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Summer, 2009

Vol. 13, No. 2

COMMANDER’S COMMENTS By John Byrum, Commander, Department of California AMVETS


irst and foremost I want to thank you for your support. I am truly honored to be your Commander for your AMVETS – Department of California. I will do my best to serve you/the Department. Now is the time to stand tall, look the issues straight in the eye and make good things happen. You all should know by now that the Department, and the Foundation, your Foundation have a judge’s decision that gave you back your voting rights and your Foundation. They are working together to help you get the resources you need to better serve our veterans, our communities, and our youth. So many of you have waited to have this chance to show what you can do for the department. Don’t be hesitant to call your leadership and ask what you and your post can do and how to get the support you need to do it. Get involved with one of the many projects available: Americanism, Golden Age Games, Honor Flight, Stand Downs, barbecues, Marching through History, Scouts, JROTC, and many others that are out there. Many of you have good ideas and now is the time to work on getting them in place. I have heard things like, we are a small post and can’t do much. Please don’t sell yourself or your post short; you can all make a difference if you give it a chance. A couple of weeks ago I had a fellow JROTC instructor ask to become a member of AMVETS. He told me that since he had retired and started teaching JROTC he had been asked to join a couple of other organizations, which he joined, but hadn’t seen too much happen with them. He told me that every time he saw or talked to me I had something going with AMVETS or had plans to do something. He just straight out told me he wanted to join an organization that took action to get things done not just talk about it. That made me feel proud to be an AMVETS member in our Department. Keep up the good work and others will see the same thing. I want you to understand that every member of this Department is a valuable member in some way. From where I sit as your commander, I am still one of you and a member of this Department. I can only be as successful as you work to help me be. It’s not about me, but it’s about those who we all are obligated to serve with as much help as possible. I am confident that this department can and will show others the way to service our Veterans and their families many needs. I have said this before and will say it again. As we move forward, I am seeing a lot of good things happening with posts getting grants and putting out the time and effort to support our veterans, our youth programs, our communities, and the brave men and women serving us around the world today. We may not be able to do everything needed and solve all the problems, but we dang well can give them a fighting chance to work. Please stand together with me, our heads held high when speaking about AMVETS Department of California - an organization to be proud of. May God bless you and your families and give us the guidance to serve with integrity and honor.  John Byrum Commander

Congratulations to Post 116 for their stellar effort!

Commander Byrum

Give the gift of membership this year.


The Voice is published quarterly by Midwest Publishing, Inc.. Any articles or photographs received after the deadlines will be held for the next edition. All articles must be signed to be printed. The editor reserves the right to edit any submission for clarity, brevity, etc. The opinions expressed in The Voice are those of the authors and not necessarily the opinion of the AMVETS Department of California. Submit articles to: California AMVETS Voice, Attn: Rose Blackman 611 N. Sacramento St. Tulare, CA 93274 or E-mail:

DEPARTMENT OFFICERS FOR 2009-2010 Commander John Byrum


1st Vice Commander Dennis Starkey


2nd Vice Commander Charles Ramos


Northern Area Commander Thomas Johnson 530-357-3380 Central Area Commander Frank Guerra


Southern Area Commander Cephus R. Daniels 310-397-0810

Table of Contents Officer’s Reports........................................................................................ 3

Finance Officer Phil Plascencia


Legislative Advocate’s Report................................................................... 4

Judge Advocate Chuck Kissel


AMVETS Riders........................................................................................ 5

Provost Marshal Ben Aguayo


ROTC.......................................................................................................... 5

N.E.C. Man Filbert Bejarano


Submission Deadlines................................................................................ 6

Alt. N.E.C. Man Ron Ferrea


Upcoming Events....................................................................................... 6

Trustee S.E.B. Leo Simon


Friends of California AMVETS................................................................ 7

Trustee S.E.B. Ray Delgado


Chaplain Tom Sarchipone


Visiting Arlington National Cemetery...................................................... 9

Inspector General Terry Mc Carty


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Post Reports.............................................................................................. 10 If You Go................................................................................................... 11 Vol. 13, No. 2

From the Desk of Executive Director By Rose Blackman


HANK YOU to everyone who preregistered for convention. It made life easier for those at the registration desk and me. It was great to see so many of you there. We had some great speakers and lots of information was disbursed. Thank you to the many posts that turned in their revalidation forms on time. Thank you to post 113, our host post for the bands that kept us entertained before, during and after our dinner. Remember if you plan to go to national as a delegate I should have received your signed contract by July 1st. Congratulations to Steve Jacobs from Post 311 for winning the raffle for the night stay at the Doubletree Ontario and two free Sunday brunches (my grand kids, husband and I can testify it’s great food, just as the banquet dinners were). Congratulations to the winners of the preregistration raffle- it pays to pay your registration ahead of time. Please remember that when sending in your membership forms that new life members go on the LIFE TRANSMITTAL FORM ONLY and annuals (new and renewals) go on the ANNUAL form. All transfer forms MUST have four signatures before I can send them to national: the transferring member, the adjutant or commander of outgoing post and the adjutant or commander of incoming posts, if these are all on the form, then I sign and send to national. A member must be in his/her new post for six months before they are allowed to be a delegate at any convention. I look forward to seeing all of you at our fall DEC in Bakersfield, September 25 and 26, 2009. 


By John W. Byrum, 1st Vice Commander, Department of California AMVETS



OW! Another year has rapidly gone by since our 2008 State Conference. The past 12 months have brought many new challenges for many of us as members of AMVETS – Department of California. I feel we have turned the corner and are heading in a more positive direction. We have now started the program at Chapman University Law School in Orange and have plans to spread that to other areas in the state. We have made many improvements in our support of ROTC and JROTC with awards, monetary support, and scholarships. I have witnessed the Service Foundation Board approve support of many Post in their request to get funds to support veterans and the community. We have made some headway in membership but not nearly what I would have liked to see. We increased by 301 new members, 246 being Lifetime Members. As of May 15, 2009 we have a Department of 9,715 members which places us as the 6th largest Department in the country. Our growth rate was 5.80% a number I believe will increase by leaps and bounds as we go forward with better projects, more service, and a better advertisement of our name (AMVETS). I thank you all for the opportunity to serve as your Department 1st Vice and appreciate the support many of you have given me. I plan to continue serving our department in whatever capacity you see fit to have me serve. Encourage you to get out and spread the word on the good deeds your Department has been, and are continuing to do. We can and will be the leader in service for veterans, community and youth. 

Vol. 13, No. 2

1st Vice Commander AMVETS Banner at Awards Night for Long Beach Poly High School Army JROTC. I use this banner at several different events just around campus.  Has helped in getting five new members, including faculty and parents.  Get banners out at as many events as possible.  People will ask questions giving you a chance to speak about AMVETS.

California AMVETS Voice—3


By Pete Conaty, AMVETS Legislative Advocate


une 5 was the deadline for California’s legislative bills to be out of their house of origin. On June 8, the Assembly bills that were passed off of the Assembly Floor went to the Senate to work their way through the same process they went through in the Assembly. The same applies to Senate bills. Due to California’s $24.3 billion budget deficit, only about 305 Assembly bills and 155 Senate bills passed out of each house last week. This is about half of what normally passes out. Had the Legislature passed all of the bills the budgetary impact would have been a staggering $213.5 billion, nearly double the amount of the entire state budget! Currently, the Legislature’s Budget Conference Committee is meeting to reconcile the proposed budgets of the Assembly and Senate. Once they come to a consensus, the two houses of the Legislature vote on that version and it is then sent to the Governor. The top 4 legislative leaders then wrangle with the Governor to reach an agreement. The Governor then signs the budget bill and exercises his “Blue Pencil” powers which allow him to cut money from budget items. Veterans bills update: The following is a listing of some key veterans legislation which the Am Vets, Department of California has taken an active position on or we are monitoring on your behalf. Bills that are held are dead for the year. AB 38-Salas. Held in the Assembly Appropriations Committee (Dead). This bill was held because of the cost to the schools. This bill requires that veterans of the armed forces who become students at one of the state’s public higher education institutions within one year after moving to California are immediately eligible for in-state tuition and fees, provided that these veterans

4—California AMVETS Voice

are also eligible for receiving federal education assistance benefits. AB 59-Jeffries. Passed the Assembly. Provides that, if a military identification card lacks a physical description, but does include date of birth and photo, further proof of majority shall not be required to purchase or consume any alcoholic beverage, as specified. AB 264-Cook. Passed the Assembly. This bill requires the governor to proclaim March 30 of each year as “Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day.” AB 265-Cook. Passed the Assembly. Requires an elected state official to forfeit his or her office upon the conviction of a crime that involves a false claim of receipt of any military decoration or medal pursuant to the federal Stolen Valor Act of 2005 (18 U.S.C. Sec. 704). AB 351-Salas / Ma. Author has taken amendments and bill was re-referred to Assembly Committee. Author hopes to work with committee to move the bill. If successful, the bill could still move to the Senate this year. Authorizes, as an urgency measure, the governing board of a school district that provides the following courses or programs as part of the regular course of study or as part of the regular school-sponsored extra curricular activities to exempt any high school pupil participating in such a course or program from attending courses of physical education (PE): California Cadet Corps, Cheer team or dance team, Color guard or drill team, Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps, or Marching band. AB 674-Salas. This bill will be heard again in 2010 (two-year bill). Establishes a deferred entry of judgment program and a pre-conviction drug diversion program for veterans who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or traumatic brain injury.

SB 361-Runner. Passed the Senate. This bill makes changes to existing law giving veterans priority registration at a California State University or California Community Colleges, by limiting priority admission to honorably discharged veterans only. Adds the California National Guard to the definition of Armed Forces. SB 815-Cogdill. Passed the Senate. SB 815 would create the National Guard Education Assistance Award Program to provide financial support for qualifying active members of the California National Guard, the State Military Reserve, or the Naval Militia attending a qualifying postsecondary institution. Participants would apply to the Adjutant General, who would certify eligibility to the California Student Aid Commission, who would issue the awards. Qualifying applicants would receive funding equal to the amount of a Cal Grant A or, if attending a community college, a Cal Grant B award. Grantees would agree to use the award to obtain a certificate, degree, or diploma that he or she does not hold at the time of application. 

AB 1077-Anderson. Held in the Assembly Revenue and Taxation Committee (two-year bill). Provides an exclusion from gross income for retired pay and survivor annuities received as a result of active service in the military. Provides that retired pay and survivor annuities are excluded from gross income if received by an individual as a result of the active service of a member of the Armed Forces. Defines “retired pay” as retirement pay, including disability retirement pay, computed by reference to a calculation based on years of service, rank, and final base salary as an active member of the Armed Forces, as provided by Chapter 71 of Title 10 of the U.S. Code.

Vol. 13, No. 2




elcome to another day in my world, So Cal and riding. AMVET Riders have been doing so many things and trying to help start new chapters, and live with in Nationals rules (not that hard really). Other bikers are welcoming us at every ride. to another day in my world, So Cal and riding. AMVET Riders have been doing so IWelcome came onto 80 Post Office Biker Bears (both boy and girl biker bears). We many things and trying to help start new chapters, and live with in Nationals rules (not that hard tookreally). themOther to bikers the Chula VistausVeterans Home. I knew some of the AMVET are welcoming at every ride. members would like them a bit, as it turned out they all loved them. Some I came ontoown 80 Post Office Bikerstories Bears (both boy and girl biker bears).the We took them to some shared their bike riding of old. I have to admit ladies told the Chula Vista Veterans Home. I knew some of the AMVET members would like them a of the best I have heard in long time. bit, as it turned out they all loved them. Some shared their own bike riding stories of old. I AMVET Riders were at the Veterans Ride, Strive and Roll have to admit the ladies told some of theParalyzed best I have heard in long time. Motorcycle Run, which ended at Lakeside Post 367. The turnout was great. AMVET Riders were at the Paralyzed Veteransvets Ride,on Strive andown Roll Motorcycle Warmest moment was seeing paralyzed their trikes. Run, which ended at Lakeside Post 367.The turnout was great. Warmest moment was seeing Memorial at own Posttrikes. 367 was something to see Congressman Duncan paralyzed vetsDay on their Hunter and County supervisor Diane Jacob were on hand as well as the Marine Memorial at PostCorps 367 washelicopter something to and see Congressman Duncan Hunter County Corps band,Day Marine sheriffs helicopter. Theand turn out was supervisor Diane Jacob were on hand as well as the Marine Corps band, Marine Corps great even with so many other memorial events elsewhere. Marine band gave helicopter and sheriffs helicopter. The turn out was great even with so many other one memorial he-- of aevents concert to the delight he-- of a concert to the delight of all. elsewhere. Marine bandof gave Flag Day Parade in La Mesa had us riding with the VFW Float but we were seen.Flag Day Parade in La Mesa had us riding with the VFW Float but we were seen. Department Convention in Ontario sparked some interest and from there it Department Convention in Ontario sparked some interest and from there it is only up is only up ward and onward.  ward and onward. See ya thethe Roadroad, Jon-i See yaonon Jon-i

Below: Left to right Congressman Duncan Hunter and President of Lakeside, California Riders Chapter 367 Jon-i Shandera

John Byrum, 1st Vice Commander presents the JROTC AMVETS Medal and Certificate to C/Sgt. Benjaman Eastman a member of the Long Beach Poly High School Army JROTC program. Cadet Eastman maintains a 4.0 GPA in the college prep program as well as a being very active member of the JROTC program.

Yountville annual picnic This year the picnic at the Yountville Veterans Home is scheduled for Sept 12, 2009. Come tour the home and have a great time with the residents.

Congressman Duncan Hunter and President of Lakeside CA Riders Chapter 367 Jon-i Shandera

CONGRATULATIONS Jim Pidgeon, Post 56 Department AMVET of the YEAR Debby Johnson, Post 1996 Auxiliary Department Woman of the YEAR Meleah Carroll, Post 1776 Department VAVS of the YEAR Vol. 13, No. 2

AMVETS Co-Sponsors California State Assembly’s 2nd Annual Veterans of the Year Luncheon


n June 17, this event was held at the Sacramento Convention Center. Each Assembly member was invited to honor a veteran from their district. Forty-eight members participated by attending the event and presenting a certificate of recognition to their honoree. Members of the veteran & VSO community also attended the function, for a total of 225 lunches served. In attendance representing AMVETS was Dept. Commander Mel Posey, his wife Francis, seated at the head table. Post 1 Commander Bruce Mc Burnett, and from Post 940 Chaplain PV2 Brett Currier & PDC John Reece. Nineteenyear-old PV2 Currier, in his ARMY class As, gave the events Invocation and Benediction. AMVETS gained some well earned recognition from the assembly members present and the veteran community as well. We look forward to an even bigger and better event next year. 

Submitted by PDC John Reece

California AMVETS Voice—5

Upcoming Events 65TH NATIONAL


AUG. 8-15, 2009 Sheraton New Orleans Hotel 500 Canal Street New Orleans, Louisiana 70130



heck out the websites of some of our posts to see what they are up to. If you find a site you like contact the post to learn how you can set up your own.

Post 2

Post 85

Room rates: $109+$3+tax/night Toll free 888-627-7033, cut-off date September 3, 2009


Post 940

Post 1240


America’s Heroes At Work


he following information is to help our returning veterans suffering from PTSD/TBI to secure employment. The DOL has undertaken a project that focuses on the employment challenges of service members returning to the United States with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and/or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder(PTSD). The goal of the project is to educate employers and the workforce development system on TBI and PTSD as well as on accommodations they can make for these individuals. This website is designed to be a link to information and tools that will help service members, primarily returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, affected by TBI and/or PTSD succeed in the workplace.  Some of the resources include: job sharing, coaching and mentoring programs, fact sheets, training tools and success stories.  For all these resources please visit:

Post 1996

Post 1997

6—California AMVETS Voice

Deadlines for Quarterly Submissions by Issue

Issue Vol. 13, No. 3 Vol. 13, No. 4 Vol. 14, No. 1 Vol. 14, No. 2 Convention Book

Deadline September 1 December 1 March 1 June 1 April 1 Vol. 13, No. 2

Friends of AMVETS

Automatic Boiler Co.

Michael R. Chiarottino Md

Bacome Insurance Agency

Peter Vander Werff Construction Inc.

Burghard Design Group

Randy Hill Construction

California Cleaning & Maintenance Service

Redi Room

Chamberlin Building Services

Ritchie Farms

Corporate Fulfillment Services

Sam Joaquin Prime Care

Creedon Trucking & Hay Hauling

Sanitary Process Installation

De Paoli Equipment Co. Inc.

Steico Industries

Delta Imaging Service

Western Pacific Capital M LLC

Direct Construction

Zeal Electric

Dragons Lair Tattoo

35 ER

Epicurean Group Inc.


Fred’s Tires


H R P Systems

Core-Mark International Inc.

Harry Williams Construction

FPI Management Inc.

Head Dental Corp.


Intrastate Tax Service

San Francisco Fire Protection

Kishek International Inc.

Heckman & Pull Inc.

Komtech Inc.


Kyffin Pharmacy

Best Western Frontier Motel

Lathrop Construction Association

Brent MacQueen & Barb Helgesen

Vol. 13, No. 2

California AMVETS Voice—7

8—California AMVETS Voice

Vol. 13, No. 2

July, 2009 (Visitor Info on page 11 of this issue.)

Top left: Monument to the 4th Infantry Division (directly on your left after exiting the metro station). Top center: Headstones stand at attention. Top right: Old Amphitheater Left: Memorial Amphitheater Right: Tomb of the Unknowns at Memorial Amphitheater Bottom left: Battle of the Buldge Bottom center: Nurses memorial Bottom right: The mast of the U.S.S. Maine

Vol. 13, No. 2

California AMVETS Voice—9

POST Reports Here are some great ideas your post can do to help veterans and your community!

Post 18


assisted in the Los Angeles National Cemetery Memorial Day Program while Ron Lane orchestrated the Costa Mesa Memorial Day Program. Both were HUGE successes! Terry McCarty gets a cameo at the Orange County Program. We had Jon Voight, Robert Forester, Lee Purcell, Robert Davi and David Horowitz as readers at the

Post 40

LA National Cemetery, as well as over a thousand participants attending. Post 2 Culver City had their organizational colors at the event. Department First Vice Commander John Byrum attended the LA program. I was contacted by the Commanding Officer of the United States Coast Guard Integrated Support Command - San Pedro to “assist” after the Captain

contacted Paul DeNubilo (LM Post 18) - President of the American Civil War Society who we collaborated with on our recent successful veterans educational outreach project honoring the 200th anniversary of the birth of President Abraham Lincoln. Jeff Sharp. 



RADM Bennett S “Bud” Sparks, United States Coast Guard Reserve (retired) 1925 - 2009


dmiral Sparks joined the United States Coast Guard Reserve in 1942 and served in all enlisted rankings through Chief Petty Officer. He served as a Combat Aircrewman aboard a variety of Coast Guard aircraft, including PBM’s and PBY’s, in the Pacific, Atlantic and European theaters, flying both Anti-Submarine and Air-Sea Rescue missions. In 1946, he transferred to the regular Coast Guard. In 1957 he received a field promotion to Ensign. Later training included assignments at the Naval War College, National War College, National Defense University, Industrial College of the Armed Forces, and the Army War College. As a pilot, he flew as both a Coast Guard and civilian aviator in Alaska from 1946 to 1957 on mapping missions for the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey. From 1966 to 1989, he held nine consecutive commands: four Coast Guard Units, three Coast Guard Groups, and two U. S. Navy Maritime Defense Zone Sectors. He also served as District Inspector for the Eleventh Coast Guard District and as Senior Coast Guard Reserve Officer for the Pacific Area in San Francisco and the Atlantic Area in New York. He commanded the United States Navy Northern California Maritime Defense Zone headquartered in San Francisco and later the Maritime Defense Zone Sector Six at the U. S. Navy Base in Charleston, South Carolina. He was nominated by President Reagan for Flag Rank in the United States Coast Guard in February 1985. He was promoted to his second star in 1987. He was the first Coast Guard President in the then sixty-year-old history of the Reserve Officers Association of the United States. In the 1980’s, he served as Chief of the United States Delegation to the Inter-Allied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR) at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. He served as the National Deputy Executive Director of the Reserve Officers Association of the United States in Washington D. C. from 1988 to 1991 with additional duties as Director of Administration and Director of Finance. He held the Navy Distinguished Public Service Medal and twice received the Coast Guard Distinguished Public Service Medal. Other military decorations include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, two Coast Guard Commendation Medals, the Coast Guard Achievement Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Arctic Service Medal, the Coast Guard Combat Air Crew Wings, and the Coast Guard Command Ashore Device.

10—California AMVETS Voice

A long-time member of the Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, the NATO Grand Priory, he was promoted to Knight Commander for his services to both NATO and the Society. Among his many volunteer activities, he served as Chairman of the State of California Veterans’ Board, Board Member of the Sonoma County Area Agency on Aging and North bay Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association of Northern California and Nevada. He was a member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the American Legion, and the Disabled American Veterans, among numerous other military organizations. In 1991, he was instrumental in the creation of the Windsor Police Department for the new city of Windsor, California. 

Post members participated in the Apple Blossom Parade. Thanks to the following: Amvets: Ron, Bud, Dave and Hattie -- Amvet Supporters: Jackie -- Civil Air Patrol: John and Jeff. The kids from the Civil Air Patrol were great. Santa Rosa Rose Parade. We have a WWII Jeep with room for two extra people to ride who can’t walk the parade route.

Vol. 13, No. 2

POST Reports Here are some great ideas your post can do to help veterans and your community!

Post 56


he post Honor Guard held a well attended picnic at the home of member Jim Pidgeon. It was good for the group to get together, share good food, good company and relax with a break from their honor guard duties. In April Post members manned the grill to serve hotdogs and chili to attendees at a local real estate information fair. The post is currently getting ready to hold their largest fundraiser of the year- selling fireworks. The editor wishes to make a correction concerning a picture that appeared in the last paper. The picture was of current Post 113 auxiliary members Apryl Casares and Stella Usery- they are currently members of the 113 auxiliary who were wrapping gifts for the post 56 Christmas party, gifts that were funded by Post 56 where their husband / significant other are members by the time you receive this paper they will have transferred to Post 56 where Apryl is the new Auxiliary President. AMVETS Post 56 continues to excel in volunteer man hours. July 1, 2008 to June 30, 2009. Our Honor Guard dedicated 6,528 hours serving full military honors for our fallen brothers and sisters. A1, 181 hours to various community activities such as: flag demonstrations at our local schools, taking part in various parades, visiting our Sr. veterans in local nursing homes, helping with local blood drives, and attending various other community projects. Our Chaplain (Leonard Smith) besides helping at funerals, visits the families of our fallen and visits our sick. 

Post members participated in the Apple Blossom Parade. Thanks to the following: Amvets: Ron, Bud, Dave and Hattie -- Amvet Supporters: Jackie -- Civil Air Patrol: John and Jeff. The kids from the Civil Air Patrol were great. Santa Rosa Rose Parade. We have a WWII Jeep with room for two extra people to ride who can’t walk the parade route.

If You Go - Hours, Access and Parking


rlington National Cemetery is open to the public at 8 a.m. 365 days a year. From April 1 to Sept. 30 the cemetery closes at 7 p.m.; the other six months it closes at 5 p.m. Ample paid parking is available to visitors, accessible from Memorial Drive. As of June 1, 2008, the cost is $1.75/hour for the first three hours, and $2.00/hour thereafter. Commercial rates are $7.00/hr for the first three hours. During all hours the cemetery is open the Arlington National Cemetery Metro stop is regularly served by highspeed subway trains. The cemetery is also a stop on most tour guides' itineraries, and is serviced by Tourmobile, the popular tour buses that allow patrons unlimited reboarding for a single daily rate. 

Vol. 13, No. 2

California AMVETS Voice—11

POST Reports Here are some great ideas your post can do to help veterans and your community!

Post 116


guess that God has placed you both in a position of stewardship as guardians over his men and women of valor. As a Vietnam veteran I have seen the homeless lost and forgotten group of heroes most who were willing to lay down their lives as a sacrifice for freedom. There are no words that can express the feelings and thank you that we veterans here at the Salvation Army Westwood Transitional Village can say. The food boxes that your organization graciously gave to our veteran’s families were much needed. On the behalf of all the veterans and their families I would like to thank you.

Sincerely; Mr. Donald Taylor, Veterans Case Manager/Employment Coordinator


ost 116 meets every second Saturday of the month at 10:00 a.m. at a new meeting location AFGE Local 1061 Union Hall W.L.A. Medical Center. If you need help getting to the meeting, please do not hesitate to call Commander, Cephus R. Daniels, at 310-463-6380. The Post continues to host a bingo at the WLA VAMC nursing home every second Sunday of the month at 2:00 p.m. Post 116 continues to provide food deliveries to the “Feed a Vet Program”, with the help of Post 116 Women’s Coordinator, Ann Reeder, Post 116 Ladies Auxiliary President, Alma Gant, and Post Commander, Cephus R. Daniels. Special thanks to Post 116 members for volunteering and providing assistance for the programs that we have been part of this quarter. Post 116 was honored at the WLA Volunteer ceremony for our work with veterans. AMVETS Post 116 provided a game booth with prices at 2009 Block Party at the WLA Medical Center. We would like to thank LeVon and James from Post 2 for all their help at the booth, as well as, a special thanks to VAVS Rep, Pete King, who helped but was unable to attend. AMVETS Post 116 Co-sponsored along with the WLA Greater Los Angeles Substance Abuse Programs an event to increase awareness of Substance Abuse Program. The Young Americans Singers entertained the veterans with patriotic and inspirational song. Theater Neo presented hilarious comedy slam. Chuck Kissel and lovely wife decorated the hall with his collection of historical American flags. Post 116 provided a table with AMVETS literature and membership materials. Post 116 is proud to welcome three new life members, Glenda Davidson, Willie Boyd, and Cathleen Williams, and two new annual members. Commander, Cephus R. Daniels Date: 5-31-09 

12—California AMVETS Voice

Vol. 13, No. 2

POST Reports Here are some great ideas your post can do to help veterans and your community!

Post 700


MVETS “BECAUSE WE CARE DAY” was a big success thanks to Frank Manthei and his wonderful wife Irma who took over (while Commander Taylor recuperated from his accident). They did a great job- 1200 hamburgers with all the fixings, chips, dessert and soft drinks.

In honor of our recently lost comrade, Joe Wingo, the monthly Bingo game was voted on to be called “WINGO’S BINGO”. Proceeds from the Bingo go to the AGNES P. KOLANO SCHOLARSHIP FUND Post 700 had their annual Picnic at the ELKS LODGE No 2011 in Chula Vista on May 14, 2009 

Post 1996


n 6/19/2009, Honor Flight Nor Cal assisted by a grant from the Department of CA Service Foundation flew to Washington DC for the second time in a month. We gathered together at the San Francisco International Airport 20 WWII Veterans and 10 guardians. Following a sendoff by members of the PGR, folks from the USO family members and random passengers, We proceeded through a specially setup security for our vets. The five hour flight was expected to be long but was made shorter by the "getting acquainted" time. Because only a few of these Veterans (and guardians) knew each other. By the time we arrived at the Holiday Inn/ Dulles our teams had been established and every one was ready for the fine meal presented by the hotel. Bright and early the next rainy Saturday morning, following breakfast we boarded a large comfortable bus and headed into DC with the first stop being the WWII Memorial. Prior to anything else, a short ceremony was performed at the CA pillar. Doris Peterson of Redding, CA was selected to

carry a folded flag (US) and place it on the CA pillar commemorating all those CA Veterans that will never make it to see their memorial. Ponchos were passed out to everyone because the rain would start and stop just enough to get us wet. But as soon as Sen. Bob Dole and his wife arrived (to see the CA Honor Flyers) the rain stopped and was not a problem the rest of the day. The rest of the day was a whirlwind tour of many memorials and points of interest in the DC area Our Bus driver Bob Campbell (we called him Soup) was a wealth of information and kept us up to date on just about everything. Probably the highlight of the tour (besides the WWII Memorial) was being allowed to take the bus into Arlington Cemetery to witness the Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Very few of our group had ever witnessed that before especially the added laying of wreaths by the guard. Dinner was at the Great American Steak Buffet, and no one went back to the Hotel hungry. Sunday (Fathers Day)Breakfast was ready at 4:30 AM and we were riding shuttles to the airport by 5:AM. The 5 hour trip Home was fantastic we were all sitting together and everyone was telling stories and even the airline crew got in on the festivities by getting lunch to the whole group before anyone else on the wide body 757.

Once again our greeting at the gate was mind boggling for the veterans, and that was only the half of it when we got to baggage claim there was an even bigger crowd waiting and cheering. The PGR was once again out in force, they even volunteered to drive one of our vets into San Francisco to catch a bus to Bakersfield. All in All this was a very successful trip. A lot was learned for the future and no one was injured in any way. Safety is our primary focus, we had three nurses on board and they had nothing to do. Hooray!  Thomas L. Johnson A M V E T S Dept. of CA Nor. Area Cmdr. Cmdr. Leo P. Simon Post 1996 (530) 357-3380

Vol. 13, No. 2

California AMVETS Voice—13

POST Reports Here are some great ideas your post can do to help veterans and your community!

Post 2002

Post 2813

ommander Buck Bordeau handed out white clovers at the Corning City Council meeting in March when they proclaimed March “AMVETS White Clover (Remember Me) month. 

emorial Day started with the Veterans Honor Guard raising the flags at Chico City Plaza. Representing AMVETS: Commander Gene Clements, James Wolski, Gary Imhoff and Joe Turner, they were joined by DAV members Hank Snow, George Holland and David Heise. All of the members belong to both AMVETS and DAV making the program a combined effort for both organizations. Just an indication of how veterans groups are able to work together to create an atmosphere of goodwill to better serve their community. Following the City Plaza event the Veterans moved onto celebrate services at Chico Cemetery, Glen Oaks and late in the day were honored by the Chico Outlaw Ball game by appearing with the Sea Cadets at the opening ceremonies of the game. The 3rd Sat of every month AMVETS hosts Bingo. 



IDEAS BIG AND SMALL THAT LARGE AND SMALL POSTS CAN DO LOW COSTS: and doesn’t require a lot of workers: A: ‘toiletry kits’ (zip lock bags which contain sample size bottles of shampoo, lotion, bar of soap, toothpaste and a toothbrush). You can buy the items or get them donated by a hotel (or if you have someone who travels a lot and doesn’t use what is in their hotel room maybe they will donate to you). These can be donated to your local homeless shelter, nursing home or if you can afford the postage, send them to Landstuhl military hospital in Germany for our injured service members. For more information on this contact Commander Buck Bordeau of post 2002. B: send thank you notes or just thinking of you notes (you can save postage and hand deliver them) to veterans or anyone in a local nursing home. They don’t have to be fancy or store bought (put some of those notepads that AMVETS sends out as fundraisers to work by using them as your stationary). C: want to do a bigger project but don’t have enough help? Contact a local boy scout or girl scout troop (many are glad to help with service projects). Or your local high school, Call the school and ask to talk to a counselor and tell him/her what you need, most are very helpful , many schools have clubs that are looking for service projects to do. Examples of things that the kids can help with: Post 56 has scouts help them put flags out at the cemetery on Memorial Day, high school students help serve Thanksgiving dinner. Post 22 had foreign exchange students entertain at their dinner by having the students come in their native dress/costume and tell us about their countries (it was very informative and enjoyable). D: combine forces with another VSO like Chico post 2813 and put on activities, their color guard is made up of members from AMVETS, VFW and the American Legion. They also work together to put on dinners for veterans and do fun activities like their push cart races. You will have to contact Commander Clements about the neat push cart he designed and decorated with AMVETS logos. E: Deliver one bag of groceries to a veteran in need, or get help (see C above) to help clean up a disabled Vet’s home or yard. Give a vet a ride to the doctor’s, store or church. F: If you or your post can afford it, sign a veteran up and pay his or her first year annual dues. You increase your membership and may get a good worker. G. Contact your local national guard and ask what help they or any of their guard families need. With husbands deployed some of the families need help with things like car maintenance, mowing the lawn, etc. H. Sponsor a Cub Scout Pack, like Post 1240 (contact Commander Starkey for more info on how). If your post can’t afford to do it with money, do it with time, scouts need to do certain activities in order to pass their badges, perhaps there is something you can teach them. contact your local schools, what do they need volunteers for, with budget cuts everyone needs help these days (be sure to ask if it’s ok for you to wear your AMVET hat). Contact Chuck Kissel (AMERICANISM chairperson) for information on doing AMERICANISM projects. Want to do a bigger project? Like deliver food to veterans, etc. Contact Commander Daniels of Post 116 (he has a lot of great ideas the Executive Director is sure he’d be willing to share). Please read some of the ideas that are more detailed, in this paper that other posts are doing. You can contact the post Commanders for more details on how they do their projects and what they cost. 

14—California AMVETS Voice

Vol. 13, No. 2

Friends of AMVETS Carolyn Curci

Mamma’s Brick Oven

Centre City Properties

North Coast Horticulture Supply

Command One Security Computer Aided Models DPR / Newport Beach FS3

Pizza Patron Sanctuary Spirits of Tahoe

Guardian Angels In Home Care

U.S. Veterans Corporation

Johnson Transportation Service

Waste Recovery West Inc.

Vol. 13, No. 2

California AMVETS Voice—15



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Vo. 13, No. 2  

Give the gift of membership this year. Summer, 2009 Congratulations to Post 116 for their stellar effort! Vol. 13, No. 2 Commander Byrum By...