VFW Action Corps Weekly – November 4, 2016

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In This Issue:

  1. Still Time to Vote Absentee in General Election
  2. Veterans Day in Washington
  3. Vietnam Era Health Study
  4. National Family Caregivers Month
  5. VA Center for Women Veterans Meeting
  6. Nominate a Hero
  7. Shop Amazon, Support the VFW Foundation
  8. MIA Update

 

  1. Still Time to Vote Absentee in General Election: The general election is next Tuesday, November 8, and federal election officials are telling military voters there is still time to register to vote absentee, but they have to act quickly. Many states allow you to accomplish some or all of the process electronically. Many states also count ballots postmarked Nov. 8 even if they arrive after Election Day. Find details on your state and more voting information on the Federal Voting Assistance Program website at: https://www.fvap.gov/military-voter. If you requested an absentee ballot that still hasn’t arrived, use the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot or get one from your unit’s voting assistance officer or the installation voting assistance office. Learn more at: FVAP.gov.
  2. Veterans Day in Washington: VFW Posts everywhere will be recognizing Veterans Day on Nov. 11. Visitors to Washington can join in the national salute starting at the World War II Memorial at 9 a.m., at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery at 11 a.m., and at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial at 1 p.m. More updates will be posted on the respective websites: WWII Memorial, http://www.wwiimemorialfriends.org/news-and-events/news-events; Arlington, http://www.arlingtoncemetery.mil; and The Wall, http://www.vvmf.org/news/article=Free-Family-Tours-of-the-Vietnam-Veterans-Memorial-Set-for-Veterans-Day-Weekend.
  3. Vietnam Era Health Study: This week VA announced a nationwide study –– the Vietnam Era Health Retrospective Observational Study (VE-HEROeS) –– that will assess the current health and well-being of Vietnam veterans, Blue Water Navy veterans, and veterans who served elsewhere during the Vietnam Era (1961–1975). Approximately 43,000 veterans will be invited to participate in this important study and the VFW encourages them to do so. To learn more about VE-HEROeS, visit: www.publichealth.va.gov/epidemiology/studies/heroes/.
  4. National Family Caregivers Month: Throughout the month of November, Caregiver Support Coordinators located at every VA medical center will be holding special events for caregivers of veterans to thank them for all they do to ensure their veteran loved ones are cared for and supported. Caregivers interested in participating in events should contact their local Caregiver Support Coordinators. The VA Caregiver Support Line toll free number, 1-855-260-3274, is also available for caregivers who would like to speak to a licensed social worker for support, education and referrals. The Caregiver Support Program website www.caregiver.va.gov provides additional caregiving information, as well as links to VA caregiving resources and services.
  5. VA Center for Women Veterans Meeting: The Department of Veterans Affairs Center for Women Veterans (CWV) held a breakfast on Wednesday. The director for CWV, Kayla Williams, hosted the event which was attended by Department of Labor, the VFW, other veterans service organizations, and nearly half a dozen female veteran-specific nonprofits. The intent of the now monthly breakfasts is for key players in women veterans advocacy to come together to discuss their areas of focus. Main topics highlighted on Wednesday included reproductive health, military sexual trauma, women veterans employment, homelessness, outreach and MyVA goals for health equity and gender-specific needs. The next breakfast is slated for Dec. 5. To learn more about CWC, visit: http://www.va.gov/WOMENVET/index.asp.
  6. Nominate a Hero: Do you know a fellow citizen who has performed a singular act of extraordinary heroism or a continued commitment to putting others first? Nominate them for the 2017 Congressional Medal of Honor Society Citizen Honors. Four U.S. citizens and one organization are selected each year to receive Citizen Honors awards. To be considered, nominees age 18 and older must have made a difference in the lives of others through a singular act of extraordinary heroism, or through exceptional selfless service to others. Young Americans age 8-17 can be nominated for their leadership, courage and service. Community organizations can be nominated for their exceptional impact in support of our nation’s service members and families. Award recipients will be recognized in Washington on National Medal of Honor Day, March 25, 2017. Applications are available through Nov. 30 at: www.themedalofhonor.com.
  7. Shop Amazon, Support the VFW Foundation: With the holidays quickly approaching, online shoppers have the opportunity to assist America’s veterans, service members and their families by shopping AmazonSmile at https://smile.amazon.com/ and selecting the VFW Foundation as their charity of choice. Amazon will donate 0.5 percent of the total purchase price to the Foundation upon checkout. Purchase items eligible for donations are indicated on the products’ pages. Donations to the VFW Foundation support many vital troop support programs, such as financial grants to help military families during emergencies, veterans’ scholarships, assistance with filing VA claims, and more. You can even select the VFW Foundation as your AmazonSmile charity of choice after the holidays are over. Call the Foundation at (816) 968-2720 if you have any questions.
  8. MIA Update: The Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency has announced burial updates of three Americans who had been missing in action since World War II and Korea. Returning home for burial with full military honors are:

— Marine Pfc. Nicholas J. Cancilla, 18, will be buried Nov. 7 in his hometown of Altoona, Pa. Cancilla was assigned to Company B, 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, 2nd Marine Division, which landed against stiff Japanese resistance on the small island of Betio in the Tarawa Atoll of the Gilbert Islands. Cancilla died on the first day of battle, Nov. 20, 1943. Read more at: http://www.dpaa.mil/News-Stories/News-Releases/Article/990641/marine-missing-from-world-war-ii-accounted-for-cancilla/.

— Army Pfc. William V. Giovanniello, 22, of Brooklyn, N.Y., will be buried Nov. 10 in Port Jervis, N.Y. Giovanniello was a member of Company F, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, when his unit was forced into a fighting withdrawal from Chorwon, South Korea. He was declared missing in action on April 25, 1951. Read more at: http://www.dpaa.mil/News-Stories/News-Releases/Article/995006/soldier-killed-in-korean-war-accounted-for-giovanniello/.

— Army Cpl. Wayne Minard, 19, of Furley, Kan., will be buried Nov. 12 in nearby Wichita. Minard was a member of Company C, 1st Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, fighting a delaying action south to Kunu-ri, North Korea. He would be reported missing in action on Nov. 26, 1950. Read more at: http://www.dpaa.mil/News-Stories/News-Releases/Article/996115/soldier-missing-from-korean-war-accounted-for-minard/.

To sign up new veterans’ advocates, click here: http://capwiz.com/vfw/mlm/signup.htm.

As always, we want to hear your advocacy stories. To share your stories or photos with us, simply email them directly to vfwac@vfw.org.