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S Spring, 2009

Commander’s Message


By John R. McDonald

appy New Year, to all of the members and staff in the great Department Of North Carolina, Amvets (American Veterans). I can only hope that this will be our best year yet; however, ladies and gentlemen, as all of you know we are in an extreme period that rivals that of the Great Depression. All we have to do is tune into our favorite nightly news there are new conflicts, unemployment figures on the rise, bank failures and our United States Government trying to prop up our economy by handing out billions and trillions of our hard earned tax dollars. When you look at your 401K Statements and your losses, your private savings accounts dwindling, and other financial programs, it lets you know real fast that we could be on the brink of really desperate times both personally and as an organization. While listening to and reviewing different reports presented during our most recent D.E.C. at Clemmons, the following areas are the big four which we need to concentrate on: Membership – Finances – Organization – Reporting. Currently we are ranked 10th nationally in membership for this reporting period. My question as members of this department is this; are we doing all we can do, to increase and retain our membership? Are we overlooking prospective members by not asking them to join? Once the individual has joined are we getting them involved within our posts projects, and are these new members made to really feel welcomed to our organization? The bounty of having 800,000 eligible individuals as veterans, within the boundaries of our state is being taken for granted, overlooked and not really being explored. We need to tell prospective

members of our long and distinguished history such as our organization raising funds to assist in placing the memorial over the battleship, “Arizona” at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, and carillons at various battlefield sites around the globe. Communicate to your membership of the support given to hospitals, health education and research nationally. Inform your membership of the awards available to recognize outstanding service to individuals within our organization. Financially our organization is solid for the time being. We heard the reports of the Service Foundation, President, Charles Claybourn, Department Finance Officer Laura Britton and they are not trying to be soothsayers of gloom and doom. However, they are being reactive and proactive to the current Department financial situation and looking down the road to what we could face if all of us do not take an active interest. The burden of these two offices is immense, and without their leadership we will find ourselves in dire straits, within the next three years. Our operational costs continue to rise every year. Our Department needs to tap into all of our imaginations, to assist in the continuance of funds coming into this department. In the area of organization, we need to look at ourselves and the posts which we represent. We are governed by our National, State and Local Constitution & Bylaws. These rules and regulations are a guide for the good of the order. We all have our own interpretation of these; however, when they are blatantly disregarded, we compromise the integrity of our organization and what we represent and stand for. I am requesting that we all come into compliance with our standing rules and regulations and that all line officers comply and put their Posts in order. Report your accomplishments to Kathy Pion, the Department Community Service Chairman, remember this is a National requirement, for submission of a minimal of three reports a year. Each and every post needs to report all of their activities. Please send photos and articles about your activities to the Depart-

Honor A Hero Sponsor an ROTC Medal


t the January DEC Finance Officer Laura Britton presented the idea of having NC AMVETS sponsor an ROTC Medal. The price will be $15.00 per sponsorship. She designed this patriotic business card size insert for the Medal case. Samples shown are in “Memory” of (her father) and the other is in “Honor” of (her son) who is currently serving. All of us have friends and family who have served or who are currently serving their country. What a great way to show our future military our respect and thanks to others who have served. The ROTC medals are presented by a member of your local Post at the schools ROTC Awards Ceremony, usually in March and April. If you would like to be present when the Medal is presented or even if you would personally like to present the Medal contact your Post to get the time, date and location of the presentation. Send your sponsorship information and check made out to AMVETS Dept of NC to: Finance Officer Laura Britton at P.O. Box 10179, Southport, NC 28461 You will receive a copy of the card along with your receipt. Please include your post number. 

This Medal

This Medal

is sponsored

is sponsored



Laura Britton

Laura Britton

In Honor

In Memory



Robert A. Britton

E. Franklin Rivenbark

Private First Class

Seaman First Class

U.S . Army Reserve


NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009

From the President

Table of Contents


The NC AMVET News is published three times per year by Midwest Publishing, Inc.

Commander’s Report.............................................. 1 NEC Report............................................................... 2 Programs Reporting................................................ 3 Legislative Review................................................... 7 Photos!..................................................................... 8 Honors and Awards................................................ 10 Post Reports.......................................................... 11 Photos!................................................................... 14

Commander’s Message, cont.

By Eva Craver

hope this letter finds everyone doing well.We just got home from our DEC meeting in Clemmons, NC. We had a very good attendance at our meeting. I hope everyone enjoyed the reverse drawing. I want to thank everyone for supporting our project to raise money for the AMVETS Ladies Auxiliary. As always our ladies have done a great job. Our auction of homemade cakes, pies, and cookies was a great success. Thanks to all the ladies who brought or sent something to help us. Some of our ladies have been sick. Please remember to keep Chris Smith in your prayers. I hope Martha MacDonald and Darlene Fulmer are doing better by the time you read this. Commander MacDonald, thank you for your support of our auxiliary. Also the Sons and Riders who are always willing to help whenever they can. In closing, I hope to see everyone in Statesville at our Spring DEC. If I can be of service to anyone,please let me know. As always, don’t forget our veterans and their families. I know they can use our help in many ways. I hope good health and happiness will be with you until I see you again.

Special Report

A gubernatorial and a presidential inauguration!

ment Adjutant, for enclosure in the newspaper. Show your pride in your post! Members of the Department of North Carolina, these are my major areas of concern as your Department Commander, which I have observed within the past seven months. During the next five months we are looking forward to our Spring D.E.C. on April 1718-19, 2009 at Statesville and the membership of our National District II personnel joining us. I would like to see as many of you in attendance as possible, to insure the success of this endeavor. After this, and in less than 45 days, we will elect and install a new commander and his staff. We all need to assist our new administration with as smooth a transition as possible. If asked; step up to the plate, volunteer, accept an appointment, and assist your new incoming commander during his tenor of duty. Lastly, may God bless each of you in your daily challenges of life. He guides and strengthens all us, and all you have to do is ask for his support!


Pg. 8-9

A Prayer For Those We Love Almighty God, we entrust all who are

July 15 to print September 25

dear to us to thy never-failing care

October 15 to print December 25

To contribute to your NC AMVETS NEWS, mail submissions to: NC AMVETS - Attn. Nancy Shiverdecker 13470 Old Beatty Ford Rd., Rockwell, NC 28138 704-267-6410

and love, for this and the life to come; knowing that thou art doing for them better things than we can desire or pray for; through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

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NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009

NEC Report


he NEC was held in Linthicum, MD on December 4-6, 2008. Those in attendance from North Carolina were PNC John Lorec, Alt. NEC Mike Rozmaryn and myself.

Membership Mr. DelPiano says they are getting rave reviews about their database from around the country. I haven’t heard this, but that is what he said. He reported that life memberships are processed in about 10 days. They have implemented two new recruiting tools for this year “Green for Green Hats” and Excellence in Recruiting Coin. This is for recruiting 5 new members each year. A poster for recruiting new women veterans is being developed but is not finished yet. The Finance Officer reported National was operating in a deficit and they had to borrow $500,000 from the Life Membership Department to keep headquarters operating. They announced they had each director to cut 10% from their budget. National Service Foundation reported solicitations are coming in slow but they are managing to get by. Programs Beryl Love thanked everyone for getting on board with on-line reporting – 744 Posts. This past month Devry University awarded 8 scholarships for their 3rd semester selection and the University of Phoenix announced forty recipients of their annual selections. This past November, 78 young Americans and 21 adults attended Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, PA. Service Director Denny Boller reported that we had lost four NSOs, since the convention to the VA, since they had started rehiring. He also announced that during the VSO Forum that was held on 9/17/08, three major changes to the rating schedule for the following conditions: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis – ALS Traumatic Brain Injury – TBI Scars – Burns Talk to your Service Officers if you need to know more. The NEC passed Resolution 09-45 – Extension of Montgomery GI Bill Benefits.  Jim Ely, NEC AMVETS Dept. of NC

1st Vice President


t the beginning of this membership year I said that the members are the heart of the auxiliary. New members can bring fresh ideas, keep our numbers up and perhaps help your auxiliary win an award.  These are some of the reasons to seek new members, but please remember those who have not renewed.   Call, write, e-mail or visit them to see if you can find out why they have not renewed their membership.  Perhaps, with your one on one encouragement, they will renew again.   

“Gotta Have Heart” Sincerely,   Pat Pulliam Department Auxiliary Membership Chair 



elow are web sites that provide information on veterans benefits and how to file/ask for them. Accordingly, there are many sites that explain how to obtain books, military/medical records, information and how to appeal a denied claim with the VA. Please pass this information on to every vVeteran you know. Nearly 100% of this information is free and available for all veterans, the only catch is: you have to ask for it, because they won’t tell you about a specific benefit unless you ask for it. You need to know what questions to ask so the right doors open for you - and then be ready to have an advocate who is willing to work with and for you, stay in the process, and press for your rights and your best interests.

Links for Veterans

Appeals: Board of Veteran’s Appeals: CARES Commission: CARES Draft National Plan: Center for Minority Veterans: Center for Veterans Enterprise: Center for Women Veterans: Clarification on the changes in VA healthcare for Gulf War Veterans: Classified Records - American Gulf War Veterans Assoc.: Compensation for Disabilities Associated with the Gulf War Service: Compensation Rate Tables, 12-1-03: Department of Veterans Affairs Home Page: Directory of Veterans Service Organizations: cfm?template=view Disability Examination Worksheets Index, Comp: Due Process: Duty to Assist: Electronic Code of Federal Regulations: Emergency, Non-emergency, and Fee Basis Care: Environmental Agents: Environmental Agents M10: Establishing Combat Veteran Eligibility: EVALUATION PROTOCOL FOR GULF WAR AND IRAQI FREEDOM VETERANS WITH POTENTIAL EXPOSURE TO DEPLETED URANIUM (DU): and See also, Depleted Uranium Fact Sheet: EVALUATION PROTOCOL FOR NON-GULF WAR VETERANS WITH POTENTIAL EXPOSURE TO DEPLETED URANIUM (DU): Fee Basis, PRIORITY FOR OUTPATIENT MEDICAL SERVICES AND INPATIENT HOSPITAL CARE: Federal Benefits for Veterans and Dependants 2005: pdf OR, Forms and Records Request: General Compensation Provisions: Geriatrics and Extended Care: Guideline for Chronic Pain and Fatigue MUS-CPG: Guide to Gulf War Veteran’s Health: Gulf War Subject Index: and GulfWar/page.cfm?pg=7&template=main&letter=A&template=main&letter=A Gulf War Veteran’s Illnesses Q&As: Hearings: - mr/part1/ch04.docn21/m21_1/mr/part1/ch04.doc Homeless Veterans:

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NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009 HSR&D Home: Index to Disability Examination Worksheets C&P exams: Ionizing Radiation: Iraqi Freedom/Enduring Freedom Veterans VBA: M10 for spouses and children: M10 Part III Change 1: M21-1 Table of Contents: Mental Disorders, Schedule of Ratings: Mental Health Program Guidelines: Ment al Illness Research, Education and Clinical Centers: MS (Multiple Sclerosis) Centers of Excellence: My Health e Vet: NASDVA.COM National Association of State Directors: National Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention: Neurological Conditions and Convulsive Disorders, Schedule of Ratings: regs/38cfr/bookc/part4/s4%5F124a.doc - doc OMI (Office of Medical Inspector): Online VA Form 10-10EZ: Parkinson’s Disease and Related Neurodegenerative Disorders: and, Peacetime Disability Compensation: usc - docid=Cite:+38USC1131 Pension for Non-Service-Connected Disability or Death: partii_chapter15_subchapteri_.html and, and,  Persian Gulf Registry: This program is now referred to as Gulf War Registry Program (to include Operation Iraqi Freedom) as of March 7, 2005: Persian Gulf Registry Referral Centers: Persian Gulf Veterans’ Illnesses Research 1999, Annual Report To Congress’_Illnesses_Appendices.doc Persian Gulf Veterans’ Illnesses Research 2002, Annual Report To Congress: Phase I PGR: Phase II PGR: Policy Manual Index: Power of Attorney: Project 112 (Including Project SHAD): Prosthetics Eligibility: Public Health and Environmental Hazards Home Page: Public Health/SARS: Publications Manuals: Publications and Reports: Records Center and Vault Homepage: Records Center and Vault Site Map: REQUEST FOR AND CONSENT TO RELEASE OF INFORMATION FROM CLAIMANT’S RECORDS: Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans Illnesses April 11, 2002: Research Advisory Committee on Gulf War Veterans Illnesses: Research and Development: Survivor’s and Dependents’ Educational Assistance:   Title 38 Index Parts 0-17   Part 18>   Title 38 Part 3 Adjudication Subpart A, Pension, Compensation, and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation: ecfrbrowse/Title38/38cfr3_main_02.tpl&sid=1b0c269b510d3157fbf8f8801bc9b3dc Title 38 Pensions, Bonuses & Veterans Relief (also 3.317 Compensation for certain disabilities due to undiagnosed illnesses found here): 38 PART 4 - SCHEDULE FOR RATING DISABILITIES Subpart B - DISABILITY RATINGS iew=text&node=38: iew=text&node=38:   Title 38 4.16 Total disability ratings for compensation based on unemployability of the individual. PART 4, SCHEDULE FOR RATING DISABILITIES Subpart A, General Policy in Rating ew=text&node=38: ew=text&node=38:   U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims: VA Best Practice Manual for Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): VA Fact Sheet: VA Health Care Eligibility: VA INSTITUTING GLOBAL ASSESSMENT OF FUNCTION (GAF): VA Life Insurance Handbook, Chapter 3: VA Loan Lending Limits and Jumbo Loans: VA MS Research: VA National Hepatitis C Program: VA Office of Research and Development: VA Trainee Pocket Card on Gulf War: VA WMD EMSHG: VA WRIISC-DC: VAOIG Hotline Telephone Number and Address: Vet Center Eligibility - Readjustment Counseling Service: Veterans Benefits Administration Main Web Page: Veterans Legal and Benefits Information: VHA Forms, Publications, Manuals: VHA Programs - Clinical Programs & Initiatives: VHA Public Health Strategic Health Care Group Home Page: VHI Guide to Gulf War Veterans­­(tm) Health: Vocational Rehabilitation: Vocational Rehabilitation Subsistence: VONAPP online: WARMS - 38 CFR Book C: Wartime Di sability Compensation: usc  -> &docid=Cite:+38USC1110 War-Related Illness and Injury Study Center - New Jersey: Welcome to the GI Bill Web Site: What VA Social Workers Do: WRIISC Patient Eligibility:  

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Beryl W. Love AMVETS (American Veterans) National Programs Director 4647 Forbes Blvd. Lanham, MD 20706 240.832.7768 ( C’3: Cooperate / Coordinate / Communicate

NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009


Disney Parks Celebrate U.S. Military With Free, Multi-day Admission to Theme Parks in 2009

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Florida / ANAHEIM, California (January 4, 2009) – As Disney Parks ask “What Will You Celebrate?” and invite guests to turn their personal milestones into magical family vacations in 2009, America’s military personnel will have one more reason to celebrate: Free multi-day admission to Disney’s U.S. theme parks. With the “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” offer, active and retired U.S. military personnel, including active members of the United States Coast Guard and activated members of the National Guard or Reservists, can enjoy complimentary, multi-day admission into Disney’s U.S. theme parks, great rates at select Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resort hotels, and additional special ticket offers for family members and friends. “For so many of the men and women who serve in our U.S. military, time together with their families is cause enough for celebration,” said Jay Rasulo, chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. “We are grateful for their service and hope ‘Disney’s Armed Forces Salute’ will allow our troops to create wonderful, magical memories with their family and friends.” At Disneyland Resort in Southern California:     Through June 12, 2009, each active or retired member of the U.S. military can receive one complimentary three-day “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” ticket valid for admission to both Disneyland and Disney’s California Adventure parks.  During the offer period, active or retired U.S. military personnel also may make a one-time purchase of an adult or child threeday “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” ticket for up to five family members (including spouse) or friends for the price of an adult 1-Day Park Hopper ticket. Disneyland Resort hotels are also offering special room rates for active or retired military personnel.  For example, at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel, active or retired members of the military and their families may find hotel rooms starting at $119 per night during value season, with great savings during other times of the offer period. This offer is available through June 12, 2009, and the number of rooms available at these special rates is limited.     For information regarding “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” at the Disneyland Resort, or to make reservations, military personnel may call 714/956-6424.  At the Walt Disney World Resort in Florida: From January 4 to December 23, 2009, each active or retired member of the U.S. military may obtain one complimentary five-day “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” ticket with Park Hopper and Water Park Fun & More options.  This ticket is valid for five days of admission into the four Walt Disney World theme parks, plus a total of five visits to a choice of a Disney water park, DisneyQuest Indoor Interactive Theme Park or certain other attractions.  During this offer period, active or retired U.S. military personnel may also make a one-time purchase of up to a maximum of five, five-Day “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets for $99 per ticket, plus tax, for family members (including spouse) or friends.  Although this ticket for family members and friends does not include either the Park Hopper or Water Park

Fun & More options, this ticket can be upgraded to add either such option, or both, for an additional $25, plus tax, per option. All tickets and options are non-transferable and must be used by Dec. 23, 2009. Ask about the great rates that may be available at select Walt Disney World or Disneyland Resort hotels for active or retired U.S. military personnel during this offer period. For information on the “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” offer at the Walt Disney World or Disneyland Resort, or to make reservations, active and retired U.S. Military personnel may call the ITT office on their base.  Information is also available at Other Offer Details: ·       Complimentary “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” tickets for the Walt Disney World or Disneyland Resort may be obtained only by active or retired U.S. military personnel, including active members of the United States Coast Guard and activated members of the National Guard or Reservists. ·       Please see a participating U.S. military base ticket office for an exchange certificate for the complimentary “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” ticket for the Walt Disney World or Disneyland Resort.  The exchange certificate will need to be redeemed for such ticket by the active or retired military personnel at a Main Entrance theme park ticket window (maximum of 1 such complimentary ticket per service member, regardless of where the exchange certificate is obtained).  ·       “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets for family members and friends may be purchased only by active or retired U.S. military personnel, including active members of the United States Coast Guard and activated members of the National Guard or Reservists (or their spouses, but not both).  ·       “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets for admission to the Disneyland Resort can be purchased only at participating U.S. military base ticket offices.  “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets for admission to the Walt Disney World Resort can be purchased only at participating U.S. military base ticket offices (including at the Shades of Green Resort at the Walt Disney World Resort), or at Main Entrance theme park ticket windows.  ·       Military personnel (or their spouses) who purchase “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets for family members and friends at participating U.S. military base ticket offices (including at the Shades of Green Resort at the Walt Disney World Resort) will receive exchange certificates to be redeemed by such military personnel (or their spouses) for tickets at Main Entrance theme park ticket windows (one ticket per exchange certificate). ·       The military personnel (or spouse) will be required to present valid military identification (which, for activated members of the National Guard or Reservists, also includes orders showing active status between Jan. 1, 2008 – Dec. 23, 2009 for the Walt Disney World Resort and between Jan.

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NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009


k n a h T u Yo

Accelerated Benefit Solutions

4, 2009 – June 12, 2009 for the Disneyland Resort) for all ticket transactions (including to exchange and redeem the exchange certificates for the tickets at Main Entrance theme park ticket windows). A valid ID may also be required for admission. ·       “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets are limited to five per service member (regardless of place of purchase and whether purchased by service member or spouse) and all five must be purchased at the same time.  Accordingly, no service member (or spouse) may purchase “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets at any military base ticket office if that service member (or spouse) previously purchased “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets (whether at that same military base ticket office or at any other military base ticket office or place). ·       First day of use of “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” complimentary tickets and “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets at the Disneyland Resort must be no later than June 12, 2009 and tickets expire 13 days after the first day of use or June 25, 2009, whichever occurs first.  Last day of use on “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” complimentary tickets and “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets at the Walt Disney World Resort is Dec. 23, 2009. ·       Tickets must be used by the same person on any and all days.  “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute” complimentary tickets may be used only by the service members to whom they are issued.  “Disney’s Armed Forces Salute Companion” tickets may be used only by the friends and family members for whom they are purchased.

Bill Polyi

Carthage Shooting Sports

Covenant Community Partners D & S Discount Tobacco Store Decorative Sales Industricare

Leo Construction & Maintenance Metro Title Co.

k n a h T u o Y Mullins Way

Port Human Services

Rws Construction Inc.

Southern Engineering Services Star Erectors Inc.

·       This offer may not be combined with any other offer.


What Will You Celebrate?

C & R Auto Sales Inc.

Military personnel taking advantage of this offer will find even more to celebrate during their stay. Beginning in January, Disney Parks will embrace a newly identified nationwide travel trend called “celebration vacations,” in which Americans mark special occasions in their lives with a family vacation.

CORPORATE Betty Eubanks

In 2009, Walt Disney World and Disneyland Resorts ask guests “What Will Your Celebrate?” and lead this growing trend with new entertainment and services that allow guests to turn their personal milestones –a birthday, an anniversary, Quinceañera or any special occasion – into magical Disney experiences.

Buie Norman & Co.

H T Papas Restaurant

CONTACT: DISNEYLAND RESORT P.R.                          714/781-4500

Northstate Drywall Inc. Southern Site


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NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009

News Release—Legislative Director AMVETS News—Jan., 2009


North Carolina Veterans Council Plans Advocacy Day at the General Assembly


orth Carolina’s General Assembly returned to Raleigh to take care of the business of the people of North Carolina on Thursday January 29, 2009. In North Carolina we approve our budget in two year cycles. The 2009 session of the General Assembly will be a long session and the first year of a new two year cycle. Governor Perdue will submit a budget with priorities for her administration. The NC House will then initiate a budget in their chambers. Finally then the Senate will receive the House budget and will submit their own priorities and ideas on responsible spending. The next step is a long process of compromise and negotiations. The end results will be a balanced two year budget. This process will also include input from the citizens of North Carolina that will come in a variety of forms. As an individual you have every right and are encouraged to call your legislators and share ideas, concerns and questions about timely issues. The legislators will also be informed of the emotion as well as the value of issues through advocacy groups who plan events at the Legislative Building. The North Carolina Veterans Council is planning such an event. As of the printing of this article the planned date for Veterans to go the Raleigh as a group and speak out for the needs of North Carolina’s Veterans is May 13, 2009. All details are not complete and our final legislative agenda has not been tweaked but the following is a draft of issues that will be included in that agenda. 1. Legislation that would establish a Department of Veterans Affairs thus creating the Secretaries position as a cabinet member.

2. Extend the no-state income tax law( Bailey/Patton) to all military retirees 3. Support legislation that would offer special programs for Veterans with TBI. This would also Include a study from the institute of Medicine at UNC Chapel Hill that would offer NC information on the proper treatment of OEF and OIF Veterans with TBI. You will be receiving additional information through the monthly newsletter, our newly produced web-site as details are completed and finalized. I stress that you can make a difference. You however, have to believe and participate. Please mark May 13, 2009 on your calendars and make a commitment to be heard and be a part of the total process.

VA SURVIVING SPOUSES HOTLINE SEEKS TO DELIVER DELAYED BENEFITS VA hopes to find spouses who may be eligible under 1996 federal law WASHINGTON, Jan. 6, 2009-Shortly before the New Year, the Department of Veterans Affairs discovered an estimated $24 million discrepancy in unpaid survivor’s benefits. The clerical error is the result of a 1996 federal law allowing surviving spouses to collect their loved one’s VA benefits for the month of their death. At the time, the VA failed to properly implement the new law, leaving spouses

New Release—Legislative Director AMVETS NEWS January 15, 2009

lections are over and a variety of swearing in ceremonies has taken place. Local Mayors and Commissioners, members of the North Carolina General Assembly, North Carolina Governor and Council of State, a new U. S. Senator for North Carolina, and a Presidential Inaugural celebration all brought 2009 in with great hopes and anticipation. Now that the orderly transfer of power has taken place it is time to take a true measure of our role in this picture. One of the things that sets this great country apart as a Democracy and as a great nation is a very public and ceremonious transfer of power. Oh yes, there was plenty of security for all of these ceremonies but each and every one of them was a public event that was celebrated with not just a select few but with the masses. Whether your candidate won or not the people of these United States cast their vote and the Constitution guided us through an orderly process. We now, as a people, have a responsibility to respect the office but also to remain involved and informed so we can fulfill the promise of government for the people, by the people. Throughout many campaigns we heard talk of open government, engaging the citizens, looking to Main Street for input. Through the month of December 2008 both Governor-elect Perdu and President-elect Obama completed transition forum that did just that. They asked for direct input from the voters on matters of everything from Healthcare to Military and Veteran Affairs, from Economic Development to Education. How many of you put yourself in places that would allow you to know these forums were taking place and then made the effort to participate? It is not government for the people, by the people if we are not at the table to offer our story and our knowledge and to share our talents. We all complete various community service projects within our Post. We do them because it is important to take care of our fellow Veterans, our neighbors and to make our communities better places. It is equally important to read our local paper, show up at a town meeting, and know what the priorities are for our Chamber. Part of being good citizens is seeking out appointments to various boards and committees within our communities. Every county has a Human Relations Board, local boards that give oversight to assisted living facilities, economic development boards, recreation boards and juvenile justice boards. Every one of these and more are an opportunity for you to volunteer your time and give back something to your community. This is how you really learn about the process and the system. This is how you really get to know officials within your community and better yet how they get to know you. This is how you give a positive impact to the process of government by the people. It is important for us to continue our Post projects but it is equally as important for us to reach outside of our Post and really become a full participant. As the new administrations begin their tenure in office I challenge you, as individuals and as Veterans, who understand the meaning of service, to take your responsibility to heart and to take these newly elected officials to task; not by griping but by really being engaged. I challenge each of you to become informed, to think and learn, to become a part of the solution rather than a bystander shaking your head at the problem. You can make a difference, you just have to believe it and act on it. 

who were unaware of the benefit locked out from receiving proper compensation. Payments to 11,000 spouses were issued on Dec. 29, but the VA continues to search for more eligible family members. A new Survivor Call Center for spouses was established by the VA at 1-(800) 749-8387. The call center is open weekdays from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Central Standard Time and the VA also accepts online

queries at The benefit is only available to veterans’ spouses whose loved ones passed away after Dec. 31, 1996. AMVETS encourages all surviving spouses who believe they qualify to call the VA hotline to ensure delivery of their entitlements. 

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Governor’s Inauguration

Page 8


Presidential Inauguration 2009

John and Jean go to Washington.

Jan 19, 2009 U.S. Capitol awaits the crowds for the Inauguration of this countries 44th President. 5000 chairs sat out alone in the “Gold “ section.

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NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009


1. The Honors & Awards Committee will consist of all the Past Department Commanders. The Chairman will he elected by the group. 2. Six (6) members of the committee present and voting shall be considered a quorum. 3. The: committee may, if they choose, not make an award in the absence of any nominees. 4. No members of the committee may participate in the judgment of an award application that originates from his/her post or concerns a member of his/her Post. 5. If any member, in good standing, wants to recommend anyone for an award. they must submit their recommendations to their post Commander or District Commander.


This award will be presented to an outstanding NC resident, who is in good standing in the Department NC AMVETS, Consideration for this award will be based on the following; A. Membership B. Community Service C. Hospital Service D. Veterans Service E. Activities of Post and State that promote the Aims and Purposes of AM VETS.


This award will be presented to a NC resident who is in good standing in the Department of NC AMVETS and has done outstanding work in the following: A. AMVETS Programs B. VAVS Local and State C. Leadership D. Service to veterans and families E.. Improvement of our community and state

POST AND DISTRICT AWARDS Each Post Commander and District Commander, please send the name of one AMVET, in good standing from your Post or District, to the Honors and Awards Chairman. All nominees for awards must be received by the chairman by the close of business Saturday at the April D.E.C. (Prior to the Picnic) WHITE CLOVERS

This award is presented to an AMVET who has done outstanding work in the Department of NC.


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POST CLASSES: A - 250 or more members B- 151 to 249 members C- 100 to 150 members D- 51 to 99 members E- 10 to 50 members


he Post with the greatest percent increase in their class will receive a trophy and $100.00 at the awards banquet June 2009. Calculations will be based on membership as of August 31,2008 and ending May 1,2009. DISTRICT COMMANDERS AWARDS: The District Commander with the largest number of new Post Charters submitted between August 31, 2008 and May 1, 2009 will receive a trophy and $100.00 at the awards banquet June 2009. ♦RECRUITER AWARD: Each of the three District Commanders will submit the name of one AMVET from their District that promoted AMVETS through membership activities. These three AMVETS will each receive a plaque and $100.00 at the awards banquet June 2009. **TOP RECRUITER AWARD: The top individual recruiter of new members will receive life membership or $ equivalent if already a life member and hotel accommodations for the fall DEC (hotel accommodations must be used at the fall DEC or forfeited). Department Commander’s Service Awards will be presented to the Post and Post 1st Vice Commander achieving 100% membership by December 31, 2008.

^District Commanders submit names by May 1st - this is separate from the Honors and Awards Nominee. **Post Commanders or Adjutants submit the name of the individual in your post that has recruited the most new members for 2009 with a list of the members by May 1st.

NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009

post 13 - Lexington

Dec. 6th Danny Crotts and his grandchildren

Attending the Deployment ceremony of Co. E. NC National Guard in Hamlet, NC. Post 13 Comm. Woody Bowman, PDC Ed O’Neal, Alice Stanley and Piedmont Dist Comm. Larry Klass

Members enjoy fellowship with Department Auxiliary President Eva Craver, left Left: Dec. 6th Children’s Christmas Party. Santa Clause (Charlie Claybourn) assisted by Auxiliary member Jeannie Gathings. Dec. 13th members Annual Christmas Party. A big success with Aux. help in decorating the hall and serving food. Jeannie Gathings, Brenda Norman and Alice Honeycutt (right, left to right). Members Melissa and Clark Cable (not pictured), are recovering from a motorcycle accident, both hurt badly and Clark lost part of leg. Even in wheel chairs we were glad they could attend.

post 101 - Halifax county Editorial Criteria

Following are guidelines to aid you in preparing your articles for publication: 1. Articles MUST be typewritten. DO NOT TYPE IN ALL CAPS. 2. NEW! Submissions may be e-mailed to 3. Photos must have captions to be used with an accompanying sheet of paper which lists name(s) of people in the picture, as well as the date, event and post involved. Do not write on the back or the front of photos. Do not tape or staple photos to your article. 4. The editor reserves the right to edit any submission for clarity, brevity, etc. -- Page 11 --

NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009

post 101 - Halifax county

post 227 - Williamston AMVETS Life Member Gerry Phelps Owner of Nova SS, with 427 Vette engine and 600 Horse Power State Commander John MacDonald and Gerry Phelps (owner) also of the 57 Chevy Belaire with 427 Corvette engine.

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NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009

post 845 - Rockwell


was going to fill this article with platitudes on the success of Auxiliary Member Martha Watkin’s fund raising efforts for Hugs for Hailey. In 6 weeks time Martha put on a golf tournament and raised nearly $4,000. I thought about expounding on our 4th year raising money for Relay for Life. When we are done this year we will be at a total of $25,000.00 for the four years. But I decided instead to tell you and show you about camaraderie and the friendships that are built and shared by members at our Post. The day started out with saddened hearts as many of us attended the funeral of Aux member Judy Brattain’s 24 son Anthony. But as days do they move on and early that evening we had a surprise Retirement Party for Aux member Trudy Rhinier. At most Retirement Party’s the Honoree receives a Gold Watch or something along those lines. But NO not at 845. As you can see in the picture Trudy received...Depends, Poligrip, Prep H, and Prunes among other paraphernalia. Our resident Country singer Fred King brought his guitar and entertained. We have several members who can sing and as you can see they joined in. Enjoy the pictures and know that the AMVETS motto of Veterans helping Veterans takes on many emotions and many forms.

3&4 grade Youth Football team sponsored by Post 845 Won the Super Bowl this year.

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NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009 Jean Reaves is Past Department Commander (PDC) for the NC AMVETS and is currently our Legislative Director

Singing for the unsung by Della Batts, Daily Herald Staff Writer Published/Last Modified on Tuesday, January 27, 2009 1:12 PM CST Copyright © 2009 Roanoke Daily Herald ROANOKE RAPIDS — Last evening, david’s Restaurant was filled to the brim with the “Unsung Heroes.” Bringing them together for a lovely dinner, Phil Hux and his staff from Coastal Benefits presented the Unsung Hero of the Year Award for exemplary volunteer efforts in the Roanoke Valley. Each person present was responsible for bringing something good to the community. So how do you narrow such meaningful contributions down to one award? It’s not easy, but in the end, it was Jean Reaves who received the acknowledgment for her work with the aging and veterans through AMVETS and the Roanoke Valley Adult Day Care Center. A surprised Reaves said, “I have a passion for both the aging and veterans. We are a military family and I had the honor of being sworn in as an officer by my father …” Reaves’ husband is a disabled veteran and she has three sons in active military duty. “These issues are close to my heart,” she said. Through the Adult Day Center, she as director and her staff “have been privileged to build the organization from a fledgling organization to serving over 60 families from four counties.” Reaves said that she feels privileged to touch a lot of people’s lives and to have them touch her. “It gives me an opportunity to speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.” Reaves went on to say that she encourages everyone to work as a volunteer to better the community and themselves. “I know it sounds cliché, but you get back more than you give. It makes us strong as individuals and strong as a community. That’s what it’s all about.” Some people can still remember a time when you left your door unlocked when you left home because a neighbor might need something from your house while you were gone. In those days, neighbors watched out for neighbors, and you did what was right because that was the right thing to do. Phil Hux grew up in Roanoke Rapids, and he, like others remembers those days, and is grateful for the lessons he learned. In remembrance of those times, Hux began the Unsung Hero Awards about three years ago. “Most of the people we’ve recognized didn’t want any recognition for what they’ve done,” he said.  People in the Roanoke Valley, can nominate their neighbors and friends who show unselfish acts of kindness, who work for the betterment of the community, who epitomize the characteristics of an “unsung hero” for this award. These volunteers and good neighbors will be acknowledged in a radio segment and in The Daily Herald. The Unsung Hero of the Year receives $1,000 cash prize to give to the nonprofit of their choice. Reaves will split her award between the AMVETS and the Adult Day Care Center. When ask about her future plans as a volunteer, Reaves said, “As long as there’s breath in me I will continue.” 

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NC AMVETS NEWS­—Spring, 2009

Veterans Day and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

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AMVETS Dept. of NC P.O. Box 1360 Welcome, NC 27374-1360 NONPROFIT U.S. POSTAGE PAID


Michigan Web Press





 A strong voice for veterans in Congress.


 Many local, state and national scholarships.  Our state VA hospitals  Several national insurance programs

actively supports friendship among all veterans.

 Our Special Olympics programs.  A State Service Officer who has the answers.  Various activities in our communities.


Application for membership - please print NC AMVETS Dept. Headquarters, P.O. Box 1360, Welcome, NC 27374-1360 New Annual  Renewal  Life Membership ( Post dues may vary depending on area.)





City, State, Zip Branch of service

Year entered service

Service # Type of Discharge Date of Birth




Signature Post Authorizing Officer

Discharged Sex:  Male

 Female

Spring, 2009  

In Honor Robert A. Britton In Memory Laura Britton Laura Britton E. Franklin Rivenbark U. S. Army Reserve This Medal This Medal Seaman First...