News from around the County, State, and Country
Pennsylvania Adjutant General Honors Our Heroes During National Military Appreciation Month:
Maj. Gen. Tony Carrelli, Pennsylvania’s adjutant general and head of the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), reminds everyone to take a moment to honor our service members and veterans during the month of May as part of National Military Appreciation Month. “Anyone who has ever worn the uniform understands the personal sacrifice that accompanies the duty of preserving the freedom and safety that we all enjoy every day,” said Carrelli. “It is fitting for us to pause and honor these heroes every day, but it is particularly important during National Military Appreciation Month. We can show our gratitude with simple gestures like a hand shake and a word of thanks, or by displaying the American flag at our home and business.” Read more.
Older Americans Month – Another Reminder Of The Heroes And History At Pennsylvania’s Veterans Homes:
As the nation celebrates Older Americans Month during the month of May, the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) is reminded of the many heroes living at the six veterans homes it operates throughout the commonwealth. Established in 1963 and led by The Administration on Aging, Older Americans Month provides an opportunity for everyone to appreciate the wealth of knowledge, experience, and wisdom that the older generations can share with us. Read more.
Share Your Memorial Day Events:
As a service to Pennsylvania’s veteran community, the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs is committed to sharing information about veteran or military-oriented events being held in Pennsylvania, via the DMVA DIGEST. We encourage you to submit your Memorial Day events, parades and ceremonies. To submit an upcoming Memorial Day event being held in Pennsylvania, please email RA-VA-Newsletter@pa.gov with the following details: 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 (required fee to attend, pre-registration, etc.). If you have questions about submitting your event, contact Erica Moore at 717-861-9178 or email RA-VA-Newsletter@pa.gov.
Survey Seeks To Identify Unique Challenges Female Veterans Face In Pennsylvania:
The Pensylvania Women Veterans Survey is available online here. Key survey topics focus on benefits and services, access to health care and veterans service organizations. The survey is available for completion now through midnight, June 18, 2018. Read more.
Around the State
Facebook Live Virtual Tour Of A Vet Center:
Coming home from deployment can be challenging. That’s why veteran centers offer free community-based counseling for eligible veterans, active-duty service members and their families. Read more.
Mausoleum Flag Holders Available From Westmoreland Veterans Affairs Office:
A limited number of free flag holders, designed to attach small flags to mausoleum burials, are being distributed by the Westmoreland County Veterans Affairs office in advance of Memorial Day. County residents who want a flag holder to decorate a veteran's mausoleum should call the department at 724-830-3530. The holders can be picked up at the department's office on the second floor of the Westmoreland County Courthouse in Greensburg. Read more.
Pennsylvania Helicopter Aquatic Rescue Team (PA-HART) Conducts Exercise:
PA-HART conducted a joint complex search and rescue land-based exercise on March 23 at Gilbert Airfield in York, Pa. The team consisted of more than 50 civilian and military personnel. The exercise integrated PA HART rescue technicians, 1 CH-47F Chinook, 3 UH-60 A/L Black Hawks, and 1 LUH-72 Lakota helicopters to simulate search and rescue operations to hoist (simulated) patients, rescue divers and technicians. Read more.
Towamencin Twp. (Montgomery County) Board Looking To Revive Veterans Committee, Update Plans For Park:
Township officials are looking for local veterans interested in reviving a long-dormant township committee, and leading an effort to create a new memorial for those who have served. “A committee was established in 2007, but has been dormant for the past several years. The township would like to reactivate the committee this summer,” said supervisor Chairman Chuck Wilson. Read more.
York County Charity Seeks Veteran Who Needs Home:
A Habitat for Humanity house has been sitting empty for one year now. Mark Mattern, the associate director of York Habitat for Humanity, says the home will go to a veteran and their family. Read more.
Scranton Boscov’s Teaming With Teens For Veterans’ Fundraiser:
Boscov’s is teaming with the Gino J. Merli Veterans’ Center and area high school students to raise money to make life better for veterans. Boscov’s Scranton (Lackawanna County) store, located inside the Marketplace at Steamtown, will host an event 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on May 24, to raise money for the resident welfare fund at the veterans center. Read more.
New Efforts To Boost Armed Forces Parade Attendance:
New efforts are being made to get people out to the annual Armed Forces Parade in downtown Scranton (Lackawanna County). Over the years, attendance has dwindled but organizers are hoping to change that. The parade will begin at 11 a.m. outside the Gino J. Merli Veterans' Center on May 19, 2018. Read more.
Army Heritage Center Foundation (AHCF) To Host Army Birthday Commemoration Dinner:
To celebrate the Army's 243rd birthday, the AHCF will host central Pennsylvania's 6th annual Army birthday dinner at the U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center on Saturday, June 2, 2018, at 6 p.m. The event allows the region to honor the U.S. Army, its soldiers, veterans and their families. Read more.
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
Agriculture Jobs For Veterans:
- Cidermaker, cheesemaker and sustainable fruit and vegetable grower positions available to U.S. veterans.
- Any questions please call 724-691-1087 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Job & Education Fair:
- May 17, 2018, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Carlisle Expo Center, 100 K St., Carlisle, PA (Cumberland County)
- Point of contact: Jeffrey Hanks at 717-245-3684, ext. 4357 or 717-962-5342 or email email@example.com
- Bring your resume and dress for success. Network with over 100 businesses from central PA and nationwide from all career fields in this event that is open to all military, veterans and civilians.
Quick Track Workshop:
- May 18, 2018, 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
- PA CareerLink, 243 Schneider Dr., Lebanon, PA (Lebanon County)
- Call 717-273-2090 to pre-register or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- At Quick Track Workshop you will develop a professional resume and cover letter and learn and practice interview techniques. If you land a job you could be eligible to receive a referral to Dress for Success.
Veterans’ Expo & Job Fair:
- May 30, 2018, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Crowne Plaza Reading Hotel, 1741 Papermill Rd., Wyomissing, PA (Berks County)
- Point of contact: Kimberly Shaffer at 717-285-8123 or email Kshaffer@OLPEvents.com
- The veterans’ expo will connect active and retired military members of all ages and their families with the benefits and resources available to them. In addition, the job fair will provide an opportunity for veterans and employers to meet face-to-face to discuss available positions. Workshops and seminars will be offered on relevant topics.
Governor Wolf Announces New Funding To Expand Machining, Welding Training Programs In Northwest Pennsylvania:
Governor Tom Wolf announced the approval of new funding to the Precision Manufacturing Institute in Crawford County to enhance its manufacturing training programs by adding more advanced trainings and placing an additional focus on employability skills that prospective workers need to get a job in manufacturing. Read more.
Resource Management Assistant With The U.S. Department Of Agriculture:
- Philadelphia District Office, Office of Field Operations, Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Philadelphia, PA. (Philadelphia County)
- The work schedule is fulltime. Flextime and telework may be offered.
Waste Management Hiring Heavy Equipment Diesel Mechanic In Philadelphia, PA:
- Text WASTE to 51893 or call 1-877-220-5627 for more information
- Requirements: Must be at least 18 years of age and have a valid driver's license with clean driving record and at least one year of prior heavy equipment diesel maintenance experience.
- Sign-on bonuses of up to $2,500 are available.
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.)
Westmoreland: Fallen Heroes Run – Armed Forces Day Motorcycle Run:
- May 19, 2018, rider check-in starts at 7 a.m., kickstands up at 8:45 a.m.
- Z&M HD, 6930 U.S. 30, Greensburg, PA (Westmoreland County)
- To register go to website or email email@example.com
- You may pay the day of the event, but please send an email to R.SV.P. The event costs $20 per rider and $25 for rider and passenger. After Ride Event Festivities open to the public from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and included food trucks, a live band performance by Desperado, an Eagles tribute band, military displays, kids balloons, face painting and more.
White Oak Vet Center Open House:
- May 25, 2018, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
- White Oak Vet Center, 2001 Lincoln Way, Suite 21, White Oak, PA (Allegheny County)
- R.S.V.P. to Lee Wagner at 412-678-7704 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- White Oak Vet Center invites veterans and their families to join us for an open house and free BBQ. Event will be held rain or shine.
Veterans Breakfast Club (VBC) Morning Event:
- May 26, 2018, 9 a.m.
- Triple Crown Banquet and Conference Center on the Racetrack Level, 210 Racetrack Rd., Washington, PA (Washington County).
- R.S.V.P. by May 21, 2018 to 412-623-9029 or email Lauren@VeteransBreakfastClub.com. Please mention the DMVA Digest when you R.S.V.P.
- The breakfast costs $15 per guest and every guest will receive $5 in free slot play. The VBC is a nonprofit that creates communities of listening around veterans and their stories. Storytelling events, both morning and night, are held throughout western PA. Veterans from World War II to Iraq and Afghanistan share their stories. They are open to the public, and you don’t need to be a veteran to attend.
- Facebook page.
Veterans Breakfast Club (VBC) Night Event:
- May 24, 2018, 6:30 p.m.
- Patrick’s Pub, 1207 Spring Run Rd., Coraopolis, PA (Allegheny County)
- R.S.V.P. to 412-623-9029 or email Lauren@VeteransBreakfastClub.com - Please mention DMVA Digest when you R.S.V.P.
- Free food and cash bar. The VBC is a nonprofit that creates communities of listening around veterans and their stories. Storytelling events, both morning and night, are held throughout western Pennsylvania. Veterans from World War II to Iraq and Afghanistan share their stories. They are open to the public, and you don’t need to be a veteran to attend.
- Facebook page.
Hersheypark Military Appreciation Weekend:
- May 18-20, 2018
- Hersheypark, 100 Hersheypark Dr., Hershey, PA (Dauphin County)
- Save 40 percent on tickets and receive free parking during Military Appreciation Weekend. To receive free parking, show your valid Active & Retired/DOD/Civilian Military ID. Purchase up to 10 discount one-day admission tickets with your military ID at ticketing services the day of your visit. Discount not available online.
Cabinet In Your Community:
- May 18, 2018, 11 a.m.
- University of Scranton, 800 Linden St., Scranton, PA (Lackawanna County)
- R.S.V.P. to Cassandra Coleman at 570-614-2090 or email email@example.com by May 11
- Join the discussion with members of Governor Tom Wolf's cabinet to talk about issues that are important to you and your region
- Facebook post.
Echo Taps Invite:
- May 19, 2018, 9 a.m.-noon
- Indiantown Gap National Cemetery, Indiantown Gap Rd., Annville, PA (Lebanon County)
- To register please email Douglas Wilbourne at firstname.lastname@example.org
- You are cordially invited to participate in this year's expanded Echo Taps program at Indiantown Gap National Cemetery, which takes place on Armed Forces Day. As in previous years, the program will include a trumpet choir tribute at the Pennsylvania Veterans' Memorial at the cemetery immediately after the sounding of taps.
Veterans Breakfast Club (VBC) Morning Event:
- May 19, 2018, 9-11 a.m.
- Buhl Park Activities Building, 730 Forker Blvd., Hermitage, PA (Mercer County)
- R.S.V.P. to 412-623-9029 or email Lauren@VeteransBreakfastClub.com. Please mention the DMVA Digest when you R.S.V.P.
- Free breakfast in Hermitage on Armed Forces Day. The VBC is a nonprofit that creates communities of listening around veterans and their stories. Storytelling events, both morning and night, are held throughout western Pennsylvania. Veterans from World War II to Iraq and Afghanistan share their stories. They are open to the public, and you don’t need to be a veteran to attend.
- Facebook page.
Military And Muscle Car & Truck Show:
- May 19, 2018, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. (Rain date May 20, 2018)
- PA National Guard Military Museum, T-8-57, Fort Indiantown Gap, Annville, PA (Lebanon PA)
- Point of contacts: Jerry at 717-880-2296 or David at 717-943-3885 or email email@example.com
- Vehicles all pre-1976 military vehicles or muscle cars and trucks
- Registration is from 9:30-11 a.m. and costs $10. Admission is free for spectators. Free museum tour, silent auction, door prizes, food and drinks available and DJ. Great family fun. Please, no alcohol, weapons or pets.
Honoring Our Edison 64 Heroes:
- May 25, 2018, 8:30 a.m., ceremony to commence at 9:10 a.m.
- Thomas A. Edison High School, John C. Fareira Skill Center's, 151 West Luzerne, Philadelphia, PA (Philadelphia County)
- R.S.V.P. by May 21, 2018, by phone 215-400-3900 or fax 215-400-3901
- Edison High School lost more young men to the Vietnam War than any other high school in the nation. Veterans, veterans organizations and invited guests are cordially invited to attend. The guest speaker will be Robert Craven, Vietnam war era veteran.
Annual Memorial Day Commemoration:
- May 26, 2018, 11 a.m.
- Lycoming County Veterans Park, West Fourth St. and Wahoo Dr., Williamsport, PA (Lycoming County)
- Point of contact: Mike McMunn at 570-220-8156 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- The event is open to the public and will be held rain or shine and tents and chairs will be provided. Guest speaker will be MSG Chester Beaver, USA, Retired.
American Legion – Latin American Post 840 Memorial Day Service:
- May 27, 2018, 1 p.m.
- The Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, 1601 Valley Forge Rd., Valley Forge, PA (Montgomery County)
- Point of contact: Jose Rivera at 215-498-6571 or email email@example.com
- Since 1978, the Latin-American Post 840 of the American Legion has held an annual memorial ceremony to honor and remember members of the Armed Forces who lost their lives for the good of the country including nine Puerto Rican soldiers who were awarded the Medal of Honor posthumously. Obelisk to be dedicated to Puerto Rico at the Medal of Honor Grove, in the event of inclement weather, the event will be held in the Chapel at the Freedoms Foundation.
Annual North Penn VFW Post 676 Memorial Day Ceremony:
- May 28, 2018, 11 a.m.
- 2519 Jenkintown Rd., Glenside, PA (Montgomery County)
- Point of contact: Commander Tom Hermansen at 610-506-8350 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- The ceremony will include a presentation of symbolic wreaths at the flag pole, and speeches from state and local officials. Refreshments will be served after the ceremony.
VFW Media Post – Memorial Day Cookout:
- May 28, 2018, 3 p.m.
- 11 Hilltop Rd., Media, PA (Delaware County)
- Point of contact: Pat Flanagan at 610-566-9980
Wills For Heroes:
- June 2, 2018, 11 a.m.
- Pennsylvania Bar Institute, 5080 Ritter Rd., Mechanicsburg, PA (Cumberland County)
- Point of contact: Gabriele Miller-Wagner at email@example.com or Hannah Suhr at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- In partnership with the Pennsylvania Bar Association Young Lawyers Division and with sponsorship by Ballard Spahr LLP and the PBA Military and Veterans Affairs Committee, brings the Wills for Heroes program to you. Wills for Heroes is a free and easy service that provides wills, living wills, health care and financial powers of attorney to first responders and their spouses or partners. Please note that proof of affiliation or DD214 will be requested at the event.
- Website. Schedule. The password is: MVAWFH
Across the Nation
Add A Little Spring In Your Step During National Physical Fitness And Sports Month:
May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month and is the perfect reason for you to take your dog outside for a walk or check out a new fitness class. Exercise, in all different forms, benefits your health. The Aleda E. Lutz U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Saginaw, Michigan, recently partnered with the YMCA to provide an aquatic fitness class. Veterans are loving the new opportunity to get fit indoors. Read more.
Anonymous Soldier Surveys Tell Stories Of Morale, Race Relations During WWII:
A Virginia Tech group is looking for history buffs, grateful citizens and others to help catalog thousands of firsthand accounts from soldiers in World War II about their daily lives. The personal, handwritten accounts come from 65,000 documents collected during the war by the Army’s Information and Education Division Research Branch. Army leadership created the branch to tap into the mindset of its troops on a variety of issues. They issued surveys to soldiers on everything from field rations to the horrors of combat. Read more.
Army Veteran Recalls Arriving In Europe The Day Before The Battle Of The Bulge:
William V. Hines is a simple man with an extraordinary story that starts in a small Louisiana town and leads to redemption through service. He is a resident at one of the five state-of-the-art veterans homes that the Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs operates, and he is an inspiration to those who have the honor of meeting him. Hines was born on Feb. 22, 1926, in the small town of Ruby, La. Ruby is an unincorporated community in Rapides Parish. Read more.
Food Truck Owner Offers Jobs And More To Veterans Who Have Experienced Homelessness:
Securing a job is an essential step to exiting homelessness, but for many homeless veterans employment is not just hard to find, it can be hard to keep. Veteran Frank Diaz and his Tin Hut BBQ food trucks and catering service are addressing this issue head-on in Diaz’s own backyard on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. “I like to hire those people who need an opportunity in life to transition,” Diaz said. “Sometimes they come straight from the military, others are homeless veterans who I try to offer stability to.” Read more.
Helping Homeless Veterans:
If your business or organization has employment vacancies to fill, find out how to interview job-ready veterans who exited homelessness and are ready to add value on day one, by visiting VA Website.
For additional information: 1) Visit the U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs (VA) Website to learn about employment initiatives and other programs for veterans exiting homelessness; or 2) Refer veterans who are homeless or at imminent risk of becoming homeless to their local VA medical center, where VA staff are ready to assist, or urge them to call 1-877-4AID-VET (1-877-424-3838).
ICU Nurse Makes A Last Wish Come True:
Because of numerous national complaints against the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) over the past three years, it is sometimes difficult for the local community to understand that caregivers at VA medical centers uphold the mission and core values of the agency with the highest regard. Read more.
In Veterans, Even A Mild Case Of Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Is Linked To An Increased Risk Of Dementia:
A new study shows that mild TBIs can have serious consequences for military veterans by raising their risk of dementia. Researchers who examined the medical records of more than 350,000 Americans who served during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan found that men and women who experienced at least one mild TBI were more than twice as likely as their uninjured peers to develop dementia after they retired from the military. Read more.
New Direct Express Debit Mastercard For U.S. Department Of Veterans Affairs (VA) Payments:
Does anyone use paper checks anymore? Not many do, because they are costly, easy to misplace, and too much paper is bad for the environment. VA is excited to introduce the Direct Express Debit Mastercard card for beneficiary travel and compensated work therapy payments. This prepaid debit card is available to veterans who don’t have bank accounts or simply prefer to get their payments on a debit card. Read more.
Nurse And Formerly Homeless Veteran On Personal Experience With The U.S. Department Of Veterans Affairs (VA):
Little Rock’s Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System nurse and veteran, David Hathcock, works in the same hospital that helped him pull his life together after becoming addicted to drugs and losing everything. His story, as reported on Fox and Friends, was one of drug addiction that led him 10 years ago to seek help and overcome his addiction at the VA Medical Center in Little Rock. Read more.
Resumes 4 Vets:
In the transition from active duty, there is an obvious need for a veteran-oriented service specializing in professional profile development, starting with a great resume. Website.
U.S. Department Of Veterans Affairs (VA) Announces Whole Health Flagship Sites:
The VA released the names of 18 facilities designated as Whole Health Flagship Sites, which are spread around the country within the VA health-care system and are focused on empowering and equipping veterans to take charge of their health and well-being. As VA shifts from a health-care system focused primarily on treating disease to one guided by a personalized health plan that considers the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and environmental needs of veterans, the Whole Health System acknowledges that health care involves more than the physical human body. Read more.
U.S. Department Of Veterans Affairs (VA) Celebrates ‘Nurses Week 2018’ With A Number Of Activities:
VA was pleased to recognize and celebrate National Nurses Week, May 6-12 with a number of activities, including the release of “Meaningful Tweets,” a heartfelt VA twist on a popular late-night talk show host’s segment by a different name. This year marks the 28th anniversary of Nurses Week, which celebrates nurses in both the public and private sectors and is supported by the American Nurses Association. This year’s theme is “Nurses: Inspire, Innovate, Influence.” Read more.
VA Announces Paul Lawrence As New Under Secretary For Benefits:
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced that Paul R. Lawrence will assume office as the department’s new Under Secretary for Benefits. Lawrence is a former Army captain and airborne school graduate, and has served in a number of key positions in the accounting industry, focusing primarily in the area of federal government practices. Most recently, Lawrence was a public sector vice president with Kaiser Associates. Read more.
Veterans Benefits Scam Alert – Beware Of Scammers Impersonating U.S. Department Of Veterans Affairs (VA) Attorneys:
VA is currently investigating a telephone scam involving an individual or individuals impersonating VA Office of General Counsel attorneys. The perpetrator reportedly calls veterans and requests money to process their claims for benefits. Veterans have been given actual VA attorney names and phone numbers to call back. It is important to know that VA, as a cabinet-level agency of the U.S. government, funded by Congress, will never request payment for carrying out its mission to serve veterans. Read more.
Women Of Valor – Mother & Daughter Spend Mother’s Day Deployed Together:
Behind every pilot is a high-tempo team that tracks pilot training and who’s legally qualified to fly. Senior Master Sgt. Michelle Mersing is the leader of one such team as the senior noncommissioned officer in charge of the Squadron Aviation Resource Management office within the 340th Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron, assigned to the 379th Expeditionary Operations Group at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar. In this role, Mersing monitors pilots from approximately 20 different military installations worldwide. Read more.
WWI Medal Of Honor Recipient Re-interred At New State Veterans Cemetery In Kentucky:
One hundred years ago, eastern Kentucky’s own Willie Sandlin received the Medal of Honor after single-handedly destroying three German machine gun emplacements and killing 24 of the enemy on Sep. 26, 1918, at Bois de Forges. Only Sgt. Alvin York received more citations for valor in that war. Sandlin’s Medal of Honor citation reads: Read more.