News Flash

Veteran's Affairs

Posted on: June 13, 2019

News from around the region, state, and nation

 Local Interest

Veteran Summer Stand Down: 

- June 29, 2019, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Veterans Place Service Center, 945 Washington Blvd., Pittsburgh, PA (Allegheny County)
- For more information contact rbarnes@veteransplaceusa.org 
- Free assistance for homeless veterans. The following will be available: housing, employment, veterans benefits, counseling, legal assistance, clothing and food.

Boots To Business Reboot: 

- June 14, 2019, 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
- 411 Seventh Ave., Suite 1450, Pittsburgh, PA (Allegheny County)
- Point of contact: Jonathan Bennett at 412-395-6560, ext. 107 or email jonathan.bennett@sba.gov.
- Boots to Business is an entrepreneurial education and training program offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration as part of the Department of Defense Transition Assistance Program. The course provides an overview of entrepreneurship and applicable business ownership fundamentals. Active duty service members (including National Guard and Reserve), veterans of all eras and spouses are eligible to participate.
- Register.


DMVA News 

Adjutant General Participates in Guard Day at the Capitol: 

Maj. Gen. Tony Carrelli, Pennsylvania’s adjutant general and head of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), participated in Guard Day at the Pennsylvania Capitol. Guard Day is an annual event showcasing the mission and capabilities of the Pennsylvania National Guard (PNG). Read more.

Fort Indiantown Gap Announces Free Guided 2019 Tours Of Rare Regal Fritillary Butterfly Habitat: 

This July, visitors are invited to see the only population of regal fritillary butterflies in the eastern United States at Fort Indiantown Gap National Guard Training Center, Annville, Lebanon County. The tours allow the public a guided opportunity to see this rare butterfly and its associated grassland habitat on military training ranges. Read more.

PA National Guard Troops Training With Prospective NATO Country: 

About 1,300 Pennsylvania National Guard troops are in eastern Europe for the next two months to train with partner countries. Troops from units within the 56th Stryker Brigade are joining North Macedonian soldiers in live fire exercises as part of Decisive Strike 2019. Read more.


Residents, Family Members And Staff Honored For Their Service And Support During Veterans Homes Week: 

Pennsylvania’s six veterans homes, operated by the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), will honor residents, family members and staff with week-long festivities during the annual Veterans Homes Week. The DMVA provides memory, personal and skilled nursing care to more than 1,300 veterans and their spouses in a caring, thoughtful and patriotic environment. Read more.


 Around the State 

100-Year-Old Hershey (Dauphin County) Veteran Flew 33 B-24 Mission Over Europe: 

Vincent Lewis flew 33 bombing missions over Europe during World War II in a B-24 Liberato nicknamed “My Briny Marlyn.” He served in North Africa, Italy and Germany and was awarded a Purple Heart for wounds he received when his B-24 was shot down in 1944. Read more.

Aging Survivors Bore Witness To The Longest Day: 

It was the largest amphibious assault in the history of human warfare. The U.S. military suffered a total number of more than 12,000 killed, wounded, missing, or captured. Today, there are fewer and fewer witnesses alive to tell the story of the D-Day invasion of Normandy. Currently there are less than 500,000 World War II veterans still living. Read more.

Can D-Day Still Resonate In The Classroom? One Central PA Teacher Has Proven It Can: 

When PennLive scheduled its reader panel a couple weeks ago to talk about the impact of D-Day and how it’s taught in school today, the date was built largely around one person’s schedule: Kevin Wagner’s. That’s because no one fit the profile for that discussion better than Wagner, a social studies and history teacher in the Carlisle School District (Cumberland County). Read more.

Clarion Man Battling Terminal Brain Cancer Inducted As Honorary Member Of PA National Guard: 

Twenty-year-old Jedediah Brewer’s goal upon his graduation from Clarion Area High School (Clarion County) in 2017 was to join the Army National Guard. Jedediah was diagnosed with brain cancer, and it has progressed to the point where there is nothing more the doctors can do. To honor Jedediah’s dream, his friends and several family members orchestrated the Army National Guard Induction ceremony at Clarion Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center. Read more.

Female Veteran Honored For Long Military Service: 

Growing up in rural Elk County, Deborah L. Wilkins saw joining the military as an opportunity to serve the nation and explore the world, which would open doors to a great career. “I was just a small town girl who got to get out and see the world,” said Wilkins, 48, a former Ligonier (Westmoreland County) resident who moved to Upper Tyrone Township (Adams County) six years ago to fulfill a longtime dream of operating a dog kennel. Read more.

Lebanon (Lebanon County) VA Medical Center Prepares To Launch New VA Health Care Options: 

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will launch its new and improved community care program, which ends the Veterans Choice program and establishes a new Veterans Community Care program. Read more.

Nonprofit Connects Veterans To Farming Apprenticeships: 

Mimi Thomas-Brooker is a master connector. Through online searches, phone calls, word-of-mouth and a lot of grit, she coordinates farming apprenticeships for veterans seeking a second career. In 2016, she founded the nonprofit Troops to Tractors to organize what she had been doing throughout her career both as a military spouse and a civilian – connecting people to people, and people to resources. Read more.


Pennsylvania's First All Female Veteran Call To Duty – Honor Flight Philadelphia: 

Honor Flight Philadelphia is currently looking for female veterans who would like to join us on a trip to Washington, D.C. on Sept. 21, 2019, in a day of honor and recognition, to view the memorials dedicated to their service to our great nation, at no cost to the veteran. For trip details call 215-301-8890 or 215-954-5634 or email Andrew@honorflightphiladelphia.org. Honor Flight Facebook page.


Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program Application Deadline Extended To End Of Year: 

The deadline for older adults and Pennsylvania residents with disabilities to apply for rebates on rent and property taxes paid in 2018 has been extended from June 30 to Dec. 31, 2019, the PA Department of Revenue announced. “Last year nearly 572,000 seniors and people with disabilities benefited from the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program,” Revenue Secretary Dan Hassell said. Read more.


Shop’n Save Owner Bikes Across U.S. For Veterans’ Charity: 

Ray Charley biked 2,000 miles to prepare for his 3,048-mile, 48-day trek across the United States. “The training was a feat unto itself, really,” said Charley, 68, of Unity (Westmoreland County). Read more.


The legacy Of Lancaster County Native Dick Winters 75 Years After D-Day: 

It’s now the stuff of legend: The D-Day parachute drop that scattered them across Normandy dairy fields. The out-numbered assault on Nazi machine gun nests, poised high over Utah beach to cut down landing allied soldiers before they got so much as a foothold in France. Read more.


 Across the Nation 


`We Were Helping The War Effort’: 

The second World War is remembered as a time when many Americans made enormous sacrifices on foreign lands and at home to stop the rise of tyranny and the axis powers. Those Americans spearheaded what’s widely regarded as “The Greatest Generation.” World War II veteran Wilma Gregory is very proud of that generation. Read more.


Exempt Veterans Charged VA Home Loan Funding Fees: 

Veterans are generally required to pay a funding fee to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) at loan origination to defray the cost of administering a VA home loan. However, veterans are exempt from paying the funding fee if they are entitled to receive VA disability compensation—a monetary benefit for veterans with service-connected disabilities. Read more.

Free Braille And Talking Book Program For Veterans: 

Whether escaping into a great novel or staying current with popular magazines, the freedom and independence of reading are only a few steps away. This program, from the National Library Service (NLS) and the Library of Congress, provides talking books, audio magazines, and digital talking-book players free of charge. Read more.


VA Health Care Facilities To Go Smoke-Free: 

As part of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) commitment to provide excellent health care for veterans, the department will implement a new policy restricting smoking by patients, visitors, volunteers, contractors and vendors at its health care facilities by October. Read more.

Veteran Unemployment Rate 2.7 Percent In May: 

In May 2019, the veteran unemployment rate was 2.7 percent, down from 3.4 percent in May 2018. This represents the lowest veteran unemployment rate in the month of May since 2000. Read more.

Veterans Benefits And Resources Available From Federal Agencies: 

While the federal U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers benefits for veterans, do you know what other non-VA federal benefits are out there? Check out the federal agencies that offer benefit programs and resources for service members, veterans, and their families at Website.

 Employment Opportunities 

This listing is offered as a resource to both Pennsylvania's veterans and businesses that seek to employ veterans. The DMVA has not investigated the positions being offered or the businesses listed, and does not warrant or guarantee either the availability or the terms and conditions of the positions listed. Please contact the employers represented in this listing directly. To have an employment opportunity listed please email: RA-VA-Newsletter@pa.gov

Customs And Border Patrol Mini-Job Fair: 

- June 19, 2019, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
- Ft. Indiantown Gap, Bldg. 14-99, Annville, PA (Lebanon County)
- To R.S.V.P. or for more information contact: Scott Merlo at scott.merlo@cbp.dhs.gov 
- Custom Border Patrol recruiters will be on site for any questions. 11:30 a.m-1 p.m. there will be an information session.

Governor Wolf – Tyber Medical Expansion Will Support Nearly 80 Jobs In Northampton County: 

Governor Tom Wolf announced that Tyber Medical LLC, an orthopedic device manufacturer, will expand its manufacturing operation in Hanover Township, Northampton County. The project will support the combined creation and retention of 79 jobs in the area. “Tyber Medical’s expansion project is so important because not only does it provide good-paying, family-sustaining jobs for Lehigh Valley families, but also because it contributes to building Pennsylvania’s entire manufacturing sector,” Governor Wolf said. Read more.


Tips For Cybersecurity Vets Starting A Company: 

Ron Gula, of Gula Tech Adventures, funds cybersecurity companies and has some tips for veteran entrepreneurs. Read more.


Veterans Employment Representative 1 (Blair County): 

As a veterans' employment representative 1, you will serve as a disabled veterans' outreach program specialist (DVOP) in a PA CareerLink career center. You will provide employment services to disabled veterans as well as veterans facing significant barriers to employment. Posting closes June 13.Apply!


Veterans' Job Fair: 

- June 26, 2019, 9 a.m.-Noon
- Lebanon VA Medical Center, 1700 S. Lincoln Ave., Building 37, Lebanon, PA (Lebanon County)
- Any questions, contact 717-920-7089
- Attention all veterans! The PA CareerLink, Lebanon County and the Lebanon VA Medical Center are partnering to offer a veterans only job fair! This event is free. Be sure to bring copies of your resume.


2019 Career & Employment Expo: 

- June 26, 2019, veterans only 10-11 a.m., open to the public, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
- James E. Van Zandt VAMC, 2907 Pleasant Valley Blvd., 2nd floor Main Building, Altoona, PA (Blair County)
- For more information contact: Ken Wise at 814-946-6996 or Nate Danzy at 814-943-8164 x4521.
- Over 50 employers! Bring your DD214, resume and transcripts.

 Veteran Events 

This listing is offered as a service to individuals and organizations to promote their veteran and military-oriented events being held in Pennsylvania. The information is taken directly from emailed submissions from requestors. DMVA is not responsible for incorrect information submitted. Please send details on events to RA-VA-Newsletter@pa.gov and include the following key pieces of information: 1. Name of event, 2. Date of event, 3. Time of event, 4. Address of event, 5. County of event, 6. Event website, 7. Point of contact name, 8. POC phone number, 9. POC email address, and 10. Additional details/coordinating instructions (fees, pre-registration, etc.)

Open House At Southeastern Veterans' Center: 

- June 13, 2019, 6-8 p.m.
- Southeastern Veterans' Center, One Veterans Dr., Spring City, PA (Chester County)
- Point of contact: Jill Alwine at 610-948-2406 or email jialwine@pa.gov 
- Take a tour, meet the staff, enjoy refreshments, participate in activities and experience the comradery of fellow veterans. Southeastern Veterans' Center is operated by the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs.
- Read more.

Operation Boots To Business: 

- June 26-27, 2019, 8:30 a.m.
- Building 842 Sumner Rd., SFL-TAP Media Center, Carlisle, PA (Cumberland County) Left hand side of the Commissary end of the sidewalk.
- Point of contact: Call 717-245-3684 or 717-961-2060
- You must be a transitioning service member, military spouse, or veteran who is interested in starting a business. To register please call Jeffrey Hanks at 717-245-3684 or email Marsha Cleff at marsha.s.cleff.ctr@mail.mil.

VetFest: 

- June 29, 2019, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
- Washington Wild Things Stadium, 1 Washington Federal Way, Washington, PA (Washington County)
- Point of contact: Shawn Seguin at 412-385-5320
- Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) invites you to join us for a day of fun and fellowship at VetFest. This multi-faceted event is designed to bring veterans and their families together with others in the community while sharing valuable information about services and resources available locally. This community integration event is open to the general public and will have up to 50 different organizations participating in the resource fair throughout the day.


Fort Indiantown Gap Announces Free Guided 2019 Tours Of Rare Regal Fritillary Butterfly Habitat: 

- Free guided tours will be offered on July 5, 6, 12, and 13, 2019, arrive no later than 9:30 a.m.
- Intersection of AsherMiner Rd. and Fisher Ave., (GPS coordinates in decimal degrees: North 40.4214, West 76.577. Visit the website below for further directions and parking instructions.
- Contact: Bureau of Environmental Management, Wildlife Office at 717-861-3299 or email RA-DMVA-Wildlife@pa.gov 
- This July, visitors are invited to see the only population of regal fritillary butterflies in the eastern United States. The tours allow the public a guided opportunity to see this rare butterfly and its associated grassland habitat on military training ranges.
- Read more.


Veterans Family Fishing Program: 

- Second and fourth Sunday of each month, 2-6 p.m.
- Fisherman's Paradise, 1150 Spring Creek Rd., Bellefonte, PA (Centre County)
- Point of contact: Jim H. Lanning at 951-231-8000 or email jlanningvsp@gmail.com, rasills@earthlink.net or bob.whitlinger@comcast.net 
- All veterans and active duty military personnel, join the Spring Creek Chapter of Trout Unlimited talented stream mentors to learn fly fishing, improve your existing skills, and learn about conservation projects to keep streams and watersheds healthy and protected. Equipment is provided if needed. This is a family fishing program for veterans.
- Facebook page.

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