The Veterans' Voice
We're a greassroots publication for military veterans and their families. We cover a wide range of topics, but oour specialty is helping vets deal with the VA and recieving their benefits. We have book reviews, war stories, legislative updates and political commentary too.
By Mark Alexander The Patriot Post If our nation's Founders could visit us on this, our 234nd Independence Day, what would they make of us? What would they declare of us? A hint can be discerned in a letter from John Adams to his wife, Abigail, on July 3, 1776, as the Declaration of Independence had just been approved. "It ought to be commemorated," said the man who would become our second president, "as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more. You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Day's Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not." Americans have maintained the "Pomp and Parade" for more than two centuries now, and the "Bonfires and Illuminations" are commonplace, but how often do we recognize Independence Day as "the Day of Deliverance?" How often do we honor it with "solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty"? How often do we contemplate the cost of our freedom, "the Toil and Blood and Treasure?" Our Founders believed that independence was more than a choice; they viewed our break from royal rule as necessary. Consider the first statement of the Declaration: "When in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which VOL 9 NO. 123 such Government, Independence Day - A Necessary Observance to throw offnew Guards for theirand to provide fu- INDEPENDENCE DAY JULY-AUGUST 2010 Remembering Those Who Gave All ture security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government." In conclusion, the Founders wrote, "We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation..." Their cause, of course, was not anti-government. Rather they objected to the misgovernment of the king, saying, "He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good." Furthermore, the Americans had been patient, petitioning their British rulers for redress for over a decade. Armed hostilities had commenced on April 19, 1775, at the battles of Lexington and Concord, and the colonists faced the full power of the British Empire in their quest for American independence. One year before taking that step for nationhood, on July 5, 1775, the Continental Congress adopted the Olive Branch Petition, beseeching the British king for a peaceful resolution of the American colonies' grievances. A day later, that same Congress resolved the "Declaration of the Causes and Necessities of Taking Up Arms." the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a deKing George III refused to read the peace petition and ascent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they sembled his armies. On July 2, 1776, Richard Henry Lee's should declare the causes which impel them to the sepa- proposal for a formal declaration of separation passed, and ration." the document was ordered printed on July 4. The signatories were emphatic that separation from the The war-weary among us today might ask, was indecrown was not only an objective, but an obligation: "But pendence really necessary? when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing inTo pose the question at the outset of the Revolutionary variably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them War was to answer it. Representatives of the colonial under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, Americans realized that, in voicing this query, they already possessed proof that STD PRSRT they, not the King of England, were legitUS POSTAGE imate instruments of self-government for PAID their countrymen. How could circumOGDEN, UT stances be otherwise when the king of#115 fered no remedy for his subjects' complaints, no guarantee their rights See page, 15 - Independence Day ww w.theveteran svoice.co m 888-826-3215 Independence Day much I appreciate everything that was done on my behalf. I won't dwell upon what happened to my home Our regualr readers may while I was deployed to remember Jeffrey Farmer, Afghanistan but instead who while serving in Iraq, want you to know how lost all of his belongings to your thoughtfulness got me a thief. Well, we're happy through a very tough situato say that our readers and tion. many others came together It has been overwhelming to make for a happy ending how many people stepped to his plight! up and did things for someHello, one that they didn't even I don't know how to say know. Through the efforts thank-you for your support of the American Legion, and kindness. The words Bill Lockhart, and the "Thank You" do not adeTrenton Arts Council, and quately begin to tell how many others, money was THE VETERANS' VOICE is distributed free of charge to Veterans' Homes, Vet Centers, and select military bases. If your VFW, AL, or other service organization would like to recieve the paper, we will send 50-75 copies per issuefor $14.00 a month. It is also mailed to elected government officials, and directly to the homes of individual subscribers. THE VETERANS' VOICE is an independent, grassroots publication with no government or service organization affiliation and is constructed from information received from a variety of sources. Some articles may lean towards political expressions and are published for the topics contained within. These articles DO NOT necessarily express the opinions of this publication. We thank all of these sources for their input. We welcome any newsworthy stories or photos for publishing consideration. Any correspondence, including opinions or comments (limited to 350 words and may be edited for brevity), can be e-mailed (preferred) to: firstname.lastname@example.org or mail to: 1145 N. 100 W., Layton, UT 84041 or call toll-free: (888)-826-3215. Visit us on the web at: www.theveteransvoice.com Publisher: Patriotic Publications-editor: Clairice Still Minkler, Associate Editor: Lucas Necessary, Distribution: Elijah Necessary. Writers: Susan Barrera, MSGT Bruce Salisbury, Major Van Harl USAF( Retired), Tom Segel, Frank Praytor, Thomas Stoddert, Greg Reeson, Jim Kouri, Jim Strickland, Military Advisor Dick Wells, Marnie Mowles- Vet of the Month & Vet's View with Tony Fialkowski. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED-Contact publisher for reprint permission. The opinions expressed by contributing writers are expressly their own and may or may not represent the opinions of the editorial staff, its publisher or our advertisers. Mail Call raised to help buy back tools and other things that were stolen while I was in Iraq. I have received support in the form of monetary donations, a vehicle to drive, approximately 64 Tshirts from people across the United States and even a couple from abroad. Items were donated to be sold at auction to raise money as well. A retired Lieutenant Colonel sent his spare scuba equipment to me to replace mine. These are just a few examples. People have done so much at a time when our economy has been so strained. I also cannot begin to say thank you enough to the people who expressed their concern, prayers, kind notes and shared well wishes. These notes and offers of support have meant the world to me. Thank you again for your support. Please let others know on my behalf of my gratefulness. Sincerely, Jeffrey A. Farmer Trenton, GA 30752 email@example.com Dear editor; Thank you for the article on my VN journey in this recent publication. I want to commend the contributors and founders of Veteran's Voice for the integrity in this publication. It is the first publication I have seen that I relate to. I would like to see more in the Polson/Ronan/Mission Valley area for the public and veteran's family use. Keep up the good work. Sheron Green, VN Polson, Montana Our pleasure! Thank you for your service! www.theveteransvoice.com Addressing the gentleman, Ray Peck: Sir, your comment "biggest bunch of nonsense" on what I wrote in the Mar/Apr 2010 issue is welcomed- simply for the fact that what Mr. Segal wrote in the Dec 2009 article was the opening of a public wound. What I wrote simply put salt on that wound that you and all liberals cannot stand...the Truth! Yes Sir, I am angry-at our Montana elected officials who promised to go to Washington to represent us, yet cower from Nancy Pelosi's voice and fall in line with what she and your president want for a liberal, Dear editor; The USA security is highly at risk. This country needs to be aware of the dangers of the US/Mexico unsecure border where drugs/drug runners & terrorists are flooding across our border along with the Mexican Nationals. Many who are fighting Arizona's immigration law, (our US government officials) are unaware of how the law reads. Media is lying about the issue. Who has the courage to sound the alarm?You probably do. Ann Phelps-NM We do our best, Ann! Sadly, it seems both parties have an agenda where illegals are concerned. Dear editor; Really appreciate the current information on getting help from the VA and also the wide variety of topics covered in the paper. Rick Smith Headland, AL secular America. Senators Baucus and Tester are governing AGAINST THE WILL OF MONTANA AND THE AMERICAN VOTER! You defend them because of the nanny-state attitude you obviously possess, and you refuse to see the liberal, Marxist future these individuals want for us. But guess what, Sir...we're mad as hell and we're not going to take it anymore!!! Not only us Veterans, but at least 66% of the voting populace see that this so called president and his liberal puppets, hate the Constitution as it is written and want to tear it up and write their own laws for their own Marxist ideologies. The Constitution that many shed their blood for, and continue to do even today, Sir! Sir, and YES-I AM AN EXTREMIST! A red blooded, card carrying extremist, conservative who is willing to take a pay cut on my disability and military retirement to help the greatest nation in human history: THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA! Yet, YOUR president made $5 million last year, Joe Biden made I'm sure five times that, yet collectively they probably gave less that. 06% of their income to charity. I'm willing ot bet that the hard working woman or man, Veteran or non-veteran that reads this conservative and loyal publication, has proportionately given much more than YOUR president and vice-president, to help out in their communities. Sir, you are an HONORABLE man, for having served America in WWII and allowed me and thou- sands of Americans to speak freely without going to jail as we would have if we lived in Cuba or South America. One of my tours was in Peru, and I witnessed firsthand the results of Communism. I will gladly re-enlist as age 63 to protect my family from Totalitarianism and Marxism, the ideology this so-called president wants to bring us to. I have a daughter in the US Navy and a son in the US Marines. Their mom and I constantly worry for their well being. How many thousands of moms and dads are doing the same now with the "regime" in the White House? Respectfully, Jose A. Bustos, Jr. Msgt (ret) USAF/Mt.ArNG/MtANG Commander-In-Chief Went AWOL Dear editor; As a Navy veteran, I am appalled President Obama, our Commander-In-Chief, did not lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery on Memorial Day 2010. Instead, he went on vacation. If a military member did not show up for duty he or she would be punished, including the possible loss of pay, a reprimand, a demotion, or in a theater of war operations, the potential exists for incarceration. Our Commander-In-Chief deserves to be punished, and the punishment is to make him a one term president. Donald A. Moskowitz Londonderry, NH 2 Independence Day A Tale of Tails- How Many Bunnies? In the winter of 1956, I was stationed at Peterson Field, Colorado, close in to Colorado Springs, and assigned to Ent Air Force Base, which was part of Air Defense Command. Pete Field was well out of town in those days and a pleasant little place to be working and living. My family lived in Colorado Springs, near to Prospect Lake, and we loved the town. My duties were wrapped around being a Line Chief, and one of the interesting headaches was to be in charge of the Transient Alert Facility, which did the repair, refueling, maintenance and scheduling of transient aircraft, and the like. The Transient Alert "shack" was always well manicured and polished, because this Base was the Headquarters landing strip, for Air Defense Command, and it was common for generals, and politicians, to wander into our building. The first order of business, in the morning, was for the crew of mechanics, to get themselves, and the quarters polished up in case a dignitary wandered in. We had a great crew of Bruce Salisbury USAF(ret) with his lovely wife, Dottie. By Major Van Harl USAF Ret. young men, who were dedicated to doing the job, and who took care to appear military at all times. I enjoyed seeing them perform their duties, and they always rendered the sharpest of salutes, when required. One stormy winter day, I had driven out from town, just to be sure that everything was alright, and towards evening, we realized that the snow was so deep, the wind so vicious, that the roads could not be traveled, so I called my wife to let her know I'd not be coming home that night, and I settled in to sleep there at the Crew Quarters. The young mechanics were pleased to have me for company. On into the night, those kids found out that in the deep snow, the hoards of rabbits that plagued the airstrip, couldn't hop very well. The bunnies would jump up, and then disappear into the soft fluffy snow. Soon enough the kids started to gather these rabbits, and stuff them into burlap bags. I stood at the window, and watched the crew driving up to an area, jumping out, and diving on frantic rabbits. Close to midnight, I radioed for all hands to come in to the Alert Facility, because the wind was howling, and the temperature had taken a dive. The crew came in, tired and happy. However, all those bunnies that had been confined in those burlaps bags in the open beds of the trucks while the trucks were zipping up and down the runways, well, they were catatonic critters that were almost frozen stiff. The young men came in lugging bags full of bunnies and since they had not had time to count their catch, they opened a big equipment box, just inside the front door of the facility, and began pouring the almost frozen bunnies into the box. The cold little "fur balls", were just stiff, and I sat there sipping coffee, and watched them pour bag after bag of the cold, motionless little things into that box. The box was so full that they had to rearrange bunnies, here and there, before they could close the big overhead lid, and latch it. Now the guys got out of their Arctic Gear, gathered up coffee, and sat about speculating on how many rabbits were in that box. They all agreed that this had to be a "record", since they had never ever done this before. As these guys got warm, they became weary from all the exercise they'd had, and with snow everywhere, I made the decision to send them to bed and not concern myself with cleaning up the floors or mopping up puddles. We left the Charge of Quarters to guarding the place, and we dived into bed. At about 0500, I awoke to the sound of Snow Plows, and realized that we might have visitor. The Officer In Charge, was a nice young Captain, who always arrived at 0600, to look in on us, to share coffee, and to inspect the area. Waking up the guys, I set them to polishing the facility. In half an hour, the place looked See page, 5- Bunnies www.theveteransvoice.com 3 Introducing A Special Account Honoring Our Veterans BENEFITS INCLUDE: 0.25% 0.15% APY FREE FREE FREE FREE FREE haveanicebank.com Independence Day Got Questions?Get Answers.... Jim; My files are in Washington for a final decision to be made. I called the number provided to me to check on progress of the decision. I was told my files had been turned over to the VFW and when they got them back a decision would be made on my claim. I was in Vietnam in 68 - 69 on Swift boats. My claim is for diabetes type 2. Can you help me understand why the VA would turn my files over to the VFW? I started out down this confusing road before I heard about you. Thank You Reply; I don't understand why your case would be in by Jim Strickland The information provided herein may or may not apply to your particular circumstances. This information is provided for your general knowledge only. Please consult an attorney or other qualified representative before you make a descion. Washington. That implies that it's an appeals case at the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA) and that you have had a previous denial. You say you're a Vietnam veteran with brown water service so there should be a reasonably quick decision on the presumptive DMII. That above is true unless there had been some question of the brown water service or your "boots on the ground" duty. If that came up, there may be no end to the loop of remands and appeals you'll have to endure. At some point in your claim you may have signed a Power of Attorney (POA) document allowing VFW to represent you. If your appeal arrived at the board www.theveteransvoice.com Fighting for Veteran Disability & Social Security Disability benefits is our job. 1-877-527-5529 Call the lawyers at Kazmierczak & Kazmierczak Get the help you seek today! www.KazmierczakLaw.com Disabled Veteran? Help is finally here!!! without appropriate representations assigned or working on your case, the BVA may have sent it off to your designated representative to have them "perfect" your file. If you have more data or if anything happens, I'd like to hear more about it. Jim; I have a 100% permanent rating I have had it for 12 years on base privileges and all that. I lost my colon and other issues all service connected. I was told if I had this rating for 10 years I was protected by law and VA could not reduce it. I use VA for all of my ostomy supplies and meds. I also live in Panama and travel back to the States to see VA. My question; Is it now twenty years before I am safe with my rating and do I need to go back to the States for my check up? Also I was covered for all of my medical needs in the states both service connected and none service connected. Is that still true overseas? Reply; There's always confusion around the 20 year rule. It's at 20 years VA can't change the rating...not 10. It's been 20 for as long as I know. Title 38: Pensions, Bonuses, and Veterans' Relief PART 3--ADJUDICATION Protection � 3.951 Preservation of disability ratings. (a) A readjustment to the Schedule for Rating Disabilities shall not be grounds for reduction of a disability rating in effect on the date of the readjustment unless medical evidence establishes that the disability to be evaluated has actually improved. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 1155) (b) A disability which has been continuously rated at or above any evaluation of disability for 20 or more years for compensation purposes under laws administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs will not be reduced to less than such evaluation except upon a showing that such rating was based on fraud. Likewise, a rating of permanent total disability for pension purposes which has been in force for 20 or more years will not be reduced except upon a showing that the rating was based on fraud. The 20year period will be computed from the effective date of the evaluation to the effective date of reduction of evaluation. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 110) [34 FR 11970, July 16, 1969, as amended at 57 FR 10426, Mar. 26, 1992] Even then VA can change the rating if they can prove fraud. Medical care is generally restricted to service connected conditions except in e m e r g e n c i e s . http://www4.va.gov/hac/fo rbeneficiaries/fmp/fmp.asp However, there is a 10 year protection, and it centers on protection from severing service connection. This is equally as important as the 20 year protection. Fraud and character of discharge issues can be cause for severance of s/c ... but if a veteran is s/c for 10 years or more, and no fraud or character of discharge is at issue, the disability must be rated as it is warranted under the schedule of rating. Thus, even if they discover that the condition should not have been granted s/c, they cannot reduce it to zero unless the evidence indicates that it warrants a zero. If there are secondary conditions or nsc condition subject to aggravation by the protected disability, they must be granted regardless of the erroneous prior grant. "We at TVV extend heartfelt sorrow at the passing of Jim's dad, "The Gunny". See his story on page, 14. "Never drive through a small Southern town at 100mph with the local sheriff's drunken 16year-old daughter on your lap." by, Anonymous member of a chain gang. 4 We Have Your Loved Ones Covered With Personalized Photo Quilts 406-393-2008 or 406-885-2754 Great For Deployed Loved Ones, And Those They Left Behind! Independence Day The Rating Le er, It's a Tool Repeatedly, I have seen too many people file a claim for benefits and have it denied. They then file a Notice of Disagreement; the claim is looked at again, and again it is denied. What's up? If the vet had read the Rating Letter carefully they would not be angry, so much time would not have been wasted, and they would have been successful. If only they had read what was sent to them! The first letter is the VCAA letter. It is general and mostly non-specific. Most of the information in this document can be ignored unless there is something that really fits you. The VA is mandated to send these letters out. However, the rating letter is not only the VA's communication to you; it is also a tool for you to use to successfully get your military related medical issue service connected should your claim be denied. It is supposed to tell you everything you need to know to get your condition service connected even after a denial. So let's start and look at the components of a Rating Letter. The rating letter is composed on a computer data- By Thom Stoddert base. This program automatically computes your rating percentages so mistakes in calculations are eliminated. Just below the seal of the VA is a brief paragraph about you and your service. Pay attention to this. If there are mistakes in the dates recorded this could, but not often, impact your benefits. Next is the list of evidence that is contained in your claims file (C-file) that was used to decide your claimed issues. Looking at this is important, because if you know of information that is favorable towards you but was not used, then you have a significant disagreement with the VA if they were given this information. So make sure all of the evidence is listed and used. Many denials of benefits have been changed to a desired decision when evidence was overlooked or additional evidence was sent in. Again, make sure the evidence is in the hands of VA and that it was used. There is also a list of the issues claimed and a summary of the adjudicated decisions. Though this section is the least important; make sure that all the issues claimed have received an adjudicated decision. The meat and potatoes of the rating letter is in the "decision and the bases section." This section contains what has been decided and why. This is the most important part of the rating letter and must be carefully studied. This is of utmost importance for unfavorable decisions. Each issue will have an explanation why it was given a favorable or an unfavorable decision. The explanation will discuss the laws that supported the decision to grant service connection; to increase the rating percentage of a service connected medical condition; or to deny the claimed issue. It will go something like this; "We have decided to grant service connection at the 20% level for Traumatic Arthritis of the shoulder because service medical records document that you were injured in a vehicle accident in Iraq and later treated for a torn rotator cuff as a result of this injury. Your private medical records also document further treatment for this same injury that was incurred in the service. The VA examination showed... To have received a higher rating percentage the medical evidence must show...." However, you may see something like this; "your claim for service connection of PTSD is denied because there is no medical documentation or other evidence linking this mental health issue to your military service." These are real tools for you to use and are provided by the VA. When a claim is decided, the VA is required to explain which criteria were used to assign the rating percentage. The VA must also explain the criteria to get a higher rating percentage.They give you the information to build your claim further as needed. When a claimed issue is denied, the VA must explain the law or laws that were not met that would www.theveteransvoice.com have allowed a favorable grant. There should be an explanation how to overcome the denial. It is up to you to plan and obtain the needed information and resubmit it. You have one year from the date of decision to provide the evidence to change the decision before the decision becomes final. After one year, you are forced to deal with the laws pertaining to providing new and material evidence and a new date of claim that is less favorable to you. In other words, you have to start over. So get the lacking information and/or new evidence to the VA, ASAP. In summary, read the Rating Letter as many times as you need to, so you can understand the information. It gives you the tools to be successful in filing future claims with the VA or to reverse a denial. From page 3 great, and we were getting ready to send the guys off to breakfast, when the door opened, and in walked the Captain. With a smile, he stepped over toward the "box". He always peered into this equipment box, before he did anything else, just to see if everything was neatly stacked. I then remembered the rabbits, but I didn't have time to warn the poor man. He raised the lid, and suddenly the air was full of (now warm) bunnies. He slammed the lid, but all that did was squash a few rabbits, which caused them to squall like banshees, which How Many Bunnies? prompted him to jerk the lid open, releasing another torrent of rabbits. The Captain threw the lid wide open and fled from the building. When all the rabbits were evicted, and the little yellow puddles mopped up, and all the rabbit poop gotten rid of, the kids once more started talking about the "great rabbit hunt". When I asked them how many rabbits they had captured, the realized they really didn't know, but one boy (from Tennessee), declared that he thought there was more bunnies came out of that box, than what they had put in there. If you can't convince them, confuse them. Harry S. 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Showtime and related marks are registered trademarks of Showtime Networks Inc., a CBS Company. �2010 DIRECTV, Starz and related channels and service marks are the property of Starz Entertainment Group LLC. Showtime and related marks are registered trademarks of Showtime Networks Inc., CBS Company. �2010 DIRECT Inc. DIRECTV and the Cyclone Design logo, CHOICE and CHOICE XTRA are trademarks of DIRECTV, Inc. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners Inc. DIRECTV and the Cyclone Design logo, CHOICE and CHOICE XTRA are trademarks of DIRECTV, Inc. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners Independence Day Wussies To The Left Of Me Wimps To The Right Marine Corps legend, Chesty Puller, when informed in the middle of a fierce ground battle that his troops were completely surrounded, said words to the effect of, "Good, now we can shoot at the S.O.B.s in any direction". "Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!" "Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition!" These are the words and deeds of brave men who stood for what they believed in even if it took their last drop of blood. Highway 280 Flooring Gallery 2815 Greystone Blvd., Birmingham (205) 981-2311 Highway 31 Flooring Gallery 2858 Pelham Parkway Pelham, AL 35124 (205) 663-2310 ISSIS & SONS Quality & Service in the Issis Tradition America has always won against far superior forces, simply because our people have always had the tenacity and the courage to spit in the face of an enemy's overwhelming strength and never give an inch even when their backs were to the wall. American history is full of accounts of bravery and valor that reaches far beyond the pale of any simple call to duty to a place of rarified air only visited by the bravest of the brave and the boldest of the bold. How would you like to go to war with Eric Holder guarding your left flank and Janet Napolitano guarding your right? How would you like to get in a bar fight with Harry Reid watching your back? The schools in this country are teaching revisionist history to our children, belittling or even omitting American heroes and re- ducing morals to a gray area with no absolutes and even denying the omnipotence of the God who made the very earth they stand on, the ACLU standing by with bated breath, eager to sue at the mere mention of His name. Part of the Supreme Court thinks the Constitution is only a list of suggestions, and from the looks of things that attitude will only worsen with the recent appointees. Our President lies with impunity and criticizes an immigration bill he admits he hadn't even read, while taking every opportunity to smear the country that was silly enough to elect him President. Our Attorney General is more concerned with extending the rights of a fullfledged American citizen to a murdering scumbag Islamic terrorist than he is in seeing justice carried out. He also hasn't read the immigration bill that he is criticizing and threatening www.theveteransvoice.com *Carpet *Rugs *Wood*Tile *Slate*Laminates *Window Treatments *Wood Floor Refinishing Our Commercial Department is fully staffed and capable of taking on large or small projects, from office buildings to Churches, and anything in between. Alabama's Largest Flooring & Furniture Gallery to bring legal action against it. Our Director of Homeland Security is seriously not up to the job and only the grace of God saved the lives of untold numbers of Americans in New York recently when an Islamic terrorist who had flown to Pakistan something like thirteen times without making the no fly list left a bomb on a busy Manhattan street and scampered to the airport where he almost escaped aboard an Arab airline. She is also criticizing the immigration bill that she hasn't read. That's three of the most powerful people in the U.S.A. lying about and distorting legislation they admitted they haven't even read. It's insane. Our Democrat-controlled Congress and Senate, realizing that they will probably not have a majority in both houses after November are feverishly cramming one catastrophic spending program after another down the throats of an Obama weary America. There seems to be a pervasive attitude of "If ya can't beat 'em join 'em" as state after state gets ready to legalize certain drugs and there are those who say that we just can't do anything about our southern border. I have one word for that, "baloney". We can do something about anything if we would only go about it the right way. We just simply don't have enough real men in power who are willing to stand for something besides their next election and the political party they belong to. They think no more about betraying America than they do of swatting a fly, a pitiful bunch of limpwristed cowards who blow in the wind like a limp rag, lacking the guts or the integrity to pay the cost of doing the right thing for America. Anybody with a mere semblance of a brain has to know that what Barack Hussein Obama and the Democrats are doing can only have a bad ending, in fact, in my estimation, bad is a much too mild a word to describe what's going to happen when Obama's crippled chickens start coming home to roost. And yet there is not one strong voice on Capitol Hill who is willing to risk the wrath of the media to say, "Hey wait a minute, this President is ruining the economy of our country for generations to come if not forever!!!" Not one has the gonads to stand up and shout, "No you cannot grant citizenship to twelve million people who came into this country illegally just so the Highway 119 Furniture Gallery 250 Cahaba Valley Rd Pelham (205) 620-6926 Democrats can stay in office for the next hundred years!!! Whatever happened to the men who had the guts to stand for what is right, no matter how unpopular, no matter what the personal cost? What ever happened to the American citizen who would stand up and say, "Hell no, don't even think about taking my guns away and I demand school vouchers for my children so they can learn what I think they should learn instead of that socialist crap the teacher's unions are supporting. I'm tired of paying taxes and having my money given to support the socialistic laziness of a nation like Greece. I want to hear my President and his administration call an Islamic terrorist an Islamic terrorist and I want the ones we've caught tried in a military tribunal." It seems that America's pioneer spirit has all but evaporated in the steamy morass of political correctness and compromise that is taking more backbone out of each succeeding generation. I'm so sick of the empty suits and milksop scoundrels on both sides of the aisle in Washington and the state capitols. America is looking for a few good men and women; spineless sellouts need not apply. Wussies to the left of me, wimps to the right. It's sickening. What do you think? Pray for our troops, and for our country. God Bless America Charlie Daniels 6 back to active Civilian In Training calledthe end of the duty until war. There were some rather old NCOs working military recruiting offices, who should have been out fishing. This recall stuff is not what my wife wants to consider. She wants to be a civilian for good, after 29 years, 9 months and 27 By Major Van Harl USAF days of active duty service Ret. in the Air Force. She originally joined the The Colonel has gone active duty Air Force beand done it. She has done what we refer to in the mil- cause she only had to sign itary as "dropping her pa- up for three years and the pers." She has formally reserves wanted her for six notified the US Air Force years. 29 plus years later that she is going to retire she is still in uniform. She followed me around on acfrom active duty. In the civilian world, tive duty for a year and a when you retire from a half when she figured that company you are done. military stuff was not so You buy the motor-home, hard and she knew she never to darken the doors could do it. I retired from of your former employer active duty and have been again. In the military you following her around ever never really retire. Your since. It looks like we are movmonthly payment from the ing to Wisconsin where a Department of Defense is considered a retainer, just lot of folks do not even in case they need your serv- know there really is a military, other than what they ices down the road. see on TV. We will, howAfter 7, December 1941 a large group of very old ever, spend our winters in service members who Oklahoma. When you live in a purely civilian comthought they were done munity where there is no wearing a uniform were obvious military presence, Independence Day www.theveteransvoice.com retired soldiers are kind of an oddity. The civilians ask you questions but they don't get it when if comes to the military. So I have enrolled the Colonel in remedial civilian training. She had a four day weekend over Memorial Day and we worked hard on her military-to-civilian indoctrination. First off, no uniform wearing, and no talking about the Air Force- shop-talk was not allowed. There was no watching the Military Channel on TV. We did watch the Memorial Day concert on the steps of the US Capital, but that was a Veteran thing, not a military thing. The Colonel wore civilian cloths, not to Colonel Dawn M. Harl USAF NC include any of the many tshirts she has with Air Force logos on them. This was not anti-military training; that will never be our desire. This was "getting ready to be a civilian" training. It is OK not to come to attention in your living room when the Air Force song is played on TV. We talked about when I would remove the 50 caliber machine gun rack off the top of her Hummer vehicle, but we set no firm date for that. Don't want to push the stress button too soon. The brackets on the front bumper of her truck used to hold the flags will stay on for a little while longer. You never know when you could be in a veteran / military parade. We are going to start emptying some of the sandbags we have filled and stacked up, ready to go just in case. Both of the family dogs will convert to being pets and we will drop the K9 working dog title for Maggie and Libby, our four legged babies. The family dinning room will no longer be referred to as the chow hall. We had civilian friends at our home during the weekend, people who had never been in the military. We talked about civilian things. The civilian in training must be working a little because, come Tuesday morning, a duty day for the Colonel, I had to push her out into the garage and gently force her into her vehi- cle. She did not want to go back to the Big Air Force. There is no doubt she is ready to retire and take off the uniform she has worn for almost 30 years. Now as long as Korea does not turn into a shooting war and stop-loss does not force her to stay on active duty, I believe we are headed to retirement and the land of civilians. We are holding our breath. 7 The Air Force continues to seek Airmen who were involuntarily held on active duty "stop-loss" between Sept. 11, 2001, and Sept. 30, 2009, to determine if they may be eligible for the Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay compensation of $500 for each month they were affected as a result of stop loss. Eligible individuals have until Oct. 21, 2010, to file their claim. To file a claim, call the Total Force Service Center at (800) 525-0102. AF Seeking Stop Loss Airmen To succeed in politics, it is often necessary to rise above your principles. Anonymus 2130 Sigman Rd, Conyers, GA- Toll free 877-569-0780 HANDICAP VANS *SCOOTER VANS *CONVERSION VANS *ACCESSIBLE VANS * WHEELCHAIR VANS*BRAUN RAMP VANS & BRAUN ENTER VANS * VMI INFLOOR RAMP CONVERSIONS * REAR ENTRY VANS Delivery Service Available Anywhere In The Southeast! Independence Day sion. He loved the AmeriA Story of Hope & Freedom can Forces and hung our strengths, and commit- around them as much as ment to freedom. One positive light in this vast darkness is the story of Antoine Accristo. Mr. Accristo's life is an inspiration and monument to the struggles and triumph of the human spirit. His life story is published in a book called "Little Tony." Little Tony grew up in southern France in a Rick Mowles, BS, DC, large family. They had to DICAK, DABCO exist in extreme poverty Vietnam Veteran 1968and despair while World 1970. 1st Battalion 9th War II engulfed Europe. As Marines, 3rd.Marine Divi- the war escalated, France sion as other European, countries found themselves oc- possible. He soon had the We live in a country cupied by the Nazi forces. beginning of a dream to where the ideals that made Little Tony describes the come to America. America, America great have disap- brutality of the Nazi sol- the land of freedom and oppeared. We see people pub- diers toward the civilians. portunity, became the focus the The extreme conditions of of his life. He befriended licly criticizing traditions of America, dis- poverty as well as the an American soldier, respecting the armed forces harshness of war, tested Nicholas J. Botera, who and even burning the the extremes of the human wanted to bring him back American flag. The many spirit for survival. Little to America. Little Tony positive factors such as Tony found himself at was only fourteen years courage, loyalty, respect, times questioning many old. He wasn't allowed on courtesy, truth, hard work, basic principles of life and the troop ship returning to and spiritual strength are the will to survive. He soon America so he sneaked looked upon as faults and recognized and idealized onto the ship as a stownot pillars which made this the American Forces as away. He was discovered country great. Out of the they gradually pushed back half way across the Atlantic discouragement of the the Nazis, freeing his coun- and detained but not sent times in America, there are try from German oppres- back to France. He spent months at Immigration in things that remind us about Boston. Finally, his dream was coming true. He was sponsored and allowed to Building The American Dream stay in America. He learned the english lan- "Li le Tony" www.theveteransvoice.com 4033 Lamar Ave Memphis, TN 38118 901-363-1887 AUTO CARE CENTER 5155 Quince Rd. Memphis, TN 38117 RON ARCHER'S guage, went to school and got a job. Little Tony was so thankful to be in America that he cherished every moment. He wanted to be an American and give back to this great country. He also never forgot his love for the American troops that liberated France from the brutality of Nazi Germany. He had experienced the extremes of man's inhumanity toward man as well as the ravages of war. Little Tony felt so proud to be a part of this great country that he had admired for so many years. He enlisted in the United States Air Force and was stationed in the Phillippines and Japan as well as in the combat theater of Korea. One night in Korea he was attacked by an infiltrator and wounded. He returned from Korea and got his American citizenship. He got married and went back to school under the GI Bill. He started a business. He describes in his book the trials and tribulations of being successful in business as well as trying to help his family members in France. The one thing that stands out with Little Tony was his unwavering determination to succeed and never give up. Faced with numerous challenges, and obstacles, Little Tony always continued to fight 901-682-6515 for success. Marital stresses mounted during these struggling years which ultimately led to divorce and termination of his marriage. Little Tony later remarried. He loved the American West so soon after retiring in the early 90s, he moved his family from Pennsylvania to Helena, Montana. He built a home and settled into a calmer lifestyle enjoying the beauty of Montana with the great hunting and fishing. He has been volunteering at the Fort Harrison VA Medical Center in Helena for the past ten years. The story of Antoine Accristo is important reading for several reasons. First, it describes the many trials and tribulations of a young man under the most extreme conditions to survive. The rebounding of the human spirit from many obstacles reflects how determination and hard work will lead to the accomplishment of one's goals. Second, it shows the emotional and physical stresses of being occupied by an enemy that has no regard for human life. As a young boy, living under the strict rules of Nazi occupation, the effect of liberation by the American forces is told. In today's news media, we frequently see negative things about the American forces. Little Tony's life shows the appreciation of our troops, as a citizen of a country occupied by a foreign enemy. The book tells what a citizen of that country felt when the American forces came and drove out the Nazi forces. These sorts of things need to be told by the victims of an occupied country freed by American liberation. Third, and probably the most important reason for reading this book is the appreciation for all that is offered in America. 8 It drives home the idea that we need to be appreciative of the opportunities, freedoms, and happiness present in this great country. We can sit around and complain about things only because we have not been without things. When you have to worry about finding the next morsel of food to keep from starving or clothing, and shelter, then it puts into prospective just how much we have in America. "Little Tony" also drives home the idea that an immigrant who goes through the proper channels to be an American citizen will have the many opportunities available in this great country. This doesn't mean what is going to be given to you, but what hard work, determination and perseverance will give one who is willing to take advantage of the opportunity. "Little Tony" is one of those books that once you start reading it, you can't put it down. It is an incredible story of an incredible journey. Antoine Accristo Immigrant Patriot Independence Day You probably already know that starting a small business requires extensive research and analysis of many factors. But the one requiring the most critical assessment is often overlooked by many entrepreneurs. And, it's as close as the nearest mirror. That's because wanting to be an entrepreneur is one thing; being one is quite another. You will take on responsibilities and commitments far different from those of an employee, even if you have management experience. It's a challenge that can be exhilarating and rewarding. Unless you're prepared mentally and emotionally, however, it can also be overwhelming. Before you study financing options and plan store layouts, sit down and conduct a probing interview with yourself to see if you're the right person for the all-important job of entrepreneur-owner-boss. Are You a Self-Starter? Nothing in business happens by itself. As the owner, you're responsible for everything from estab- Want to be an Entrepreneur? There are many resources for vets who do! lishing your firm's vision to setting the daily work schedule. The fact that you're exploring small business ownership and asking questions is a good sign. Are You a Positive Thinker? The moment you become a business owner, you represent yourself, your business and your expectations for success. What you say and do must convey confidence and commitment to moving forward. Employees who sense these qualities will share that determination to succeed, even under difficult circumstances. If you work alone, there will be days when you have to be your own cheerleader. Are You Disciplined? Your days of the "9-to-5 routine" are over. Running a small business requires a continuous commitment to quality and detail. You cannot afford to cut corners, miss deadlines or make promises beyond your capabilities. If you plan to run the business from home, you must be able to resist temptations and distractions in order to get your work done. Are You a Lifelong Learner? Entrepreneurs who continually seek information, new ideas and sound advice have the best chance for success. Being attuned to market trends and issues makes it easier to adjust products and services to customers' needs and preferences. You're also in a better position to enhance your competitive advantage and efficiency, and address potential problems before they harm your business. Can You Market Yourself and Your Business? Some people have trouble with this one because of the negative (and often unfair) connotations associated with being a "salesperson." No business, no matter how good, will succeed without some kind of marketing. The good news is that promoting your business is easier than you may think as long as you know what to do and how to do it. After all, we all enjoy saying good things about www.theveteransvoice.com ourselves. When you craft and tell your story in the right way, more people will be willing and eager to hear it. Can You be Objective? Your ideas and practices may seem "bulletproof," but reality may be far different. Is there really a need for a particular product or service in your area? Are the hours of operation fair to your employees? Is renting equipment better than owning it? A good business owner knows how to examine an issue from many perspectives and understand that strengths and limitations of each. So how did your "candidate" for entrepreneurowner-boss do? If every answer was a "yes," your small business dream is on its way to becoming a reality. For areas of concern, the solution may be business counseling, management courses, or a concerted effort to discard some unproductive habits in favor new ones. Finally, make it a point to conduct regular self-reviews. Thinking and approaches that worked in the start-up phase may not be as appropriate for a thriving concern, or if a major market shift occurs. When you work for yourself, you want to be confident the entrepreneur-owner-boss knows exactly what he or she is doing. Belle Meade Exterminating Company 2711 Larmon Dr., Nashville, TN Small Business Administration (SBA) Historically, veterans do very well as small business entrepreneurs. Veterans interested in entrepreneurship and small business ownership should look to the U.S. Small Business Administration's Office of Veterans Business Development (www.sba.gov/vets) for assistance. OVBD conducts comprehensive outreach to veterans, service-disabled veterans and Reserve Component members of the See page 10 9 Call us for all your pest control needs. (615) 298-5555 Herb Adcox Chevrolet, Inc. "Thank you for your Service & Our Freedom" Sales 423-443-4656 Service 423-443-4653 271 Lee Highway, Chattanooga www.herbadcox.com Independence Day I did not expect to see you there! www.theveteransvoice.com Hero Sherman A. Jones Army 1967-1970 Vietnam 1968- 1969 Pastor Emeritus, Disabled Veteran, and Author Cedar Hill, TX The Veterans of Underage Military Service celebrated their Annual Reunion in April of 2010 and gathered in Salt Lake City Utah for the event. We were pleased that the Editor of the Veterans Voice newspaper( Editor's note: It was an honor and a By Bruce Salisbury pleasure to meet such incredible men and women. I was dumbfounded as I considered that these heroes had volunteered at such tender ages!) was able to visit with us and meet the underage boys and girls she had been reading about. At these reunions we vote on which state will host the next gathering and it was Since 1952, builders, architects and designers have relied upon Venetian Blind Carpet One Floor & Home to help create their dream homes. decided that Cheyenne, Wyoming would be that place in 2011. There are many historical things to see in the area, including a large memorial marker dedicated to a prostitute, over near to Lusk. Yes! "Old Mother Feather legs" has a memorial rock. She is an interesting story which can be read on internet. When we get together each year we honor those of our small group who have died during the last year and this year the number of those who are with us no more was shocking. Almost half a hundred of our group made that final transfer since last we gathered. There are no more of us enlisting underage, and we will all one day be gone, but we will be around longer than most people think. Our oldest member is Frank Buckles of West Virginia who joined the US Army back in 1918 at age 16. I will not be as old as Frank until the year 2039! Yes, there will be Underage Vets around for years to come. When I joined the Underage Veterans there were four of us in my area who became VUMS at the same time. Our friend Cyrus Waggoner died several years ago and is buried at Home Lake Colorado. I had been told that John McManus too had died, and was surprised when he showed up at the Salt Lake City Reunion. Guess you could say we were both stunned, but we were very happy to spend time together again. If you know of anyone who enlisted in the military under the age of seventeen please ask them to consider becoming a part of our elite group! Remember though that you must be able to prove your age of entry into the military service. We old government certified liars insist on this. To join our group go online to www.oldvums.com. (or) veterans of underage military service (or) call 1-888653-8867 Vet Entrepreneurs 10 2504 Bissonnet, E. of Kirby,Houston,TX 713.528.2404 " We're here when the others are closed and people need help the most" "Welcome Home" CARPET CARPET CERAMIC TILE LAMINATE FLOORING VINYL FLOORING WOOD FLOORING COUNTERTOPS WINDOW COVERINGS Flowers By Spain 1627 10th Street Wichita Falls, TX 877-273-7337 or 940-723-7337 Serving Shepherd Air Base *Flowers Wired Anywhere *All Occassions *City Wide Delivery From page 9 U.S. military. OVBD also provides assistance to veteran- and reservist-owned small businesses. SBA is the primary federal agency responsible for assisting veterans who own or are considering starting their own small businesses. Among the services provided by SBA are businessplanning assistance, counseling and training through community based Veterans Business Outreach Centers for more information, go to www.sba.gov/aboutsba/sba p r o grams/ovbd/OVBD_VBO P.html. More than 1,000 university-based Small Business Development Centers; nearly 400 SCORE chapters (www.score.org/veteran.html) with 11,000 volunteer counselors, many of whom are veterans; and 100 Women's Business Centers. Continued ANGEL OF MERCY ANIMAL CRITICAL CARE 8734 Grissom Rd.- San Antonio TX, 78251 210-684-2105 Independence Day SBA also manages a range of special small business lending programs at thousands of locations, ranging from Micro Loans to the Military-communitytargeted Patriot Express Pilot Loan, to venture capital and Surety Bond Guarantees . Veterans also participate in all SBA federal procurement programs, including a special 3 percent federal procurement goal specifically for service-connected disabled veterans, and SBA supports veterans and others participating in international trade. A special Military Reservist Economic Injury Disaster Loan (www.sba.gov/reservists) is available for self-employed Reservists whose small businesses may be damaged through the absence of the owner or an essential employee as a result of Title 10 activation to Active Duty. A Veterans Business Development Officer is stationed at every SBA District Office to act as a guide to veterans, and SBA offers a full range of selfpaced small business planning assistance at http://www.sba.gov/tools/i ndex.html for veterans, re- servists, discharging service members and their families. Information about the full range of services can be found at www.sba.gov/vets/ and at www.sba.gov/reservists/, or by calling 202-205-6773 or 1-800-U-ASK-SBA (1800-827-5722). Patriot Express; aloan program for the veteran community The U.S. Small Business Administration has Patriot Express Pilot Loan Initiative for veterans and members of the military community wanting to establish or expand small businesses. Eligible military community members include: * Veterans * Service-disabled veterans *Active-duty service members eligible for the military's Transition Assistance Program * Reservists and National Guard members * Current spouses of any of the above * The widowed spouse of a service member or veteran who died during service or of a service-connected disability * The SBA and its resource partners are focusing additional efforts on counseling and training to augment this loan initiative. Perhaps a Free Franchise Would Suit You? The Kitchen Tune-Up franchise has had a lot of success with working with Veterans in the past. Over 22 veterans currently work throughout the many Kitchen Tune-Up franchise locations and at the Home Office. Their service background has given them the leadership skills, work ethic, and dedication to teamwork that is necessary in running a successful Kitchen Tune-Up business." Kitchen Tune-Up's Veterans Program is offering one free franchise in the fol- www.theveteransvoice.com lowing territories: Savannah, Georgia; Mobile, Alabama; Biloxi, Mississippi; Baton Rouge, LA; Kansas City, Missouri; Memphis, Tennessee; Tallahassee, Florida; Omaha, Nebraska; Tulsa, Oklahoma; and San Antonio, TX. If interested, applicants should contact Craig Green by phone at 800.333.6385 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org The Pizza Cookery "BEST PIZZA ON THE WEST COAST!!" 1111 "Thank you for Our Freedom" Great casual place for a quick and easy italian dinner. Excellent salads and wonderful garlic bread! 6209 Topanga Canyon Blvd. Woodland Hills CA 91367 (818)887-4770 Bob Bowen's Auto Service *Senior Citizen Discount*Computerized patient profile services We accept all major prescription insurance plans Waterfront Pharmacy Hero JenniferRuth Green USAF 2005-Present Unit: Multi-National Security Transition Command - Iraq Rank: Captain Hometown: North Highlands, CA Currently: Carson, CA 7191 Alvarado Rd. La Mesa, CA 619-469-1895 123 S. Commerce St., Ste A, Stockton, CA. We strive to offer a high level of service and quality in all we do. We're the one-stop provider of medical supplies & equipment in Stockton, CA. at Waterfront. We are reliable and committed to serving all of your medical supply and equipment 209-463-7777 FARM FRESH PRODUCE At Gate 3 Party Fruit Platters - Gift Baskets Fruit Salads To Go Call Armando 6333 West Third St., Los Angeles, CA 323-931-3773 Independence Day "Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail." -Ralph Waldo Emersonby Gail Chatfield Writing What You Know To paraphrase Ernest Hemingway, everyone's life if truthfully told would make a great story. I found this especially true after interviewing 52 veterans for my book, "By Dammit, We're Marines! Veterans' Stories of Heroism, Horror and Humor in World War II on the Pacific Front". They shared captivating stories not only about their foxhole view of war but also about growing up during the Depression. I sought out these veterans because I wanted to know more about what my father experienced as a young Marine fighting on Bougainville, Guam and Iwo Jima. Like most men of his generation, he never spoke about the war and sadly died when I was 15 years old. As I look back, he never really talked about his childhood in Arkansas either. How I wished he would have written his story down so I could have known him better. Retrieving personal life stories and writing a memoir can be a daunting and intimidating task. I'm sure my father felt that way. Questions of where to begin, what to include and how to put it together can be overwhelming. With a little bit of guidance though, anyone can create an interesting record of their life's important events. Let me help you get started writing your memoir by offering a few suggestions. First, trust yourself. You can't write the wrong thing. This is your life, your perspective and your wisdom. Accept that there may be distressing parts of your life revealed, but writing allows you to sort out those thoughts and feelings. Choose the stories you want to tell. Memoir writing is not about telling every detail of your life and it is not necessarily about starting at the beginning of your life. Make a list of the events you remember most, www.theveteransvoice.com Serving the family with dignity and personal Understanding 2 Locations to serve you... 115 John McCarroll St., Charlotte, NC 704-332-7109 Rogers and Breece Our Family Serving your Family Since 1898 www.grierfuneralservice.com 704 Walkup Ave. Monroe, N C 704-283-5423 the ones that were life changing, heartfelt, exciting, taught you something, historically important, defined who you are, etc. Focus your attention on several of those or perhaps choose one event and tell that story in great detail. From this list, pick one event and jot down anything you remember. You don't need to write complete sentences at this point. A simple outline or bullet points will do. Don't forget to use all your senses to re-create that moment in time. Then outline the next event. Each outline could be its own short story chapter in your final memoir. When finished, put your events in chronological order. If you recall additional information later, simply add it to your outline. Now you are ready to begin the actual writing. Choose one of your experiences. Don't spend a lot of time trying to craft the perfect sentence. The most important part at this stage is to tell the story in your own words. Don't over analyze what you write or wonder what anyone will think if they read it. Polishing and editing the narrative will come later. Remember that each event you write about needs to have a beginning, middle and end as does the entire memoir. If you plan to share your writings with others, use a style that will keep the reader engaged in your story. The best way to do this is to be honest, open and human. The more you write, the easier it will be to find your voice and writing style. Distractions abound when writing. Stay on task by setting realistic goals for yourself. Plan to write about one event or chapter per day or week for example. Ultimately set a timeline when you want your memoir finished. Perhaps you want to give copies to your family at a holiday or on your birthday. Maybe you want to keep your writing private. Either way, a deadline is essential for any writer. Reliving the past can be pleasurable as well as painful. Frank McCourt, whose memoir Angela's Ashes was published when he was 66 years old compares writing a memoir to going to confession. "You have to examine your conscience," he explains. Like a confessor, writing keeps your secrets safe and going to `confession' will become easier with each sentence you write. Plus writing is good for you. Putting emotions and memories into words re- duces stress, promotes well-being and fires up those alpha brain waves. With only pen and paper needed, memoir writing is the least expensive, yet most valuable gift you can give yourself. So blurt it out, jot it down, and delight in the life you've led. And remember, nothing beats reality for a good story. Gail Chatfield is a native of Southern California and received her Bachelor's Degree in Anthropology from San Diego State University courtesy of the G.I. Bill. Chatfield is a free lance writer and an awardwinning journalist in San Diego. Her book By Dammit, We're Marines! Veterans Stories of Heriosm, Horror, and Humor in World War II on the Pacific Front has been honored with two national book awards. Chatfield leads writing workshops for veterans through the non-profit American Combat Veterans of War organization at the VA hospital and at Camp Pendleton. 12 500 Ramsey St Fayetteville, NC 28301 Phone: 910-483-2191 www.rogersandbreece.com Now I know what a statesman is; he's a dead politician. We need more statesmen. Bob Edwards Independence Day Saudi Syndrome from a VA Perspective When the troops started returning after Desert Storm there were a host of complaints made to government agencies for various for symptoms of illness. There was much talk of Saudi Vets actually dying from unknown conditions marked by symptoms that doctors could not provide a diagnosis for. The VA did recognize there was a problem, but was unsure how to handle it at first. Traditionally if a soldier developed an illness or injury that was linked to their service, the diagnosed condition was evaluated and given the status of Service Connection. Compensation was paid to the veteran based on the evidence the medical documents provided. The problem for the VA was evaluating something that couldn't be diagnosed. Researchers looked at every thing from sand mites, to spirochetes native to the Middle East, to depleted Uranium. An answer for the veterans who served at the various locations in the Persian Gulf region has not been found. In a local newspaper, there was an article describing how various research organizations have not come up with any ex- By Thom Stoddert planation, except that the evidence may indicate there is no "Saudi Syndrome." The same news article reported that other health studies now indicate that Saudi vets experience multi-system illnesses at a rate twice that of none deployed veterans. I personally agree to some extent. I have come across too many men and woman who complain of pain or burning during intercourse since they or their spouse were deployed in the Gulf. I researched this further and discovered this complaint is far more common than ever expected. The Dept. of Veteran Affairs has come up with certain guidelines for what is called "Saudi Syndrome." If a Desert Storm veteran presents with a symptom or grouping of symptoms for which a diagnosis cannot be given, then the symptoms will be service connected based on their debilitating effect. A common scenario is of a veteran complaining of pain and swelling in his knees. The pain is a subjective complaint; it cannot be repeated or observed in a clinical setting. Nevertheless, the swollen knees are objective symptoms that any clinician can observe and describe. The usual tests are run and a diagno- sis cannot be made. Yet the knees are still swollen and painful. The VA should grant service connection for the symptom(s) and evaluates as if there was an actual diagnosis given. This is true even if the symptoms appear after a reasonable period of time after the veteran has left the theater of operations. So how does a veteran file a claim for "Saudi Syndrome"? Just like any other claim except the veteran points out what the issue/complaint is and that there has been no diagnosis made for it, nor is it a part of a larger diagnosed medical condition. The VA will do two things; attempt to obtain the veteran's service medical records and gather up the civilian medical records identified by the veteran. The VA is responsible by law to obtain any military medical records. The veteran is responsible to identify any appropriate civilian medical treatment records to the VA. Once there is sufficient medical documentation the VA Regional Office will most likely schedule a medical exam for the purpose of confirming and measuring the amount of disability the undiagnosed condition presents. A Rating Decision will be made to determine if service connection is granted or denied. If the decision is favorable, a monetary award will be determined. If the claim is denied service connection; then information will be provided for why it was denied and how to over come the denial. What are some of the pit- www.theveteransvoice.com falls claiming service connection for a medical issue believed to be resultant of service in Desert Storm? There are some, so a vet will need to be extra careful and start planning and building the evidence before they actually file a claim. First, a lack of proof that the veteran was actually in the Kuwaiti Theater of Operations (KTO) will kill the claim before it even gets to the Rating Board. The vets DD-214 should be the best source to fulfill this requirement. The VA is aware many vets who received the campaign ribbons had never set foot on or sailed in the KTO. Therefore, have secondary information ready, such as pictures, copies of orders, and/or a history of the unit assigned to. The medical evidence must not be exclusive to other evidence or insufficient. The medical documents must show there is an undiagnosed condition and that it was not there before deployment to the KTO. For complaints, especially issues such as pain, there will be a need for the medical records to show continuity of complaints. There should be documentation of a problem beginning during or shortly after leaving the KTO and it continuing to this day. The thought here is "quantity", as in many visits to the doctor over the years. Several things the vet should think about that would help the claim's success. Consider talking to a doctor about what is bothering him or her and see if it really meets the diag- www.theveteransvoice.com nosed requirement. Before actually filing a claim, the vet should plan and assemble the claimed issue(s) with the appropriate evidence. A service officer (States often have knowlegable VSOs) can help in understanding the legal jargon of the VA. With or without a service officer's help, the veteran must read, and re-read any correspondence from the VA for complete understanding. These simple steps are laborious, but they will ensure a much higher likelihood of a successful claim. Also keep this in mind; service connected medical issues can serve as the basis of benefits for a vet's family. VBA details new procedures for handling claims based on herbicide exposure in Thailand and Korea. After reviewing documents related to herbicide use in Vietnam and Thailand, C&P Service has determined that there was significant use of herbicides on the fenced in perimeters of military bases in Thailand intended to eliminate vegetation and ground cover for base security purposes. Therefore, when herbicide related claims from Veterans with Thailand service are received, RO personnel should now evaluate the treatment and personnel records to determine whether the Veteran's service activities involved duty on or near the perimeter of the military base where the Veteran was stationed. To see the completeC & P bulletin visit us on: 13 MT National Guard 2009-Present Chemical Tech Plains, MT Missoula, MT Just a note to say how proud I am of my son! Editor-TVV Elijah Lee Necessary Water Well Drilling & Service Southland Well Drillers "Thank you for Our Freedom" 460 Mcleod Rd, St Augustine, FL 904-824-0774 Independence Day Remembering Roy L. Strickland yards to the outhouse. Bringing in seasoned wood for the cook-stove was the youngster's duty. The odor of Red Man and spit wafted from old Folgers cans in the dining room...his mother had her can nearby at all times. The life was hard enough to make him sure that there had to be a better way to live. He was an adventurer and a restless spirit and the first military uniform he saw gobsmacked him and he knew what he had to do. Roy L. Strickland He was 15 when he left home and tried joining the July 30th 1925 Army. He almost made it. May 30th 2010 He was a stout and strong By Jim Strickland guy then. Ultimately they "Rather than mourn his didn't accept him. That was death, I choose to celebrate the Army's loss. He was 16 his life. He epitomized our when he became a United American spirit and our States Marine and went off to the exotic sounding Parvalues." ris Island, South Carolina. Boot camp didn't trouble He was 15 when he left home. He was born in him much, but for the Hilliard, Florida and even- gnats. If you aren't familiar tually lived as a young fel- with the South Carolina low in Hazlehurst, Georgia. "low country" you can't unHis DD 214 says that prior derstand the terror that a to his entrance to the pinhead sized winged creaUSMC that he was a farm ture can cause when they hand. Most southern Amer- swarm around you by the icans back then were farm- millions. Dare to slap at a ers or sharecroppers. The gnat who just bit a painful, United States hadn't turned bleeding, itching hole in the corner yet to the mech- you and you risk the ire of anized nation we've be- a drill sergeant. "Them gnats have to eat too recome. People worked hard then. cruit, don't you DARE kill He knew how to hook one of my gnats." He didn't just survive mules to plows and which was the business end of a boot camp, he thrived in it. flat blade shovel. He pro- Not unlike Will Stockdale fessed a long love for the in 'No Time For Sergeants' smell of tobacco drying in this young Marine saw the a barn. I knew his parents life at boot camp as a lot well. It seemed natural to less strenuous than his life me to draw water from a back on the farm. Three well outside their kitchen squares a day, indoor and to walk a hundred plumbing, a cot to sleep They Called Him "The Gunny" on...shucks, life in the Corps was a cakewalk. All there was to it was hiking and shooting and running around a bunch of obstacles. Then you got to eat all you wanted 3 times every day. How could anything be better? That he was grateful to the Corps for taking him out of the red dirt farmland that was his future is an understatement. He knew that but for the USMC he'd be just another redneck, a Florida/Georgia cracker with no education, no skills and no future. These officers and NCOs were giving him the chance to be somebody and he wanted them all to know how much he appreciated it. He worked hard at everything he was told to do and then made corporal and then sergeant and soon there was little doubt that he had become one of those...a real Marine. He married and spent what he called his very best years in Charleston, S.C. as a "brig chaser". He thought the Corps had made a mistake when they allowed him to stay there and chase down and arrest drunk sailors for 3 whole years. Life wouldn't ever be better. He enjoyed his duty at Gitmo and Viegas too...but for a few hours in a brig himself. That story revolved around strong Puerto Rican rum and some sailors itching for a fight and I'm not sure I ever heard all of it. He didn't care for Haiti much. The abject poverty troubled him. There were those times that he didn't enjoy so much. He was 19 when he landed on the shores of Iwo www.theveteransvoice.com Jima. He told the story that after watching the Navy bombard that little island for days ahead of the invasion he didn't expect any resistance...nothing could have survived the shellings. But the Japanese did survive and before it was over he was wounded, nearly 7000 Marines and tens of thousands of Japanese were dead. He saw more death in a couple of weeks than most professional soldiers will see in two lifetimes. At Saipan he saw the island's defenders as well as civilians...women and children...throw themselves from Banzai Cliff. They committed suicide rather than be taken by the American devils and there was no stopping them. His citations from his Pacific duty reflect his courage under fire. He was a frequent traveler on those USMC "Med Cruises" and talked knowingly of the island of Crete as well as Libya. Japan was a frequent stop in his travels even as a civilian. He was wounded again in Korea during the war and later went back as a civilian tourist. He spent the night on Tinian just so he could remember where the Enola Gay launched from. He's returned to the beaches of Iwo Jima to meet with others in hopes that nothing like that would never happen again. There are no antiwar sentiments as strong as those of a warrior who has seen the futility of battle. He hated everything about war. He had a fascination with Australia and never met a stranger in his tours of the bush country, Ayers Rock and their cities. Panama was a place he remembered beautiful people and intolerable humidity. In his spare time he made a second career with Pan Am Airlines security at Cape Kennedy, FL and on their dime he traveled to Europe. He had retired after 20 in as a Master Gunnery Sergeant E-9. He was 36 years old. He had achieved the E9 grade at age 34. Try to wrap your mind around that. I have and I still have trouble with it. He was cited back then as a Marine's Marine. He made that grade because he dearly loved the Corps. He dearly loved the Corps because the Corps gave him his life and a reason to live. Every move he ever made was aimed at being a good American and an outstanding Marine. Nothing else mattered. If he got those two things right, he reasoned, everything else will fall into place. In recent years my father became more fragile. Cancer took his muscle from him but couldn't touch his strength. He was known to a few close friends as "The Gunny." The Gunny refused to give in to the disease and he refused to suffer. "Pain is weakness leaving your Robert Perry is a Vietnam era veteran and singer/songwriter who has traveled DC and states in between to sing his powerful, patriotic music to inspire, raise morale and say thanks to all of America's heroes. Now, for every $10 donation (check or money order) you will get a CD, and another one will be donated to a troop (in your name) in Iraq or Afghanistan by, body" was a saying of a friend and The Gunny was the master at quelling his own pain. A few months ago the cancer caught up to him. It was inevitable and he confessed to me that this time, he wouldn't beat it back. He'd been ill since January of this year and on Sunday, May 30th 2010, The Gunny slipped away quietly and peacefully. Not long ago he smiled at me and waved a hand to me...it had been a while since he was able to speak. I held that hand for a long time. It was goodbye and I knew it as well as he did. Rather than mourn his death, I choose to celebrate his life. He epitomized our American spirit and our values. He was a true warrior who would always stop to help anyone less able than himself. He was humble yet afraid of nothing. I've been told that we shouldn't lead quiet lives and go out peacefully but that we should work hard and play hard and come screaming into our destiny as if we were sliding into home plate for the winning score. That makes me think of my dad. Let there be no doubt...the man did it his way. 14 Supporting Soldiers Mail $10 to: 6150 Moondance Rd., Helena, Mt. 59601 Independence Day Marine Seeking "Letters to Home" for a Book God, country, and family that they have made. I would like the first portion of the book to be comprised of letters that were thankfully not sent, and the second half of the book to be letters that families relieved from their loved ones after they were killed in combat. I will need a lot of support from the families for this part because I would like to include a biography and picture of each of the individuals who died. It is my way of properly showing respect to the sacrifice they made. I would also like to scan in the original letter that was written so that people are in a sense hearing the true voice of the individual who wrote the letter. I know that this is a huge endeavor; however, I believe that it is a worthwhile project, and it is gaining support very quickly. If you'd like to make a contribution to this project, please write to: email@example.com I am compiling a book of letters that service members from any branch wrote to their loved ones in case they did not survive while they were deployed to a combat zone. I personally wrote one while I was deployed with 2D LAR, Alpha Co. during Operation Phantom Fury in 2004. I know that it is not an easy letter to write; however, I do believe that these letters properly demonstrate the sacrifice that service members are willing to make, as well as the commitment to USMC Unit: VMA-542 Intelligence Analyst Hometown: Molalla, Currently: Jacksonville, NC will be Spokane, WA in 2 months. Hero Chase Zuber SAINT LEO THE GREAT ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH God Bless Our Veterans & Our Troops One thing they never tell you about child raising is that for the rest of your life, at the drop of a hat, you are expected to know your child's name and how old he or she is. I do not participate in any sport with ambulances at the bottom of a hill. Erma Bombeck From page 1 would be respected, and no means for them to govern themselves in their new lands? The founders knew, however, that power could not be its own justification. They recognized that only an appeal to overarching laws, binding the king as much as his subjects, was legitimate. And abuse of authority demonstrated disqualification of any governor, whether a monarch or a purported representative. We would do well to apply this insight to the political debates of today. Indeed, two competing philosophies of government at odds during the American Revolution have reappeared, with the antirepublican form seen in those politicians who would seek to gain favor by manipulating language and misrepresenting their positions. Royalists, on the other hand, believed that the king was divinely or- Independence Day www.theveteransvoice.com dained to rule over the people and was therefore above the law. This view is manifest currently in government officials--especially our elected officers--who believe they may properly command the citizenry to whatever they please, to whichever they purport to be for the good of the people. As Thomas Jefferson observed, "Were we directed from Washington when to sow, and when to reap, we should soon want bread." Yet the prevailing philosophy of government proposes exactly this--that directions from Washington as to how we must conduct ourselves, in matters large and small, will lead inexorably to scarcity and will inevitably erode our freedom. Our system of govern- ment today is not so different from the monarchy we escaped, except that a swarm of bureaucrats have taken up the throne. A necessity thus presents itself to us as well: We must reconnect with the timeless principles that inspired our Founding Fathers; those same principles that long ago gave birth to a good, great and Godblessed nation. "[W]hat do we mean by the American Revolution?" reflected John Adams. "Do we mean the American war? The Revolution was effected before the war commenced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people; a change in their religious sentiments, of their duties and obligations... This radical change in the principles, opinions, sentiments, and affections of the people was the real American Revolution." Let us celebrate this Independence Day in a manner that Adams himself might recognize--with "solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty," and with a rededication to the principles of our necessary American Revolution. And as always, in the words of George Washington, "Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism. 15 Need Help? Suicide Hotlines 888-649-1366 800-784-2433 800-984-8523 Wounded Soldier & Family Hotline Help people in need. Donate your car, boat or RV your car, RV Free Towing Tax Deductible Free Towing Tax Deductible 227 S Exeter St Baltimore, MD 21202 FREE vacation 3 day vacation vac to over to over 80 destinations destinations Call Toll-Free Toll-Free 410.675.7275 1-888-786-4632 Independence Day Scams, Scams & VA Benefits-Part 2 Scams against veterans, for veterans, and about veterans are everywhere, more than I ever thought possible! Some people have learned to stand on the line between unethical and illegal and still claim to be heroes. In one incident a "veteran" (who would not meet the federal standards of being a veteran) was dumb enough to walk into a crowd of veterans one evening at an event with three cases of soda pop and some snacks in arm. He then told the people closest to him how he had been out collecting donations for them (mostly Viet Nam By Thom Stoddert vets) from area stores. When Daryl Hunt's (of Auburn, Washington) eyes adjusted to the light he realized he was well known by those present as the poor Navy Seal blown up in Panama, confined to a wheel chair for life. Well, "wheel chair Daryl" bugged out real quick on his own two feet. Unfortunately Daryl also plays games with the VA's Orthopedic Clinic in Seattle. Daryl is the reason the VA has a hot line to report fraud. Over a year ago I went to a Wal-Mart store one day. In front of each door was a "veteran" collect ing money for homeless veterans. Wal-Mart works very hard with its public relations and supports many veterans' issues, much to their credit. When I started asking the man in front of the door about his organization, he became vague and agitated and could not produce any documentation except the business card of someone who lived 60 miles away. For some reason that summer Wal- Yokum's Vacationland Attention veterans! Seneca Rocks, West Virginia 304-567-2351 800-772-8342 Mart did not sponsor the yearly "Military Family Day." May be they had been burned, and decided to take a low profile. In Washington(and most states), if you are collecting money for a charity, you must be registered with the Secretary of State. A simple call to them will tell you if the charity is registered and if there have been problems. The Attorney General's office can also tell you if there have been complaints. In the instance of lawyers addressing VA issues in nursing homes, there have been lots of complaints made to many different agencies, state and federal. Just because a group is a registered charity with a 501 (c) 3 tax- IRS status does not make them legitimate. A friend of mine keeps getting calls for donations from a particular group; one caller even ID'ed himself as a former Marine Corp chaplain. When my buddy questioned them by email; they told how they are so generous with the donations collected for veterans that they www.theveteransvoice.com even paid the airfare for relatives of their president to visit him in the hospital. The writer's email address is firstname.lastname@example.org and he writes this is one their phone numbers 888296-8044 (it has been verified). Dws2624, did not really provide any real details, like their location, or full name of the organization. If they are legit, they will welcome a call. Always check out the groups operating costs. I found a group, Foundation for American Veterans, on Wikipedia which noted that for every dollar taken in they kept 96 cents for their own operating costs. They gave just enough away to stay out of trouble with the IRS. Check out their website for yourself. I would never give them any money. For weeks now I have been looking, talking, and interviewing lawyers, state agencies, long term assisted living facilities, and the VA. I also went to an educational VA benefits seminar that sounded more like a pitch for purchasing vacation land than an infor- Army 16th MP BDE Specialist Helena, Mt Ride Captain for the Patriot Guard Rider in Montana Hero Eric C . Walla We have excellent facilities for reunions. Log Cabins with fireplaces, fully equipped kitchens and linens & a modern motel too! mational resource. The information that was not put out was volumes more abundant than which was discussed. That made me suspicious, and very nauseated. I have written about pension and aid/attendance and we have given a presentation on the subject to a military widow's group. We accepted nothing more than a piece of cake and coffee. For most REAL veteran advocates that was a bit too much to receive for just helping. The lawyer I spoke with in the assisted living facility was asked during and after his presentation how he is compensated for what he does in the elder living facilities. He repeatedly explained that he is like a bank selling Certificate of Deposits (CDs). The bank promises a percentage of return on the money invested but the bank also makes money. During the next phase of the presentation he explained to the group, mostly retirees, that when a financial relationship is established through the "repositioning" of assets, the veteran or widow will be a hundred percent assured they will receive VA benefits in the form of pension and/or aid and attendance. In other words, a relationship is established through the purchase of financial products, such as annuities, and the VA advocacy begins. Between phase one and two, there seems to be an illogical disconnect as the listeners were left to make many assumptions to bridge each issue during the presentation. I will attempt to clarify this in next month's article. However, an old and trusted veteran friend with a master's degree in business has helped me on these articles has said; "Never, ever, purchase financial products from someone who stands to benefit continually from a sale, instead use fee based agents/brokers." They get paid once and that's it; there is no prejudice on what will get recommended or sold. The buyer is best served." The focus of my articles has always been to help and protect veterans, whether it is dealing with the Department of Veterans Affairs or things that can be dangerous to a veteran. This is the motivation for this type of article. I wish to thank writer Jim Strickland for his help, knowledge and commitment to veterans and the "Voice" for its service. See you next issue; I only scratched the surface with this article. 16 The N. Fork of the Potomac River flows just behind the motel and restaurant, offering excellent trout and bass fishing & canoeing. "An optimist will tell you the glass is half-full; the pessimist, half-empty; and the engineer will tell you the glass is twice the size it needs to be" Anonymous. "In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock."Thomas Jefferson "Republicans believe every day is the Fourth of July, but the democrats believe every day is April 15."Ronald Reagan Enjoy horseback trail rides to top of Seneca Rocks! Dixie Body Shop-Clarksdale, MS Thank you for Our Freedom! Independence Day No VA Hearing on Shinski's Agent Orange Decision to add Parkinson's, heart disease & B-cell leukemia to presumptive list. Senator Webb proposed, and senators accepted May 27, an amendment to the fiscal 2010 war supplemental funding bill (HR 4899) to limit spending on claims filed for these new presumptive Agent Orange diseases for 60 days. That will allow Congress time to study the VA decision and examine more closely the link found between these diseases and herbicide exposure. Shinseki's decision and how the hefty cost -- $42.2 billion over 10 years -could impact other VA services. That final rule likely won't be published until fall, at the earliest, but when claims can be paid they will be retroactive the date first filed To stop the regulation from taking effect, both the House and Senate would have to pass a blocking resolution. Veterans' service organizations say that is not likely to happen. VA Announces New Hotline for Homeless Vets The telephone hotline willprovide emergency support and resources to homeless veterans. 1-877-4AID VET Stolen Memorial Reward Increases The Veterans of Foreign Wars is reporting that the reward fund for the crossshaped Mojave Desert Veterans Memorial that was stolen recently has increased from $25,000 to Benefits Update $125,000, thanks to the generosity of a decorated combat veteran who wishes to remain anonymous. Anyone with information relating to the crime should call the National Park Service Tip Line at 1760-252-6120. VA Makes Filing Claims Easier and Faster for Veterans VA has shortened application forms to reduce paperwork for Veterans. The new forms, which are being made available on VA's Web site include: * A shortened VA Form 21-526 for Veterans applying for the first-time to VA for disability compensation or pension benefits. This form has been cut to 10 pages. It is immediately available to Veterans via Web download, and will be available through VA's online claim-filing process later this summer. * VA Form 21-526b for Veterans seeking increased benefits for conditions already determined by VA to be service-connected. This new form more clearly describes the information needed to support claims for increased benefits. VA has also introduced two new forms for Veterans participating in the Department's new fully developed claim (FDC) program, which is one of the fastest means to receive a claims decision. If VA receives all of the available evidence when the claim is submitted, the remaining steps in the claims-decision process can be expedited without compromising quality. To participate in the FDC program, Veterans should complete and submit an FDC Certification and VA Form 21-526EZ, "Fully Developed Claim (Compensation)," for a compensation claim, or a VA Form 21-527EZ, "Fully Developed Claim (Pension)," for a pension claim. Disability compensation is a tax-free benefit paid to a Veteran for disabilities that are a result of -- or made worse by -- injuries or diseases that happened while on active duty, active duty for training or inactive duty training. Pension is a benefit paid to wartime Veterans with limited income, and who are permanently and totally disabled or age 65 or older. For additional information visit, www.va.gov/ or call VA's toll free benefits number at 1-800-827-1000. Committee Advances Legislation to Support VA Health Practitioners, Offer Chiropractic Care at VA Facilities H.R. 1017, as amended � Chiropractic Care to All Veterans Acts (Filner) This bill will require the VA to expand veterans' access to chiropractic care and services at their local VA facilities. This care is intended to help veterans get necessary treatments, especially those who served in Iraq and Afghanistan and continue to report musculoskeletal ailments. H.R. 5145 � Assuring Quality Care for Veterans Act (McNerney) www.theveteransvoice.com Name________________________________ Address______________________________ City__________________________________ ST_____________Zip___________________ Call 888-826-3215 or mail check or M.O. to: The Veterans' Voice, 1145 N 100 W, Layton, UT 84041 Subscribe Today- 6 Issues - $7.00 H.R. 5145 would increase the reimbursement for continuing professional education for all health care professionals employed by the VA. H.R. 3885 � Veterans Dog Training Therapy This bill requires VA to conduct a 5-year pilot program for relieving veterans' post-deployment mental health and posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms through training service dogs for veterans with disabilities. The bills will next be considered by the U.S. House of Representatives. Changes to Some CoPays As previously announced on January 7, 2010, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) froze prescription copayment increases for six months. Veterans who generally have higher income and no service-connected disabilities - referred to as Priority Groups 7 and 8 Veterans will now pay an additional $1 for each 30-day supply of outpatient medications. Taking effect July 1, the increase to $9 from $8 is the first change in VA's medication copay since Jan. 1, 2006. Veterans, Psych Drugs, and Deaths It has been noted that psychotropic drug-induced sudden deaths are increasing in Iraq War Veterans. Most of the newer psych drugs are fluoride based and are known to have cardiac effects among the many problems they cause. If you suppress respiratory function enough you will impact heart function because of low oxygen levels. Old studies showed that low O2 levels in the blood caused more deaths at 4 AM and that often there was evidence of cardiac arrythmia. Interactions: Combined Seroquel, Klonopin, Paxil clonazepam paroxetine Applies to: Klonopin (clonazepam), Paxil (paroxetine) clonazepam quetiapine Applies to: Klonopin (clonazepam), Seroquel (quetiapine) MONITOR: Central nervous system- and/or respiratory-depressant effects may be increased in patients taking multiple drugs that cause these effects, especially in elderly or debilitated patients. paroxetine quetiapine Applies to: Paxil (paroxetine), Seroquel (quetiapine) MANAGEMENT: Dur- ing concomitant use of these three drugs, patients should be monitored for potentially excessive or prolonged CNS and respiratory depression . Ambulatory patients should be counseled to avoid hazardous activities requiring mental alertness and motor coordination until they know how these agents affect them, and to notify their physician if they experience excessive or prolonged CNS effects that interfere with their normal activities. 19 FREE BIBLE STUDY COURSES BY MAIL Write: WBS P.O. Box 2169, Cedar Park, TX 78630 OF HOLY LOVE WHICH BELIEVES EVERY SOUL IS PRECIOUS TO GOD. WWW.wbschool.org AVAILABLE BY EMAIL WORLD BIBLE SCHOOL IS A WORK COURSES ALSO *ASK THOMAS STODDERTFORMER VA RATING SPECIALIST *ASK JIM STRICKLANDVETERAN'S ADVOCATE *DOC- DR. ELAINE TRIPI- TAKE THE PTSD SELF TEST GOT QUESTIONS? GET ANSWERS... www.theveteransvoice.com Completely confidential! Please be sure to give your e-mail address if you'd like a response. Questions of general interest may be shared with readers after names and places have been changed to protect your privacy, unless you request otherwise. Independence Day Divided We Stand-Are We Headed for Another Civil War? ern border. Mexico cannot and will not secure their side of the border. In fact they encourage the Mexican people to illegally come across to the US. Yet when we try to enforce OUR laws, to keep the illegals out, the Mexican government wants to crucify us on an open fire! It's high time we stand up to the Mexicans, and let them know that they must, under no uncertain terms, secure their border, or we will, and use whatever force necessary to accomplish the mission. The illegals that come into this country, are smart enough to use our own laws against us, to get what they came here for; $$$$. Using the generosity of government funded programs that are meant to help US citizens who legally have the right to those $$$$$. The illegals are bankrupting this country. The illegals get more benefits than any legal American can ever hope to get, and those that truly need our help, can not get help. They come here, have a baby, rape our system for all they can get, FREE, and bingo, we have another US Citizen, don't we? They are called "anchor babies" folks, the biggest rip-off in this country's history. The law that allows anchor babies to become US citizens, was written about www.theveteransvoice.com CAN WE ALL JUST GET ALONG?! It appears not! Not as long as those that have, keep having to pay for those that have not! As I presented the facts in my last article, "America's Racist Race," those of us who pay taxes,48%, have to support the other 52% who pay NO taxes at all! Of which, a large portion are illegal aliens. The president wants to raise our taxes to pay for all his programs that will not work, but then, those who pay no taxes, don't care do they? Like I said, they don't pay any taxes! Folks, do you realize that 70% of the people who live in the US, receive some sort of payment from our government?! Talk about the goats guarding the garbage! How in the hell can we keep going in the direction that this country is heading ---we can't. At the rate this country is going, we will bankrupt ourselves in a very short period of time. Most of the illegal trade is coming from our south- Bud Keller with his wife Sandi CowboyVeteran@gmail.com 150 years ago when we were still growing as a nation, it now needs to be changed! We can't keep giving away things when we no longer have the resources to give them away. I, for one, am sick and tired of my tax $$$$ being used to support other people's bad work, ethical, moral, family, responsibilities, health, cars, big screen TV's, and other bad spending/living habits, so they can lay around on their fat asses watching TV, waiting for their next check. I will not be part of the "Spread-the Wealth" party. I'm sick and tired of being told by this government, they will take the $$$$$ I earned, by force if necessary, and give it to people too damn lazy to earn it. I'm sick and tired of being told I have to pay more taxes to "keep people in their homes." Of course I'm willing to help those who have lost their job, or have become very ill, or other legitimate reason, but not those who have overbought from Fannie-Mae or Freddie-Mack, who never could and never would be able to afford them! Yeah, we have ole Barnie "freaky-frack" Franks to thank for that one. I'm sick and tired of all this "political correctness" crap! The bowing down to other countries because we might offend them. The Mexican government is all in a tizzy because Arizona is trying to protect herself from all the illegals coming across their border killing her citizens, running drugs and human contraband. Mexico, you are the biggest bunch of hypocrites south of the border! Innocent people in the US are being killed by your scumbag, low-life criminals coming across our border illegally, and you piss-ants blame us for that, and the Mexican president has the "Brass-Balls-Banging-outSOS," to accuse us of being racist. Well Mr. President, take a real good look at who's calling the kettle black! I don't want to hear your sad-sack stories about how your government is trying to help with the border problem. You sir, are not getting it done! We, the United States of America, pay you billions of $$$$$ to help you with YOUR problem! Mr. President, what the hell are you doing with all the money we have given you up to now? I dare say sir, not much. Mexico has had nothing more than a thorny basketcase government, that can't run its own country, and has, like many of its people, its hand out for a hand out from the US tax paying citizens. You, sir, are a tyrannical, hypocritical, 8090 South State Street, Midvale, Utah 84047 Phone (801)255-7151 bastard! There was a 15 year old young-man killed on our/your border the other day, by one of our border agents. Sad as that is, that kid was not a saint! He had a record of human/drug trafficking as long as your arm. He was a criminal, a bad guy, breaking our laws, and bout as brainless as a popcorn fart! Anybody, who tries to hurt a cop, who also, by-the-way, has a mighty big gun, is a total ass and deserves what he gets for throwing a softball sized rock with the intent to do bodily harm to that agent! Our Agent was protecting himself from a rock that could have been traveling at up to 60/70+ MPH. If that had hit the Agent, it very well could have killed him! Self defense folks, self-defense. That kid was far more adult than he was kid, and he paid the price for his stupidity! It's not just the Mexican government that's throwing rocks! It's just as bad here at home. The illegals that are here, think they have a right to be here, don't they? Although the problem is all throughout the US, the biggest problems tend to be in our southern border states, primarily CA, AZ, NM, NV, and TX. But I'm only going to cover CA. AZ. NV. and NM. for now. For those sad, despondent, cry babies who feel so sorry for the illegals who are in this country just to find work, supposedly, that no one else will do, understand this my friends, they are a criminal the minute they cross over into our country. And that means that those folks that are "honest and hard working," are now criminals who have broken our laws. That in itself, means they are no longer honest. Many of these so-called honest hard working people, well maybe aren't so honest and hard working after all. The following facts are compiled from our FBI and the Dept of Homeland Security. Did-Ya-Know: * 86% of warrants for murder in Albuquerque, and 83% in Phoenix, are for illegal aliens? *75% of those on the most wanted list in L.A., Phoenix, and Albquerque, are illegal aliens. *25% of inmates in CA., fourty percent of inmates in AZ., and fourty eight precent of inmates in NM, are Mexican Nationals! ^29%(630,000) of inmates are convicted illegal alien felons. They fill our state and federal prisons at a cost of $1.6 Billion annually. *53% of all investigated burglaries reported in CA., NM., NV., AZ., and TX., are perpetrated by illegal aliens. *50% of all gang members in L.A. are illegal aliens. *71% plus of all apprehended cars stolen in the 5 above states, were stolen by illegal aliens or "transport coyotes". *47% of cited/stopped drivers in CA. Have no drivers license, no insurance, and no registration for the vehicle. Of that 47%, 92% are illegal aliens, 63% in AZ., 97% are illegal aliens, 66% in NM., 98% are illegal aliens. And last but not least, my favorite, Did-Ya-Know is: *380,000 plus "anchor ba- 17 Independence Day bies" born in the US to illegal alien parents in just one year, making a whooping 380,000 plus babies automatically US citizens! AND, over 97% of all cost incurred from those sweet little babies being born here, YEP, you got it, the 48% of us who do have to pay taxes, get stuck with the bill! And we haven't even touched on food stamps, subsidized housing, Medicare/Medicaid costs, and educational costs, such as special teachers and the lot! Are you seeing the problems here folks? They are very grave and for those of us who do pay taxes, hold onto your wallets, it's only going to get worse. So I ask you my friends, just what part of `illegal' doesn't our government understand? I fear that if this country doesn't get its ship, shipshape, we will be in for a American/Mexican WAR! Our progressive liberal far left is driving a big wedge in our country, all to get the Hispanic/minority vote. Many Hispanic organizations, especially in CA., are calling for a revolution to take back what they think is "THEIR" country. Trust me Mexico, and you Mexican sympathizers who call yourselves Americans, you do NOT want to start anything with the US that you cannot win, anyway, any shape, any form. Here are some pretty outlandish quotes from the Hispanic community; *Augustin Cebada, of the Brown Berets said , "Go back to Boston! Go back to Plymouth Rock, Pilgrims! Get out! We are the future. You are old and tired. We have beaten you. Leave like beaten rats. You old white people, it's your duty to die! Through love of having children, we are going to take over." Mr. Cebada, the only thing you have ever beaten sir, well I hope you have a few band aids handy! *Mr. Richard Alatorre a L.A. city councilor, "They are afraid we're going to take over the governmental and other institutions. They're right, we will take them over....we're here to stay." Hey Mr. Alatorre, you just might want to re-think that thought sir! *From a Mexican national newspaper, the Excelsior, "The American Southwest seems to be slowly returning to the jurisdiction of Mexico without firing a single shot!" Well now partner, don't go a holdin your breath on that one, our powder is very dry, and our aim is very straight forward! *Chairman of the Democratic Party, Art Torres; "Remember 187--proposition to deny taxpayer funds for services to non-citizens---was the last gasp of white America in California." Hey Mr. Torres, that's a mighty interesting number, that there number 187, you see sir, that is the number of men who kicked-ass on about 5000 Mexicans at the Alamo in San Antonio TX. If memory serves me right, them boys took out bout half of ole Santa Anna's Army didn't they? What the hell makes ya think you can do any better this time around? *Mexican Consul General, Jose Pescador Osuna, "We are practicing `La Reconquista' in California." Mister, you are going to need all the practice you can muster up! *Professor Jose Angel Gutierrez, University of Texas; "We have an aging White America. They are not making babies. They are dying. The explosion is in our population....I love it. They are "shitting in their pants with fear, I love it." That's OK, professor, here in America, we gots lots of toilet paper, and a lot more bullets than you will ever have. So, you see my friends, these are quotes from Hispanic leaders who want to make and stir up trouble, and if it's trouble they want, I'll be only too happy to oblige! Mexico has never extradited a Mexican National accused of murder in the US in spite of agreements to do so! According to the LA Times, Orange County, California is home to 275 gangs with 17,000 members; 98% of which are Mexican and Asian. How's your country doing? According to the New York Times article dated May 19th, "twenty years after the great influx of legal immigrants from Southeast Asia, 30% are still on welfare compared to 8% of households nationwide." A Wall Street Journal editorial stated, quoting law enforcements officials, that Asian mobsters are the greatest criminal challenge the country faces. Not bad for a group that is still under 5% of the population. This is a statement from a teacher who has taught school in the L.A. school www.theveteransvoice.com system for over 20 years, "Imagine teachers in classes containing 30-40 students of widely varying attention spans and motivation, many of whom aren't fluent in english. Educators seek learning materials likely to reach the majority of students and that means fewer words and math problems and more pictures and multicultural references. Therefore, the very reason for the high drop-out rate we experience here" One would think a job darn near impossible. When I was young, boy when I was young...that was along time ago folks! I remember hearing about the immigrants that came through Ellis Island. My grandparents included, straight off the boat from Ireland. They wanted to learn english, they wanted to breath the free air. They wanted to become Americans more than anything else, and demanded nothing in return----just the right to be free men to work and raise their family in the same way. Immigrants did what it took to become Americans. Now, too many immigrants come here with demands! They demand to be taught in their own language, they demand special privileges--such as affirmative action! They demand ethnic studies that glorify their cultures. Folks, you want to come to my country, you MUST learn to live by the same rules as we do. If that's not acceptable to you, leave! I/we don't want you here imposing your ways of doing things, on us, trying to make US do the changing----ain't a gonna happen, not on my watch! I/we welcome all peoples who are here, legally, to better themselves! We no longer can afford to baby-sit and care for the world's poor! We have way to many of our own to take care of, and we need to do a much better job of that. God Bless America and all our troops in harms way. May they all come home safe and soon. Happy Birthday America, everyone have a great 4th of July! Patriotically yours, Bud Keller--- cowboy email@example.com "The way taxes are, you might as well marry for love." Joe E. Lewis. I'm not cynical. Just experienced. 18 FREE FREE Home Security Home Security $850 VALUE System! System! at NO COST to you for parts and activation with only $99 Installation Fee and the purchase of alarm monitoring services Terms at NO COST to you for parts and activation with only a $99 Installation Fee and the purchase of alarm monitoring services. 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Offer valid for new ADT Authorized Dealer customers only and not on purchases from ADT Security Services, valid only. apply. Services, available. Inc. Other rate plans available. Cannot be combined with any other offer. offer. CA-ACO6320, CT-ELC.0193944-L5, GA-LVA205157, KY-City Licenses: AL-09-1104, AZ-ROC217517, CA-ACO6320, CO-110357041, CT-ELC.0193944-L5, DE: 07-212, FL- EC13003401 GA-LVA205157, ID: 39131, IL-127.001042, KY-City of Louisville: 483, LA-F1082, MA: 1355-C, MD: NV-68518, 30339155,107-1375, MI- 3601204877, MN- TS01807, MO-City of St. Louis LC7017450,CC354, MS-15007958, NC- 25310-SP-LV, NE-14451, NJ- 34BF00021800, NM-353366, NV-68518, City of Las Vegas: B14-00075-6-121756, C1125310-SP-LV, Vegas: NY-Licensed .Y.S 11262-L-121756, NY-Licensed by the N.Y.S. Department of State UID# 12000286451, OH- 53 89 1446, OK-1048, OR- 170997,RI-3428, SC- BAC 5630, TN- C-1164, TX-B13734, UT-6422596-6501, VA-115120, VT-ES-2382 WA- 602 588 N.Y.S. BAC UT-6422596-6501, VA-115120, VT-ES-2382 694/PROTEYH934RS, Milwauk www.protectyourhome.com/MBIDS 694/PROTEYH934RS, WI- City of Milwaukee M-0001599, WV- WV042433, WY-LV-G-21499. For full list of licenses visit our website www.protectyourhome.com/MBIDS Milwaukee WVWY-LV-G-21499. For Independence Day Shown above are super supporters of Veterans! These ladies volunteer their time to quilt lap blankets for veterans in our states' nursing homes. Last year they provided 80 blankets to the Vet home in Columbia Falls and this spring we(DAV) delivered 6 to a nursing home in Miles City and 80 to the vets in Glendive, MT. Pictured above are 9 of the 24 volunteers. From left back row: Avalon Billquist, Angie Blaz, Sue Cahill, Ada Ewan and Dorothy Hogg. Front from left: Mary Ann Jurcich, Mary Ann Kindle, Peg Patterson and Clara Scott. DAV Chapter 13, Anaconda, MT presented all with a letter of appreciation. Barry DeChaine "Well done ladies!" Honoring Our Volunteers By Kenneth Buster I was invited to DC to be with the Blackfeet Warriors as they lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and presented the colors at the ceremony on Memorial Day. I took them to meet my Great-Uncle Frank Buckles(Last living WWI Vet). Picture of America's last living WWI Veteran,109 year old Frank Woodriff Buckles from West Vir- Our last living WWI Veteran gina. Frank is also an ExPOW of the Japanese during WWII. Also in picture are The Blackfeet Warriors from Montana,(top row,left to right),Craig Falcon USMC,Keith Heavyrunner ARMY, Bruce Runningcrane USMC,Earl Heavyrunner retired ARMY (Desert Storm, Bosnia,Iraq),Walter Runningcrane ARMY(Vietnam, Silver Star, PurpleHeart), Bill Old Chief USMC, and George Rutherford USMC.(Bottom row, left to right),Ken Buckles of Remembering America''s Heroes from Oregon, retired 3 Star General Russell Davis ARMY and National President of Tuskegee Airmen from Virgina, Frank Woodriff Buckles ARMY(WWI and Ex-POW WWII), Apache Warrior, Robert Delsi USMC(Vietnam,Purple www.theveteransvoice.com 20 Heart) from Arizona,and Souix Warrior and National Commander of American Indian Veterans, Don Laudner ARMY(Korea) from South Dakota. Assisted Living Facility 2232 Tongue River Road P.O. Box 598, Ashland, MT 59003 Experience the quality service, enjoy the tasty meals, and visit with our residents and friendly staff. Decide after your stay if you would like to make your home here with us. Visit us and enjoy a complimentary week, or weekend as our guest. Call Dewanda Little Coyote for reservations: 406-784-2840 NOBLES WESTSIDE LIQUOR Thank you f o r Ou r Freedom! *Private Apartments are fully furnished and include a refrigerator & microwave. *Housekeeping services *24 hour emergency assistance *Three meals served daily *Laundry area 623 First Ave., NW 406-454-3612 Great Falls, MT Eastern MT Hospital Service Coordinator-Billings 406-651-2143 Western MT Hospital Service Coordinator- 406-447-7760 Montana Disabled American Veterans