The European Gazette October - December 2022

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THE OFFICIAL MAGAZINE of the VFW DEPARTMENT OF EUROPE

Don’t Give Up - You have to fight for yourself p. 11

October / December 2022 Volume 3, No. 2 Department
of europe
Kristina Keenan, Post 605, Top Lobbyist 2022 p. Robert C. Heafey, first known non-US Citizen to join the VFW in Europe p. 8
WHAT WE OFFER: ü Veterans Affairs (VA) claim filing ü VA Benefits Counseling ü Help Veteran / Claimant complete forms ü Help Veteran / Claimant understand state or local benefits SERVICE OFFICER CORNER For more information or to schedule an appointment, stop by your local VFW Post and talk to a representative or Post Service Officer. Services are FREE and we are here to help you make your military transition easier. email: C.Singletary@va.gov email: ehriqb@googlemail.com CLAIMS REQUIREMENTS PER VETERANS AFFAIRS GUIDANCE: q Qualifying Service (DD-214) q Diagnosis, not NEXUS letter q Treatment, this can be a NEXUS letter visit www.va.gov

Phoenix,

Louisville, KY

Columbus,

Salt

1 Robert C. Heafey,
Canadian Citizen, served tw0 tours
He recently joined the VFW after the requirements were changed. THE COVER Jan 1 New Year‘s Day Jan 16 Desert Storm Began 1991 Jan 27 Signing of the Vietnam Peace Accord 1973 Jan 31Panama Campaign Ended 1990 Feb 3Four Chaplains Day
23Iwo Jima Flag Raising 1945 Feb 28 Liberation of Kuwait 1991 Mar19Iraqi Freedom Began 2003 Mar24Start of Kosovo Campaign 1999 Mar25 National Medal of Honor Day Mar29Vietnam Veteran’s Day Mar31End of Operation Restore Hope 1995 Upcoming Dates - Events in January / March 3 Department Commander‘s Word 4 Top Lobbyist 2022 5 VFW Day of Service 6 VFW Homeless Vets Day 7 JROTC Warrior Battalion 8 Non-U.S. Citizen joins VFW 9 Veterans Day 10 Rocksany, Czech Republic 11 Don’t Give Up 12 Retiree Appreciation Day (RAD) 13 Recruiting 14 Celebrating Thanksgiving in Paris 17 Marking Milestones in IRAQ 18 National Home for Children 1920 VFW Fact Sheet The European GazetteIN THIS ISSUE Future VFW National Convention Sites
a
in Vietnam.
Feb
AZ - July 22-27, 2023
-
2024
July 27 - Aug. 1,
2025
OH - Aug. 9-14,
2026 8 First non-U.S. Citizen in Europe joins the VFW 10 DISTRICT 3 HOSTS ANNUAL EVENT IN ROCKSANY, CZECH REPUBLIC
Lake City, UT - Aug. 15-20,

is the official E-news publication of the Department of Europe, Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States, Published four times per year (Mar., June, Sep., Dec.) by the Department of Europe, Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U. S.

Edition: Jul / Sep Oct / Dec Jan / Mar Apr / June

Publish Date: Sep. 30, 2022 Dec. 30, 2022 Mar. 30, 2023 June 30, 2023

Info. due to Editor: Sep. 15, 2022 Dec. 15, 2022 Mar 15, 2023 June 15, 2023

The purpose of this magazine is to strengthen the efficiency of the Department of Europe, by getting information and decisions of National, the Department, Districts and Posts to the VFW members of Europe.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions are not necessarily those of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, Department of Europe, or the National Organization.

Articles for consideration should be sent electronically to: lee.wolvertonvfw27@gmail.com

Volume 3, Issue 2, © December 2022. All rights reserved. The European Gazette E-news is at: https://issuu.com/vfw-europe

Lee R. Wolverton..........................................Editor / Design / Layout

If we work together, we can make things happen. If we do nothing, we have already failed.

Lee R. Wolverton

VFW Department of Europe on Facebook: VFW Department of Europe https://issuu.com/vfw-europe

Department of Europe Officers

2022-2023

Commander Angelo Aldridge Senior Vice Commander Mark Primmer

Junior Vice Commander Dwight Johnson Quartermaster Peter Mascetti

Adjutant Norberto Millet Chief of Staff James Vergott Chaplain Stanley Richardson Service Officer Christopher Singletary Judge Advocate Bobby White Surgeon George Gilgore Inspector Billy Sherd National Council Member Peter Mascetti

POW/MIA Norbert Isaak

Riders Group Michael Konsavage District Commander’s

District 1 Commander John Casey III District 3 Commander Eddie Guevara Post Commander’s

Jan

Jan

Feb

Apr

May

May

June16-18Department

27 - Wiesbaden Gemma McGowan 605 - Paris Mark Primmer 2566 - Baumholder William Walker 3885 - Erlangen Jessie Williamson 8862 - Vicenza Johnny Borden 9334 - Vilseck Angelo Aldridge 9342 - Ansbach Dwight Johnson 10312 - Augsburg Stanley W. Allgood 10436 - Kitzigen Emilio Andujar 10506 - Berlin Todd Lafleur 10557 - Hohenfels Weston Lahr 10614 - Kaiserslautern Dennis Walton 10692 - Grafenwoehr Williams D. Stronsnider 10708 - Illesheim Norbert Isaak 10775 - Spangdahlem Christopher Bowser 10810 - Stuttgart Thomas Hooper 12139 - Sembach John Casey III 12159 - Naples Christopher Singletary

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-
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14 1300
DoE CoA
Wiesbaden
1300
21
- District 3 Business meetingGrafenwoehr
11 1300 - District 1 Business meetingSembach
15 1300 - DoE CoA - Grafenwoehr
131100 - District 3 ConventionGrafenwoehr
201300 - District 1 ConventionWiesbaden
of Europe ConventionGarmisch Partenkirchen Depart. / Dist. Dates

DEPARTMENT COMMANDER'S wORD ORD

Comrades,

This quarter has been great, a delegation of myself, Senior Vice Commander Mark Primer and Quartermaster Pete Mascetti went to New Hampshire for the Eastern States Conference. The Convention went extremely well.

I want to give a shout out to Department of Europe from the Commander-in-Chief Tim Bor land, “let it be known that Depart ment of Europe is leading the way by doing everything it can to keep the Veterans of Foreign Wars in Europe leading the way”. Thank you again for your great support.

As the year ends our recruiting is looking great, keep up the good work. I would like to congratulate all posts that have already achieved 100% on members hip, outstanding job.

Coming into the New Year let‘s keep doing what we are doing. I want to thank my staff for all they do to help, a special thanks to my Chief of Staff for keeping me out of trouble, thanks again James.

I would like to also thank Comrade George Gilgore for his work on the Voice of Democracy and Teacher Awards, thank you George.

Post 9334 went to the orphanage that they support in Immenreuth. Altogether there were approximately 200 people in attendance, with about 150 of these being children. We held a combined Thanksgiving / Christmas dinner for the orphanage, with donations from the Commissary and other agencies. It went extremely well. We also held a toy drive for the orphanage. I hope, and know, all VFW posts are doing the same in support of their own communities.

We have a task coming up in January with the National Junior Vice Commander Alfred J. “Al” Lipphardt attending the Department of Europe Council of Administration in Wiesbaden, so let‘s do everything we can to make his trip eventful and one to remember.

If anyone needs anything from me, please reach out to me. Also, for retirees, I will be taking over as the President of the Retiree Council in USAG Bavaria. If you have something you want to fight for, let me know, but let it be something that will make it better

And last but not least, Thank you for your support

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VFW Launches PACT Act Assistance Website

The VFW is pleased to announce the launch of a new website to inform veterans about the benefits for which they may qualify under the PACT Act. The new site, www.PACTActInfo.org, allows veterans to enter certain military service details and medical information to determine eligibility for compensation benefits on a presumptive basis as a result of exposure to toxins. The site will then provide referrals to VFW Service Officers in their state of residence to assist with their claims. The site also warns veterans about claim sharks and non-accredited entities that may try to exploit them for financial gain.

4 Post 605, Paris "
Post"
Benjamin Franklin

Last year, veterans across the country turned out in force to show how they are #StillServing during the first-ever VFW Day of Service. They united with one another and their communities to strengthen bonds and help neighbors.

It was amazing to see. Now, it’s time to gear up for next year and do it all over again!

The second annual VFW Day of Service will kick off May 6, 2023. Add the date to your VFW Post‘s agenda so others know about it too. Let us know you’re all in for 2023 so we can keep you in the loop!

We Want You to Be a Part of This Annual Event

The #StillServing campaign launched in 2020 to highlight the countless ways veterans continue to serve in communities across America. Now the movement continues to deepen its impact with the annual VFW Day of Service.

The next VFW Day of Service kicks off the first Saturday of May — May 6, 2023 — marking the start of veteran-led community service projects to take place throughout the month.

Are You Ready to Serve?

We’re asking VFW Posts, VFW members, community advocates and veterans of every stripe to band together to host one community service event on May 6, or at another point during the month, to make a meaningful difference in your community. We need your Post on board. Please let us know if your Post will be participating in the annual Day of Service. Service projects can be any size.

https://todaysvfw.org/day-of-service/?utm_source=2023DOSNM&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=DayOfSer

I am sometimes asked the question why I’m still serving after being retired from the USAF for 29 years, and I simply break it down by saying several things that mean a lot to me and they are:

- To honor the service of a family member.

- To promote patriotism within the community to all citizens, young and old.

- To participate in programs that bring families and community members together for worthwhile projects.

- To stress that veterans and their entitlements are legislators’ number one priority.

- To be the voice of those veterans that gave the ultimate sacrifice so that we can all live in a democracy.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars is comprehensive in nature, embracing all religions and faith groups within its ranks.

The Chaplaincy, being non-sectarian, must seek to minister to the needs of all, without regard to either church/synagogue/mosque affiliation or non-affiliation.

Comrades, I would also like to take this time to say Happy Holiday’s and to be safe, and remember, you may call me 24/7 at +49-171-147-7878 if you have any concerns or questions.

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DoE Chaplain

VFW homeless Vets Day

VFW Post 10124 from Las Cruces, New Mexico, invited Wayne Allgood, Commander of VFW Post 10312, to participate and represent Europe in their VFW homeless Vets Day event.

This was an event for veterans who are homeless, and even those that aren’t. They differentiated between the homeless and those that just need help.

TA50 was offered for the homeless, along with toiletries. A lot of civilian clothing had been donated, along with food and drinks. Everyone received breakfast and lunch.

There was a Barber, Dentist, Doctors and complete VA affairs were also there to help the Vets in need. Two job agencies offering jobs and taking applications were also in attendance.

The local college ROTC was there to help out, along with a middle school to support the vets. All in all, according to Wayne Allgood, “It was a great success with a total of 26 vendors and 3 posts that helped out, to include; the Marines, Navy and Air Force clubs that all donated their time to make this event a complete success”.

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CDR Chris Kelley, VFW Post 10124, SVC Victoria Haddox, VFW Post 5890, and CDR Wayne Allgood, VFW Post 10312.

Warrior Battalion Honors Veterans of Foreign Wars through the distribution of Buddy Poppies

The Wiesbaden High School Warrior Battalion distributed Buddy Poppies in honor of Veterans of Foreign Wars on Sunday, November 6th, 2022, in Wiesbaden, Germany. Approximately one dozen cadets handed out hundreds of the small red poppies, which are the official memorial flower of the VFW and are symbolic of the service and sacrifice of veterans. The cadets handed out the poppies from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. while collecting over 1,300 dollars in donations for the VFW.

When talking about the poppies, VFW Post 27 Senior Vice Commander, Anthony Miller states that, “Flander’s field is important, it is in remembrance of all those who have fallen for our country, and the Buddy Poppy symbolizes that.”

Poppies need plenty of light to germinate, unlike most other flowers. Because of this, the land churned by bombs, trenches, and the countless graves would allow millions of poppies to bloom in a brilliant and powerful display of color.

After witnessing a friend’s grave display these poppies in 1915, Lt. Col. John McCrae wrote the poem “In Flanders Fields” in honor of his fallen comrade. McCrae writes in his poem, “In Flanders Fields, the poppies grow. Between the crosses, row on row.” Almost immediately after the war, the poem inspired dozens of organizations who proceeded to sell the flowers to support and rebuild war-torn countries. The organizations were small and no large-scale effort to produce them existed until the VFW began to distribute them, beginning the first nationwide effort to distribute the poppies.

In 1923, the VFW decided that struggling and in need veterans would assemble the poppies, and in return they would be paid for their efforts. In remembrance of their buddies who never made it back, the veterans coined the flowers “Buddy Poppies.” The poppy was soon adopted as the official memorial flower of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States and struggling and recovering veterans in VA hospitals assemble the flowers to this day. By distributing these poppies, the VFW lives up to its motto, “To honor the dead by helping the living.”

Top image: Senior Vice Commander Anthony Miller of VFW Post 27 preparing Buddy Poppies to be given to people walking into the PX.

Middle image: Buddy Poppy flowers, and the VFW donations box laying on top of a World War II style field desk.

bottom image: Members of VFW Post 27 standing at the Buddy Poppy front desk, an event that they designed. From left to right: Adjutant Lee R. Wolverton, Commander Gemma McGowan, Cedric Sawyer, Tyrone Riley, Post Chaplain

VA Benefit Payment Rates Increase

7
Stanley “Spike” Richardson.
The Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) for VA disability compensation benefits programs became effective on December 1, 2022. The 8.7% COLA increase is for the calendar year 2023. Veterans and beneficiaries receiving VA disability compensation will notice an increase in their monthly payments, starting January 1, 2023. This annual increase impacts disability benefits, clothing allowance, Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), as well as other VA assistance programs. If you do not see a difference in the amount, you
the VA regional office near you.
for VA disability benefits or appealing a VA decision, reach out to
should contact
To ask questions about applying
a VA-accredited representative today.

Is the deer going to be arrested??

Ft. Lewis. WA.

First known non-US Citizen joins VFW in Europe

Robert C. Heafey, 83, a Canadian Citizen, joined the VFW on December 5 in Kitizigen, Post 10436. He is now a Life member.

Robert is the first known veteran in Europe who is not a U.S. Citizen or U.S. National to join the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Robert has tried to join the VFW for almost fifty years, the first time being in 1974, but due to the U.S. Citizenship/U.S. National requirement, has been unable to.

The VFW changed this requirement at the 122nd VFW National Convention in 2021. The U.S. Citizenship/U.S. National requirement was removed to enable non-U.S. Citizens who meet the other requirements to be able to join the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Robert spent twenty years in the U.S. Army, retiring in 1977 as an MP. He served two tours in Vietnam with the 25th Medical Battalion, 25th Infantrty Division. The first being March 1966 to March 1967, and the second, which he volunteered for, from June 1968 to June 1969.

There are two qualifiers for membership in the VFW, as set out in our National Bylaws. An individual must meet both in order to become a member. They are as follows:

1. Honorable Service – must have served in the Armed Forces of the United States and either received a discharge of Honorable or General (Under Honorable Conditions) or be currently serving.

2. Service in a war, campaign, or expedition on foreign soil or in hostile waters. This can be proven by any of the following:

- An authorized campaign medal (see section 101 of the VFW National Bylaws)

- Receipt of Hostile Fire Pay or Imminent Danger Pay (verified by a military pay statement)

- Service in Korea for 30 consecutive or 60 non-consecutive days

This information is usually available through a veteran’s DD-214. If other information is needed or if a veteran’s DD214 is not complete, they can contact the National Personnel Records Center online or at 314.801.0800 to request more information.

If you are not eligible for membership in the Veterans of Foreign Wars but you have a parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, sibling, or spouse who would be eligible then you may apply for membership in the VFW Auxiliary. You can learn more at vfwauxiliary.org.

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Chillin at the NCO Club Robert being sworn in and receiveing his Cross of Malta.

Veterans Day

VETERANS DAY, FORMALLY CALLED ‘ARMISTICE DAY’, IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO RECOGNIZE THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF LIVING VETERANS AND IS CELEBRATED ANNUALLY ON 11 NOVEMBER. WWI ENDED ON 11 NOVEMBER 1918 AND ‘ARMISTICE DAY’ IN ACCORDANCE WITH A CONGRESSIONAL RESOLUTION OFFICIALLY RECEIVED ITS NAME IN THE USA IN 1926 BECOMING A NATIONAL HOLIDAY TWELVE YEARS LATER.

IF WORLD WAR I HAD BEEN “THE WAR TO END ALL WARS,” 11 NOVEMBER MIGHT BE STILL CALLED ARMISTICE DAY. HOWEVER, REALIZING THAT PEACE WAS EQUALLY PRESERVED BY VETERANS OF WORLD WAR II AND KOREA, CONGRESS DECIDED TO MAKE THE DAY AN OCCASION TO HONOR ALL THOSE WHO HAVE SERVED IN THE ARMED FORCES OF THE UNITED STATES. IN 1954 PRESIDENT DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER SIGNED A BILL PROCLAIMING 11 NOVEMBER AS VETERANS DAY.

TRADITIONALLY THE ‘BUDDY’ POPPY BECAME THE OFFICIAL VFW MEMORIAL FLOWER IN 1922 AND ARE DISTRIBUTED ACROSS THE GLOBE, NORMALLY ON MEMORIAL AND VETERANS DAY, HOWEVER EVERYDAY CAN BE ‘BUDDY’ POPPY DAY. THE POPPIES ARE ASSEMBLED BY DISABLED, HOSPITALIZED, AGING AND NEEDY VETERANS WHO ARE PAID FOR THEIR WORK. THESE ‘BUDDY POPPIES’ ARE NOT FOR SELL, BUT DONATIONS ARE GREATLY APPRECIATED. PROCEEDS CONTRIBUTED ARE USED FOR MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES, VETERANS’ WELFARE, OR FOR THE WELL BEING OF NEEDY DEPENDENTS, WIDOWS AND ORPHANS OF VETERANS.

Like many Military posts around the world, Wiesbaden also paid homage to Veterans on Veterans Day. Members of VFW Post 27, American Legion, Buffalo Riders and other organizations also came togoether at the PX on Hainerberg Kaserne. The Wiesbaden JROTC, Warrior Battalion, led by LTC, (Ret.) Jon Ring and SGM (Ret.) Allen Ashton performed the honor guard.

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Rocksany, Czech Republic

Rocksany is a town in the Czech Republic. District 3 sponsors an annual event, this year it was from 18-20 November.

The event is to celebrate the meeting of the US and Soviet armies and the liberation of the town from German forces during WW 2. There is a demarcation line exactly were the two Armies met. You should be able to see it in a couple of the pictures were there is English and Soviet inscription. We also went to Pilsen to the Patton Museum.

The area around Rokycany marks the furthest point east that U.S. Forces advanced before Germany‘s surrender. information provided be Emilio Andujar, Dist 3 SVC

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Cooties - Pup Tent 6

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

‘Don’t Give Up — You Have to Fight for Yourself’

John Wayne Massaro, 68, followed in his father’s footsteps and served in the Navy from 1972 to 1992. “I joined to see the world like my dad, Mario,” he said.

Throughout 20 years of service, Massaro sustained several injuries that continue to affect him.

John Massaro (right) with Service Officer Chris Singletary. “In 1976, I was in a car accident while driving back to our ship in Gaeta, Italy,” he said. “I fractured my femur in the accident. I also suffer from sleep apnea, insomnia and 33 other disabilities.”

It was not until 2006 that Massaro considered seeking the benefits and assistance he was entitled to.

“After talking with my shipmate James Bollinger, who kept telling me to start a claim, I went to the States and stopped by the VA office in Orlando to start the process,” he said.

Friend and fellow VFW member Jacoby Fleming helped Massaro with his claim. Eventually, Massaro found additional assistance through the VFW’s National Veterans Service (NVS) where he connected with VFW-Accredited Service Officer Chris Singletary.

“Chris went through my medical records since no one ever had. He found all my disabilities,” said Massaro. With Fleming’s and Singletary’s help, Massaro submitted his claim and received a VA rating of 100%. He encourages other veterans to take action, no matter how long ago they left the military.

“I retired in 1992,” said Massaro. “Don’t give up — you have to fight for yourself.”

Today, Massaro is a member of VFW Post 12159 in Naples, Italy (formerly, he was a member of VFW Post 2093 in Orlando, Florida). He and his wife Filomena have a daughter Manuela, son Danilo and granddaughter Jasmine. In 2009, their other son John Wayne Jr. passed away. Massaro believes his untimely death could have been prevented with adequate support.

“I hope that people try to help our service members and veterans overseas,” he said. “While I was in the service overseas, our children were born at the military hospital.”

Despite living there all their lives, Massaro’s kids struggled to find work on the base, so his son moved to the U.S.

“John Jr. had to go to the States and get a good job,” explained Massaro. “But he was all alone and passed away because of medical problems.”

Massaro is certain that better veteran support services could keep tragedies like his from happening to someone else. He hopes people will do what they can to assist veteran families who sacrifice so much.

“If by some miracle, someone can help, please do, because I’m not the only one in this situation,” he said. “And to other veterans — never give up.”

Learn more about the VFW‘s National Veterans Service (NVS) program.

(https://www.vfw.org/assistance/va-claims-separation-benefits)

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Navy veteran John Wayne Massaro hopes people will do what they can to assist veteran families who sacrifice so much
VA

Retiree Appreciation Day (RAD)

Retiree Appreciation Day in WIesbaden. Members of VFW Post 27 were at this event to help Retirees with assistance that might needed. (above and left)

Retiree Appreciation Day USAG Bavaria 19 Oct 22 with Department of Europe Commander (and CDR VFW Post 9334) and Tower Post 10692 members. Great event which is held once a year, providing Retirees with much needed assistance! (below)

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Recruiting

On

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November 5 and 6 members of Post 27, along with the Wiesbaden JROTC, Cub Scouts, Scouts, and Model UN, held a Buddy Poppy and Recuiting event at the Hainerberg PX in Wiesbaden. There were several new Life members, Annual members and Re-instated members. VFW Post 10692 & 9334 & DoE Recruiting event at Grafenwoehr Commissary 25 October 2022 with 3 new members.

VFW Post 605 Celebrates Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a time of togetherness and gratitude. Our American traditions of celebrating Thanksgiving are rooted in the spirit of unity and charity.

Remembering this, the Benjamin Franklin VFW Post 605 organized a community wide Thanksgiving Dinner celebration at the Ecole Militaire in Paris on November 24th.

A dozen Post members welcomed over 80 friends and family member guests, including: French Veterans from the Union Nationale des Combattants in Issy-les-Moulineaux, Rochambeau Chapter DAR France, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, the Association of Americans Resident Overseas (AARO), as well as seven Cadets from the U.S. Air Force Academy.

The Scouts provided the honor guards for posting of the colors, and Commander Primmer led all guests in singing of both the US and French National Anthems. Special toasts were given to honor of comrades who are no longer with us, and Buddy Poppies were distributed with donations received going to help support the post’s community programs.

Smiles were abundant throughout the evening, as this year’s dinner was a continuation of Post 605’s annual tradition over the past decade, with only one interruption in 2020 due to Covid restrictions. Post members and guests alike all pledged to be back again next year!

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LOGO GAITER 9 x 19". Machine washable. With vinyl storage bag. 1965 $14.95

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VFW Podcast

The VFW Podcast is a new show for veterans, by veterans. The VFW is in the midst of a paradigm shift and it’s an exciting time to be a part of this transformational change within our organization.

The VFW Podcast is our newest communication platform that will highlight critical issues, challenges and legislation affecting veterans, service members and military families worldwide.

Join us as we chat with congressional leadership, Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs senior officials, and everyday veterans as we tackle tough issues affecting our military veteran community.

To listen to the VFW Podcast, visit one of these streaming services, or wherever you get your podcasts.

I am the DoE Riders Chairman, Michael Konsavage.

We honor the dead and helping the living. We are a growing group of riders. We ride with pride and safety. If you would like to start a Rides Group on your post, Please let me know.

Email: konsavage@hotmail.com

VFW MISSION TO FOSTER CAMARADERIE AMONG UNITED STATES VETERANS OF OVERSEAS CONFLICTS. TO SERVE OUR VETERANS, THE MILITARY AND OUR COMMUNITIES. TO ADVOCATE ON BEHALF OF ALL VETERANS

VFW VISION ENSURE THAT VETERANS ARE RESPECTED FOR THEIR SERVICE, ALWAYS RECIEVE THEIR EANED ENTITLEMENTS, AND ARE RECOGNIZED FOR THE SACRIFICES THEY AND THEIR LOVED ONES HAVE MADE ON BEHALF OF THIS GREAT COUNTRY.

VFW CORE VALUES TO ALWAYS PUT THE INTERESTS OF OUR MEMBERS FIRST TREAT DONORS AS PARTNERS IN OUR CAUSE PROMOTE PRATIOTISM HONOR MILITARY SERVICE ENSURE THE CARE OF VETERANS AND THEIR FAMILIES SERVE OUR COMMUNITIES PROMOTE A POSITIVE IMAGE OF THE VFW RESPECT THE DIVERSITY OF VETERAN OPINIONS

Veterans Creed

I am an American Veteran

I proudly served my country

I live the values I learned in the military

I continue to serve my community, my country and my fellow veterans

I maintain my physical and mental discipline

I continue to lead and improve

I make a difference

I honor and remember my fallen comrades

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DoE VFW Riders Michael Konsavage

Marking Milestones in Iraq

The VFW remembers the official end of the Iraq War

December 15, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) joins a grateful nation in remembering the end of the Iraq War and honoring the service and sacrifice of the veterans of the conflict.

On this day 11 years ago, then - General Lloyd J. Austin III cased the colors of the U.S. Forces –Iraq, officially marking the end of Operation New Dawn. The ceremony was a significant milestone for America’s military operations in the Middle East, which, including Operation Iraqi Freedom, wrapped up 8 years, 8 months and 26 days of persistent conflict in the country of Iraq. The combined toll of casualties from Operations Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn far exceeded that of the much longer and more widespread Operation Enduring Freedom. More than 32,000 U.S. service members were wounded in action in Iraq and its surrounding area, and 4,486 made the ultimate sacrifice, a total almost double the number of lives lost worldwide in the Global War on Terrorism. On Dec. 18, 2011, the last convoy of American troops left Iraq and after more than 21 years since Saddam Hussein ordered his forces to invade Kuwait, it seemed as though our nation could finally shift our focus away from Iraq. However, it only took three years before we were sending the U.S. military back in country to combat the terror group ISIS, marking another milestone in Iraq – the beginning of Operation Inherent Resolve.

In a Dec. 10, 2022, press release, Combined Joint Task Force – Inherent Resolve marked the “fifth anniversary of Iraq’s liberation and victory over ISIS control.” Since the U.S. ended its combat role last December, American forces “Advises, Assists and Enables” the Iraqi military until they can independently defend themselves from ISIS and provide long-term, stability and security for the Iraqi people. Until that day comes, U.S. service men and women will continue with their mission in what has become a more than 32-year-overwatch of the nation of Iraq.

Please join the more than 1.5 million members of the VFW and its Auxiliary in honoring the veterans of the Iraq War and remembering the ones still deployed to the region, as we wait to mark the final milestone when everyone finally comes home.

Graciously allows hard copies of The European Gazette to be printed

vfw.org

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All gave some Some gave all

Be a Life Member

Join our family!

Join the VFW National Home for Children family! Become a Life Member or an Associate Life Member and create a lasting bond between yourself and the mission of the National Home.

There are two types of membership:

VFW and VFW Auxiliary members and organizations are eligible to become Life Members. Life Members may vote for the trustees who represent their National Home District and approve any proposed changes to our bylaws and articles of incorporation.

Any individual or organization wishing to support the National Home’s mission can become an Associate Life Member. Associate Life Members do not have voting privileges.

Both member types receive a membership certificate and wallet card, and a Life Member Pin.

VFW National Home for Children

3573 S Waverly Rd

Eaton Rapids, MI. 48827

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ vfwnationalhome/#_=_

Website: https://www.vfwnationalhome.org/

The origins of today’s VFW National Home for Children can be traced to a 23-year-old woman named Amy Ross. In 1922, Ross made it her mission to help find jobs for the thousands of unemployed veterans in Detroit.

THE BEGINNING

News of Ross’ efforts reached millionaire cattleman Corey Spencer, who gifted 472 acres of land near Eaton Rapids, Michigan, to build on Ross’ vision of supporting veterans.

On Jan. 7, 1925, the VFW National Home was founded, helping to fulfill the VFW pledge to “honor the dead by helping the living.” Later that spring, the Home welcomed its first family in an old frame farmhouse, Mrs. Pollett and her six children. Pollett had become suddenly widowed and lost her husband’s military pension.

THROUGH THE YEARS

Since its founding, the VFW National Home for Children has grown from an old frame farmhouse to a sprawling campus with playgrounds; park areas; and multiple buildings, including single-family homes, a community center and gymnasium, child care facility, guest lodge, chapel, and administrative offices.

Over the years, the National Home has evolved to meet the changing needs of America’s military and veterans’ families. Through it all, one thing has remained constant: the National Home’s commitment to honor our nation’s veterans and active-duty military by providing help and hope for their children and families.

The Mission

“The Veterans of Foreign Wars National Home for Children will provide children, youth and families of veterans, active-duty military, and members of the VFW and its Auxiliary opportunities for growth and development in a nurturing community, and by doing so will serve as a living memorial to all veterans.”

About Us

Born from the belief that America needs to care for the children and families of men and women who sacrificed for our country, the VFW National Home for Children is a place of healing, support and refuge. It was founded in 1925 as a place where the families left behind by war could remain together, keeping the family circle intact even when their servicemember didn’t come home. Today’s families face different challenges — reintegration, post-traumatic stress, high unemployment and rehabilitation from battlefield injuries, among others — and the National Home has evolved over our decades-long history to meet those changing needs.

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FACT SHEET

As the nation’s oldest major war veterans’ organization, the VFW has an impeccable and longstanding record of service and stewardship. More than 4.4 million patriotic Americans, both members and non-members, entrust the VFW with financial contributions and dedicate millions of volunteer hours.

the VFW with financial contributions and dedicate millions of volunteer hours.

THE VFW’S VITAL SUPPORT PROGRAMS

2,000+

Educate separating service members about their well-earned VA benefits through private benefits counseling sessions with a VFW Service Officer.

Provide training to VFW Service Officers on signs of emotional suffering so they can better direct veterans to programs and services.

Help cover rent, utilities or groceries for a military family struggling with the hardships of war.

Deliver morale-boosting “welcome home” celebrations for service members who have returned from combat.

$11.55 million

Number of VA-accredited VFW representatives across America and abroad, helping veterans fight for the VA benefits they have earned.

$11.2 billion

The total annual amount the VFW helped veterans recoup in VA disability compensation and pension benefits.

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Number of times the VFW has testified before Congress in the last 12 months alone. The VFW has been instrumental in virtually every major legislative victory for veterans in the 20th and 21st centuries.

$12.7 million+

Value of financial assistance awarded to military families since 2004 to help cover basic needs in times of crisis. 45% of the funds covered basic housing needs.

Amount of scholarships awarded to more than 2,567 veterans and service members through VFW’s “Sport Clips Help A Hero Scholarship” since January 2014.

66

Number of VFW-SVA Fellows (student veterans) who have traveled to Washington, D.C., to advocate for veterans’ rights.

Nearly $3 million

Amount of scholarships, monetary awards and other incentives the VFW distributes annually to middle and high school students through two major patriotic essay competitions.

3.4 million+

Number of service members and their family members hosted at VFW Military Assistance Program (MAP) events since 2005.

Learn more about the VFW’s programs and services at vfw.org.

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Updated December 2022

Cutting

Number of grants provided to military families facing financial hardship through VFW Unmet Needs since 2004. $5,741,123

Amount of grants provided through VFW Unmet Needs covering housing for struggling military families since 2004. 3,948

Number of military families who received assistance with housing needs since 2004.

Approximatenumber of veterans the VFW assisted in submitting new VA claims in fiscal year 2022. Nearly 13,500

Number of VA claims filed by the VFW’s Pre-Discharge offices in fiscal year 2022 resulting in more than $64 million in disability compensation. 20+

Number of VFW Pre-Discharge offices across the nation, including the military district of Washington, D.C., area.

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The VFW by the numbers Helping struggling military families
MORE FACTS ABOUT THE VFW
1.5 million
Number of VFW and VFW Auxiliary members. 5,773 Number of VFW Posts worldwide. 11,326
red tape 115,000
Updated December 2022 Learn
JOIN THE VFW Improving life in America Inspiring patriotism in young people
more about the VFW at vfw.org
5.3 million Number of volunteer hours contributed by VFW members annually. 25,000+ Number of high school students who competed in the 2021–22 VFW Voice of Democracy competition. 72,000+ Number of students who competed in the 2021–22 VFW Patriot’s Pen competition. $52.2 million Amount donated annually to local community service projects by VFW members. Year the VFW started to fight for veterans, service members and their families.

Post Name Legacy Level

9334Aldridge, Angelo D. Gold 10775Andrew, Glenna M Gold 10436Andujar, Emilio Gold 8862Bankston, Thomas J. Bronze 10436Barber, Billy D. Silver 27Barton, Clyde A. Bronze 10810Bateman, Gary M. Gold 10692Beatty, James M. Gold 10810Benard, Thomas R. Gold 27Bobbe Sr, Shawn J. Gold 9342Bodily, Cecil L. Gold 8862Borden, Johnny R. Bronze 8862Bostic, Mark C. Bronze 10810Boynton, Pierre Y. Bronze 9342 Brooks, Robert P. Gold 10810Buechner, Brian L. Bronze 27Campanas, James P. Gold 10692Cannon, Donald Gold 10692Case, John C. Gold 12139Casey, John J. Bronze 8862Clark, Tom A. Bronze 10708Classe Jr, Anthony V. Gold 3885Coleman III, Willie A. Gold 27Corea, Juanita C. Bronze 10692Creager, Donald R. Bronze 8862Davenport, Terry D. Bronze 605Digilio Jr, John T. Bronze 10692Flick, Brian H. Gold 10692Flick Sr, Bob R. * Gold 10692 Foist, Gabriel T. Bronze 10692Fuentes, Pierre J. Silver 8862Funk, Steven L. Gold 8862Furnish, Caroll E. Bronze 10692Gehring, Gregory J. Silver 605Gibson, Lon M. Gold 10614Gilgore, George J. Gold 8862Gillott, Bert A. Gold 10506Gish, Blane E. Bronze 10692Hadley, Benjamin F. Gold 9342Hall, Herbert Bronze 10692Hawley, Philip M. Gold 10810Hayman Collins, LisaBronze 8862Heaton, Alex O. Bronze 27 Heffernan, Michael G. Gold 8862Helie, Robert A. Bronze 8862Hendrickson, Richard B.Bronze 10692Hicks, David E. Gold 9342Hirschman, Norman J.Bronze 10506Hooper, Carl Gold 15060Hoskin, Lawrence K. Gold 10557Howard, Lance W. Gold

Post Name Legacy Level

10708Isaak, Norbert Gold 9342Johnson, Dwight Silver 10692Joyce, James R. Gold 605Keenan, Kristina J. Gold 9334Kennedy, Jonathan Gold 8862Kennedy, Richard F. * Gold 9342Kistner, Mark C. Gold 10506Konsavage, Michael F.Gold 15060Kuehn, Michael A. Gold 10506 Kuntz, Daniel J. Gold 10810Lally, William E. * Bronze 8862Lawery, Donald F. * Gold 10810 Leffler, John L. Gold 10810 Leffler, Robert J. Gold 8862Leonard, James L. Bronze 10692Lorenzo, James R. Gold 10692Lovmo, Russell D. Gold 8862Luste, Peter H. * Gold 15060Lytle, Victor S. * Gold 10810Marable, Devon A. Bronze 27Miller, Anthony E. Bronze 27Minsky, Robert R. Gold 3885Mishkin, Marc B. Gold 9342Miyamoto, Daniel K. Gold 27Moore, Andrew J. Gold 8862Moore, Thomas R. Bronze 10436Morgan, David L. Gold 12159Mormino, Joe A. Gold 8862Murley, Myron H. * Gold 10708Nagan, Dale R. Gold 27Neiderhiser, Adam T. Gold 2566Neilson, John C. Gold 10708Nelson, Walter A. Bronze 8862Northen, Alice Silver 8862Northen, Matthew B. Silver 3885Ota, Todd H. Bronze 2566Otto, Matthew J. Gold 10692Palos, Jasson G. Bronze 8862 Peiffer, Robert R. Bronze 8862 Pfaff, Michael D. Bronze 10436Preston, Lee B. Silver 605Primmer, Mark D. Gold 10692Proctor, Ryan A. Bronze 12159Purham, Randy Silver 10692Quick, George Bronze 8862Quinn, Patrick I. * Bronze 605Reid, Ulysses T. Gold 10614Rewis, Thomas Bronze 8862Reynolds, Ronald Bronze 27Richardson, Stanley Gold 10614Ridenbaugh, Rudy L. Gold

Post Name Legacy Level

3885Robbins, Leo V. * Gold 10692Rohr, Kenneth J. Gold 10775Schaaf, Mark A. * Gold 15060Schreiber, Mark A. Bronze 9342Schreiber, Thomas K. Gold 10810Schwartz, Robert N. Gold 605Shanahan Jr, John H. Gold 15060Shelton, Christopher L.Silver 9342Smith, Nay Bronze 10692Spohr, Gladwin K. Gold 8862St Hilaire, Shaun M. Gold 605Steiner, Charles J. Bronze 10775Strickland Jr, Jack L. Gold 10692Strosnider, William D.Bronze 15060Thomas Sr, David J. Gold 10506Van Der Wyst, Ralph H.Gold 27Vergott, James D. Gold 12139 Wagaman, Jeffrey H. Gold 27Wallent, Anthony Bronze 15060Webken, Jacob T. Bronze 8862Wilder, David B. Gold 3885Williamson, Jessie L. Gold 27Wolverton, Lee R. Gold 10692Worm, Kenneth S. Gold 8862Young, Anthony L. Gold 10810Young, Joel O. Gold 10775Zaiz, Richard A. Gold

* Indicates deceased member as of June 30, 2022

Department of Europe Legacy members Gold 78 Silver 8 Bronze42

WE PROVE IT. GOT YOUR BACK. SOME SAY THEY’VE

Testifying on Capitol Hill, leading the way for veterans legislation
Hosting service members and their families at morale-boosting events Standing at the forefront in the battle Granting scholarships to student veterans for higher education Helping veterans recoup their earned benefits from the VA Providing vital financial assistance to military families in need
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