Material Information

VFW, Veterans of Foreign Wars magazine
Portion of title:
Veterans of Foreign Wars magazine
Alternate Title:
VFW magazine
Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
Place of Publication:
Kansas City, MO
Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States
Publication Date:
Monthly (except Dec. and July)[<Nov. 1980->]
Monthly[ FORMER <May 1978->]
normalized irregular
Physical Description:
v. : ill. ;


serial ( sobekcm )
periodical ( marcgt )

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
Copyright Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States. Permission granted to University of Florida to digitize and display this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Resource Identifier:
21544681 ( OCLC )
0161-8598 ( ISSN )

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Preceded by:
VFW magazine

UFDC Membership

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USAA means United Services Automobile Association and its a liates. The VFW receives )267( nancial support for this sponsorship. 2018 USAA. 248368-0318 There are many reasons why you served, and our reason to serve is you. Thats why USAA is dedicated to helping support VFW members and their families. FOR THE MANY REASONS YOU SERVED, thank you.


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 1 JUNE/JULY 2018 Vol. 105 No.9 ON THE COVER 16 Citizenship Through the Military 24 Convention in Kansas City 36 Bataan Memorial March 42 Learning About Lobbying IN THIS ISSUE 28 The War on Hunger 34 Battle of Belleau Wood 38 Korean War Armistice 40 Post $10,000 Donation 46 Voice of Democracy and Patriots Pen IN EVERY ISSUE 2 Command Post 7 Mail Call 8 Now Hear This 10 Issues Up Front 12 Washington Wire 50 Better Health 52 VFW in Action 54 Member Corner 56 ttibLitiiw 58 Reunions and Claims COVER PHOTO: VFW life member and Army veteran Daw Dekon is photographed at Kansas Citys Union Station in March. ityi`t>t-`>t>`tii>)-4()-13(t arrived in America, where he joined the U.S. military and earned U.S. citizenship. In this issue, Dekon and two other immigrants share their stories about becoming Americans through military service. ( Photo by Susan McSpadden ) THROUGH MILITARY SERVICE Immigrants take the fast track to becoming Americans CITIZENSHIP BATAAN MEMORIAL MARCH ATTRACTS RECORD NUMBERS CONVENTION IN KANSAS CITY THE CITY OF FOUNTAINS WELCOMES VFW MEMBERS LEARNING ABOUT LOBBYING VFW FELLOWS GET HANDS-ON EXPERIENCE NEED HELP? VETERANS CRISIS LINE: 1-800-273-8255 CHECK OUT OUR DIGITAL VERSION AT WWW.VFWMAGAZINE.ORG PLAYING FOR ALL THE MARBLES VFW hosted a unique national marble tournament in the years after World War II. A new book and a museum in Kansas City, Mo., chronicle the tournaments competitors, their memories and the relationships they forged with returning veterans. BY KARI WILLIAMS 30 ITS NEVER ABOUT THE HIKE Veterans advocates trekked through the New Mexico desert in March to honor the sacri)4(ce of those who endured the Bataan Death March during World War II. The VFW-sponsored event attracted record crowds this year. BY KARI WILLIAMS 36 STUDENT VETS IN WASHINGTON Nine young veterans attending college are participating in VFWs Fellowship program this year. One aspect was a hands-on experience learning about creating and passing laws in Washington at VFWs Legislative Conference in March. BY KARI WILLIAMS 42 24 KANSAS CITY WELCOMES VFW Kansas City, Mo., Mayor Sly James, a Marine Corps veteran, is excited that his city will host VFWs 119th National Covention in July. James and several VFW employees gathered in Kansas Citys Union Hill neighborhood in April to promote the convention. BY JANIE DYHOUSE


2 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 V FW is rightfully proud of its Korean War veterans. Their service and sacrice in The Land of the Morning Calm more than six decades ago foreshadowed the nearly 50-year struggle against communism known as the Cold War. The Korean War began 68 years ago this June and the shooting stopped 65 years ago this July. And while an armistice was signed July 27, 1953, the war did not end. That remains true to this day. VFW has always recognized this fact. On average, about 30,000 U.S. troops serve in South Korea each year. If hostilities erupt on the peninsula, our troops there would immediately be on the front lines. Thats why in 1995 VFW opened its membership eligibility to all U.S. troops who have served 30 consecutive or 60 nonconsecutive days in Korea since June 30, 1949. Today, we have ve VFW Posts located in South Korea. For the same reason, VFW ardently supported the creation of the national Korean War Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. In the decade leading up to its dedication in 1995, VFW contributed $600,000 to make sure it became a reality. We wanted to make certain that all 1.6 million U.S. veterans of the Korean War especially the 36,576 who died there were properly recognized. Their cause was just. All one has to do is look at how North Korea and South Korea have evolved since the armistice signing. In 2018, the democratic South is prosperous, home to corporate giants like Samsung and Hyundai. It is East Asias most developed country, according to the Human Development Index. South Korea also has the worlds third-highest life expectancy and fourth most-efcient health care system, according to Bloomberg. On the other hand, the North has been ruled by tyrants since the armistice. The current leader is suspected of murdering political rivals and starving his fellow civilians. Several different sources have ranked the country as the worlds least democratic with the least economic freedom. On average, life expectancy for those in the North is more than 10 years less than those living in South Korea. One Korean War vet, quadruple amputee Edward Reeves, who served with the 7th Infantry Division at the Battle of the Chosin Reservoir in late 1950, offered his unique perspective on the difference. When I was over there for the Olympics [in 1988] and saw how far they had come and how the people came onto the street to thank an American vet in a wheelchair, it was worth it, he said. If I had to do it all over again, yes, I would. That indefatigable spirit is why South Korea thrives today, why democracy has triumphed over communism and why VFW salutes all its Korean War veterans. Thanks to all who served during the war, and all who continue to serve there today. Thank You, Korean War Veterans COMMAND POST FROM THE CHIEF COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF Keith E. Harman Ofcial publication of the VETERANS OF FOREIGN WARS OF THE UNITED STATES DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS, PUBLICATIONS & PUBLIC AFFAIRS Joe Davis EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Tim Dyhouse SENIOR EDITOR Janie Dyhouse ASSOCIATE EDITOR Kari Williams SENIOR WRITER Dave Spiva ART DIRECTOR Lauren Goldman ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT Tina Clark MEMBER ALLIANCE FOR AUDITED MEDIA STAFF ADVERTISING REPRESENTATIVE GLM Communications, Inc. Jacqueline Tobin Vice President, Digital/Print Media 500 1st Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030 (212) 929-1300 FAX 212-929-9574 Email: EDITORIAL OFFICE Address all communications for publication to: The Editor, VFW Magazine 406 W. 34th St., Suite 523, Kansas City, MO 64111 (816) 756-3390;; VFW magazine is protected through trademark reg is tration in the United States and in the foreign countries where VFW magazine circulates. VFW magazine (ISSN 0161-8598) is published 10 times a year by Veterans of Foreign Wars, 406 West 34th Street, Kansas City, MO 64111. Non-prot standard class postage paid at Oklahoma City, Okla., and additional mailing ofces. Publications Agreement No. 1476947 Available on recording for the blind and those with physical handicaps that preclude reading material. Contact: SUBMISSIONS Unsolicited manu scripts and pho to graphs must be ac com panied by return postage and no re spon si bil i ty is assumed for safe han dling. Poetry submissions not accepted. VFW mag a zine is available in microlm from NA Publishing, Inc., P.O. Box 998, Ann Arbor, MI 48106-0998. Payment of membership dues includes $1.98 for a years subscription to VFW magazine. CHANGE OF ADDRESS/DECEASED MEMBER 1-833-839-8387 Forward address changes to: Member Service Center, VFW, 406 W. 34th St., Kansas City, MO 64111. Be sure to furnish your old ad dress, also your Post number, when requesting change to new address. To ensure accuracy, please clip and enclose your present address as printed on a recent copy of VFW magazine. NON-MEMBER SUBSCRIPTIONS U.S. and its possessions, $15 per year, $1.50 per copy. For subscription in other countries, $20 per year. Make checks payable to VFW Magazine and send to: Member Service Center, 406 W. 34th St., KC, MO 64111. VFW OBJECTIVES To ensure national security through maximum military strength. To speed the rehabilitation of the nations disabled and needy veterans. To assist the widows and orphans and the de pen dents of disabled and needy veterans. To promote Americanism through education in pa tri o tism and constructive service to the communities in which we live. Copyright 2018 by the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States


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JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 7 MAIL CALL LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Mail Call features letters from our readers in nine issues per year. If you have questions, comments or concerns about any subject or article from our most recent issue, letters can be emailed to with the subject line, Mail Call, or mailed to: VFW magazine, Mail Call, 406 W. 34th Street, Suite 523, Kansas City, MO 64111 Letters must be no more than 200 words, and VFW magazine reserves the right to edit letters for clarity, length and accuracy. Scaling Kilimanjaro Hunger Among Veterans Shocking I was shocked to read Commander-inChief Keith Harmans April comment that the University of Minnesota School of Public Health determined 27 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans struggle to put food on the table. I agree unacceptable. It would be of help to know if this is due to being unemployed, having a job that does not provide adequate compensation or another reason? LLOYD SOHL EMAIL Veterans and military [personnel] need to be aware that having more children makes it harder on the budget. Many military people getting free health care and housing in the military do not understand how expensive these things will be to provide once they exit the military. The DoD would be wise to start educating their members on this. I am very sympathetic to hungry veterans. Im less sympathetic to veterans who have three plus kids and expect the world to support their choices. DEBRA SMITH EMAIL This starts out with an interview with a WWII vet and then immediately identies how many Iraq and Afghanistan vets are going hungry. What happened to the Korean War vets, Vietnam vets and Desert Storm vets? As an older vet, when I attempt to recruit or retain older veterans, I hear the same story: They dont care or they have forgotten us. Theyre only interested in giving benets to the younger veterans. There isnt even any discussion about Desert Storm vets anymore. JOHN BLUEHER EMAIL I am a 23-year Navy veteran with a disability and a member of VFW. I recently read this article and was quite upset. I work as the Military Veteran Agricultural Liaison here at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). There are potential areas where USDA programs may help, for example SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program ). My tag line has always been, Veterans dont know what veterans dont know, and some veterans may be eligible for our programs. BILL ASHTON, EMAIL I respectfully disagree that hunger and sequestration are the two major problems for veterans. They certainly are important, but homelessness is clearly number one. Although the VA, Naval hospital and Veterans Village (where I volunteer) have provided much relief and assistance, it is homelessness thats the major issue in San Diego. I suspect it is nationwide, too. Groceries are readily available to those in need. GENE KEMP CORONADO, CALIF. Practically every fair-sized community has a food bank, a farmers market or some other outlet where food is available cheap or even free. In Monterey County (Calif.), our Veteran Transition Center has food available at its pantry or at its weekly food distribution. Communities are providing for veterans. Also, please advise veterans about Meals on Wheels. It is designed for folks over 60 who cannot cook or shop. Veterans who are having food issues should contact Meals on Wheels in their community or their local food bank. LOUIS RICHARDS, EMAIL Pheasant Hunt I see we pay to have pheasants killed. This magazine can get out of my life. Too bad animals cant have a gun. I do understand hunting to eat, but to pay them to do it? CHUCK VOLKEY LAKE DELTON, WIS. I just received my VFW magazine and enjoyed the article Living a Better Storey. I was in Korea in 1951 and then a year in Japan. I climbed Mt. Fuji, and I also climbed Mt. Asama (active volcano). REX HICKOX EMAIL THE IRAQ WAR BATTLES OF BAGHDAD AND NASIRIYAH Wounded Marine scales Mount Kilimanj aro BLESSED THAT IM ALIVE FOOD INSECURITY VFW JOINS FORCES TO FIGHT HUNGER Warghters to the Rescue VFW members volunteer for Puerto Rico disaster relief Proud of Members Service to Homeless Vets Wanted to reach out and say thanks for a job well done. I can think of no better word to describe Jack Picciolo than servant, and I think he would be OK with that. I hope he is, because for me, there is not much better of a compliment. Jack seems to be the kind of person we should all want to be. He saw a seam in service to those near and dear to his heart and found ways to attack that seam and ll the void. This man has made a difference through service. I am proud of him and all those like him whose story will likely go untold but impact is felt. MARK S. LESLIE DERIDDER, LA. Iranian Tanker War I would like to point out one inaccuracy: In the article it states that an F-14 disabled the Iranian frigate Sabalan with a cluster bomb. It was actually an A-6 from VA-95 stationed aboard the USS Enterprise that attacked the Sabalan with a 500-pound MD-82 bomb. TIM BRYANT, EMAIL Battle of Nasiriyah Just read the article on the 15th anniversary. Great job covering the experiences we had. Thanks for helping to preserve our story. DOUG HOVEST EMAIL


8 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 NOW HEAR THIS NEWS YOU CAN USE VFW Celebrates World War I Poet VFWs Department of North Carolina will help commemorate the memory of a famous poet who died while serving in France during World War I. Department and national VFW ofcers will attend an event in July marking the 100th anniversary of the death of Joyce Kilmer, who wrote the poem Trees in 1913, ve years before his death in the Great War. Kilmer was 31 years old and a member of the 1st Bn., 165th Inf., 42nd Inf. Div., when he was killed by a snipers bullet on July 30, 1918, near Seringeset-Nesles, France, during the Second Battle of the Marne. Incidentally, Kilmer was accompanying his battalion commander Maj. Wild Bill Donovan, who would found the CIAs predecessor the Ofce of Strategic Services in WWII during the patrol. The July 30, 2018, ceremony in North Carolina will be held in the Joyce Kilmer Memorial Forest in the states Great Smoky Mountains. A former VFW Post in New York Kilmers home state spearheaded the effort to have the forest dedicated in 1936. The ceremony is sponsored by the Partners of Joyce Kilmer Slickrock Wilderness, Inc. The event will include an address by B.J. Lawrence in one of his rst acts as new VFW Commander-in-Chief. Silver Stars Earned in Afghanistan Four Green Berets from the Utah National Guard received Silver Stars in March for their actions last year in Afghanistan. Capt. Nelson, Sgt. 1st Class Madsen, Staff Sgt. Walruth and Staff Sgt. Caldwell (whose rst names were omitted for security reasons) earned the awards while serving with B Co., 1st Bn., 19th Special Forces Group. On May 21, 2017, Nelsons actions at Maktab Bazaar, some 100 miles south of Kabul, inspired many to ght back in the face of overwhelming and unrelenting enemy re, according to his citation. Three months later, on Aug. 16, Madsens ghting spirit in southern Nangarhar province near the eastern border with Pakistan, enabled him and his fellow troops to fend off emboldened ISIS attackers long enough to allow medical evacuation of wounded troops. During the reght, a wounded Walruth disregarded his own suffering to immerse himself in the care of his wounded comrades, according to his citation. Meanwhile, Caldwell performed at least four surgical procedures in the eld and coordinated triage and Medevac operations at a landing zone near the reght. In addition to the Silver Stars, other members of the unit earned three Purple Hearts, ve Bronze Stars with V device and seven Army Commendation Medals with V device. Apply for South Dakota Pheasant Hunt VFW Post 8530 in Gettysburg, S.D., again will sponsor a pheasant hunt this fall for ve decorated veterans. The hunt will take place Nov. 9-13. Those selected will travel to Gettysburg on Nov. 8 and return home Nov. 14. VFWs Military Assistance Program covers airfare and hunting licenses for the ve-day hunt. VFWs Department of South Dakota covers the lodging costs. Post 8530 will host the hunt and cover the cost of meals. To qualify, a veteran must be an honorably discharged Purple Heart recipient and have enough upper-body strength to wield a shotgun. Amputees are encouraged to apply, and wheelchair connement is not an obstacle. If you wish to be considered, submit a copy of your DD-214 and VA disability rating documentation, along with your personal contact information to: SD Decorated Veterans Pheasant Hunt c/o Butch Anderson 16461 294th Ave., Lot 9 Gettysburg, SD 57442 Applications must be received by July 10 and will be reviewed at the Posts July meeting. For more information, contact Butch Anderson at ljbutchander or call (605) 765-2457 PHOTO COURTESY OF COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY PHOTO BY TIM POTTS Joyce Kilmer Four Purple Heart recipients show off their quarry at last years hunt.


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10 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 M ore than 800,000 veterans in New York nd it difcult to get quality health care outside the VA, according to a study released in March by the RAND Corp. The nonprot research organization published a study called Ready or Not: Assessing the Capacity of New York State Health Care Providers to Meet the Needs of Veterans, and found that only 5 percent of the 746 health care providers surveyed in New York are members of the VA Community Care network. VA manages and funds a number of non-VA programs through its Ofce of Community Care that provides veterans with care in the community. In New York, VA operates 12 medical centers and 48 outpatient clinics, but only about half of the states vets are enrolled in the VA system. And only 58 percent of those enrolled used the VA in 2015, according to the RAND report. The authors conclude that these results mean many New York veterans are receiving health care in the community sector. The study was conducted at the behest of the New York State Health Foundation, but it comes at a time when U.S. government ofcials are deciding whether or not the Veterans Choice Program is benecial for veterans. The failure of the Choice Program is not paying the health care providers in a timely manner, said VFW Junior Vice Commander-in-Chief William Doc Schmitz, of Corning, N.Y. It has caused many health providers to stop offering health care to vets. Implemented in 2014, the Veterans Choice Program offers private-care options for veterans who live more than 40 miles driving distance from a VA medical facility or cant get a VA appointment within 30 days. The RAND study shows that timely access to care is not the problem in New York quite the contrary. Some 61 percent of surveyed providers reported that new patients would be seen within two weeks, while 45 percent said most patients could be seen the same day they call for an appointment. The main problem, according to the report, is quality care. Only about 13 percent of surveyed medical providers said they had participated in formal training with regard to military and veteran culture. Of those who had not received formal training, less than half expressed an interest in receiving future training. Only 19 percent said they were aware of the Veterans Choice Program. Furthermore, just 20 percent reported that they routinely screened patients for a military or veteran afliation. These ndings reveal signicant gaps and variations in the readiness of community-based health care providers to provide high-quality care to veterans, said study lead author Terri Tanielian, a senior behavioral scientist at RAND. It appears that more work needs to be done to prepare the civilian health care workforce to care for the unique needs of veterans. To determine the readiness of private doctors, researchers used seven questions. They asked physicians if they were: Currently accepting new patients. Prepared to deal with conditions common among veterans. Providing high-quality care to their patients. Screening for other conditions common among veterans. Accommodating patients with disabilities. Familiar with military culture. Screening patients to determine whether they are current or former members of the armed forces or family members of such a person. Just 2.3 percent of providers met all of these criteria, the report revealed. To that end, study authors recommended four objectives that private doctors should meet. Those are: Improve understanding of VA and available veterans resources. Increase familiarity with and preparedness related to military culture and service-connected health conditions. Improve provider screening practices. Implement quality monitoring and management systems for VA Community Care. EMAIL ISSUES UP FRONT CURRENT VETERANS CONCERNS Most Private Doctors Not Prepared to Treat Veterans A RAND study of New York physicians found that while veterans living in the Empire State like to use doctors outside the VA, most physicians in the private sector were unfamiliar with veterans unique conditions. BY JANIE DYHOUSE It appears that more work needs to be done to prepare the civilian health care workforce to care for the unique needs of veterans. Terri Tanielian, RAND study lead author RESPONDENTS BY THE NUMBERS Of the 746 health care providers surveyed: 46.5 percent were physicians 30.9 percent were mental health providers 12.2 percent were physician assistants or nurse fnrtbf 10.4 percent were rntftrr\016ntbn therapists


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12 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 FOR MORE INFORMATION about specic legislation or VA benets, contact VFWs Washington Oce at A member of VFWs National Veterans Service staff will respond as soon as possible. WASHINGTON WIRE: CAPITOL HILL BRIEFS BY DAVE SPIVA President Donald Trump announced the departure of VA Secretary David Shulkin as head of the department in a statement released in March. Shulkins departure comes after working with VA since 2015. That year, Shulkin started as undersecretary for health while the department was reeling from a nationwide crisis in care and access that had rocked veterans condence the year prior. In 2017, Shulkin was retained by Trump and nominated as VA Secretary. His nomination was conrmed by the Senate, 100-0. During Shulkins 14-month tenure as VA secretary, the department had achieved a host of successes ranging from increased accountability and transparency to a beefed-up education package and increases in overall funding and patient satisfaction. The VFW wishes [Shulkin] and his family all the best in their futures, VFW Commanderin-Chief Keith Harman said. After Shulkins departure, Trump appointed Robert Wilkie, under secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, to serve as acting VA secretary until the Senate conrms a presidential appointment. As of Wilkies appointment, VA has had six different secretaries since 2014. Harman said VFW looks forward to working with the next VA secretary to continue building upon the progress created by Shulkin and his staff. Progress that properly takes care of Americas wounded, ill and injured veterans rst, Harman added. Shulkin Departs VA after 14 Months as Secretary Congressional leaders in March reached a deal to fund the federal government through the end of the scal year (Sept. 30). President Donald Trump signed the bill into law shortly after. The $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill ( H.R. 1625 ) provides relief from sequestration budget caps by funding a 2.4 percent pay raise for troops and a 9.5 percent increase for VA, including funds for a new electronic health care record system. Among the more than 2,200-page document, the omnibus spending bill: Supports the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency mission with more than $10 million more than the initial request. Authorizes VA to provide mental health care services to veterans who were discharged with other than honorable (OTH) discharges. Requires VA to improve its characterization of discharge review for veterans with OTH discharges. Gives $2 billion for VA medical facilities $1 billion for nonrecurring maintenance, $425 million for minor construction and $575 million for state extended care facilities. Requires VA to review and improve the process for disability claims for veterans exposed to toxic drinking water at Camp Lejeune. Gives funding to implement recommendation to improve VAs burn pits registry. Urges Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson to prioritize preuorinated chemical-contaminated sites when considering Base Realignment and Closure cleanup project funding. Authorizes Hmong-American veterans who served in Vietnam and were naturalized pursuant to the Hmong Veterans Naturalization Act of 2000 to be buried in VA national cemeteries. Bill Provides Relief from Sequestration Former VA Secretary David Shulkin Veterans with a service-connected disability that resulted in the inability to procreate without fertility treatment now are eligible for a VA adoption reimbursement. The program, which was created by a VFW-supported appropriations bill, took effect on March 5. VA now will provide reimbursement for qualifying expenses for an adoption of a child 18 years old or younger. Covered veterans may request reimbursement for expenses for an adoption nalized after Sept. 29, 2016. To qualify for a reimbursement, adoptions must be arranged by a qualied adoption agency as dened in Department of Defense Instruction 1341.9 Reimbursement for items such as clothing, bedding, toys, books and travel expenses are not covered. Expenses that occur during adoptions arranged in violation of federal, state or local law also are not reimbursable. For eligible veterans, a reimbursement application must be submitted no later than two years after a nalized adoption or, in the case of adoption of a foreign child, no later than two years from the date a U.S. citizenship certicate is issued. A veteran may receive only up to $2,000 per child or $5,000 per calendar year. For two married veterans, only one may claim a reimbursement for any one adoption. Interested veterans should refer to VA form 10152, found at https://www. and typing in the Form Number search bar, then clicking Search. Adoption Reimbursement Now Offered by VA F O R M O R E I N F O R M A T I O N


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14 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 WASHINGTON WIRE, CONT. President Donald Trump signed the State Veterans Home Adult Day Health Care Improvement Act of 2017 (H.R. 1005/S. 324) into law on March 27. The law expands adult day health care benets for veterans who are eligible for long-term inpatient care. The Adult Day Health Care program is a reimbursable treatment option through VA that gives access to adult day health care, or adult day services, at no cost to veterans who are at least 70 percent service-connected disabled. The bill helps expand the program to all of the 153 state veterans homes in the United States. Last year, VFW showed support for the bill during a hearing of the House Subcommittee on Health Committee on Veterans Affairs. While nursing home care is a necessity for veterans who can no longer live in the comfort of their home, the VFW strongly believes veterans should remain in their homes as long as possible before turning to inpatient and long-term care options, said VFW Legislative Associate Kayda Keleher during the hearing. Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-N.Y.) was the House sponsor of the bill, which he said will provide a valuable and necessary service to some veterans. By expanding access to Adult Day Health Care, Zeldin said, we can ensure that all veterans receive the best and most efcient outpatient services that provide each veteran with the assistance and special attention they need, while still allowing them to maintain their independence. Thanks to a bill that was introduced in the House and Senate in March, some troops might be able to use their military tuition assistance for training programs that arent part of colleges or universities. The bill, dubbed the Credentialing, Educating and Relevant Training Initiative for Your Heroes (CERTIFY Heroes) Act (S. 2534) would allow service members currently eligible for the Defense Departments tuition assistance program to use their benet for licensing, credentialing and certication programs. Those supporting the bill said the change would help prepare some service members for life after the military, according to Military Times The military tuition assistance program covers the cost of tuition for active-duty members, as well as some National Guardsmen and reservists. Under the program, each branch of service pays the colleges and universities directly. The education benets that cover the cost of these programs are available to veterans after their service. But the new measure would help these soon-to-be civilians prepare for careers that require special licenses and training. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), ranking member of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, called the CERTIFY Heroes Act a commonsense measure. Investing in the future of our service men and women is a no-brainer, Tester said. The folks who serve our nation in uniform develop unique and specialized skillsets over the course of their military careers. Our bill helps give them more exibility to get the training and certication they need to put their skills to work as civilians. VFW Helps Expand Adult Day Health Care Program Bill Would Expand Military Tuition Assistance Retirees Can Enroll in New Dental and Vision Plans for 2019 The Tricare Retiree Dental Program will be ending Dec. 31. However, eligible military retirees and their families now will be able to enroll in a dental plan with FEDVIP, a federal health benets program used by employees of the federal government. Additionally, these eligible beneciaries, as well as active-duty military family members, are eligible to enroll in the FEDVIP vision program, which previously was not offered. But activeduty families can only purchase vision insurance and will remain in the Tricare Dental Program. Eligible beneciaries will need to choose a plan during the FEDVIP Open Season, which starts Nov. 12 and ends Dec. 10. Enrollment and changes to a plan can only be made during this period. However, newly eligible members and members dealing with life-changing events, such as marriage or child birth, will have an opportunity to enroll outside of the time period. Prospective enrollees may preregister at to receive messages and updates for the enrollment period. To nd out more information about FEDVIP, visit topic/insure/ then click Military and TRICARE under the Dental & Vision section on the right side of the page.


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16 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 BY DAVE SPIVA MANY OF TODAYS VETERANS SERVED THIS COUNTRY EVEN BEFORE BECOMING A CITIZEN. VFW MAGAZINE LOOKS AT THREE MEN WHO SERVED IN THE MILITARY AND, AS A RESULT, BECAME U.S. CITIZENS. EACH VFW MEMBER CAME FROM A DIFFERENT COUNTRY AND HAS A STORY TO TELL ABOUT HIS JOURNEY TO BECOMING A U.S. CITIZEN. EARNING THE HARD WAY PHOTO BY SUSAN MCSPADDEN AMERICAN CITIZENSHIP Daw Dekon, a life member of VFW Post 7356 in Parkville, Mo., and a former South Sudanese refugee, sits at Union Station, located in Kansas City, Mo., in January. Dekon, an Army veteran, moved to Kansas City a)7(er spending his youth in eastern African refugee camps during civil war in his home country of South Sudan.


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 17 F rom the Revolutionary War to todays military conicts over seas, immigrants and noncitizens have been serving honorably in Americas military. Many foreigners who come to the U.S. work for years to receive citizenship. But, this country has always placed noncitizens who serve in the U.S. military in a special category oftentimes allowing for an expedited path to citizenship for those service men and women. A Department of Justice document from October 1948 shows that more than 300,000 immigrants served during World War II. Interestingly, of the 109,000 noncitizens who served, almost 92 percent, or more than 100,000, received citizenship while serving during the war. According to the Migration Policy Institute, 31,000 immigrants who served during the Korean War became U.S. citizens while in the service. As of 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services had naturalized 109,321 service members since October 2001. Of those men and women, 11,069 troops were naturalized in ceremonies at overseas locations. For some, military service means more than serving our country its about becoming a part of it. While immigrants who serve come from different back grounds and ethnicities, all have one goal in mind obtaining U.S. citizenship. DAW DEKON SOUTH SUDAN For a refugee born in Panrieng, South Sudan, serving in the military meant protecting his new country from an all-toofamiliar enemy. Daw Dekon, formerly known as Anderia Mayom, ed from his home in what is known today as South Sudan during Sudans civil war in the 1980s. When the war started, things changed, Dekon said. There were no hospitals, there were no schools and many people were getting killed. Dekon said the war started when the Sudanese government decided to imple ment sharia, or Islamic religious, law. The act was a violation of an agreement between the northern Islamic region and the Christian south. Soldiers from the north attacked the people of South Sudan in 1983. HOW TO BECOME A U.S. CITIZEN A member of the U.S. armed forces who wants to rnh^rr A good moral character. Knowledge of the English language.

18 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 If you were a male, you were killed, and if you were a female, they took you to the north, Dekon said. That is why I went to Ethiopia in 1989. His parents died during the war his mother when he was 2 years old and his father when he was 8 years old leaving Dekon as an orphan. After their villages were destroyed, many of South Sudans children, including Dekon, ran away and sought refuge in neighboring countries. Dekon found himself in a camp in Ethiopia with many other boys from South Sudan. He said they all spoke a different dialect or language, so there was a lot of confusion when talking with others. At the time, the Ethiopian government accepted Sudanese refugees, but that soon changed. The Ethiopian government was overthrown in 1991, and the new govern ment didnt want refugees in the country from South Sudan siding with the government of northern Sudan. Dekon, 12 years old at the time, learned that he couldnt stay in the country. So, now, we had to move again, Dekon said. JOURNEY TO KENYA Thousands of displaced and orphaned boys, including Dekon, needed to move to a refugee camp in Kenya more than 1,000 miles away. But there was no transportation and many didnt have shoes. So, the Lost Boys walked across eastern Africa to seek safety. The perilous journey took more than two months. Many of the boys died along the way due to diseases and encounters with wild animals. Crocodile attacks were common, Dekon said. Dekon spent eight years at the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya. There, he learned to speak English and Arabic, two languages that proved useful in his future. Dekon also applied for permanent residence and a chance to earn citizenship in the United States. IN PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS At 21 years old, Dekon was granted refugee status in America. In 2001, he traveled from Kenya to Belgium, then to New York City, before traveling to Kansas City, Mo., where he would live. A Catholic organization provided him and other refugees a home for three months, which helped the refugees start a new life in America. Everything was shocking, Dekon said. It took time to know how to get along and get around in Kansas City. All the people here were great to us. Once situated in the heart of America, Dekon said he never had any intentions of moving back home. Maybe to visit, he said. When I was given an application (for refugee status), the United States was my new home. Its important to go back to South Sudan and visit, but this is home now. Dekon said he thought of his new home in America as the place where he was going to pursue happiness. After talking to his new U.S. friends, Dekon decided to visit an Army recruit ing ofce to join the Reserves. LOST BOY FINDS PURPOSE IN NEW COUNTRY In 2006, Dekon enlisted in the Army. Soon after, Dekon was encouraged to pursue his Army career as a linguist because of knowledge of his native languages Dinka and Swahili as well as Arabic. Dekon then attended the Defense Institute of Language in San Antonio, Texas. After he graduated in August 2006, he was transferred to active-duty service. Prior to that, in 2005, Dekon had started the ve-year process of becoming a citizen before joining the Army. However, Dekon said the military recalled his application while he was on active duty so he could become a citizen sooner. While attached to the 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Dekon deployed to Iraq in 2007. On Sept. 9, 2007, Dekon became a U.S. citizen during a ceremony at Balad Air Force Base, Iraq. Dekon served seven years of active duty service and three in the Army Reserves. He said a major reason for joining was because of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Osama Bin Laden was in Sudan all those years during the civil war, Dekon said. Because of what happened there, I wanted to protect my new country. My motivation was to stop the person who caused a lot of what happened to me in Sudan and also attacked my new home. After serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, PHOTO BY JOHN CROSBY/DOD SERVING AMERICA Drtfnbrrbfh^bnnb\027t ^nfht^tbfbr/bn^fn\bf Osama Bin Laden was in Sudan all those years during the civil war My motivation was to stop the person who caused a lot of what happened to me in Sudan and also attacked my new home. Daw Dekon, South Sudanese-born U.S. Army veteran Daw Dekon became a U.S. citizen on Sept. 9, 2007, while on deployment in Tarmiyah, Iraq, with 4th Stryker Bde. Combat Team, 2nd Inf. Div. Dekon served on active duty and in the Army Reserve as a linguist from 2005 to 2015.


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20 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 Dekon left active duty service in 2010, but was reactivated in 2013 with orders to Jordan. When he left the Army in 2015, Dekon attended classes at Park University, in Parkville, Mo., but left college to take a job as a civilian contractor with the military as a linguist. Dekon, a life member of VFW Post 7356 in Parkville, Mo., said he is glad that he joined the Army. Where I came from got me to where Im at now, Dekon said. I believe that where I came from and the motiva tion that I have in me helped me get to America. Its been a dream come true. GUY POUVESLE FRANCE Born 100 miles southwest of Paris in the French town of Herbilly, Guy Pouvesle, a U.S. veteran of the Marine Corps and Army, had the opportunity to move to America in August 1966 when he was 17 years old after his mother married an American soldier. While living in Shreveport, La., Pouvesle held a green card. This grants a U.S. residency to live and work for up to 10 years. In 1969, Pouvesle was drafted into the Marine Corps. At the time, he was teaching French in a Catholic school but was eager to join. For me, I wanted to serve for what America did in support of my family in France, Pouvesle said. America has a special spot in my heart from the begin ning of my life. Pouvesles father was a prisoner of war in Germany during World War II. Pouvesle said that, during the war, Germans shot down an American plane that crashed into his grandparents house. He said it killed many of his family members. But, the Americans were there to help my family during the war, Pouvesle said. I joined and served to pay back America. Pouvesle, who served with Bravo Co., 1st Bn., 7th Marines, was stationed in Camp Pendleton, Calif., and sent to Vietnam in 1969. There, Pouvesle received a letter from the French govern ment he had been drafted to serve in the French army and was to report to Metz, France, to begin his duty. I sent them a letter and told them I was in Vietnam serving with the U.S. Marine Corps, Pouvesle said. I told them I would come if my chain of com mand released me and France paid my way there. Shortly after, he was sent another letter telling him that he needed to pay his own way back to France to serve. I replied with a few acquired Marine choice words that they could stick it where the light didnt shine, Pouvesle said. BECOMING AN AMERICAN After returning stateside, Pouvesle became a citizen on Oct. 7, 1971, shortly before his active-duty discharge from the Marine Corps. He became a citizen during a ceremony with other immigrants in San Diego. Back then, it would normally take ve years to become a citizen, Pouvesle said. It only took me two months. I wanted to become an American citizen, because not only was I given the opportunity to live in the U.S., I was given the opportunity to serve and protect this country. Pouvesle served in the Marine Corps Reserves for four years until he decided to enlist in the Army in 1975. While sta tioned at Fort Carson, Colo., Pouvesle received another letter from the French government stating that he was sentenced to one year of incarceration for failing to report for French military duty. Pouvesle, now a citizen of both America and France, ignored the letter. The next year, Pouvesle served in Panama, then received orders to Germany. Pouvesle, a wanted fugitive of France, feared that he would be caught in Germany and sent back to France for being a draft dodger. France and Germany had an extradi tion treaty, Pouvesle said. If caught, I could have been sent to France. A CHANCE TO REDEEM HIMSELF Pouvesle said he told his commander about his situation, but nevertheless was sent to Germany in December 1976. There, Pouvesle read a Stars and Stripes article about an ofcer who was in the same situation. Pouvesle contacted the ofcer and followed his instructions to le for a dissolution of the charge against him with the French Military Tribunal board in Paris. About a year later, the French government resolved this issue and told Pouvesle that his time in the Marine Corps was recognized as time served. Pouvesle served in the Army until he I am proud to be an American. This is the greatest country, and I have been all over the world. I wouldnt trade my citizenship for anything. Guy Pouvesle, French-born U.S. veteran of the Marine Corps and Army Guy Pouvesle, a life member of VFW Post 9834 in Decatur, Ark, is a retired veteran of the Army and Marine Corps. He immigrated to the U.S. a)7(er leaving France and was dra)7(ed into the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War. He became a U.S. citizen on Oct. 7, 1971, a)7(er returning stateside from Vietnam. Pouvesle also served more than 20 years in the Army and retired from the service in 1992. PHOTOS COURTESY OF GUY POUVESLE


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 21 retired in 1992 as a master sergeant spending 23 years in the military. He now resides in Gentry, Ark., and is a life member of VFW Post 9834 in Decatur, Ark. He said if he could live his life all over again he wouldnt change a thing. I have no regrets of becoming a soldier or Marine, Pouvesle said. I am proud to be an American. This is the greatest country, and I have been all over the world. I wouldnt trade my citizenship for anything. ROOP SHARMA INDIA Born in 1942 and raised in a village near New Delhi, India, Roop Sharma left his home country at 22 years old to be an airplane technician in America. As a student at an aeronautical engineering college, Sharma was selected in 1964 to move to New York City to work for Pan Am Airlines. When I got to New York, I thought, Wow, this is America, Sharma said. Then the next year, I was drafted. Like many other immigrants with a green card, Sharma was drafted into the Army in September 1965 during the Vietnam War. I always wanted to be a soldier, Sharma said. My parents would not let me go into the military academy in India, so I was very happy to be drafted. I thought, Now, I can nally be a soldier. DEEPLY IMPRESSED WITH AMERICANS While in Vietnam from December 1968 to July 1970, Sharma served as a CH-47 Chinook helicopter technician at Camp Eagle with B Co., 159th Assault Helicopter Bn., 101st Airborne Div. Sharma said there were a few small obstacles he had to overcome along the way. In India, I was taught British English, Sharma said. It was hard to understand some of the slang used by everyone. Also, I was a strict vegetarian, but the mess sergeant there, luckily, worked at an embassy in India, so he understood. Sharma said he was deeply impressed with the men he served with in Vietnam. They were the only people in the world who loved to laugh at themselves, Sharma said. Those guys were really out of this world. Sharma also said he was impressed by how rich the men were, by the worlds standards, but didnt act as if they were. They could have bought a whole Vietnamese village with the money they earned, Sharma said. But they were happy and didnt care about the way they lived while serving in Vietnam. PROUDEST DAY OF MY LIFE After coming back home, Sharma continued to serve in the Army at Fort Mead, Md., and Fort Eustis, Va. In 1971, he became a U.S. citizen when the opportunity was offered. He became a citizen on Aug. 18, 1971, during a ceremony in Norfolk, Va. That day was the proudest day of my life, Sharma said. The whole process took less than six months. Sharma retired from the Army as a command sergeant major in January 1992 after 27 years of service. He resides in Hanover, Md., and is a member of VFW Post 160 in Glen Burnie, Md. I enjoyed serving this country, Sharma said. I still have dreams that Im back in the Army. I am very proud of my time as an American soldier. EMAIL CHANGES TO NATURALIZATION PROCESS /nKnrrnb nnnnbt nfnbbn btnnbdbb nbbbbbtn rnnbnn/n bbbbnnbn bnbb ing to Dttdtb\001 dnnnb rbrnfnnb /nbnb nbtbrtn tbrbntntr tb Dttdtb\001 /nWbn'tbbn nfnn fnbntbn\216b rbn^r fnb/bnbrb bbnnb^bt brbbb Roop Sharma, a member of VFW Post 160 in Glen Burnie, Md., is a retired Army veteran who emigrated from northern India to the United States in 1964. Sharma, who served in the Army for 27 years, became a U.S. citizen on Aug. 18, 1971, during a ceremony in Norfolk, Va. Sharma, a Vietnam War veteran, retired in 1992 and now lives in Hanover, Md. PHOTOS COURTESY OF ROOP SHARMA I enjoyed serving this country I am very proud of my time as an American soldier. Roop Sharma, Indian-born U.S. Army veteran




I wish to reserve ___ of the Tet 50 th Anniversary Tribute Pistol a working Colt .45 pistol, at the current issue price of $1,995.* My deposit of $195 per pistol is enclosed. I wish to pay the balance at the rate of $100 per month, no interest or carrying charges. Certicate of Authenticity included. Thirty day return privilege. T)TjETQq1 0 0 .96552 30.361 86.781 cm.145 gBT/GS5 gs/F1 7.6125 Tf7.8789 0 Td(Check enclosed for $___________ T)TjETQq1 0 0 .96552 30.361 75.021 cm.145 gBT/GS5 gs/F1 7.6125 Tf7.8789 0 Td[(Charge payment of $ ___________ to: \000\000T VISA T MasterCard T AMEX T Discover No. _________________________________ Exp. ___________ T)TjETQq1 0 0 .99538 38.003 42.046 cm.82745 .12549 .1451 rgBT/GS4 gs/F2 7.1648 Tf(Display Case: I wish to reserve the optional, luxuriously lined, custom-made display case with locking glass lid. My payment of $149* is enclosed or add to credit card. Name __________________________________________________ Address ________________________________________________ City/State/Zip ___________________________________________ Daytime Telephone No. ( ________ ) ________________________________ America Remembers 10226 Timber Ridge Drive + Ashland, Virginia 23005 To place your reservation toll-free call 1-800-682-2291 *All orders are subject to acceptance and credit verication prior to shipment. Shipping and handling will be added to each order. Virginia residents please add sales tax. AHL, Inc. A H L I n c AMERICA REMEMBERS PRESENTS The artwork on the Tribute features battles scenes from urban settings, like Saigon and Hue. Youll also see an image of the ag raising over the Thuong Tu Gate at the Citadel in Hue. When Hue was overrun by the Communist forces, they quickly replaced the South Vietnamese ag which ew at the Citadel with a huge Viet Cong banner. This banner could be seen throughout the city and was a daily reminder of the overthrow and occupation of this treasured Vietnamese city by the Viet Cong and the NVA. This scene shows a South Vietnam banner once again ying over the citadel after the city was reclaimed on February 24, 1968. I t was January, 1968. Over Christmas, Bob Hope, Raquel Welch and other entertainers were in Vietnam performing for the Christmas holiday and a group of lucky troops were able to see the show live. Back at home, Americans were able to see highlights of the shows on television in January, ever mindful of all those who were serving in Vietnam. With the start of the New Year, American troops were preparing for another year in Vietnam. Many longed to return home, and they counted down the days before their expected date to return home. The days were long and tedious and lled with uncertainty and danger. In this faraway country, a major Vietnamese holiday was also approaching: Tet, the Vietnamese New Year. The Tet holiday was the most celebrated time in Vietnam, and a time when the ghting in Vietnam usually ceased for a short period. Many South Vietnamese soldiers were granted leave and joined family and friends for this special celebration. Meanwhile, the North Vietnamese and Viet Cong had been planning for months a surprise attack on South Vietnam. The Communist forces would unleash a wave of attacks on South Vietnam while the South Vietnamese were celebrating their lunar New Year. With little warning, shortly after midnight, the sounds of combat exploded in Saigon and other locations. The assault had started. The Tet Offensive was well-organized and conducted countrywide, eventually including more than 100 towns and cities. The Tet Offensive was by far the largest military operation conducted up to that point in the war, and it proved to be a pivotal turning point in the war. Honoring All Those Who Served The 50 th Anniversary of the Tet Offensive In honor of the upcoming 50 th anniversary of the Tet Offensive, and in salute to all who served during the Vietnam War, America Remembers proudly announces the Tet 50 th Anniversary Tribute Pistol For this historic Tribute, we selected a working Colt Government Model pistol in caliber .45 ACP, a classic military rearm, and a trusted sidearm during the Vietnam War. Only 1,000 Tributes will be issued in this exclusive edition. The artwork on the Tribute features banners and artwork highlighting important battles and scenes from the Tet Offensive. Craftsmen commissioned specically for this project by America Remembers decorate each pistol in sparkling 24-karat gold and gleaming nickel, with blackened patinaed highlights to accentuate the details of the artwork. On the slide, youll nd six important battles of the Tet Offensive Hue, Khe Sanh, Saigon, Da Nang, Quang Tri and Bien Hoa. Saigon was the capital of South Vietnam and the surprise attacks on Saigon during the rst night included an attempt to overrun the US Embassy and to capture the National Radio Station. A Marine Corps Combat Base was located at Khe Sanh. The NVA had built up signicant forces around Khe Sanh, far outnumbering Americans and South Vietnamese forces. During Tet, the NVA subjected the base to day and night bombardment, and cut off the overland supply route to the base. The base would remain under siege for more than two months. Hue was a cultural center in South Vietnam. The ghting in Hue was intense, and lasted for four weeks. The Marines and South Vietnamese forces had to ght building to building, street by street, to reclaim the city. Much of the city was destroyed and losses on both sides were high. Quang Tri City was in the north of Vietnam and an important government headquarters. It was an important target for the NVA. Bien Hoa and Da Nang were home to major military air bases for the United States. They were both attacked at the start of the Tet Offensive, but attacks were turned back by the allied forces. EXCLUSIVE 50 th ANNIVERSARY TRIBUTE Order today and we will arrange delivery of your working Tribute through the licensed rearms dealer of your choice. You will receive your Tribute with our 30-day guarantee of satisfaction. If you are not completely satised, return your Tribute to us in original, unred condition for a complete refund. Our nations involvement in Vietnam spanned three decades. Its estimated that more than 2,500,000 Americans served in Vietnam. More than 58,000 lost their lives and another 350,000 were wounded. When the Tet attack started, America had over 400,000 soldiers and Marine servicemen in Vietnam. This historic 50 th anniversary Tribute honors the generation who served during the Vietnam War. They didnt hesitate to put their lives on the line and sacrice when our country called. All of them deserve our gratitude. If youre a veteran who served, or you want to honor a family member or friend who served, this handsome Tribute pistol will be a lasting tribute to all who honorably served in Vietnam. Order yours today to secure your place in this edition honoring all those who proudly served in Vietnam. The artwork on the right side includes an M48 tank. The M48 Patton tanks helped provide cover and repower in the urban setting, as our troops reclaimed the cities, street by street. Both sides of the slide also feature a banner that reads Tet Offensive January 1968, commemorating this pivotal period in the war. On both sides of the slide, youll nd crisscrossed M16 and M14 weapons used during the Tet Offensive, with the date 1968 and Tet Offensive and Lest We Forget at the bottom. Display Case Available An optional custom-built, wooden display case is available for purchase. I D i s p l a y C a s e A v a i l a b l e D i s p l a y C a s e A v a i l a b l e


24 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 BY JANIE DYHOUSE For the fourth time in the organizations history, Kansas City will host VFWs national convention. C i t y o f F o u n t a i n s W e l c o m e s V F W W e l c o m e s V F W T hose of you attending VFWs 119th National Convention in Kansas City, Mo., July 21-25, will be glad you did. Located in the heart of America, Kansas City continues to evolve, making it a superb travel destination. Most importantly, its home to VFW National Headquarters. While the business of convention is of the utmost importance, the Paris of the Plains has a lot to offer convention-goers. Unlike the last time VFW held its convention in Kansas City, in 2007, a new streetcar is in place to make getting around town much easier. Before your visit, check out to see the restaurants and hotels along the route. If you still are undecided about whether to attend the convention, perhaps the sites featured in this article, some of which feature your fellow VFW members who work at VFW National Headquarters in Kansas City, will convince you.


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 25 COUNTRY CLUB PLAZA This 15-block district about three miles south of downtown Kansas City features more than 150 shops and dozens of restaurants and bars. Most impressively, the Plaza is like an outdoor art museum, with Spanish architecture and European art. Designed in 1922 as the nations rst suburban shopping district, the Plaza has a statue of Sir Winston Churchill and replicas of two of Spains landmarks the Giralda Tower and the Seville Light. In a quiet courtyard sits an original bronze of the Roman goddess Pomona by Italian sculptor Donatello Gabrielli. Running along the Plaza is Brush Creek, where gondola rides are offered through Ambiance on the Water ( www. ). Rides last from 20 to 35 minutes and are a good way to end the day. THE ROASTERIE Coffee drinkers will delight in a visit to The Roasterie. With a DC-3 aircraft hoisted atop the factory (its the compaPHOTO BY SUSAN MCSPADDEN PHOTO BY LAUREN GOLDMAN/VFW PHOTO BY LAUREN GOLDMAN/VFW ABOVE: Marine Corps veteran and Kansas City Mayor Sylvester Sly James with VFW employees who are military veterans in April in Kansas Citys Union Hill neighborhood. From le: Zach Schwenk, Teresa Johnson, Dave Spiva, Tara Arteaga, Nick Lopez, Mary Spencer, Johnathan Duncan and Quentin Carroll. TOP RIGHT: Longtime VFW employee and Marine Corps veteran Teresa Johnson in April at Kansas Citys Country Club Plaza, where tourists can shop the 15-block district or enjoy a night on the town. BOTTOM RIGHT: Director of VFW Properties and member of VFW Post 7397 in Lenexa, Kan., Brian Opalewski enjoys a hot coffee outside The Roasterie in March in Kansas City. Visitors can have a cup of coffee while shopping or waiting to take a tour of the facility.


26 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 nys logo), you cant miss it. Take a tour of where the coffee is produced by reserving your spot online. Each tour takes about 45 minutes. Tours are offered twice per day Monday through Friday, ve times each day on Saturday and once on Sunday. Be sure to visit the gift shop and enjoy a Roasterie coffee and a pastry at the caf. CROWN CENTER If you are traveling to Kansas City with children, Crown Center is a must-see. From the LEGOLAND Discovery Center to the Sea Life aquarium to the myriad eateries, its a fun place to visit for people of all ages. Crown Center is a block east of the streetcars southern terminus. The Crown Center Square Fountain has 48 water shooters that spout up to 60 feet in the air. Watching the danc ing water shows synchronized to music recorded by members of the Kansas City Symphony is a nice way to unwind after a day of convention business. POWER & LIGHT DISTRICT Located in the heart of downtown Kansas City, the Power & Light District has more than 50 restaurants, bars, shops and entertainment venues. The nineblock neighborhood links the Kansas City Convention Center on the west and the Sprint Center on the east. In the middle of the district is Kansas City Live!, an outdoor concert venue where live entertainment can be heard weekly during the summer months. Located on the streetcar line, the Power & Light District is easily accessible. NATIONAL WORLD WAR I MUSEUM AND MEMORIAL This is the only museum in the U.S. dedicated to showing the Great War through the eyes of those who fought in it. Interactive displays and eyewitness testimonies guide visitors through one of the largest collections of WWI artifacts in the world. Life-sized trenches offer belowground views and actual tools and equipment used by Doughboys. Recorded statements from the writings of participants from the period and relevant ambient sounds add to this experience. Perhaps one of the most poignant sites at the museum is the Paul Sunderland Glass Bridge, which you must cross before entering the Main Gallery. Beneath the bridge are 9,000 red pop pies, each representing 1,000 deaths a reminder of the 9 million who died as a result of the war. HISTORIC 18TH AND VINE DISTRICT Located just two miles southeast of downtown Kansas City, this area is rich in jazz history. Hometown of legendary saxophonist Charlie Parker, the city earned its name during the 1920-40 period when it became the center of jazz music. Jazz greats such as Count Basie, Ella Fitzgerald and Louie Armstrong performed there. Today, its home to the American Jazz Museum and the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. If you are a true lover of jazz, you will want to take in a show at the Blue Room or Gem Theater. Be sure you have your veteran or military ID, as some places in the district offer free or discounted admission. BOULEVARD BREWING Beer enthusiasts will enjoy a tour of Boulevard Brewing, which launched in Kansas City in 1989. A 45-minute walkPHOTO BY LAUREN GOLDMAN/VFW VFW Membership Associate Director Tara Arteaga and her husband, Fray, with their children Lucia, Gianna and Kiara in April at Kansas Citys Crown Center. Convention attendees planning to bring children or grandchildren will want to visit all of the attractions at Crown Center.


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 27 ing tour of the brewery, located about a mile northwest of VFW National Headquarters, concludes with samples in the Tasting Room, so be prepared to show your ID. Tickets are $5 and are available on a rst-come, rst-served basis at the Tours & Rec Center welcome desk. Tour hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday through Sunday. EMAIL Editors note: The shirts featured throughout this article are available for purchase at the VFW Store at www.vfw If you are planning to attend the convention, be sure to visit the stores area at the Kansas City Convention Center. PHOTO BY LAUREN GOLDMAN/VFW PHOTO BY LAUREN GOLDMAN/VFW Nick Lopez, Ken Romine, Quentin Carroll and Mary Spencer, all of whom are VFW members employed at VFW National Headquarters, stand on the replica baseball eld in March at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas Citys historic 18th and Vine District. With a valid military or veteran ID, visitors get in the museum for free. VFW members Johnathan Duncan and Dave Spiva both of whom work at VFW National Headquarters contemplate a tour of Boulevard Brewing in April. Just a mile from VFW headquarters, the brewery offers daily tours. Duncan is a member of Post 5789 in Lees Summit, Mo., and Spiva belongs to Post 1719 in Chandler, Okla.


28 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 PHOTO COURTESY OF HARVESTERS A fter learning that 1 out of 8 Americans doesnt have enough to eat and that 27 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan vets face hunger daily, VFW is working to put an end to food insecurity. Along with After the Harvest, HarvestersThe Community Food Network and Humana, VFW is launch ing the campaign Uniting to Combat Hunger on June 6 in Kansas City, Mo. Some 25 percent of military households and 27 percent of Iraq and Afghanistan vets are affected by food insecurity, VFW Commander-in-Chief Keith Harman said. This is something VFW wont tolerate. Thats why we are teaming with others to do something tangible in our Kansas City community. Food insecurity doesnt necessarily mean just being hungry. It also means not knowing when or where the next meal will come from or how a person will feed his or her family. In Kansas City alone, 15 percent of the community faces the issue of food insecurity. The goal of Uniting to Combat Hunger is to provide 50,000 meals in Kansas City and the surrounding areas. The VFW assault against food insecurity takes place ttingly on D-Day, VFW Adjutant General Brian Duffy said. Let the assault begin. To kick it off, volunteers will participate in an After the Harvest gleaning on June 6 to gather fresh produce. According to Lisa Ousley, executive director for After the Harvest, gleaning is hand picking edible crops that remain in the elds or orchards after a harvest. Typically, the produce isnt visually appealing for selling in grocery stores, but tastes the same. Located in Kansas City, After the Harvest aims to provide fresh produce to food banks, pantries, shelters and community kitchens in Missouri and Kansas. We are honored to join forces with the VFW, Humana and Harvesters to elevate the issue of food insecurity, especially among vets of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Ousley said. The rate of food insecurity among this population surpasses the national average. In addition to gleaning, Harvesters also will provide a food-packing oppor tunity during convention. Harvester volunteers will place food collection barrels at various businesses around Kansas City through the end of July. VFW Quartermaster General Debra Anderson encourages convention attendees to bring canned goods to put in the Harvesters barrels around the Kansas City Convention Center. The Harvesters Mobile Pantry will be on site if attendees would rather purchase there. For those who want to volunteer while in Kansas City for the convention, they can pack and sort food July 21-22 at the convention center. Its an honor for Humana to raise awareness and ght food insecurity in Greater Kansas City and across the country, said Jeff Fernandez, Segment Vice President for Humana. Together, with the VFW, Harvesters, After the Harvest and hundreds of volunteers, we can help feed veterans and their families while increasing their ability to achieve their best health. We are grateful to our community partners, like the VFW and Humana, who recognize the need in our community and step forward to help us ght hunger, said Valerie Nicholson-Watson, president and CEO of HarvestersThe Community Food Network. Hunger knows no season and is found in every county in both urban and rural communities. It takes all of us working together to end hunger. In addition to the other efforts, dip jars will be strategically placed throughout the convention center for those wishing to donate money to Harvesters. This collaboration adds to the many ways that the VFW assists and advocates for veterans, military service members and their families, Anderson said. EMAIL VFWs national convention this July in Kansas City will offer ideas and activities to help end food insecurity. BY JANIE DYHOUSE VFW LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO COMBAT HUNGER


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30 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 W hen Misael Zaragoza competed in the VFW National Marble Tournament in 1957, it changed his life. He not only garnered the national title that year defeating 43 other boys but his career path was set. One of the activities that Zaragoza and his fellow competitors participated in that year was a tour of Boeings Seattle, Wash., facility. While there, Zaragoza saw young engineers wearing white shirts and ties, walking around with clipboards. His marbles coach then explained how there are different types of engineers. Right there and then, I thought to myself, I want to be one of those guys wearing a white shirt and tie, said Zaragoza, who served two tours during the Vietnam War between 1961 and 1967 aboard the USS Fort Marion USS Page County and USS Luzerne County Zaragoza went on to earn a bachelors degree in civil engineering from San Diego State University. He worked for General Dynamics for 30 years, earned a masters degree at 69 years old and now is an apostolic bishop who supervises 42 churches in southern California. PLAYING FOR KEEPS Scott McBride, a marbles historian, tells Zaragozas story and others in his book, The Kings of the Rings: Stories from the VFW National Marble Tournaments 1947-1962 McBride, who began collecting marbles when he was 5 years old, visited Boys Town, Neb., six years ago and discovered newspaper clippings about the first VFW National Marble Tournament. Six months later, McBride located and interviewed Ray Warren, the first tournament winner, who was in his 80s at the time. As McBride prepared to share Warrens story with a marble collectors group, he learned that Warren had died. After presenting his story, I kind of realized we were going to lose these BY KARI WILLIAMS VFW hosted a national marble tournament from 1947 to 1962. It helped World War II veterans re-integrate into society and taught boys life lessons. It also influenced career choices and created memories. Straight Shooters A state winners jacket from 1951 and mementos from the 1947 national competition highlight past tournaments. MOMENTO PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL MUSEUM OF TOYS AND MINIATURES


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 31 stories, McBride said. What was the impact of the game of marbles, the tour naments, that kind of stuff. In addition to the book, McBride co-curated an exhibit at the National Museum of Toys and Miniatures in Kansas City, Mo., called Playing for Keeps: The VFW Marble Tournaments, 1947-1962. He has volunteered at the museum since the 1990s and has had pieces from his marble collection displayed there over the years. He worked with Laura Taylor, the museums curator of interpretation, for six months to create the exhibit, which includes items from McBrides collec tion, as well as items from VFW marble tournament winners. LEARNING LIFE STRATEGIES Ronald Lengbehn, the 1949 South Dakota Marble Tournament Champion, said he enjoyed playing marbles as a child. And playing for keeps. My father built a big bird bath out of the marbles I had won, Lengbehn said. Jack Blatchford, the 1958 Kansas Marble Tournament Champion, won his schools tournament, which sent him on a winning streak that catapulted him into the 1958 VFW National Marble Tournament in Tucson, Ariz. At the city tournament, Blatchford won a Schwinn bicycle. I got to ride it home [to] the farm, Blatchford said. That was the rst time I ever got to do that from the city to the farm, going across the old bridges. His prize for winning the Kansas championship was a transistor radio. It was the very rst of anything wed seen like that, Blatchford said. But what he most enjoyed about playing marbles was playing for keeps. I had two big ve-gallon buckets of marbles, Blatchford said. For Zaragoza, the enjoyment of the game came from creating a strategy. How are you going to knock out seven marbles of 13 to win that game [and] not only knock one marble out, where can I have my shooter end to knock the next one out? Zaragoza said. COMPETING AT THE NATIONAL LEVEL Lengbehn, a former VFW member who served with the Air Force in Saudi Arabia and the Philippines in 1957, said what stuck with him the most from the 1949 national tournament was how PHOTO COURTESY OF HALL OF HISTORY COLLECTION, BOYS TOWN, NEB. VISIT THE MUSEUM, GET A DISCOUNT VFW-sponsored marble tournaments began in 1947 and ended in 1962. They averaged 36 tt// ^rD f EDd D

32 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 quickly he lost. I played the kid who ended up winning the tournament on the rst game, Lengbehn said, and I missed my beginning shot by just a tad, and he got up and ran them, so I was out. And while there was a little pressure, Lengbehn said he immensely enjoyed the competition. We went from South Dakota to Pittsburgh [for] the tournament, then we watched the whole tournament, Lengbehn said. We watched this paraplegic kid. He never missed a shot. Then we extended the trip and went to Niagara Falls and saw all the sights out there in the East. During the national tournament, which Blatchford won, participants stayed in the barracks at Davis Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson. We got to see the attack dogs work and the Air Force guys come around when we were playing marbles, said Blatchford, who served from 1966-72 in the Kansas National Guard as a heavy anti-armor weapons infantryman. He did not deploy overseas. For Zaragoza, the atmosphere at the national tournament was exciting. It also was the rst time he had ever own in a plane and introduced him to new friends. I got to meet young kids from different states that I was not accustomed to, Zaragoza said. VFW TOURNAMENT WELCOMED ALL Though a reason for ending the tournament was never really stated clearly, McBride said the combination of the expense, losing a co-sponsor in Hortex (maker of Billy the Kid jeans), a nationwide focus on team sports and waning interest led to its conclusion. But McBride said VFWs tournament was different in its inclusiveness. For the most part, the VFW was a unique tournament because it was very open to everybody, said McBride, who lives in the Kansas City, Mo., area. There were all kinds of ethnici ties allowed to play in the tournament. There was another national tournament going on that, in the s, was still a segregated tournament. Zaragoza, a Latino, said his father taught him to never let the environment he was in cause him to react negatively. That gave me a determination, that even though I was in a different envi ronment, I could compete with anybody here, Zaragoza said. I should not look at myself as a second-class citizen, or [that] I cannot compete with anybody. Zaragoza, who faced off against another Hispanic child in the nals, was interested in more than becoming a national marbles champion. If Im determined to do something, and I practice, and I dedicate myself to it, it can be done, Zaragoza said. Not only can I win a trophy, I can be an example to my brothers. EMAIL TOURNAMENT RULES VFW tournaments adhered to a rr ft^rDrf The Kings of the Rings: Stories from the s&tfEntnfDnbfdbn)6(f 1947-1962 Wbrff ftf rt fff ft\022r n dnrbrff tfr df\022 frbr frff rrftDrf My father built a big bird bath out of the marbles I had won. Ronald Lengbehn, 1949 South Dakota marbles champion Pennants from Ray Warrens trip to Omaha, Neb., the site of the rst VFW National Marble Tournament in 1947. Warren won the inaugural tournament. Tournament participants wore VFW shirts, printed with their respective states. On display at the National Toy and Miniatures Museum in Kansas City, Mo., is Iowa Marble Champion Gary Bellinghausens shirt. A A B Ray Warrens trophy from the 1947 VFW National Marble Tournament. B C C


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34 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE PHOTO T he spring offensive during the last year of the Great War in 1918 was a last-ditch effort by the Germans to make their way to the French capital of Paris. The Germans rolled back French troops from the established Western Front and made it to Chateau-Thierry, located on the Marne River about 50 miles east of Paris. It was as close as the Germans would get to the City of Light during World War I. In trouble, the Allies called upon the American Expeditionary Forces, including a Marine brigade under the command of the Armys 2nd Division, to reinforce and relieve the French units on the front lines. The Marines were sent to Belleau Wood, near Chateau-Thierry. The area of wheat elds and forests would soon be a battleground, where Marines would ght for the rst time during the Great War. RETREAT, HELL! WE JUST GOT HERE Belleau Wood was a key position for the Germans on the road to Paris. The battle was a turning point for the Allies and a moment of truth for the Marine Corps. But, at that point in the war, the Marine Corps had not engaged in intense combat. Up until then, the Marines had been in defensive sections and gassed, but none of them had been in combat, said Annette Amerman, a historian with the Marine Corps History Department in Quantico, Va. Nobody knew what we were capable of. The Germans didnt think we were capable of anything, because the American Army had never been this large before WWI. By the beginning of the battle, many French army units had already retreat ed from the front lines. The American Expeditionary Forces, including Marines of the 5th and 6th regiments, as well as the 6th Machine Gun Battalion all units of the 4th Bde., 2nd Div. made their way past the French to the front line. On June 3, 1918, while relieving the French, Marine Capt. Lloyd W. Williams famously said, Retreat, hell! We just got here, after a French major told the Marines they should withdraw. Williams later died on June 12 from wounds he suffered the day before. The battle was particularly bloody on June 6. According to the Marine Corps History Department, the Marine Corps lost more men on June 6 than it had in its entire history before that day. In total, the 4th Brigade had 1,087 total casualties, and, of them, 228 were KIA or later died of wounds suffered in the ght. Amerman said that the Americans arrival to the front lines ended a lot of the French mutinies going on during the German offensive. After making it to the front lines, the 2nd Division reinforced the French and acted as a plug to stop the German offensive. The Germans had pushed an allout offensive on the Western Front, Amerman said. And the Marines job was to stop the German push to Paris. The 4th Brigade made up the center of the newly formed front, with the U.S and French armies on each side. The advancing Germans collided with the Marines near Belleau Wood on June 4. During the upcoming weeks, Marines worked to stop the Germans and eventually pushed them out of the area. Yet to be truly proven in battle, Marines showed their worth by ghting off a German offensive near Chateau-Thierry, France, during World War Is Battle of Belleau Wood. After 100 years, the clash still stands as one of most signicant battles in Marine Corps history. BY DAVE SPIVA MARINES PUNCH BACK AT BELLEAU WOOD A painting by Marine Reserve Sgt. Tom Lovell depicts 2nd Division Marines in action during World War Is Battle of Belleau Wood in France. Four men were awarded the Medal of Honor and 143 Marines and sailors were awarded the Navy Cross during the bloody, three-week battle near Chateau-Thierry, France, in June 1918.


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 35 Amerman credited the Marines success in defeating the Germans in Belleau Wood to expert marksmanship and willingness to ght. DO YOU WANT TO LIVE FOREVER? According to the Marine Corps History Department, Gunnery Sgt. Dan Daly, a veteran of Chinas Boxer Rebellion who already was well-known before arriving in France, was said to have used hand grenades and a pistol to single-handedly attack and capture an enemy machine gun emplacement on June 10. Daly, who already had earned two Medals of Honor previously in China and on Haiti, fought through the end of the war and earned the Navy Cross and Croix de Guerre. Daly was actually put in for a Medal of Honor for his actions, Amerman said. But, he already had two, and it was struck down, because, apparently, nobody needs three. To add to his Marine Corps legend, Daly was said to have declared, Come on, you sons of bitches. Do you want to live forever? while his platoon attacked the Germans, according to the Marine Corps History Department. Gunnery Sgt. Fred William Stockham was another man well known for his actions in the battle. During the night of June 13 and early morning of June 14, the Marines were hit with a gas attack in Belleau Wood. While being gassed, Stockham took off his protective mask and gave it to a fellow Marine so that he could breathe. Stockhams exposure to the deadly gas damaged his lungs and resulted in his death a week later. He sacriced himself for one of his men, Amerman said. I think other men from other services had done things like this before, but actions like this are what laud these Marines into the lore of the Corps. In December 1939, more than 21 years later, Stockham was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. After many acts of heroism and the Marines desire to push the Germans from the woods, the end of the battle came on June 26. Maj. Maurice Shearer, of the 5th Regiment, reported at 9:30 p.m. that Belleau Wood was in Allied control by saying, Woods now U.S. Marine Corps entirely. THE MARINES SURPRISED EVERYONE In total, 1,062 Marines were KIA and 3,615 Marines were WIA in the 21 days of ghting. In addition to the Marines, the U.S. Armys 2nd Engineers also were instrumental in the fight against the Germans, Amerman said. The Americans, and the Marines in particular, surprised everyone, Amerman said. Belleau Wood is held in such high esteem because we punched back and bloodied the nose of the Germans. In total, four Medals of Honor and 143 Navy Crosses were awarded to Marines and sailors for the battle. Because of the Marines tenacity on the battleeld, the French government also renamed the woods Bois de la Brigade de Marine, meaning Wood of the Marine Brigade. Indeed, the Marine Corps outstanding service in the Battle of Belleau Wood proved to the world that the Marines were not going away and only added to the legend and lore of the Marine Corps. EMAIL MARINE CORPS HISTORY CENTER PHOTO Surviving ocers of the 2nd Bn., 6th Regt., gather a)7(er the Battle of Belleau Wood in France during WWI. These men, who helped stop a German offensive threatening Paris, were part of the 4th Bde., 2nd Div., which lost more than 1,000 Marines. FOUR AWARDED MEDALS OF HONOR Two Marines and two sailors were awardD,r t Gunnery Sgt. Ernest A. Janson DrfntZ Lt. j.g. Weedon E. Osborne ,* EbZ >ntKbt,ntW)]TJETQq1 0 0 1 390.6 387.8 cm.145 gBT/GS3 gs/F12 8 Tf64.946 0 Td[(EbZrb tZ Gunnery Sgt. Fred W. Stockham ,* DrnZ *Posthumously Awarded Source: Marine Corps History Division BELLEAU WOOD BY THE NUMBERS 4,677: Drr 1,062: Dr\007 143: Navy Crosses awarded 4: Medals of Honor awarded


36 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 PHOTO BY KEN SCAR/CLEMSON UNIVERSITY T he first time Ken Rhodes participated in the Bataan Memorial March, it took 14 hours to complete the 26.2mile hike. This year, it took a little more than 10 hours. But the duration of the trek in March through the New Mexico desert isnt what matters to him. Its an amazing experience, said Rhodes, a member of VFW Post 10789 in Brentwood, Calif., and three-time memorial march participant. I tell people, rst and foremost, its never about the hike. Its more about the experience along the way of talking to people and nding out why theyre there. The march, which began in 1989, takes hikers through the White Sands Missile Range in remembrance of U.S. POWs in World War II who were forced by their Japanese captors to march 65 miles to prison camps in the Phillipines. A record 8,500 people registered for this years event, which VFW sponsors. VFW Commander-in-Chief Keith Harman said he thought attendance would decrease because last years march commemorated the 75th anniversary and there would be less motivation to participate this year. But the attendance increased, Harman said, and I believe it will continue to grow. The importance of the march, to Rhodes, is that there still are Bataan Death March survivors who attend ed the hike. One survivor, 100-year-old Army veteran Ben Skardon, has participated in the march for a decade. I would like to pay tribute to those who make the Bataan Memorial Death March a reality for me, Skardon said in his speech after receiving the Congressional Gold Medal at this years event. Coming to White Sands Missile Range is now my pilgrimage. It is the most focused, solemn, meaningful event that I have ever participated in. KEEPING MEMORIES ALIVE Rhodes began participating in the Bataan Memorial March in 2015. Last year, his Post hiked for a family whose father was in Bataan and had recently died. This year, Rhodes represented his Post alone, and walked in honor of Army Spc. Daniel Dolan. Dolan served with 1st Bn., 23rd Inf., More than 8,000 people, including representation from VFW Posts across the nation, participated in this years Bataan Memorial March. Held at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico, the hike led participants through either 14.2 or 26.2 miles of desert terrain to honor those who lost their lives in 1942. BY KARI WILLIAMS DESERT HIKE HONORS BATAAN POWS Ben Skardon, 100, is a Bataan Death March survivor who commanded a company of the 92nd Inf. Regt., at Bataan. He has participated in the Bataan Memorial March for a decade.


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 37 3rd Bde., 2nd Inf. Div., during the Iraq War. He and Cpl. Kenneth Cross were killed in action when their vehicle hit an IED on Aug. 27, 2006, in Baghdad. The nonprofit Medals of Honor offered participants race bibs with the names of service members who had been killed on active duty. Thats how Rhodes came to represent Dolan. [There are] two deaths people suffer, Rhodes said. When you physically die, and the second death is when theres no one left that remembers who you were. So, their idea [is] to help honor these veterans and perpetuate [their memories] by continuing to carry these names. Though Rhodes did not know anything about Dolan prior to the march, he said he decided to treat the hike as if Dolan were there with him. I would set the backpack down at various mile markers, said Rhodes, who served aboard the USS California as an electronics technician during the Iranian hostage rescue attempt in 1980. I did 5, 11, 15, 21 and then 25. And I would take a picture of his marker on my backpack. Nine members of VFWs Department of Texas also participated in the march. Dan West, director of operations at VFW Department of Texas, served in the Marines for 12 years. That included a deployment in January 1991 to Saudi Arabia and Kuwait as an infantry platoon sergeant with the 1st Bn., 1st Marines during the Persian Gulf War. West said his team participated in the 14.2-mile honorary march. He added that every one was there for a common good, and it took him back to his time serving in the Marine Corps. I was actually in the Philippines and got to go visit part of the original death march route, West said, and I kind of played back into all of that. I used to always think, as bad as it got sometimes when I was deployed, it wasnt as bad as what the death march guys [went through]. West said he knows that if not for those who dedicated and sacrificed while serving the United States, the country might have a different history. I have long line of military in my family going all the way back to the Civil War, West said. So being able to just taste a little bit of what they went through and the hardships and all that really helps me appreciate how easy we have it today. HONORING DEFENDERS OF THE PAST The most memorable part of the march, for Rhodes, was the opening ceremony. This year, I was amazed at how quiet it became during parts of the cer emony, like the invocation, Rhodes said. Theres 8,000 people out on the parade grounds, and its dead quiet. West and his team participated alongside wounded warriors, children and a 73-year-old woman he met at the 10-mile mark who was recovering from a broken pelvis. I [decided Im] going to do this because I think its something cool, something we need to do to honor those defenders of the past, West said. From the VFW front, Chief Harman expects the organizations presence to increase. The VFW is so appreciated, not only for our sponsorship, but for our participation in the march and information booth, Harman said. The booth provided information on VFW programs, and New Mexico had its service ofcer there to talk about VA benets and answer questions regarding VA claims, Harman said. Along with VFWs national Deputy Director of Membership Rick McKenna, the Department of New Mexico recruited several new members, he added. The 30th annual Bataan Memorial Death March will be held March 17, 2019. For more information, visit EMAIL ABOVE: Team Texas VFW celebrates a)7(er completing the Bataan Memorial Death March. Pictured, from le to right, are Lynn Toomer, Carlos Sustaita, Keith King, Dan West, Angel Ramirez, Dave Walden, Commander-in-Chief Keith Harman, Karen Toomer (Auxiliary) and Lupita Perez. RIGHT: The backpack of Ken Rhodes, a member of VFW Post 10789 in Brentwood, Calif., sits at mile marker 15 on the Bataan Memorial March. Rhodes completed the march in honor of Army Spc. Daniel Dolan, an Iraq War KIA, and took photos of his backpack with Dolans marker on it at various points along the route. PHOTO COURTESY OF DAN WEST PHOTO COURTESY OF KEN RHODES


38 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 KOREAN WAR ARMISTICE SIGNED 65 YEARS AGO Goin Home Four Marines are happy to receive some good news on July 26, 1953, at their location in western Korea. They were reading news announcing that an armistice was to be signed in Panmunjom the next day that would ofcially end hostilities. Those Marines one of whom (far right) is identied as Pfc. Thomas W. OConnell, of Hammond, Wis. headed home soon after. But the armistice merely stopped the shooting. A formal peace treaty never was signed, and North Korea and South Korea technically remain at war to this day. VFW is proud of its Korean War members and the service and sacrice of all the wars U.S. veterans. A total of 36,576 Americans according to Battles of the Korean War VFWs ofcial history of the conict sacriced their lives on the peninsula. The duty that U.S. troops logged there was crucial. While the Cold War endured into the 1990s and communism remained a threat, the Korean War was a victory for democracy. U.S. veterans of the war helped save South Korea and Japan from what looked to be an inevitable takeover. Now, 65 years later, the prosperity enjoyed by those citizens stands in stark contrast to the misery endured by the people of North Korea. VFW salutes all Korean War veterans for a job well done. Thank you for your service. PHOTO BY GEORGE E. SWEERS /ASSOCIATED PRESS


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40 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 BY KARI WILLIAMS V FW Post 8220 in Belton, Mo., donated $10,000 last October to assist its city parks and recreation department with the completion of a POW/MIA memorial. Post Commander Richard Moon, who served from December 1967 to December 1968 in Vietnam as an infantryman with the 4th Infantry Division, said a groundbreaking is expected this spring. We wanted to donate [funds] because we felt it was a tting tribute to [former] prisoners of war and all of the service members [still listed as] missing in action, and it was definitely some thing that will enhance the park itself, Moon said. The citys parks and recreation department initially approached the Post about sponsoring a picnic shelter in September, according to Moon. While it would have been a good community relations project, and it would have given us publicity, it really didnt have anything to do with veter ans, Moon said. About a week later, city ofcials suggested a POW/MIA memorial, which Moon said was more in line with VFWs goals and honoring veterans. Such memorials, according to Moon, are reminders of the sacrices made by former POWs, those still unaccounted for and their families. I think a lot of people in their daily lives never really think about it, Moon said, and because theres so much foot trafc there in the park, this will be a reminder to [visitors] of the sacrices our service members have gone through over the years. Kevin Feeback, maintenance supervisor for Belton Parks and Recreation, said that since the monument is being built in a memorial park, city ofcials thought it would be fitting to give the Post a chance to be involved. The memorial is estimated to cost $17,000. Though there will be a plaque at the memorial noting the Posts donation, Moon said the publicity is secondary to the message the memorial will send to the community. EMAIL A REMINDER OF SACRIFICE One Missouri Post donated $10,000 to a city-organized POW/MIA memorial. A groundbreaking is expected this spring. PHOTO COURTESY OF RICHARD MOON VFW Post 8220 Commander Richard Moon (right) presents Belton (Mo.) Park Director Shane DeWald with a $10,000 check for the creation of a POW/MIA memorial in the citys park. Moon said the memorial will serve to remind the community of the sacrices made by uniformed Americans. When the Vietnam War ended, more than 2,500 t &ffnbt st t their last known whereabouts, according to the WKtD/ Vietnam: f)TjETQq1 0 0 1 38 82 cm.145 gBT/GS4 gs/F12 8 Tf(Laos: 292 Cambodia: rn Peoples Republic of China territorial waters: 7 POWS/MIAS FROM THE VIETNAM WAR




42 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 Nine student veterans who were awarded a semesterlong fellowship look back on their experience speaking to legislators and researching veteran issues. BY KARI WILLIAMS VFW-SVA FELLOWS REFLECT ON LEGISLATIVE CONFERENCE F or the past five years, VFW has partnered with Student Veterans of America (SVA), giving student veterans an opportunity to research and promote causes that are important to veterans. In March, nine students spent one week in Washington, D.C., during VFWs annual Legislative Conference, fulfilling an aspect of the fellowship opportunity. Student veterans focused on one of the following four policy areas: Success in higher education. Transitioning from the military to civilian life. Succeeding and thriving in the civilian workforce. Crafting the future of veterans health care. VFW magazine spoke with the 2018 fellows after their trip to Washington, D.C. JOSEPH SACCO War: Global War on Terrorism: Operation Inherent Resolve (the ght against ISIS) Dates of deployment: October 2014 to January 2015 Service: Navy Ship: USS Bunker Hill Rating: Cryptologic Technician Collection VFW affiliation: Post 2146 in Idaho Falls, Idaho Policy topic: Improving mental health care access for veterans not currently utilizing VA health care. This fellowship meant a lot to me. I am very fortunate to have served in the Navy, and now I am fortunate to advocate on behalf of veterans. I have spent quite a bit of time trying to nd some way to help other veterans, and this fellowship provided the conduit for accomplishing that goal. I want every veteran to have a voice in D.C. Dont believe that you cant make it to D.C. to pitch your idea on how to improve the lives of veterans. BRADLEY WARD War: Afghanistan Dates of deployment: January 2014 September 2014 Service: Army Reserve Unit: 302nd MP Co. from Grand Prairie, Texas and the 18th Airborne Corps. MOS: Military Police Ofcer VFW afliation: Post 4938 in Edmond, Okla. Policy topic: Granting priority enrollment to all GI Bill users in higher education and training programs. It was truly a transformational experience that has definitely shaped me into both a more knowledgeable and determined advocate for our proud veteran community. The opportunity to connect and openly discuss policy and veteran-related issues with congressional leaders and department directors was an incredible experience that is certain to prepare me for future work in the eld. RYAN REHBERG War: Iraq Dates of deployment: 2008-2009 Service: Army Unit: 2nd Bn., 7th Cav, 1st Cav Div. ABOVE: Ed Tjaden (center), an Iraq War veteran and VFW-SVA Fellowship recipient, speaks with Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) during the VFW Legislative Conference in March in Washington, D.C. Tjaden is a member of VFW Post 1592 in St. Peters, Mo. PHOTO COURTESY OF SVA


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 43 MOS: Infantryman VFW afliation: Dept. of North Dakota Policy topic: Emergency care. I learned to effectively advocate on veterans policy issues. Making change can be difcult, but with support and guidance from great mentors, advocat ing became much easier. JENNIFER HOSLEY War: Global War on Terrorism Dates of deployment: 2007 (South Korea)-2015 (Kuwait) Service: Army Unit: D Btry, 1st Bn., 44th Air Defense Arty, 69th Air Defense Artillery Bde., 32nd Air and Missile Defense Command MOS: Enhanced Patriot Missile Operator/Maintainer VFW affiliation: Post 6527 in Greenwood, Ark. Policy topic: Military transition. My biggest takeaway from this experience is learning all the policies VFW and SVA work on. I had no idea about a few of the points, but now, I feel excited to come home to Arkansas and help on a local level. This experience has certainly encouraged me to be more involved in my local VFW Post. GABRIEL SNASHALL War: Iraq and Afghanistan Dates of deployment: 2012 Service: Navy Ship: USS Pittsburgh Rating: Electronic Technician 2nd Class/SS VFW affiliation: Post 12150 in New Haven, Conn. Policy topic: Education policy. [I most enjoyed the] authenticity of advocacy for a cause. The VFW and SVA are rare: their goals are streamlined, punctu al, and it shows with how respected they are on Capitol Hill. I enjoyed experiencing every second of my time with both the VFW and SVA for that reason. BRIAN WALKER War: Global War on Terrorism Dates of deployment: July 2001 January 2002 (supporting Operation Enduring Freedom in the North Arabian Sea/Persian Gulf); January September 2003 (supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom near the Korean Peninsula) Service: Navy Ship: USS Sacramento (2001-2004) Rating: Machinists Mate (1999-2003); Storekeeper (2003-07) VFW affiliation: Post 12158 at Northeastern University in Boston Policy topic: VA mental health access to those who have received other-thanhonorable discharges. It was very eye-opening to see, rsthand, the amount of work that goes into advocating for addressing veter ans issues. This has given me a much deeper appreciation for the work that is involved, knowing there are many who are ghting for veterans like myself. FRANCHESKA SALAZAR War: Global War on Terrorism Dates of deployment: September and October 2008 (Port Au Prince, Haiti), Operation Continuing Promise ( 2008) The nine student veterans selected to receive the VFW-Student Veterans of America Legislative Fellowship visited Washington, D.C., in March to advocate on behalf of their fellow veterans, service members and families. The semester-long fellowship began in 2013. The 2018 class had more than 50 applications, a 20 percent increase over the previous year. PHOTO BY BOB KNUDSEN RIGHT: Jennifer Hosley, a member of VFW Post 6527 in Greenwood, Ark., discusses policy with (from le\VAs Vice President for Government Affairs Will Hubbard, VFW Council of Administration member Terry Callahan and Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.). Hosley is one of nine VFW-SVA Fellows who attended VFWs National Legislative Conference in March. PHOTO COURTESY OF SVA


44 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018Service: NavyUnit/Ship: Destroyer Squadron 8 attached to the USS Kearsarge Rating: Cryptologic Technician VFW affiliation: Post 15021 in Baltimore, Md.Policy topic: Non-retired veterans and the ability to access centralized resourc-es that were once afforded to them while serving their country.I am forever indebted to everyone at the VFW and SVA for creating such a remarkable fellowship. I am humbled to have been selected and a part of this experience. Words truly cannot express my gratitude for this program. I am thrilled that I took a chance and applied and even more so that I was accepted. Thank you for making such a difference in this fellows life.ED TJADENWar: Iraq Dates of deployment: 2008 Service: ArmyUnit: 2nd Bde., 1st Armd. Div., Forward Operating Base Hammer, Camp Liberty and Camp Stryker MOS: Close air support coordinatorVFW afliation: Post 1592 in St. Peters, Mo.Policy topic: Instituting a peer mentoring or support program within VAs existing Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment framework.I enjoyed learning from the senior VFW legislative delegates and leader -ship while we interacted with the sena-tors and congressmen. Their acceptance and guidance was the most amazing part of the fellowship.HANNAH JOYCEWar: AfghanistanDates of deployment: 2005-06 (Afghanistan), 2007 (Afghanistan), 2010 (Honduras) Service: Air ForceUnit: Attached to the Bagram Air Base Medical Joint Force Command, and worked in the detainee facility under the 4th Infantry Division MPs (2005-06); 435th Contingency Aeromedical Staging Facility in Ramstein Germany (2007) MOS: Aerospace medical technicianVFW afliation: Life member of Post 15016 in Des Moines, IowaPolicy topic: Expanding rural veteran health options and strengthening com -munity bonds between all the stakeholders affected.As a [master of social work] student, this fellowship was an opportunity to observe policy in action at the nation al level. The social work profession emphasizes the importance of advocacy. I hope to work with fellow veterans in the mental health capacity as a licensed clinical social worker, and this fellowship was pivotal in gaining macrolevel perspective. -EMAIL I am forever indebted to everyone at the VFW and SVA for creating such a remarkable fellowship. Francheska SalazarWERE YOU OR A LOVED ONE DIAGNOSED WITH We assist veterans exposed to asbestos and diagnosed with mesothelioma free of charge. FREE help ling VA Claims even if yours was denied FREE help nding a mesothelioma specialist FREE resources to cover medical bills and other costs Sponsored by The Peterson Firm, LLP855-978-1585or visit NOW


New Arthritis Painkiller Works on Contact and Numbs the Pain in Minutes New cream works faster and is more targeted than oral medications. Key ingredients penetrate the skin within minutes to relieve joint arthritis pain. Users report signicant immediate relief. By Robert Ward Associated Health Press BOSTON Innovus Pharmaceuticals has introduced a new arthritis pain relief treatment that works in minutes. Sold under the brand name Apeaz the new pain relief cream numbs the nerves right below the skin. When applied to an arthritic joint, or a painful area on the body, it delivers immediate relief that lasts for hours and hours. The powerful painkilling effect is created by the creams active ingredients, three special medical compounds. Anesthetics are used in hospitals during surgery. They block nerve signals from the brain so that patients dont feel pain and they work fast. The anesthetic found in Apeaz is the strongest available without a prescription. The cream form allows users to directly target their area of pain. It works where it is applied. The company says this is why the product is so effective and fast acting. Users can expect to start feeling relief immediately after applying, explains Dr. Bassam Damaj, President of Innovus Pharmaceuticals. There will be a pleasant warming sensation that is followed by a cool, soothing one. This is how you know that the active ingredients have reached the affected joint and tissue. Works In Minutes For arthritis suffers, Apeaz offers impressive advantages over traditional medications. The most obvious is how quickly it relieves pain discomfort. The cream contains the maximum approved OTC dose of a top anesthetic, which penetrates the skin in a matter of minutes to numb the area thats in pain. This relief lasts for several hours. Published pre-clinical animal studies have shown that the ingredients in Apeaz can also prevent further bone and cartilage destruction. There are also no negative side effects like from oral medication. Apeaz delivers its ingredients through the skin. Oral medications are absorbed in the digestive tract. Overtime, the chemicals in pills can tear the delicate lining of the stomach, causing ulcers and bleeding. When compared to other arthritis medications, Apeaz is a fraction of the cost. At less than $2 a day, the cream quickly is becoming a household name. Those with terrible arthritis in their hands and ngers, love how easy Apeaz is to open. The jar ts in the palm of the hand, which makes it much easier to use. Instant Pain Relief Without a Prescription Many Apeaz users report signicant improvements in daily aches and pain. Many more report increased exibility and less stiffness. They are moving with less pain for the rst time in years, like Henry Esber, an early user of Apeaz Ive tried more pills than I can count. Ive also had a handful of cortisone shots. Nothing is as effective as this product. With Apeaz, I get relief right away. I rub a little on my hands. It keeps the pain away. It also prevents the pain from getting really bad. Its completely changed my life. How It Works Apeaz contains the highest, non-prescription OTC dose of a medical compound that ghts pain on contact. When applied to the skin it goes to work within minutes by penetrating right to the source of your pain, numbing the nerve endings. This is why Apeaz is so effective for people with arthritis pain. It reduces pain while adding an additional potential layer of joint support, explains Damaj. A New Way to Treat Pain Although Dr. Damaj and his team say that their cream is the fastest and most effective way to relieve arthritis pain, they believe there is still a reason to take joint pills. The most effective are those which help to further lubricate, strengthen and support the joints. Thats why every container of Apeaz comes with ArthriVarx a breakthrough supplement thats taking on joint support in an entirely new way. ArthriVarx works on your joints, making it the perfect companion to Apeaz ArthriVarx contains special compounds published to lubricate the joints and connective tissues that surrounds them. With daily use, they improve joint health and can give an extra cushion, explains Dr. Damaj. When combined with Apeaz it becomes the perfect system to tackle arthritis. While the anesthetic component of Apeaz is working on the outside, relieving pain on contact, ArthriVarx is working on the inside, adding cushioning to the joints A Powerful Combination For Arthritis and Joint Pain With daily use, Apeaz plus ArthriVarx helps users live a more vital, pain free life without any of the negative side effects or interactions associated with oral drugs. By delivering fast, long-lasting, and targeted relief from joint pain and supporting longterm joint health, Apeaz and ArthriVarx is the newest, most effective way to tackle your arthritis pain. You can now enjoy an entirely new level of comfort thats both safe and affordable. It is also extremely effective, especially if nothing else has worked well for you. How to Get Apeaz This is the rst ofcial public release of Apeaz In order to get the word out about Apeaz the manufacturer, Innovus Pharmaceuticals, is offering special introductory discounts while supplies last. A special phone hotline has been set up to take advantage of deep discounts during this ordering opportunity. The discounts will automatically be applied to all callers. Your Toll-Free Hotline number is 1-800-457-9555 and will only be open while supplies last. Experience the guaranteed Apeaz relief already enjoyed by thousands of consumers. Dont miss out, call 1-800-457-9555 today. APEAZ IS AN FDA OTC COMPLIANT DRUG NDC # 57483-001-04 APPROVED FOR THE RELIEF OF PAIN FROM MUSCLES AND JOINTS INCLUDING ARTHRITIS PAIN. ARTHRIVARX STATEMENTS HAVE NOT BEEN EVALUATED BY THE FDA. ARTHRIVARX IS NOT INTENDED TO DIAGNOSE, TREAT, CURE, OR PREVENT ANY DISEASE AND IS NOT A DRUG. RESULTS MAY VARY. OFFER NOT AVAILABLE TO RESIDENTS OF IOWA. Apeaz is an FDA drug with approved claims for the pain relief of the following conditions: Arthritis pain Simple back pain Strains Sprains Athletic injuries Muscle stiffness/ pain Wrist, elbow, shoulder, hip, knee, ankle, foot, muscle or joint pain Apeaz : Quick Acting Pain and Arthritis Cream is Now Available Without a Prescription ADVERTISEMENT


46 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 2018 Voice of Democracy Winners PHOTO BY BOB KNUDSEN Robyn Anzulis 10076 Mt. Airy, Md. T.C. Selman Memorial Scholarship $30,000 Philip Dunagan 2471 The Dalles, Ore. Charles Kuralt Memorial Scholarship $16,000 Hannah Brown 1039 Menomonie, Wis. VFW Scholarship $10,000 :' f D f W > f ZrD nf D f t ^f n nt nnn t t rK bb ff f rt f f D t f t t t &, f rD f t ^ f r tD f ^f n nt nn Zf nf W f f n Z t Zf n ED &rtrs&tWbE f r/ t ^f n nt nnn > > f E nbf D t Z fn n f f n W t t r f f f ^f n nt nnn t t t D f t D f r f f E f z t t rZ f f '^D f t ^f n nt nn D t f t f f rZ/ f E f : f f r,s f t f tf ^ f tf f D f t ^f n nt nn t n f f f n tE: f f / t t t r^f n nt nnn f W f f W n f t : f n / f f f D f t ^f n nt nnn t n t r, f f bnn>s f dr^rZ n D f t ^f n nt nn : f t t < t t f d f : f f > f t D f t ^f n nt nnn :f&f t t f / n ^ t f ^ t D f t W^f n nt nnn t rD f Z s f f t t t r,r< n D f t ^f n nt nnn n r f bnbt f Z t f n t n f f t t t t t r^f n nt nnn < ff f r, t f r b E n > t f r/ f f / t t s&t Zr^ f f f t f ^f n nt nnn t f t n f n bb t nf f K f f t t f t tr, dd f f t f t t ntf ^f n nt nnn f r b > f D f f < f fr t t r t )TjETQq1 0 0 1 217.76 342.48 cm.145 gBT/GS3 gs/F7 8 Tf146.56 0 Td-.16 Tc[(rD t t^f n nt nnn t tr^t &f t dD f t Z f ^fD f t ^f n nt nnn D t t f bn^ n ff < t f t D n D f t ^ nf t f f f f ^f n nt nnn K f D t t D t f DD: f ,f: f z D f t ^f n nt nnn t : f bnn t f K nt f f f f t : f ,^r &rD f t ^f n nt nnn E n D t f n rt t rt t f f t Z ^ t n : f K nt t nf f :rtZ t f f f / t t ^fWb^f n nt nnn D\033rt t t f f t f f t fW f :D t f nf Wbn t t r^f n nt nnn K t t ft f f f ^ t f ^ : t t f t f d f f ff t > t f Z nf n f ^f n nt nnn t t t K f r bbf n d n t & t f rs&tW t t r f f D t f nt t t r^f n nt nnn >r t ^ t D f f E f nt f ^f n nt bnn D t ^ f f n E n E f f / t t t t r^f n nt bnn d t n rs f f D t f f f D t t t t r^f n nt bnn ^ f n W n t f f ts f f E f D f t f t t r^f n nt bnn d n W f b > t f r t f / f f Df n f E t ^f n nt bnn t W n ff t f Et f f t t t r^f n nt bnn < t f f fr & t Ez f f t t r> f d n f D f t ^f n nt bnn ^ f f n f n > t s t f t f D f t ^f n nt bnnn Dr' f t t d f f f D t f ^f n nt Z f f f nf h^^D t f bnnn > f : f n < tnft tt t f EE f Wb nft t t r t fE n ^f n nt bnnn ^ n W nf K D t f f < t t rZ f Zt nt f D f t ^f n nt bnnn t r t f b > t f E, f f E f t t r^f n nt bnnn t f n > f f n t n f n W t > f f & t : n D:f t f r^f n nt bnnn t n t t n tf bnnE n W f f f tt t t r^f n nt bnnn t t t & t tf h n f f / n t t r^f n nt bnnn > f f r n W f r t f f f D t t t t s&t t t r f Dft f D f t ^f n nt bnnn ^ f bnbZ ft f rZr^ t D f t ^f n nt bnnn ^ f > t t bb t/ f f d f f ff t f d, : n & f ^f n nt bnnn s t fZ f r bnW f DWZ f f D t t t t d tf <^ f W> nf :tD f t ^f n nt bnnn :f t f f tr t f t t ntf Z t f n >nbn nbb f f t f ^f n nt bnnn ^ b t f b ^ t bf s DD: n tf rf t nf nb, f f t t t ff ^f n nt bnnn Listed below are the winners of the 2018 National Voice of Democracy (VOD) contest. All 53 VFW Department winners were honored during VFWs National Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C., in March. Each year, VFW provides high school students from across the country and other parts of the world the opportunity to express themselves through a democraticand patriotic-themed recorded essay. This year, nearly 34,000 students from grades nine through 12 participated in the contest to win a share of almost $2 million in education scholarships through the VOD program. Robyn Anzulis, a senior at South Carroll High School in Sykesville, Md., won this years VOD contest. Anzulis, sponsored by VFW Post 10076 and its Auxiliary in Mt. Airy, Md., received the top prize, the $30,000 T.C. Selman Memorial Scholarship provided by VFW. Anzulis is pictured at right with Auxiliary National President Dee Guillory and VFW Commander-in-Chief Keith Harman. WINNER SPONSOR POST LOCATION NATIONAL AWARDS AMOUNT


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48 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 < r D K r n D r D E WW^ t W t br b rt Victoria Perry 7239 Acushnet, Mass. VFW Award $4,000 / t 'r t ff ^ r ft Z/ s&t t t t E, r t t D t r n t b t r rr Z t t r Wnn r r r t s n bn r ^ r n > t > t r t t E t zt r r t ^t f, r t D t E t r t t nt :D ft Wnn r r : < t D t r n < t < r n s t t : &' r t r ^r bb s r r t / s&t : t Z WD t t EE tt f r n D r s&t : t t r t ts&t ^t n D r t ts'r t D r r D t r & r W E t t n K t t s t s&tWn Zr t Z tt f ^ t t > r tK t tr s&tWf D n W t t bb / t r E t s t t & trn t t t Z t < : s rt :Wb r r : :rt t Wb t t W t f W t ^ r t ^ r n D t r W t t h < nf ^ t t D r r rn t t d t t D t r r t & bbn >ED t t E t r >Z r WD tt Dr t t d t t b t rt :D t r : t ^r t D t r t ^s : t >< tt t t t K r 'r rt ^ rt D n E t t ^ ts&t r r t t / r r t nb r n s t t t nr r r n r nnf E / s&t t t t r n r r r r'^ D t r n K r r bbE t Z r r t r t Z t D t r / t r f t t r ^^ r t b Wt t & tt r n D t r WbfW D r t > t t t bf W t n < t t d t t tt : & nt ^ rt d r Zr r t t D r r s&t r r ^ Z r r t D r W r E: d t Z r s& t D t r nt r r fn > n t r D r tt r n D t r Wbf r r W D r t t Dt n ,)1( n W t t ^ r r r < f W t r ^ b ^ r n t D t r s&tWff : t t W rt fn > r t d t t t r r : t D t f & r tt t t t t t & t r t D t r D t tr t & t t f ft & tt r rt,^ t t t E t D t r r : t t r r fn n s&t t t Wr rf r t : rt & t r ^ s&t t t E t : t t rt> r t nE t Z r r K r t t t b tt / t t t r\r r r :r n t t & t / t br b rt : rt rt r b t t t ^ t r t fn n E\217W t rt &r r r' r b r r rt > r t r t >rtd t t t E t D t r r r r ^ rt t f>s tn t t E t / t Wr r r b t t r t / t t W t r b >Z^,/W D f r r n & n E W t t :Dr t : )TjETQq1 0 0 1 208.8 65.509 cm.145 gBT/GS3 gs/F6 8 Tf63.559 0 Td-.4312 Tc( t t t > n b t t s&t r r t t ^ t t D t r Wb t D rt t n ^ t r rtD r t r t EE t W tr r r r rtE WINNER SPONSOR POST LOCATION NATIONAL AWARDS AMOUNT Listed below are the winners of the 2018 Patriots Pen youth essay contest. More than 101,000 students in grades six through eight from across the country, as well as the Pacic areas, Europe and the Panama Canal, entered VFWs Patriots Pen contest for a chance to win part of the $54,500 distributed to the top performers. Each year, students from all 53 VFW Departments compete in the youth essay contest. This years top winner is Karolina Mazur, an eighth-grade student from Glyndon, Md., who was sponsored by VFW Post 521 and its Auxiliary in Owings Mills, Md., for the contest. She earned a $5,000 award and a trip to the VFW National Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C., for writing the winning essay. Mazur is pictured at right with Auxiliary National President Dee Guillory and VFW Commander-in-Chief Keith Harman. 2018 Patriots Pen Winners PHOTO BY BOB KNUDSEN


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50 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 W hile it might not seem necessary to go to the doctor when you feel well, some studies show that regular examinations and routine screenings by a doctor can help increase a persons lifespan and quality of life, as well as a better relationship with his or her health care professional. Regular screenings can identify potential health concerns before they become life-threatening. Such exams include verifying height and weight, tracking blood pressure and taking a blood test to check for blood glucose, thyroid activity and cholesterol levels. According to the Centers for Disease Control, these tests help patients manage conditions such as diabetes, underor overactive thyroid conditions and possible heart disease. It also is benecial to regularly screen for hearing loss and skin abnormalities, as well as changes in vision and oral health. While hearing, vision and dental are auxiliary check-ups typically conducted by specialists such as audiologists, dentists and ophthalmologists, such screenings are equally vital in maintaining overall health. In recent years, there has been an uptick in annual doctor visits for wellness checks, thanks in part to free annual wellness visits through Medicare and the Affordable Care Act. Between 2011 and 2016, annual wellness visits increased from 3.2 million visits per year in the U.S. to 10.4 million visits, according to a study published in the October 2017 issue of the Journal of Primary Care and Community Health. The study found that, while fewer issues were being diagnosed at annual screenings, the wellness checks raise awareness and motivate patients. The studys authors also believed that regular screenings motivate providers and raise their investment into their patients care. By participating in wellness checks regularly, patients and doctors develop a long-term relationship that can help predict potential future health concerns and give health care providers a deeper historic knowledge of a patients health tendencies. WHAT TO EXPECT AT A WELLNESS EXAM For some patients, not knowing what to expect at a preventive care visit can be enough to deter them from making an appointment. Here are a few things patients will undergo at a regular health screening. Account of family medical history. Doctors need to know what medical conditions run in the family, as genetics play a role in a number of diseases. Knowing what genetic indicators a patient is facing, doctors can predict disease and counsel patients on lifestyle changes to combat or postpone health issues. Make a list of other health care professionals you see or prescriptions you take. Knowing what other issues you are struggling with and what medication or vitamins you take regularly will help your doctor paint a full picture of your mental and physical well-being. Gather your physical statistics. A nurse practitioner will take note of your height, weight and blood pressure. Take a look. Doctors might look at your eyes, ears and skin, and listen to your chest cavity and abdomen. These areas can indicate potential health issues. Draw a little blood. Sometimes doctors require a blood test to check for organ function, blood chemistry and other metabolic indicators of health. Set lifestyle goals. Your doctor will offer advice on how to improve your overall health and ways to achieve those health goals. Perhaps your doctor suggests you lose weight. Then he or she also will share diet and exercise tips to help you create a sustainable plan so you will see results. EMAIL Kelly Gibson is an editor at Sunower Publishing in Lawrence, Kan. BETTER HEALTH NEWS TO IMPROVE YOUR LIFE Take Control of Your Health Annual wellness screenings help you understand your risk for disease and combat illness. They also can help you avoid expensive or life-threatening conditions. BY KELLY GIBSON GET FREE SCREENINGS AT ,hDE^WKE^KZ)27( HEALTH FAIR s&tnt nrrt r> EKt>tr tbt rtb rnr ^nrr nn< tDtr tr K rf^)-47( K )3(rn )-31(


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52 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 VFW IN ACTION MAKING A DIFFERENCE IN THE COMMUNITY I n 2015, members of VFW Post 3769 in Pikeville, Ky., traveled more than 450 miles to build a deck on a cabin for the VFW National Home for Children, in Eaton Rapids, Mich. After the job was done, Post Commander Nathan Sesco asked National Home Facility Director Todd Marriott if they could do any more jobs for the National Home. Marriott told Sesco that a carport was needed, so Sesco and his fellow Post members returned to Eaton Rapids in June 2017 to build a seven-vehicle carport. The National Home needed the structure to help extend the life of its vehicles during the summer and winter months. The vehicles are used not only by the staff but for residents who need a vehicle. Its been a real help to us this winter by sheltering our maintenance vehicles and the eet vehicles not currently in use by residents, Marriott said. Having coverage from this harsh winter helps us keep these vehicles in top shape for National Home residents and staff. Sesco, an Army veteran who served in Bosnia and with the 448th Engineer Battalion of the Puerto Rico National Guard in the Iraq War in 2004, said he and Post members wanted to help the National Home because it has a big impact on VFW members. The carport saves the National Home money by helping prevent wear and tear on the vehicles, Sesco said. Sesco added that most members of Post 3769 are Post-9/11 veterans, and that the Post is representative of what VFW will be in the future. We strictly work on community service projects, Sesco said. We want to take care of veterans and their families that are living. Marriott said he appreciates the efforts that members of Post 3769 have done for the National Home. VFW Department of Kentucky Commander James Curry and Kentuckys District 14 also helped raise funds for the carport project in 2016. Then-VFW Commanderin-Chief Brian Duffy and then-Auxiliary National President Colette Bishop donated to the project, too. Being able to provide the families that we serve with a vehicle can play a very important piece to their overall goal achievement, Marriott said. The ability to have safe vehicles for them to use in their time of need may be the difference between them getting to work or school. EMAIL WE WORK ON COMMUNITY SERVICE PROJECTS Members of VFW Post 3769 in Pikeville, Ky., and contractors take a break last June while building the roof of a new carport at the VFW National Home for Children in Eaton Rapids, Mich. The carport helps extend the life of the National Homes eet vehicles during the summer and winter months. PHOTO COURTESY OF VFW NATIONAL HOME FOR CHILDREN ds&tEt,ft fft/rfttfn btrtft tffrnffn rtttts&tt ffndEt, rfrftbfrt dEt,f ffftn ftbftb fnfftrttfrf ft dnrttfff fttbftbt tntt fftft\036fd Et,rr t &fttts&tEt ,ft 1-800-313-4200 f fntbf)Tj(r SUPPORTING FAMILIES FOR 66 YEARS BY DAVE SPIVA A Kentucky Post built a carport for VFWs National Home last year. The structure shelters vehicles that allow Home residents to attend work and school.


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54 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 MEMBER CORNER MAKING THE MOST OF YOUR VFW T he Pentagon announced in March that troops serving in the Sahel region of Africa will now receive monthly bonus pay for being in danger of hostile re. The monthly $225 Imminent Danger Pay (IDP) will be paid to U.S. troops in Niger, Mali and parts of northern Cameroon. The pay will be retroactive to June 7, 2017. This decision means there now are 19 African countries where troops receive IDP. The issue was brought forth after four U.S. soldiers were killed in Niger last October. This measure will allow the families of Staff Sgt. Bryan Black, Staff Sgt. Jeremiah Johnson, Sgt. La David Johnson and Staff Sgt. Dustin Wright to receive an additional $225 a month for the time the soldiers were assigned there. All four served with the 2nd Bn., 3rd Special Forces Group. The units U.S. headquarters are located at Fort Bragg, N.C. During a U.S. military training mission last year in Niger, a dozen American soldiers were ambushed by about 50 ghters believed to be associated with the Islamic State Greater Sahara. At the time of the attack, some 800 U.S. troops were operating in Niger. Gen. Thomas Waldhauser, commander of U.S. Africa Command, reported to the House Armed Services Committee in March that several months ago he told the ofce of the secretary of Defense that Niger and other countries in the area were dangerous. During that same committee meeting, Rep. Joe Courtney (D-Conn.) said a constituent serving in Niger had emailed him asking why troops in Niger and Mali dont receive hostile re pay. We know enough about the incident from public hearings in this committee that it was a violent and vicious event, Courtney said. For VFW, membership recruiters should take note of Africas eligible countries and the units of U.S. troops who have served there. Its important for our recruiters to stay on top of announcements like these, VFW Membership Director Rick Butler said. While the eligible pool may not be great in numbers, I would hate to think we would inadvertently turn away a potential member. Sec. 101 of VFWs bylaws provides membership eligibility for those who receive hostile re or imminent danger pay. This is regardless of medals earned. This bylaw change occurred after Res. 201 was passed at VFWs 101st convention in Milwaukee in 2000. This was only the second time the VFW admitted overseas veterans not already entitled to a campaign medal or combat badge. The rst such bylaw amendment was passed in 1995, granting membership to all U.S. veterans who have served in Korea since June 30, 1949. EMAIL Following the deaths of four American soldiers last October, the Pentagon added three African countries to an area eligible for danger pay. BY JANIE DYHOUSE More U.S. Troops in Africa to Receive Imminent Danger Pay VFW membership recruiters should take note of Africas eligible countries and the units of U.S. troops who have served there. IDP COUNTRIES IN AFRICA nf r Etrfbr f bfZntr t tf tf /f)-8(t f Dfn E ^bfnf ^fr ^t^fr dr\024f hfrf


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58 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 REUNIONS AND CLAIMS REUNIONS To publicize your units reunion, submit a form online at: Submit at least four months in ad vance of reunion date. VFW members only. AIR FORCE 366th Fighter Assoc. Gunghters: Paul Jacob (864) 642-8501; 463rd Airliers Assoc. & 316th TAW (65-75): Tim Egen (570) 452-9177; B-57 Bummers Assoc BLMF Aircra Weapons Personnel: Howard Taylor (256) 353-7269; Chambley Airbase (France): Bob Sisk (903) 473-2272; 2nd Aerial Port Squadron: (563) 386-8219; Phan Rang Air Base (All Branches): Jack Anderson (253) 447-8505; RAF Burtonwood Assoc: Jim Bentley (813) 684-0199; Red Horse: Mike Peters (717) 243-7617; Udorn RTAFB: Allen Freauff (503) 515-6397; ARMY 101st Airborne Div Vietnam Veterans: Ron Long (310) 977-4253; 12th Armored Div WWII Hellcats: Bill Vosseler (610) 558-2163; 191st Assault Helicopter Co: Harrell Guidry (409) 626-1480; 1st Battalion 83rd Artillery (Vietnam 1966-1971): Bill Taggart (856) 228-5614; 1st Signal Brigade (Vietnam & Korea): Gerald Petersen (520) 742-4836; 2/1 Cavalry Association: Tom Fey (303) 619-7571; 24th Infantry Div Assoc: George Vlasic (910) 287-5618; 25th Infantry Div Assoc: Sarah S. Krause (215) 880-0181; 27th Infantry Regiment: Tom Harlan (309) 586-4111; 272nd Military Police Co (Vietnam Veterans): Jim Walker (404) 372-1369; 2nd Infantry Div: Bob Haynes (224) 225-1202; 311th Evacuation Hospital Former Members: David A. Becker (678) 994-3504; 46th Engineer BN: Vern Nelson (715) 886-3290; 585th Engineering Co (DT): Breland Clement (985) 817-9597; 629th/178th Ordinance Supply (Qui Nhon, Vietnam): Gary Mathews (712) 485-422; 84th & 62nd Engineers Korea 1953-1954: Carol Nelson (401) 738-0693; A Co 158th AHB of the 101st ABN Div: John Snyder (405) 200-5616; Allen Bollon Alpha Co, 2nd Battalion / 3rd Infantry: Jimmie N. Bailey (205) 587-2990; B Troop 3/5 Cav. 1st Platoon 1966-68: Kenneth C Howell Jr (918) 371-4261; D Co. 1st BN 6th Inf, 198th LIB, Am Div: Lynn Baker (870) 253-1591; Military Police Unit, Joint security area (Pan Mun Jom, Korea 1968-69): R.A. Perry (704) 883-0889; Polar Bear Patch: Don Bayt (727) 289-6668; Veterans of the 1st Engineer Battalion: Jose Vargas (720) 226-1623; Vietnam Dustoff Assoc.: John Sabanosh, Sr (410) 430-3038; Vinh Long Outlaws Assoc: Jim Donnelly (757) 481-6196; MARINE CORPS 1/5 USMC (1985-1992): Scott Hainline (309) 351-2050; 1st Battalion 3rd Marines (Vietnam): Don Bumgarner (562) 897-2437; 3rd Battalion, 11th Marines: Doug Miller (402) 540-9431; 3rd Marines 3rd Recon Battalion: Gene Haux (520) 631-4922; VMA (AW) 533 (1965-1992): Jerry Callaway (303) 946-7893; NAVY AE/AOE Sailors: Kurt Julsen (907) 632-9961; Escort Carrier Sailor and Airmen Assoc: Anthony Looney (214)738-5949; MCB 11 Seabees: Larry Hagler (512) 267-8873; MCB 1-9-10 Seabees: Saxton Wiley (970) 217-0628; NCFSU3/RNMCB 24: William H. Queen (Pete) (704) 616-3542; NMCB-3: Victor Horvath (832) 722-9434; Opticalman Instrumentman: John Bryan (706) 339-5905; USN MCB 71 Seabees: John Allsworth, EO2 (309) 682-6158; USS Bang SS-385: Isaac Cohen (908) 334-0027; USS Blandy DDE-943: James Brackens (423) 343-7554; USS Camden AOE-2: James Gardner (360) 340-8719; USS Catamount LSD 17: Ray Leon (575) 538-2427; USS CGN-9: Richard A Horowitz (918) 457-6312; USS Constant MSO-427: Gary Black (816) 689-6019; USS Coral Sea CVA-43: Milford D. Phillips Jr (858) 401-3402; USS Damato DD-871: Dan Ray (407) 323-5763; USS Delta AR9/ak29: Ron Ihsen (480) 846-0863; USS DuPont DD-941: Ray Perrotti (508)943-0528; USS Galveston CLG-3: Robert Bakos (412) 882-1591; USS Hamner DD-718: Patty Hathaway (301) 262-5516; USS Ingersoll Vets DD-652/DD-990: Gordy Morris (320) 745-2295; USS Iwo Jima LPH2/LHD7: Robert G. McAnally (757) 723-0317; USS John Paul Jones DD-932, DDG-32: John McKechnie (619) 417-3978; USS Kretchmer DE/DER-329: Joe Peirce (228) 238-4294; USS L. Y. Spear AS-36: Patty Kelso (913) 677-1837; USS Long Beach CGN-9: Richard Horowitz (918) 457-6312; USS Mars AFS-1: Ed Biddle (281) 807-7892; USS Mauna Kea AE-22: Jerry Mounton (337) 783-8270; USS Mississinewa AO-144: Don Ferricks (217) 670-2282; USS Mullany DD-528: Penny Stricklin (205) 215-6008; USS Nantahala AO-60: William Edwards (724) 396-5992; USS Navarro APA-215: Patrick Kelley (724) 346-6016; USS Passumpsic AO-107: Bob Brockman (936) 443-3117; USS Piedmont AD-17: Kent Thomas (913) 381-8934; USS Preston DD-795: John J Stringer (516) 328-8547; USS Prichett DD-561: Terry Crawford (618) 259-3007; USS Rendova CVE-114: Sue Foley (313) 758-9318; USS Robinson DD-562: Art Bowne (281) 536-7133; USS Rochester CA-124: Joe Hill (931) 432-4848; USS Sellers DDG-11: Steve Incremona (260) 410-0075; USS Simon Lake AS-33: Jim Brown (732) 752-7534; USS Southerland DD/DDR-743: Gary Schweizer (574) 234-2034; USS Tarawa LHA-1: Steve Stan (619) 855-8004; USS Terrill County LST-1157: Clovis Long (417) 438-3704; USS Threadn SS-410: Steve Kolb (904) 646-3814; USS Tiru SS-416: Douglas Johnson (770) 634-6295; USS Turner DDR-834: Hank Turner (914) 428-4675; USS Tutuila ARG-4: Charles Estelle (201) 262-0753; USS Valcour AVP 55/AGF 1, USS Duxbury Bay, USS Greenwich Bay, COMIDEASTFOR: Bill Jourdon (317) 502-0728; USS Washtenaw County LST-1166: Thomas Osmond (352) 509-7581; CLAIMS Readers are urged to help these vet s seek ing claim sub stan ti a tion state ments. Respond directly to the per son list ed at the end of the claim as sis tance re quest. This service is provided for VFW members who are in the process of ling a VA claim. Please submit your claim online at forms/vfw-claim-form Army: USA Atomic Weapons Facility, Killeen, TX 1958 -1969 Seeking Special Weapons Handlers (underground) with knowledge of radiation levels to verify cancer related to radiation exposure. Peter Niemiec (908) 704-6357 7th RRFS Det J. Ubon, Thailand, April 28th, 1971 Seeking anyone aboard ight TKP M2T1/28/118 from Travis AFB to Thailand to conrm unscheduled stop in Japan and Vietnam to verify exposure to Agent Orange. Richard A. Carlson (231) 9240332 19th Ord Co, Korea, 1956 Seeking Lt. Geiser or anyone that remembers soball games. Trying to locate for a reunion or solve a claim. Don Welser (989) 7458076 P.O. Box 123 Grayling, MI 49738 Marines: Korea DMZ 1953-1954 Seeking anyone who can substantiate a medical claim for PTSD. Robert Paul Methe (603) 381-1574; Navy: USS McKean and USS Brush 1953 and 1954 Seeking anyone who can verify COPD caused by exposure to asbestos in engineering spaces which was my duty station. John Charles Schatz (406) 328-4014 FF-1053 USS Roark 1981-1984 Seeking anyone who remembers that I was a heavy snorer for sleep apnea claim. Daniel Aguirre (254) 368-4033 retirednavy93@ USS Great Sitkin AE-17 July 21, 1968 Seeking anyone remembering myself and another Radioman going onshore to transmit radio trac in Cam Ranh Bay to verify Parkinsons disease claim. Buford Larry Dulin, Jr (254) 697-8646


JUNE/JULY 2018 WWW.VFW.ORG 59Activ. Fee: Up to $30/line. Credit approval req. SDP Discount: Avail. for eligible company employees or org. members (ongoing veriication). Discount subject to change according to the companys/orgs agreement with Sprint and is avail. upon request for select monthly data svc charges. Discount only applies to data svc for Better Choice Plans, Sprint Family Share Pack and Unlimited, My Way plans. Not avail. with no credit check o ers or Mobile Hotspot add-on. Limit one SDP discount per account. Other Terms: O ers and coverage not available everywhere or for all devices/ networks. Restrictions apply. See store or for details. 2016 Sprint. All rights reserved. Sprint and the logo are trademarks of Sprint. Other marks are the property of their respective owners. Discount for ofDiscount applies to select regularly priced Sprint monthly data service.%SaveGet a discount on select Sprint monthly data service because you are a member. VFWmembersMention this code. Corporate ID: GVFWM_ZZZ Get a great deal online at more in your pocket. 10$ *Plus $4.99 s/h. PA residents add 6% tax; taxes on orders shipped outside of PA are the responsibility of purchaser. First-time purchasers only. One per customer. No sales to anyone under the age of 21. For more information see Offer expires full web address or search keyword: CGSA888CALL 800.357.9800 Mention CGSA888 One solution for oxygen at home, away, and for travel Introducing the INOGEN ONE Its oxygen therapy on your terms No more worries about running out of oxygen tanks ever again No more relying on others for your oxygen supply No more waiting for deliveries Meets FAA requirements for travelMKT-P0044 Request your FREE Information Kit Today! 5 18DDDX 2018 Lawn Mowers String Trimmer Chainsaw Hedge Trimmer Handheld Blower3 Models available 21" Self-Propelled shown Our compatible tools are powered by 62 Volt Lithium-Ion Batteries PROFESSIONAL GRADE. BATTERY-POWERED. POWERFUL 62-VOLT lithium-ion batteries provide the performance of gas, without the noise, maintenance, or mess! HI-TECH BRUSHLESS MOTORS are powerful, durable, and energy ef cient. LONG RUN TIMES of up to 75 minutes! DURABLE STEEL DECK but half the weight of most gas Call for FREE Catalog & Special Offer!TOLL FREE Introducing the Next Generation of Lawn Care from DRPOWER EQUIPMENT! 62 VOLTBATTERY SOME LIMITATIONS APPLY Call or go online for details. FREE SHIPPING 6 MONTH TRIAL


60 VFW JUNE/JULY 2018 For Insomnia HELP FOR YOU IS HERE. Call 1-800-FOR-PAIN or 940-328-0788 for government/veteran pricing or visit to learn more and see clinical data. Alpha-Stim and the Alpha-Stim logo are registered trademarks, and LET NOTHING STOP YOU is a trademark of Electromedical Products International, Inc. 2018 Electromedical Products International, Inc. All rights reserved. Read a full disclosure of the minor and self-limiting risks here: LET NOTHING STOP YOU For Depression For Anxiety For Pain Alpha-Stim is a handheld prescription medical device thats FDA cleared to effectively treat pain, anxiety, insomnia, and depression without the use of drugs. Easy to use with no lasting side effects and no risk of addiction, Alpha-Stim is available at military hospitals and more than 100 VA medical centers. How many times have I dealt with anxiety because I didnt want to take drugs? Ive tried almost everything. Ive tried medication, a lot of it self-medication, drinking. Alpha-Stim just melted the anxiety away. I could not believe the relief. It allows me to x my problem without stopping life. Dakota Meyer, U.S. Marine and Medal of Honor recipient Faster Than Drugs and Without Their Side Effects


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