Veteran voice


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Veteran voice
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Veteran Voice, LLC
Place of Publication:
Port St. Lucie, FL
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newspaper   ( marcgt )
newspaper   ( sobekcm )


Dates or Sequential Designation:
Began in 2012

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University of Florida
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All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
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oclc - 854567034
lccn - 2013201395
issn - 2330-2267
ddc - 305.9
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VOL. 2/ISSUE 27 THURSDAY, MAY 8, 201435 cents PALM CITY Mark Updike got in a tiff with the law a couple years back. It was one of the best turns in his life, because the Marine Corps veteran got a chance to lift himself up from a string of dis appointments. And hes taking a bunch of rescued horses up with him. I believe the horse has the ultimate birthright, Updike said. It was the most instrumental animal in the development of our country, and the world. They have a birthright, because they literally, on their backs, carried us and built this country. Back to that legal tiff. The horse trainer was arrested in Jupiter about three years ago. Hed rather not get into details about what happened, but the arrest got the 47-year-old into the Veterans Justice Outreach program at the West Palm Beach Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Most know the program simply as veterans court. That got Updike enrolled into the VA healthcare system, so he was able to start getting some med ical issues treated. It also offered to pay him $10 an hour for community service to pay down some I had to do 10 hours of community service, so I did it at (Equine Rescue & Adoption Foundation, in Palm City), Updike said. They had two feral horses. I told them I can break those horses. And he did. Randy Kinder, the foundations ex ecutive director, said it was quickly obvious that Updike had an unusual gift with horses. But place yet, Kinder said. So the foundation thanked him for his service, and that was that. Or so it seemed. Kinder kept an eye on Updike, because he had promise. Over the course of a couple years Up dike got his life on a more positive track. Kinder approached the horse trainer a few months back with a job offer. I said, Mark, youre in a good place now; how would you like to come back to ERAF? Updike remembered the call well.Rescued! Randy, she called me one day, he said. She said we have two feral horses that not even our trainer can deal with. Can you come out here and work with them. In an hour and a half, I had them in halters. So, why does Updike have what, by all re ports, is an almost magical touch with the abused and neglected horses the founda tion receives? I was orphaned at birth and given up for adoption to a family that (later) divorced, he said. My (adoptive) mom, she was a single mom who tried her best for years. But that home ultimately fell through. Updike ended up living at the Florida Sheriffs Boys Ranch in Live Oak. He got onto its equestrian team and learned a lot well in Updikes life. Then I turned 18 at the Boys Ranch, and I needed another year of high school, he said. But the program wasnt designed to keep youths until graduation. Only until they were 18. But Updike got a good turn. I ended up living with the principal of my high school, he said. So, he was able to graduate from Su wannee High School and join the Marine Corps. Things were working out well for Updike. Military life suited him. Except for one thing. He had a sleep disorder that dis rupted others. That got him discharged under honorable circumstances from the USMC after two years. After that, Updike drifted around the country with good and bad turns following one after another until he ended up on the Treasure Coast. Disappointments and drifting are a very common story for those who end up in veterans court, Carla-Paula daSilva, Veterans Justice Outreach specialist, said. She said that many, like Updike, often start making big, good changes in their lives during and after their times in veterans court. I think that the reason that happens is because when the veterans are in this court, theyre around people who care, she said. In Palm Beach County, Floridas 15th Judicial Circuit, the court convenes on Mon days. The presiding judge, Ted Booras, is a Marine Corps veteran. The assistant state attorney, Robert Jaegers served in the Air Force. Steve Benedict, the public defender, is an Army veteran. Additionally, the court Patrick McCallisterFOR VETERAN Mitch Kloorfain/chief photographer See UPDKE page 3


2 MAY 8, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE Sheriffs new gun range Patrick McCallisterSTAFF WRITERpmccallister@YourVoiceW eekly.comPALM CITY By all accounts, Major John Ski Pietruszewski loved the art of shooting. He loved this range, Ruth Pietruszewski said. He was here constantly. On what would have been Pietruszewskis 71st birthday Saturday, April 26 the Martin training range at 8355 S.W. Busch St., Palm City, was named Major John Ski Pietruszewski Firearms Range. Ruth joined Sheriff William Snyder and other dignitaries, such as former Sheriff Bob Crowder, to honor her husbands memory. Ruth said Pietruszewski, who most knew as Ski, didnt just spend time on the gun range to shoot recreationally. He was always there training someone in or out of law enforcement the art of shooting. He was a real workaholic, she said. Pietruszewski moved to Martin back in the early 1980s. He joined Vietnam-era Navy veteran had done a number of jobs, including sitting in airplane seat prototypes while getting spun in a centrifuge. Thats how the Navy tested seat ergonomics at the time. Ruth said her husband was a mechanic before moving to Palm City and going into law enforcement. He worked in uniform patrol, criminal investigations, training, emergency management and directed operations. Pietruszewski died on New Years Eve after a long battle with cancer. His death was surprising, because doctors had thought he was cancer-free by then. Important to Pietruszewski, Ruth said, was not just the art of shooting, but gun safety. He focused on the safety, she said. He thought that if (someone) had a gun, they needed to know how to use it, so they didnt hurt themselves or others. Sheriff Snyder, too, said that Pietruszewskis dedication to teaching safe gun handling, good shooting and the discipline to refrain from shooting improperly have done much for Martin County. I think I can safely say that, given the thousands he taught, some civilian or a deputy is alive today because of him, Snyder said. He was very emphatic about safety. The Martin County Commission approved the range naming in January, shortly after Pietruszewskis death. Ruth said her husband was a member of the veterans organizations and the Blue Knights International Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club. restaurants best food was one of his favorite hobbies. He was a good man, she said. He did so much community service. He helped a lot of people. The range is operated by the is open to law enforcement only, times uses it to host fundraising organizations. There is a memorial page for Pietruszewski on Facebook. wski died on New by Patrick McCallister I think I can safely say that, given the thousands he taught, some civilian or a deputy is alive today because of him, Snyder said. He was very emphatic about safety.


VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE MAY 8, 2014 3 has a mentoring program headed up by Army veterans Jerry Klein and Roy Foster. A veterans court was started earlier this year in Indian River County, and efforts are underway to start them in Martin and St. Lucie counties. Updike said his bad turns of luck and natural empathy give him an intuitive insight into the their ways to the Equine Rescue & Adoption Foundation due to abuse or neglect. I know what its like to be ne glected, he said. I know what its like to be starved and lost. And Updike knows what its like places. Find out more about the Equine Rescue & Adoption by visiting Itll have an open house to show its new facilities at 6400 S.W. Martin Highway, Palm City, on Saturday, May 31, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The phone num ber is (772) 220-0150. The foundation takes in and adopts out about 100 horses a year. UPDIKE from page 1 Originally called Decoration Day and what began as a memorial day for Civil War veterans is now cially remembers those who have died in defense of the nation. Memorial Day now encompass including World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam and the Gulf wars. Sponsored by the Veterans Council of Martin County, the traditional Memorial Day Services will commence with a parade lead by veterans and veteran service organizations followed by vari ous groups from the community. The Parade starts at High School Avenue at 10 a.m. followed by a service at Memorial Park at 11 a.m. Memorial Day services will be held Monday, May 26 from 10 a.m.noon. Parade starts at High School Ave. on East Ocean Blvd at 10 a.m. ending at Memorial Park. Ceremony starts at 11 a.m. at Memorial Park on East Ocean Boulevard in Stuart. The Veterans Council of Martin nization dedicated to the better ment of and to help homeless vet erans and those veterans in need of assistance. One of the princi ple functions of the council is to provide transportation to elderly, disabled or veterans needing transportation to the VA Hospital in West Palm Beach. The council also is the caretaker of the Vet erans Memorial monument in Stuart and maintains a fund for all maintenance and upkeep. The parade is organized by a network of local civic minded groups, organizations, and individuals. It is supported by the city of Stuart and Martin County. For more information regarding the Veterans Council of Martin County, contact Tony Reese at (772) 288-5448. For more information about the parade, go to www.StuartParades. com or contact Jim Riordan at (772) 220-4127. FOR VETERAN VOICE Mitch Kloorfain chief photographer Mitch Kloorfain/chief photographer Peggy cared for our mom at home during a long illness so Mom could be with the family she loved. But in the nal months when Moms condition got worse, her doctor recommended Treasure Coast Hospice. They provided expert care for Mom, supported our caregiving and guided the whole family. This was the relief we needed to enjoy time with Mom.With our support, families can be more condent caregivers and spend more quality time together. To learn more, call us at ( 866 ) 999-4550 or visit Serving all, regardless of ability to pay. Ellen and Peggy Margarets daughtersLicensed since 1982. 2 Treasure Coast Hospice.Teasue Coast Hospice lifted a weight off ou shoulders. TREASURING LIFE TCFL-078 4.79x6.3.indd 1 10/9/13 10:02 AM 10864


4 MAY 8, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE Theodore Wilson Publisher Steve Erlanger Partner Tammy Raits Managing Editor Debbi Denning Ashley McBride Mary Kemper Patrick McCallister Nicole Rodriguez Shelley Koppel Mitch Kloorfain Eric Macon Graphic Designer Phil Galdys Donna Marinak LEGAL NOTICE ADVERTISING 407-286-0807 (please note county in the subject line) SUBSCRIBE TODAY (772) 204-2409 POSTAL STATEMENT POSTMASTER: e Voice of Experience the Indian River Lagoon. Many sported caps and T-shirts that spoke about their experience things they believe in. They were veterans. Lots of veterans. Veterans care, Rick DeTata, Port St. Lucie, said. The Air Force and Navy veteran added, They care about the county and coun try. On Saturday, May 3, a loose coalition of advocates called the River Warriors held a mock funeral for the Indian River Lagoon at Phipps Park 2175 S.W. Locks Road, Stuart to protest, among other things, slowed progress on the Central Everglades Planning Project. CEPP is part of state and federal efforts to restore the natu Okeechobee southward. As things are, the Army Corps of Engineers must release excess water from Lake Okeechobee into canals that make their ways to the St. Lucie and Indian rivers. The lake is surrounded by a dyke that the water releases protect. But, the infamous releases of nutrient-rich waters from Lake Okeechobee generates numerous and the proliferation of micro cystis aeruginosa, a type of algae also called cyanobacteria that re leases toxins harmful to animals Patrick McCallisterFOR VETERAN and has a son in the by Patrick McCallister by Patrick McCallisterSee LAGOON page 5


VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE MAY 8, 2014 5 and people. DeTata said pushing federal and the projects thatll help the Indian River is a duty he cant ignore. Im a patriot, he said. Vet erans care enough to serve the country. John Debus, Fort Pierce, too, said protesting avoidable envi ronmental damage to the Indian River is a patriotic duty. He was in the Army from to What I see myself doing is continuing to serve, Debus said. What I see is the takeover of our government by corporate money in many issues. Thats what were for my country. Vietnam veteran Joe Howard, Port St. Lucie, said he grew up near a pristine Miami River. Howard said he watched that waterway seriously decline and hopes to prevent the same from happening to the St. Lucie and Indian rivers. It is part of my patriotism, he said. This is our country we should take care of it, he said. I family. We need to protect nature to protect ourselves. John Haddox is a Navy veteran and Martin County Commission er. He attended the mock funeral. I noticed quite a few vet erans-related ball caps and T-shirts, he said after the pro test. I was very glad to see that. Veterans get involved. Getting involved is special for veterans because they fought to protect our country. The Martin County Commission has been among those at the forefront with pushing the Florida Legislature and Congress to fund of water from the Kissimmee Riv er Basin into Lake Okeechobee and onward to the Everglades. Haddox said hes guardedly optimistic that recently increased public pressure will move the state and federal governments to get to water projects more quick ly. There are elections coming up and the Treasure Coast al though were small were critical in some of those elections, he said. Debus said hes been attending area county and city government meetings to speak in favor of ordinances restricting the use of fertilizers that make their ways into the area waterways. The fertilizers add harmful nutrients to rivers. He also attends Rivers Coalitions meetings, too. That organization formed in 1998 with the aim of reducing pollutants entering the St. Lucie and Indian rivers. LAGOON from page 4 See LAGOON page 7 Indian River Colony Club Call:877-484-6178 The Place Patriots Call Home 55 + Active Retirement Community I n dian River Col ony C lub 1 936 Freedom D r ive Vi era (Mel b ourne), F L 3 2 940Ready to start the next adventure? So many choices, with the time to use them. Golf, tennis, dance, craft, ne dining and over 40 clubs & activities of all kinds! Enjoy the lifestyle you deserve. Single family homes on 453 lush acres in Viera. Initially home to Military Officers, IRCC now takes pride in accommodating all those who served, devoted to the traditions of the U.S. Armed Forces. 10764


6 MAY 8, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE STUART Coast Guard Flotilla 59 announced today its support of Wear Your Life Jacket to Work Day on May 16. Flotilla 59 joins boating professionals and boating enthusiasts to heighten awareness of different life jacket types that are available, and demonstrate their comfort and versatility by wearing them to work. The annual event, hosted by the National Safe Boating Council serves as a fun, educational element just prior to National Safe Boating Week, May 17-23, the American Safe Boating Campaign. Educating the boating public about the safety and comfort of life jackets has been a main focus on the North American Safe Boating Campaign. Wear Your Life Jacket to Work Day will take place on May 16, wherever you are, but in Stuart it will be culminate with a picture at noon at the Stuart River Walk. U.S. Coast Guard statistics show that drowning was the reported cause of death in 70 percentage of recreational boating fatalities in 2011, and that 84 percent of those who drowned were not wearing life jackets. The National Safe Boating Council is asking all participants to take a picture of themselves in their life jacket while at work and post it to the Ready, Set, Wear It! Facebook page ( or submit directly to the NSBC at U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotil la 59 in Sandsprit Park has been serving the boating community on the Treasure Coast for over 73 years. The Flotilla can be reached at 3443 S.E. St. Lucie Blvd., Stuart. The phone number is (772) 288-0509 and email address is For the serious skipper and the weekend boater, there are more aspects of seamanship that can be learned from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliarys Recreational Safe Boating classes taught each month at Flotilla 59s facility in Sandsprit Park, Stuart. Remember, boating season never ends on the Treasure Coast. May 17-23 is National Safe Boating Week. FOR Y OUR VOICE NEWS & VIEWS Assisted Li v in g Come flourish! 772-463-7133 StuartLodgeLiving.com1301 SE Palm Beach Road Stuart, FL 34994 NOW ACCEPTING RESERVATIONS! Visit our Information Center 1055 East Ocean Blvd., Stuart, FL AL License Pending Mary Ann Come visit me to discover a new culture in Assisted Living Ill provide the love, if youll provide the treatswoof! First Resident of Stuart LodgeStuart Lodge is designed around an Atlantic in Assisted Living with the warmth and comfort of home. It is our goal to help you part of Elders changing the World! 10874


VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE MAY 8, 2014 7 While protecting area water ways is important to Dubus, he said thats actually a secondary concern to him thats related to The main issue for me is to get the money out of politics and return government to the people, he said. Dubus, whos a member of the Treasure Coast Progressive Alli ance, said veterans have a broad However, he said all seem to unite around some issues. I havent found anybody who supports money in politics, he said. DeTata hopes more veterans get involved in protecting the Indian River Lagoon. Its part of our country, he said. Its part of our land. Coalition, visit www.riverscoali The next meeting is on Thursday, May 29, 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., at the Stuart City Hall, 121 S.W. Flagler Ave. LAGOON from page 5 The Lipstick Republicans of the Treasure Coast (men wel come too) invite the public to join them on Wednesday, May 14 at 6 p.m. and welcome back St. Lucie Countys very good friend, former congressman Lt. Col. Allen B. West. West will be signing indi Guardian of the Republic for at tendees. Books are only $19 and will be available at the event. All are invited to this annual dinner meeting event. The cost of the buffet dinner is $20 per person. You (Republican men and women) are also welcome to join the club, but it is not necessary. Applications will be available that evening. We suggest you respond ASAP as space is limited. The event will be held at Temple Beth El Israel, 551 S.W. Bethany Drive, St. Lucie West. Book signing and cocktail hour 6 p.m. until 7 p.m. and dinner/ meeting at 7. Reservations ARE required. Please call Mary Ann Russell at (954) 830-8368 or (772) 621-7836 (home), or email her at Marussell434@gmail. FOR VETERAN VOICE DISCOUNT OFFICE FURNITURE DISCOUNT OFFICE FURNITURE 398-0085 10983 US HWY. 1 PORT ST. LUCIE10752 Serving the Treasure Coast Since 1984 NEW & USED HOME & OFFICE SAVE! Were proud to continue our history of supporting our countrys servicemen and women, past and present.The marks of General Motors, its divisions, slogans, emblems, vehicle model names, vehicle body designs and other marks appearing on this website are the trademarks and/or service marks of General Motors, its subsidiaries, MILITARY APPRECIATION MONTH:IF YOUVE SERVED, YOU SAVE.NOW EXTENDING OUR THANKS TO VETERANS FOR A LIMITED TIME.In honor of Military Appreciation Month, we are pleased to offer the Military Discount to all Veterans, Active Duty members, Reserves, and Retirees and their spouses of the U.S. Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines, National Guard and Coast Guard. This is your opportunity to save hundreds, even thousands, on the purchase or lease of an eligible, new vehicle, thanks to a special discounted price well below the MSRP. You can also combine this discount with most current offers to save even more.Go To: Request an authorization number from the Program menu. Visit our dealership and drive home in your new vehicle. 5255 S. Highway 1 Fort Pierce (800) 777-8021Service Hours: Monday Friday 7:30am-6pm Saturday 7:30am-2pm Sunday Closed Up to a maxium of 3daysTAKING ADVANTAGE OF THIS EXCEPTIONAL OFFER IS EASY: WITH ANY SERVICE OR BODY WORK, ANY MAKE, ANY MODEL*! Come visit the home of the The All N ew


8 MAY 8, 2014 VETERAN VOICE THE VOICE OF EXPERIENCE County Veterans Service OfficersSt. Lucie County, Wayne Teegardin Phone: (772) 337-5670 Fax: (772) 337-5678 veterans@stlucieco.orgDorothy J. Conrad Building(formerly the Walton Road Annex Bldg.) 1664 S.E. Walton Road, Suite 205 Port St. Lucie, FL 34952 By appointmentMon., Tues, Thurs, Fri 8:30 am-4:30 pmWed 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. St. Lucie County Community Services Bldg.(Corner of Avenue D and 7th Street) 437 N. Seventh St., Fort Pierce, FL 34950 Walk-ins Mon. and Fri. 8:30 a.m. 4:30 p.m. Brevard Veterans Services Office2725 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Bldg. B, Suite 102, Viera, FL 32940 Office: (321) 633-2012 Fax: (321) 637-5432 Mon., Tues. and Thurs., 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Wed. and Fri, 8 a.m.-noon Manager: Glenn McGuffieIndian River CountyJoel Herman Vero Beach 2525 St. Lucie Ave., Vero Beach, FL 32960 Ph: (772) 226-1499 Fax: (772) 770-5038Sebastian Square 11602 U.S. 1, Sebastian, FL 32958 Ph: (772) 589-6597 Fax: (772) 581-4988Martin CountyTony Reese, Veterans Service Office Supervisor Nick Ciotti, Veterans Service Officer (772) 288-5448Veterans Services OfficeMartin County Community Services 435 S.E. Flagler Ave., Stuart, FL 34994 Office Hours: Mon-Fri, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.VA Life Insurance Ctr., Phil., PA 1-800-669-8477 VA Regional Office 1-800-827-1000 VA Medical Ctr, W. Palm Beach 1-800-972-8262 Pharmacy, VA Medical Center 1-800-317-8387 Military Retired Pay Activities, Cleveland, OH (Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force ONLY) 1-800-321-1080 Military Retired Pay Activities, Topeka, KS (Coast Guard ONLY) 1-800-772-8724 Survivor Benefits (SBP), Denver, CO 1-800-435-3396 Stuart VA Clinic (772) 288-0304 Okeechobee CountyVeterans Services office (863) 763-6441, Ext 5. Fax: (863) 763-0118.Orlando VA Medical Cente5201 Raymond St., Orlando, FL 32803 (407) 629-1599 or (800) 922-7521Telephone Care(407) 599-1404 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Mon. Fri. (800) 645-6895 8 a.m. 4 p.m. Mon Fri (321) 637-3625 Viera patients8 a.m. 4 p.m. Mon. Fri. (877) 741-3400 Weekends, holidays, evenings and nightsWest Palm Beach Department of Veterans Affair s Medical Center7305 North Military Trail, West Palm Beach, FL 33410 (561) 422-8262 or (800) 972-8262 Telephone Care(561) 422-6838 (866) 383-9036 Open 24 hours 7 daysViera VA Outpatient Clinic2900 Veterans Way, Viera, FL 32940 Phone: (321) 637-3788 1 (877) 878-8387 Mon. Fri. 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.St Lucie County PTSD Clinical Team (PCT) Outpatient Program 126 S.W. Chamber Court, Port St Lucie, FL 34986 Phone: (772) 878-7876Fort Pierce Community Based Outpatient Clinic1901 South 28th Street., Fort Pierce, FL 34947 Phone: (772) 595-5150 Fax: (772) 595-6560St Lucie Community Based Outpatient Clinic128 S.W. Chamber Court, Port Saint Lucie, FL 34986 Phone: (772) 344-9288Stuart Community Based Outpatient Clinic 3501 S E Willoughby Boulevard, Stuart, FL 34997 Phone: (772) 288-0304 Fax: (772) 288-1371Vero Beach Community Based Outpatient Clinic372 17th St., Vero Beach, FL 32960 Phone: (772) 299-4623 Fax: (772) 299-4632IMPORTANT NUMBERS ... Veteran Voice is a weekly publication designed to provide information to and about veterans to veterans and to the broader community. Veterans are an integral part of their Florida communities, which currently have individual organizations of their own, such as the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion, the Vietnam Veterans of America and many other groups with a narrow focus, but no convenient way to connect to a wider population of veterans and to the community in general within a limited geographic area, their community. The mission of Veteran Voice is to publish a weekly source of information that will provide, in one place, a listing of resources available to veterans, articles about changes in policies or organizations affecting veterans and events of interest to veterans as well as articles about veterans of interest to the general public. Veteran Voice LLC is organized as a partnership of experienced newspaper executives with an interest in veterans and in the communities of Florida veterans and friends. Veteran Voice is a start-up intended to address a perceived lack of information readily available to veterans on programs and policies affecting them and objective reporting of veteran affairs to the public. To our knowledge, and based on comments from lead ers of local veterans organizations, there was no media or website currently meeting this need until the launch of Veteran Voice. We hope you agree, and will support this publica tion with your subscription. Without subscriptions there will be a limited number of people we can help, without which this mission will not be realized. As part of our commitment to supporting local veteran communities, readers and subscribers. Please let us know what you think by emailing or mailing your comments to us at 1919 S.W. South Macedo Blvd., Port St. Lucie, FL 34984.OUR MISSION STATEMENTAND OUR OBJECTIVE10815 SUBSCRIBE TODAY!!! Regular .................................... $18/yr ......... $12/yr PAYMENT OPTIONS Enclosed check payable to: VETERAN VOICE, LLC. #_____________________________________ SUBSCRIPTION/GIFT FORMMAIL SUBSCRIPTION PAYMENT TO: ___________________________________________ _________________________________________ ___________________________________________ _________________________________________________ ___________________________________________ _________________________________________ ___________________________________________Veteran Voice is a weekly newspaper for veterans, active military, their families and their friends.e Voice of Experience









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