amos and Mittie Bassett on January 29, 1928 in West Palm Beach, FL. He was a 1945 graduate of Jupiter High School and enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserves at the end of W.W.II. He was called to active duty in 1951 and went to Korea to serve with the 25 th Infantry Division, 14 Regimen, 3rd Battalion. Richard was captured in an ambush by the Chinese in October of 1951 while out on patrol near Kumwha, North Korea. During his imprisonment he fought to keep his New Testament Bible, and was allowed to hold services for the prisoners. To this day that same bible is located in the Andersonville National Museum. He was finally released from captivity on August 12, 1953 during a cease fire and exchange of prisoners, after 22 months, 6 days as a POW in N. Korea. Richard returned to civilian life and went on to attend Florida State University where he received his Bachelor Degree in 1955 and Master of Education Degree in 1957. He began his career in education as a History teacher at Forest Hills High School in West Palm Beach, and continued as a Social Studies and Adult Edu c a t i o n T e a c h e r a t S t A u g u s t i n e H i g h S c h o o l f r o m 1 9 6 7 u n t i l h i s r e t i r e m e n t i n 1989. He retired after 31 years of teaching. Richard continued to teach in his retirement as volunteer. He served as a tutor in the Learn to Read, English as a Second Language and Take Stock in Children Programs. He also returned to China in 1992 and 1993 to teach Conversational English at Sichuan University in Chungdu, China. Richard was steadfast and unwavering in his faith in God. He was a founding member of Anastasia Baptist Church and had a heart for serving. He served as a Deacon, Chairman of Deacons, Sunday School Teacher, Sunday School Director, he loved singing in the choir and served on numerous commit


19 tees. He led by serving. Despite his experience in the Korean War, Richard joyfully participated in a joint evangelistic campaign with Florida and South Korea Baptist churches in Seoul, Korea. Richard was also a member of many Educational and veteran's organizations, and especially had a heart for organizations that supported ex POWs. He was preceded in death by his wife of 58 years, Valdeen. He is survived by his two sons, Mark Alan Bassett and wife Mary Jane, Jay Daniel Bassett; his granddaughters, Hannah, Alisa, Kara & Andrea; and grandsons, Caleb, Cody & Colton, and many great grandchildren. Services will be held at 5:00 pm on Monday, June 11, 2018 at Anastasia Baptist Church with Rev. Ron Moore officiating. A committal service with military honors will be held at 2 pm on Monday, June 18, 2018 at Andersonville National Cemetery in Andersonville, Ga. In lieu of flowers, donations in Richard's memory can be made to: Community Hospice of Northeast FL., 4266 Sunbeam Road, Jacksonville, Florida 32257 contact us for the PBS link.


20 From the FL Times Union Andy Ramotnik, WW II Veteran Andrew Ramotnik, 94, a former WWII veteran and POW, died May 30, 2018 in Jacksonville, Florida. The cause of death was from natural causes, said his son, Lieutenant Colonel Andrew M. Ramotnik, US Army (retired). Mr. Ramotnik was born in Clarence, PA on July 5, 1923. Noteworthy in his career was his enlistment in the U.S. Army Air Corps in 1941 and while on his 43rd bombing run, he was shot down, captured, and served as a German POW for 19 months, having escaped not once, but twice. His story inspired other veterans and members of the military, as well as audiences at several universities and civic organizations. In his later life, Mr. Ramotnik enjoyed rounds of tennis on a near daily bases. Even into his 90s, he continued to play a game he loved. Mr. Ramotnik is survived by his son Andrew and granddaughter Sara of Upper Marlboro, MD, and two daughters, Pam Dunstone of Sarasota, FL, and Cindy Ramotnik of Corrales, NM.


21 Finding a new mission Local US Army veteran Andrew Coughlan honored with By Colleen Michele Jones [CONTRIBUTED] It was 2004 when the battalion U.S. Army Spc. Andrew Coughlan was traveling with ran into mortar shield him from the blast. St. Augustine home. Coughlan, 34, returned from military service in 2006 in one piece, at least outwardly. active duty alongside comrades still in Iraq and Afghanistan? What was he supposed to do with the rest or his life that had been spared in that mortar attack? just five days after being discharged. The couple now has two daughters, Maddison, 10, and Emery, 7. Next was a chance encounter with the Wounded Warrior Project help other service men and women transition back to civilian life. Coughlan had kept in touch with a fellow Iraq vet named Russell Broughton on Facebook. When he tate to give one of his own kidneys to help Broughton. the right thing to do and that I can do Wounded Warrior Project at a banquet in New York City held May 31. Responding to the call


22 The events of Sept. 11 deeply affected Coughlan and, like many of his peers, he decided to enlist in the Army right after graduating from high school in a small town on the banks of Lake Michigan. After completing basic training, Coughlin was deployed to Iraq just two years later, in September 2003. A with conducting ambush attacks in an area known as the Triangle of Death for the number of U.S. casualties (a third in all) originating from combat in the region. Coughlan said. was killed in Afghanistan, his mental fortitude began to break down and he was medically discharged for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in 2006. Transitioning back to civilian life took a toll on his marriage; he was moody and angry. He had trouble in warfare affected him on a daily basis. The role he was offered to work for the Wounded Warrior Project in Jacksonville in 2007 began to turn things around. First serving first as an outreach coordinator, he was promoted to his current title of alumni manager, helping soldiers ease their way back into a new normal by way of benefits, education, counseling and other resources. Jonathan Pruden, senior warrior relations specialist, has known Coughlan for at least 10 years. There are times when Coughlan still struggles, certain anniversaries that can bring it all back like a film behind by Iraq.












28 IMPORTANT TAX ADVICE AND INFORMATION (From John Mountcastle) Exempt organizations reporting on a calendar year basis (i.e., their tax year ends on Dec. 31) must file some version of form IRS 990 no later than May 15, 2018 for their 2017 filing? While some may file on a group basis (i.e., their national organization submits the return on their behalf), many opt to file Form 990 N if their gross receipts are less normally less than $50,000). Completing the e Postcard requires the eight items listed below: 1. Employer identification number (EIN), also known as a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN). 2. Tax year 3. Legal name and mailing address 4. Any other names the organization uses 5. Name and address of a principal officer 6. Web site address if the organization has one 7. or less 8. If applicable, a statement that the organization has terminated or is terminating (going out of business) Annual Electronic Filing Requirement for Small Exempt Organizations Form 990 N (e Postcard) non profits/annual electronic filing requirement for small exempt organizations form 990 n e postcard


29 How to Join and Who to Contact about joining a local Vietnam Veterans of America local group Duval County: Anyone can get in touch with the Duval County VVA 1046 at 904 419 8621 or email, or call me directly, info listed below. Anthony (Tony) D'Aleo, President Nicholas J. Cutinha, VVA Chapter 1046, Cell # 904 910 2386 ------------------------------------Clay County : Anyone wishing to join the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter in Clay County should contact Gary Newman Chapter # 1059 President Any Vietnam veteran is eligible to join this very exclusive organization, era veterans are included. Contact information is as follows: Gary Newman, P.O. Box 626, Orange Park, Fl. 32067 0626 Tel: 904 269 1857, E mail: We meet on the 1st Saturday of each month at 11:00 AM @ the Middleburg American Legion, Post # 250. Come join your Brothers and Sisters. -----------------------------------St Johns County, VVA Leo C Chase Chapter 1084 : Those seeking information can call 904 233 4712 (leave message), or email to or One can also check out our website at Our membership meetings are held on the 4th (Blather, BS, and Brotherhood). We have a great group, and all are welcome to visit and participate! John Leslie, President, Vietnam Veterans of America Leo C Chase Chapter 1084, (904) 233 4712 The 3 Presidents: from left, and John Leslie


30 36 Granada Street, St. Augustine FL 32084 (904) 679 5736 Stop by the Corazon Cinema and Caf located in the heart of St. Augustine to catch a great film or a bite to eat (free parking). Tell us you are a veteran and receive 10% off any food or drinks Beer and wine available. This SEAL war dog knew no fear. His disappearance 50 years ago was a mystery until now. Prince was one of the few feel good stories to come out of knew no fear. He became the first SEAL dog and a media darling the subginian Pilot and the old Ledger Star. Prince saved lives. Had two Purple Hearts hung around his shaggy neck. Did four tours in Vietnam. But then our celebrity disappeared tangled in red tape, swallowed in the fog of war. No one could find him. Read the 3 part article here: 27b7 11e8 a7a7


31 THE RIDE HOME 2018 This Year's Event: We will base the event out of Warner Robins Georgia this September 20, 21 & 22. We will be working with Robins AFB POW/MIA Committee, Andersonville Historical Site, home of the National Prisoner of War Museum, Houston County Sherriff Office, Central Georgia Technical College and many local veterans and Patriotic citizens in an effort to comply with the Presidential Proclamation for National POW/MIA Recognition Day. All services are open to the Public. The HERO's Banquet, which is scheduled on 21 September, 1700 hrs. at Central Georgia Technical College, Larry Walker Auditorium, does require pre registering and a minimum donation of $25 per person. Seating for the Banquet is limited to 500 total attendance (which includes Honored Guest), so if you wish to break bread with these true American Hero's register soon. For all requiring hotel accommodations, the following hotels are centrally located to where the Honored Guest will be staying. As always, it is 'first come, first served'. La Quinta POC Billy 478 333 6920 Country Inn POC David 478 971 1664 Comfort Inn POC Peggy 478 953 3000 Holiday Inn Express POC Sarita 478 333 2737 The majority of Honored Guest and Families will be housed at the Fairfield and the Wyndham. These hotel will be hosted by Monica & Billie, respectfully. They will be POC for their Hotels. Proposed Itinerary for the event; Thursday, 20 September; 1400 hrs. depart hotels to Central Georgia Technical College (CGTC) 1500 hrs. Robins AFB POW/MIA Committee Recognition Service 1600 hrs. Meet & Greet 1630 hrs. Recording artist, RICKY LEE, preforms Friday, 21 September 0630 hrs. Law Enforcement escort to Andersonville 0830 hrs. POW/MIA Recognition Day Service 1130 hrs. Law Enforcement escort to Warner Robins. 1530 hrs. Law Enforcement escort to CGTC 1700 hrs. Hero's Banquet CGTC 1800 hrs. Keeping the Promise premiere of 'A SOLEMN PROMISE' 1930 hrs. Candlelight Service Saturday, 22 September 0900 hrs. Law Enforcement escort to CGTC 1000 hrs. Recognition Service (POW Story & Flag History Story) 1330 hrs. Ground pounder/Fly boy Lunch Join us in Georgia this September as we salute those who were held against their will by enemies of this Republic and remind those who still wait for their family member to come home; that We will NOT FORGET and that we will not give up Until They ALL Come Home!


32 Credit Card Processing Considerations for Your Veterans Organization thru the internet or in person). Most available options connect to Apple iPad or iPhone or other tablets and Android cell phones by bluetooth; the vendor provides the appropriate level of security. For those vendors who do not, the onus for comnearly full time job. Some vendors require contracts for specific terms (watch out for termination fees!), others do not. Before signing a contract remember to perform your due diligence, including a price comparison. Prices mentioned in this document are current as of June 1, 2018, and may be different if your organization is not recognized by the IRS under §501(c)(3) as a public charity (default is to be charged as a for incur higher fees than those recognized as public charities under §501(c)(3). data often governs the processing rate quoted. Are receipts regularly received in the same amount (e.g., subscriptions)? most are competitive and offer the advantage of integration with your existing banking relationships (i.e., no new bank account needed). This interview will raise more questions for you to answer. Hardware and software requirements should be determined Is the phone compatible with software requirements? If a physical connection to the phone is required, does the phone have a headset jack? If not, is an adapter provided? Are printed receipts required (most offer the opportunity to e mail receipts)? Does the card reader use an internet connection, or wireless (cell phone) data connection? Is software automatically updated? If subscriptions or other regularly recurring payments are received, can they be automatically processed? If so, how frequently? Can invoices (donor commitments) be sent through this system and payment processed directly by the donor? Is the rate the same, or higher? Is the organization billed for each invoice sent, or only for invoices paid thru the credit card processor? Is a Loyalty Program (providing discounts for repeat customers) appropriate? In addition to obtaining physical equipment (reader and power be downloaded. As most processing financial institutions use a reseller to market their products and services, the startup costs may vary significantly. While the monthly fees and per transaction fees are more competitive in nature, there is less


33 competition when buying readers. For example: Clover Go costs vary from $100.00 to free Square costs vary from $49.00 to free, depending upon reader (Contactless and Chip Reader is more expensive than Chip Reader while Magstripe Reader is free) When choosing a reader, please remember that the trend is towards chip cards and away from those having only a magnetic MasterCard and VISA, will hold the vendor liable for a fraudulent transaction when a credit card is swiped, unless the vendor has a chip reader! (expedited deposit may be available at an additional fee). You must settle the transaction by closing out the daily register in a timely manner (often daily) to avoid penalties. There is a glossary at the end of this document. Donors may be referred to as Customers; donations and other receipts may be referred to as Sales. Lastly, and most importantly, your organization SHOULD NOT retain unique and sensitive card holder data (name, card number, card expiration date, card CVV (three or four digit number in signature block) after it is no longer required. Failure of your organization (or your credit card processor) to comply with PCI DSS requirements can result in substantial liability! Processing on line transactions through the Internet Security is paramount too many sites have been compromised and customers (donors) credit card numbers and personal information have been leaked. All credit card issuers require that all card processing systems adhere to the PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). Commensurate with the dollar volume and number of transactions, some of these requirements can be quite intimidating, and best left to a professional In addition, each site should have a Privacy Statement which meets certain qualifications FEES: Often slightly higher than in person transactions this when you choose to remit membership dues online). Some processors (e.g., PayPal) prohibit surcharges when accepting credit card as a form of payment. Either the card is swiped (if card has a magnetic stripe) or the card is inserted into a reader (chip enabled card) or contactle ss (the card/cell phone is processed by placing it near the reader). FEES: Often, the processor will waive the per transaction fee and only charge a percentage of the transaction.


34 Manually keying the information is not only time consuming and subject to errors, but also has a higher transaction processing fee (usually a fixed amount plus a percentage of the transaction). FEES: Higher that in person transactions A good follow on article is available here. Description Your Quote Swiped Transaction (fixed fee) $0.00 $0.30 [$0.30] $0.00 Swiped Transaction (variable %) 2.75% 2.40% [1.60%] 2.70% Chip Transaction (fixed fee) 0.00 $0.30 [$0.30] 0.00 Chip Transaction (variable %) 2.75% 2.40% [1.60%] 2.70% Manual Transaction (fixed fee) 0.15 $0.30 [$0.30] 0.15 Manual Transaction (variable %) 3.50% 3.50% [3.30%] 3.50% On Line Transaction (fixed fee) 0.30 $0.30 [$0.30] 0.30 On Line Transaction (variable %) 2.90% 2.40% [1.60%] 2.90% Invoiced Transaction (fixed fee) 0.30 $0.30 [$0.30] 0.30 Invoiced Transaction (variable %) 2.90% $0.30 [$0.30] 2.90% Online Transaction fee 501(c)(3) N/A N/A 0.30 Online Transaction % 501(c)(3) N/A N/A 2.20% Checks by Phone/On Line? N/A 1.00 [1.00] N/A Is American Express different? No No Yes, 3.50% Pay for all invoices or only invoices paid through system? When paid When paid When paid Monthly Account Fee 0.00 0.00 [19.95] 0.00 PCI Compliance Included 9.95 [0.00] Included Chargeback fee (per event) 20.00 25.00 20.00 Start up Fees (excl. equipment) 0.00 0.00 Termination Fee None Possible None Other (hidden) fees? None Possible Unknown Notes: The above apply to domestic transactions; international transactions have higher percentage and fixed fees, and may al so have foreign exchange fees. Accepting charges using American Express family of cards often has a higher transaction rate (e.g., PayPal, above). To proper ly analyze the benefits of a card, the anticipated percentage of use by each card issuer should be taken into account. The follo win g is


35 a generalized example. In 2016, VISA held 50.65% of the total credit card transaction market (more, if debit cards are included). American Express a nd MasterCard were virtually tied, at 22.73% and 22.66%, with Discover a distant fourth at 3.96%. Using these percentages of market share for chip or swiped transactions for a total on line donation of $1,000, percentage fees (plus $0.30 per transaction s) could be: PayPal Square PayPal Charity Quickbooks (+$9.95 or more fixed fees/mo) VISA 2.9% $14.69 2.9% $14.69 2.2% $11.14 2.4% $12.16 AMEX 3.5% 7.95 2.9% 6.59 3.5% 7.95 2.4% 5.45 MCard 2.9% 6.57 2.9% 6.57 2.2% 4.99 2.4% 5.44 Discvr 2.9% 1.15 2.9% 1.15 2.2% 0.87 2.4% 0.95 Total 3.036% $30.36 2.90% $29.00 2.495% $24.95 2.4% $24.00 GLOSSARY AndroidPay Used by android cell phones to complete contactless transactions. ApplePay quires fingerprint recognition to complete transaction) Bluetooth A standard for the short range wireless interconnection of mobile phones, computers, and other electronic devices. Registered trademark of Clover Network, Inc. a division of First Data Corporation. Clover uses both internet and wireless cell phone connections to process transactions. Debit Card A bank card directly linked to a checking or savings account, from which funds are withdrawn immediately after the transaction is processed (there will be a delay until the vendor organization receives these funds). DSS Acronym for Data Security Standard EMV Registered trademark of EMVCo. LLC. Acronym for developers (EuroPay, MasterCard and Visa) Chip enabled credit card, which has generally replaced magnetic striped cards are the current de facto standard. Host A resource providing data processing services; any host should provide assurance that it is fully compliance with PCI NFC can be processed without inserting the card into a reader (generally, it must be within two inches or so of the reader). Most po pu l a r a r e A p p l e P a y A n d r o i d P a y a n d G o o g l e P a y N F C t r a n s a c t i o n s a r e o f t e n m u c h f a s t e r t h a n E M V t r a n s a c t i o n s ( w h e r e c a r d i s inserted or swiped). PayPal Created by Elon Musk (SpacEX), has many users; offers discount to 501(c)(3) public charities. PCI Acronym for Payment Card Industry PIN Acronym for Personal Identification Number; used to validate Debit Card transactions POS Point of Sale (where the payment is processed) SamsungPay Registered trademark of Samsung, used by Samsung android cell phones to complete contactless transactions. Square Founded by one of the founders of Twitter, competitor to PayPal.


36 The Veterans Council of St Johns County meets the last Thursday of the month at the county Health and Human Services building, 200 San Sebastian View. We have an impressive list of speakers, we hope you can join us. Here are our scheduled speakers: June 28, Charlie Tramazzo of Greater Jacksonville USO and COL (Ret) Ann Johnson of Gratitude America July 26, Bret Sovine, Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association 20 2 Scot A. French, Ph.D., Associate Professor of History | Director of Public History Interim Co Director, Center for Humanities & Digital Research, University of Central Florida August 30, Jason Snodgrass, Chief Executive Officer, K9s For Warriors September 27, Charles Tingley, St. Augustine Historical Society Senior Reference Librarian, 100 Years Ago: St. Johns County & WW I. October 25, Dr. Michael Butler, Flagler College November 29, Andrew Coughlan, Wounded Warrior Project Resource Development Cecil Field POW/MIA Memorial Save the date 10 July!!! A ceremony for the unveiling of Aviator Wings on the front of the Chapel and Unveiling of the Street Sign for the POW MIA Memorial Parkway will be held that morning. Stayed tuned, more details will be forthcoming. Please share with all your family, friends, and shipmates


37 For the sixth time in seven years, Nease was named the No. 1 Navy JROTC program in Area 12 a region that encompasses 60 schools covering North Florida and the state of Georgia. Nease earned the title as Most Outstanding Unit during an announcement by Commander Rustie Hibbard, NJROTC Area 12 manager, in May. The award is based on the total achievement of the program, which includes academic performance, community outreach, campus leadership, overall physical fitness and competition results. outgoing cadet Battalion Commander Aberlyn Short. Over the last year, Nease has earned first place at the Ed White Drill Meet, Mandarin Drill Meet, Terry Parker Drill Meet, Area 12 Drill Championships, Middleburg Pentathlon and Lee Ultimate Challenge. In addition, seven graduating seniors received service academy appointments or ROTC Scholarships, and the group completed nearly 5,000 hours of community service. run unit of the three naval science instructors. Nease was the No. 1 program in Area 12 from 2012 2016 and finished second in 2017 to North Cobb High School near Atlanta. working val science instructor. Outgoing Cadet Battalion Commander Aberlyn Short and incoming Battalion Commander Erin Sass receive the Most Outstanding Unit in Area 12 trophy during Nease NJROTC Awards Night. Photo courtesy of Scott LaRochelle Professional photographer and Veterans Council Ted Pappas has would like to share them with you. Please follow this link:


38 From Robert Dinkins, Vietnam Veterans of Leo C. Chase Jr, Chapter 1084. We were invited to attend breakfast at the Clyde Lassen Veterans Nursing Home. A rewarding and humble experience. Also my grandson attended sitting next to a WWII Navy F4U pilot.


39 Bob Dinkins Receives Prestigious Award from the FL VVA State Council Bob Dinkins of Vietnam Veterans of America Leo C. Chase Jr. Chapter 1084 in St. Johns County the June 23 triannual meeting of the VVA Florida State Council at the Orlando Marriott Lake Mary. Dinkins is the chaplain for the Florida State Council and the former president of Chapter 1084. The presentation was made by President Mike Bousher and First Vice President John McGinty. Dinkins received a certificate and medal. Gary Newman, former president of the VVA William G. Byrns Chapter 1059 in Clay County, has been elected Second Vice President for the Florida State Council. He replaces Rod Phillips, the president of Chapter 1048. Newman was unopposed for the office. The other officer holders President Bousher, First Vice President McGinty, Secretary Dan Penzien and Treasurer Ray Breault retained their positions as they were unopposed. Elections are held every two years. The Associates for the Vietnam Veterans of America also held their elections with Mary Anne Newman of Chapter 1059 in Clay County being elected as president and Kim Biddle, also of Chapter 1059, selected as treasurer. Joy Klein (vice president) and Mary Brown (secretary) were also selected for their positions. From Dave Treffinger




41 The V.A. Community Resource and Referral Center is the regions VA system, for homeless veterans to have immediate access to such services as, Social Work, Die t i t i a n C o m m u n i t y E m p l o y m e n t C o o r d i n a t o r O c c upational Therapist, ARNP, and peer support specialists. This center is located across from the Clara White Mission in downtown Jax., is open M F 8:00 am 4:30 pm. (For housing assessments, it is asked that Veterans visit between 9:00 am 1:30 pm.) 904 798 2800.


42 Veterans Council of St. Johns County, Inc. Minutes of May 31, 2018 Officers present: Chairman Bill Dudley, Vice Chairman Ray Quinn, Secretary Michael Rothfeld, Treasurer John Mountcastle Chairman Dudley called the meeting to order at 1900 hours Chairman Dudley led the Pledge to the Flag, Vice Chairman Ray Quinn gave the Invocation Introduction of Guests: Toula Wootan, Community Hospice, Director of Community Programs, Caregiver Program for veterans Crystal Timmons, Veterans Garden Project Donald J Blakely and Joseph Cone (Purple Heart recipients) Viewing of the SJC video of the POW/MIA flag raising and the reading of the Purple Heart Proclamation. Special Presentations: Chairman Dudley presented a Purple Heart pin and certificate to Purple Heart recipient and Korean War Marine Donald J Blakely and Joseph Cone, son of a Vietnam Purple Heart recipient. Speakers: Toula Wootan: There are 8 Community Hospices in NE FL, including one in Flagler Hospital. Community Hospice is honored to serve veterans and their caregivers by providing specialized programs to meet their needs. Counseling includes: advance care planning, bereavement & grief support, caregiver education, hospice care, & palliative care. For more information call 866 253 6681 or Crystal Timmons : Project Director and Founder, Veteran Garden Project. Mission is to support a healing veteran community through cultivation & production of organic foods through nursery management practices.


43 Volunteers are needed, please contact: 904 679 1811 Committee Reports: Mac: spoke briefly about the VA Mission Act which would reduce time and paper work and allow pre 911 veterans to be included caregivers under the VA programs. Steve: for Kathy, MIAP will hold their 16th Call to Honor on June 23 at the Cape Canaveral National Cemetery. The 5 county Council of Veterans Council Chairmen will meet at Cecil Field on June 22nd to discuss veterans issues and programs. The proposal to rename the road into Cecil Field was unanimously approved by the Jacksonville City Council. It will be called the POW/ MIA Memorial Highway. Bill: spoke about the county POW.MIA flag raising, the county becoming a Purple Heart county, and the St Augustine Fire Dept. T shirts that the Council paid for and will be reimbursed by T shirt sales. John: presented Chairman Dudley with 2 checks as part of the agreed repayment plan the Council had with one of the VTC participants. Ray: invited all to a Birthday party for the 243 year old Army, June 14 at the Officers Club on Marine St. at 4pm. Good of the Order: Fred, Elks Lodge 829 will hold a flag burning ceremony on June 14 at 10 am at the Elks Lodge Meeting adjourned at 8:15 pm. The next meeting of the Veterans Council will be on Thursday, June 28, 7 pm in the Health & Human Services Building, 200 San Sebastian View. Future speakers: June 28, Charlie Tramazzo of Greater Jacksonville USO and COL (Ret) Ann Johnson of Gratitude America July 26, Bret Sovine Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association 20 2 Scot A. French Ph.D., Associate Professor of History | Director of Public History, Interim Co Director, Center for Humanities & Digital Research, University of Central Florida August 30, Jason Snodgrass Chief Executive Officer, K9s For Warriors September 27, Charles Tingley, St. Augustine Historical Society, Senior Reference Librarian, 100 Years Ago: St. Johns County & WW I. October 25, Dr. Michael Butler




45 From The Gardner Report: The Battle of Bloody Marsh The Battle of Bloody Mose in 1740, reenacted last weekend at Fort Mose, was followed by a second British attempt to capture St. Augustine in early 1742, thwarted by the guns of Fort Matanzas south of the presidio. Spanish forces retaliated, resulting in the Battle of Bloody Marsh July 7, 1742. (An account drawn from Our Georgia History) The story of the Battle of Bloody Marsh is the story of two forts, Fort St Simon and Fort Frederica, which lay about 7 miles apart on St. Simon Island. Between the two a "military road" ran, a path one wagon wide, along which the army and nearby settlers in Frederica could receive supplies from Ft. St. Simon. Manuel de Montiano, governor of La Florida (Spanish Florida) rode the tide into St. Simon on July 5, sailing under the firing guns at Fort St. Simon, bypassing the fort and landing more than 50 ships near higher ground (Gascoigne Bluff). Oglethorpe withdrew from the fort before the Spanish could mount an attack. With some 3,000 troops of his estimated force of 4,500, Montiano took the fort the following day and began to scout the island on foot for Oglethorpe and his men. They quickly found the military road between Fort St. Simon and Fort Frederica, but dismissed it as a farmer's path. The Spanish began searching the leeward side of the island, completely ignorant of the existence of Frederica. After realizing their mistake, Montiano ordered more than 100 men to scout the road, looking for evidence of English forces or Frederica. Oglethorpe had chosen Frederica because of its location it was surrounded by marsh, and there were only two ways to attack by land, through the dense forest to the north of Frederica or along the military road to the south of Frederica. Sticking to a defense planned 8 years earlier, Oglethorpe stationed a small group of Highlanders, Rangers and marines under the command of Noble Jones to defend the road. Jones caught the Spanish skirmishers at the head of the formation by surprise. Jones ordered his men to fall back as he rode off to find Oglethorpe. When notified of the engagement, Oglethorpe, according to legend, jumped on the first available horse and rode off down the road to St. Simons. At Gully Hole Creek, Oglethorpe halted the orderly retreat of Jones' combined force and led them in an attack against the advancing Spanish, routing de Montiano's men in a furious battle. Knowing the Spanish would continue the attack, Oglethorpe followed the retreating enemy to an open area in a marsh. Placing his men carefully around the open field as the Spanish regrouped, Oglethorpe left to rally more support. A much larger Spanish force appeared and engaged Oglethorpe's men. The colonists tore into the superior Spanish force, forcing them into a haphazard retreat. This was the battle of Bloody Marsh.


46 Author's story starts with Medal of Honor recipient's niece By WAYNE CRENSHAW Associated Press MACON, Ga. (AP) For years John Hollis worked to uncover the full story behind an almost unfathomable act of selflessness by a man who grew up in Macon. Hollis is a former sports reporter for The Atlanta Journal Constitution and enjoys military history. He was immediately interested when a woman he was dating years ago, Regina Davis, told him her uncle was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. Today she is his wife. Marine Sgt. Rodney M. Davis, who grew up on Neal Street in the Pleasant Hill neighborhood, is the Davis died Sept. 6, 1967, in Vietnam when he threw himself onto a grenade to save fellow Marines. They were engaged in fierce combat with an enemy force far superior in numbers. He was 25, with a wife and two young children. Hollis interviewed 50 men who were on the battlefield with Davis that day, as well as three of the five Marines who would have either been killed or seriously wounded by the grenade. The other two died of natural causes, but he had their statements from the investigation that led to the medal being awarded. Davis was known for looking out for others long before he went to Vietnam. To Hollis, the most intriguing thing he learned is that the five men standing around Davis that horrific day were all white. due to the high proportion of black soldiers sent to Vietnam. That showed Hollis just how deep the brotherhood of combat runs. Despite growing up under racial oppression in the South, the skin color of those around him did not matter to Davis.


47 back to the Civil War. Hollis talks at length about Jim Crow laws that kept blacks, including Davis, from eating inside restaurants, as well as other forms of segregation and racial oppression. Davis joined the Marines in 1961 and had a nice job providing security at the U.S. embassy in London when he volunteered to go to Vietnam. Although his act of heroism happened in an instant, days of brutal combat led up to it, and Hollis degrenade landed with a thud near Davis and other Marines in a trench. Platoon Sgt. Ron Posey, one of the men Davis saved, recounted the event in an emotional interview with Hollis. weird sounds going on, it was something else that gets your attention. It just made a thud. Everybody was screaming, everybody was shooting. There was incoming and outgoing fire, but that was an absoWitnesses saw Davis not only jump on the grenade, but use both hands to push it toward his midsection to ensure he absorbed all of the blast. a new monument for Davis. It was dedicated in 2012. Leedom, Posey and others Davis saved that day went on to get married, have children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. Hollis said he got the sense in talking to the men that they felt they owed it to Davis to make the most out of their lives. Posey, who rode a Honda Goldwing motorcycle all over the country and to Alaska, lives today in phone interview with The Telegraph but answered questions by email. He said he avoided talking about the war until he spoke with Hollis, but as hard as that was, he said it also helped him heal.


48 Atlantic Coast Young Marines OPEN HOUSE SCHEDULE!!! Are you ready! Please visit us at one of the locations below to learn all about how to become part of the best youth organization in Jacksonville!!! Open House Dates (please choose one date to attend): July 14, 2018 4 pm Mandarin Branch Library, 3330 Kori Road, Jacksonville, Fl 32257 July 28, 2018 4 pm South Mandarin Branch Library, 12125 San Jose Blvd, Jacksonville, FL 32223 August 1, 2018 6 pm University Park Branch Library, 3435 University Blvd N, Jacksonville, FL 32277






51 Welcome to the official 2018 NAS Jax Air Show event. The NAS Jax Air Show, Birthplace of the Blue Angels, will be October 27 28, 2018 aboard NAS Jacksonville. Admission, parking and the Kids Zone is FREE. At the NAS Jax Air Show you will witness thrills like never before from a variety of military and civilian demonstrations. The grand finale will be While you are at the show, enjoy military and civilian aircraft displays, shop at novelty, food and beverage booths, or head to the free Kids Zone for games and activities for all ages. While there will be 2 ATMs onsite, it is highly recommended that you bring cash with you. Save the date! More details to come. Visit our website:










56 NEW INFO: Ride in comfort to your appointments at the VA Medical Center in Gainesville. The van is provided by the Disabled Veterans Chapter 6, and leaves no later than 6AM from the new VA Clinic location at 195 Southpark Blvd. The corner of Southpark and Old Moultrie Road. To schedule your seat please contact the VA Clinic at 904 823 2954 and ask for Veteran Van Scheduling.


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58 The Veterans Council of St. Johns County welcomes article submissions from all County Veterans & organizations. Articles should be of interest to all and veterans related. Submissions may be edited &/or shortened and used if space permits. Send to: Please send to: Veterans Council of St. Johns County,