NEWS

Burger Night

Acorn Post Burger Night tonight 18 August 2017 5 pm to 8:30


Hall Rentals

No hall rentals


Post Change

Post Annual Dues increase


Reporting

Reporting is off line for conversion of wed site!


GOLD STAR MOTHERS

VFW District 5 Gold Star Mothers Banquet Sunday October 1, 2017


Michigan Female Service members' Salute

Great Lakes National Cemetery is holding an event honoring Michigan's Military Women July 29, 2017 at 10:00 A.M.


Fall Conference


WEB PAGE

UPDATE Of WED PAGE


VTS Camp Trotter

VTS Camp Totter June 24, 2017 Registration Form


Gold Star Mothers

The Gold Star Mothers 69th Annual Victory in Japan Day Service Sunday August 6, 2017 At White Chapel Memorial Park Cemetery Located at 621 West Long Lake Rd. Troy, MI. 48098-4597 248-362-7670 Line up for all marching units is 11:00 AM


Notice from National Quartermaster General

The use of the VFW trademarked name, emblems, and logos.


Veterans of Foreign Wars updated Fact Sheet

As the nation’s oldest major veterans’ organization, the VFW has an impeccable and longstanding record of service and stewardship. More than 4 million patriotic Americans, both members and non-members, entrust the VFW with financial contributions and dedicate millions of volunteer hours.


Important Michigan VFW Project Underway

We are excited to announce the start of the Michigan VFW Then and Now Member Publication project. To make this a successful project, we have partnered with a nationally recognized publishing firm, Publishing Concepts (PCI). Starting soon, you will receive communication from Publishing Concepts letting you know how to participate in the Michigan VFW Then and Now Member Publication. This unique photo publication will be filled with military experiences and memorable photos from the past and the present. Don't miss out on this opportunity to be included!


VOD State Winners

Click on the link and listen to all the State winning VOD Students.


Dept. Polo Shirt

Incoming State Commander and President's shirt order form for 2017-2018


Karmanos' visit to Mid- Winter

The Department of Michigan Veterans of Foreign Wars Supports Karmanos’ Prostate Cancer Research Program


DEPARTMENT OF MICHIGAN V.F.W. AND AUXILIARIES 98th ANNUAL STATE CONVENTION

As we start to get the forms we will be updating this article. Thank you for your patience.


Reporting errors

With the upgrade of the server , some are receiving 500 error message! Please let us know if you have received this message, so that it can be corrected, email jgubin@vfwmi.org with your post number and issue to be resolved!


Post and Department emails

Post and Department email pass words Have been change due to a security risk! Server was hacked, your UID's stayed the same do not use your old Password or reset to the old password you have been using! Call or text Dave strange server technician (248) 207-3680 or John Gubin 586-216-7088 department web site Director!


Army Veteran Has the Grit to Pursue Her Goals

Samantha Bedore, 26, from Phoenix, Ariz., knew the opportunity to attend graduate school would help her pursue a better life for her and her family. But she worried that she’d be forced to take out huge student loans.

U.S. Army veteran Samantha Bedore.
Army Vet Scholarship

Fortunately, Bedore found the VFW's “Sport Clips Help a Hero Scholarship" online. The funds are helping her complete her Doctorate in Physical Therapy at Midwestern University.

...


VFW Releases Brutal Battles of Vietnam to Commemorate 50th Anniversary

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — In conjunction with 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War commemoration efforts, the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is announcing the release of its latest publication, “Brutal Battles of Vietnam: America’s Deadliest Days, 1965 – 1972.”VFW Vietnam Book

The one-of-a-kind, 480-page book, is the most comprehensive battle history of the war yet published in a single volume. Its easy-to-read chapters convey the essence of combat through swift-moving vignettes and 700 rarely seen photos covering some 100 battles. I...


VFW Awards Nearly $500,000 in Veteran Scholarships

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S., America’s largest and oldest major combat veterans organization, is proud to announce 107 student veterans have been named recipients of a VFW “Sport Clips Help A Hero Scholarship” for the 2017 fall semester.

During its eighth-straight award period, the scholarship program will distribute nearly half a million dollars in financial assistance in the upcoming fall semester to service members and veterans working toward their education goals in colleges or trade schools worldwide. 

To date, more than 800 service members and veterans have received post-secondary scholarships totaling more than $3 million. 

View the entire list of 2017 fall semester recipients


VFW Applauds Unanimous Senate Passage of Forever GI Bill

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Today, in a true display of patriotic bipartisanship, the U.S. Senate voted unanimously to pass S. 1589, the Harry W. Colmery Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2017, informally known as the Forever GI Bill.

“The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is extremely pleased with the swift passage of this bill. The GI Bill is one of our nation’s best tools for setting our veterans up for future success,” said VFW National Commander Keith Harman. “This new legislation improves upon that tool. And its unanimous passage by the House and now the Senate, shows our nation’s commitment to those who served our country.”

The legislation, geared to address eligibility and coverage gaps in the current Post-9/11 GI Bill has been strongly supported by the VFW. Joining it in its advocacy efforts regarding the bill were several other veterans organizations to includ...


Vietnam Veteran Elected VFW National Commander

The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States concluded its 118th National Convention today with the election of Keith Harman of Delphos, Ohio, as its new national commander.

Harman served in the U.S. Army from 1967 to 1969, including service in Vietnam as a crew chief and door gunner on Huey helicopters.

During his acceptance speech, he spoke highly of the nearly 1.7 million members of VFW and its Auxiliary, citing the members’ camaraderie as the driving force to the success o...


VFW Appoints New Adjutant General

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Brian Duffy was appointed adjutant general of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. yesterday at the 118th VFW National Convention in New Orleans, La. His appointment comes immediately following a year-long term as the national commander of the more than 1.2 million-member organization. He also becomes the first Desert Storm veteran to hold the position, which is similar in duties to any corporate chief executive officer. Duffy AG Cropped

Duffy retired from a successful 27-year career with United Parcel Service (UPS) airlines in 2014, having held the titles of flight engineer instructor, instructor/check captain on Boeing 757 and 767 aircraft, and ultimately, as...


VFW Lauds Unanimous House Passage of Forever GI Bill

NEW ORLEANS —The U.S. House of Representatives last night showed unquestionable, bipartisan commitment to America's student veterans by voting 405-0 to pass H.R. 3218, the #ForeverGIBill.

"The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States salutes the House for their unanimous support to improve veterans’ educational benefits,” said VFW National Commander Brian Duffy. "The vote proves that no matter the political party or ideology, our elected officials are taking care of those who have worn our country's uniform."
 
Strongly supported by the VFW, H.R. 3218 addresses current gaps in Post-9/11 GI Bill eligibility and coverage. It ensures more veteran...


Shulkin to VFW: Right Care at the Right Place

This article was written by Megan Maloney and originally appeared on VAntage Point, the official blog of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

On Monday, July 24, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. David J. Shulkin addressed an audience of VFW and Auxiliary members at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) 118th National Convention in New Orleans.2017 Shulkin

In his remarks, Shulkin spoke on the five key priorities he has identified to transform VA. Th...


Medal of Honor Recipient 'Highly Recommends' VFW Vietnam Book

Medal of Honor recipient James E. Livingston spoke at VFW’s 118th National Convention on Tuesday to give his thoughts on the recently released Brutal Battles of Vietnam, a book compiled by VFW magazine’s former editor in chief, Richard Kolb, and former art director, Robert Widener.

During a speech at the convention’s business session, Livingston, a retired Marine Corps general, said the book “is a prime example of unbiased and honest historical preservation” and tells “the human side” of the Vietnam War.

“It really tells the story in a much better way than most books do,” Livingston said. “It’s a truthful story that tells of the commitment, service and sacrifice of all who served in Vietnam.”

Livingston, a Gold Legacy Life Member of Post 10624 in Mount Pleasant, S.C., said he “highly recommends” Brutal Battles of Vietnam to everyone, especially Vietnam War v...


Defeat Unacceptable Choice Funding Legislation

Joint Statement from AMVETS, DAV (Disabled American Veterans), Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Association (IAVA), Military Officers Association of America (MOAA), Military Order of the Purple Heart (MOPH), Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) and Wounded Warrior Project (WWP)

NEW ORLEANS (July 22, 2017) – As organizations who represent and support the interests of America’s 21 million veterans, and in fulfillment of our mandate to ensure that the men and women who served are able to receive the health care and benefits they need and deserve, we are calling on members of Congress to defeat the House vote on unacceptable choice funding legislation (S. 114, with amendments) scheduled for Monday, July 24, and instead work with the Senate to reach a bipartisan, bicameral agreement.

As we have repeatedly told House leaders in pers...


118th VFW National Convention Rolls Into New Orleans

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — After a 26-year absence, up to 10,000 members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States and its Auxiliary are set to roll into New Orleans this weekend to elect new leadership and to approve resolutions that will guide the national organization’s advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill and its veteran and military support programs across the country. The 118th VFW National Convention begins Saturday at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. The business sessions are closed to the public, but a free two-day veterans walk-in claims clinic and health fair will be accessible to all veterans, service members and their families.VFW 118th NOLAVFW Announces Scout of the Year Winners

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is proud to announce the selection of the top three winners of its 2016 - 2017 Scout of the Year scholarship competition.

Enacted in 2001, the Scout of the Year competition was designed to reward eligible members of the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Venturing Crew or Sea Scouts who have risen above their peers in exemplifying standout citizenship, patriotism and love of country with college scholarships of up to $5,000.2017 VFW Scouts Names

This year’s first-place winner Olivia Zietz, sponsored by VFW Post 8422 in Smyrna, Tenn., was selected for...


VFW, SVA Now Accepting 2018 Legislative Fellowship Applications

WASHINGTON — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. and Student Veterans of America (SVA) are seeking student veteran candidates to participate in their 2018 VFW-SVA Legislative Fellowship program. The fellowship, now in its fourth year, will bring up to 10 selected student veterans to Washington to meet face-to-face with their congressional members next spring in conjunction.

Student veterans interested in applying for the 2018 VFW-SVA Legislative Fellowship must complete an application package that includes an essay proposal on one of four specific legislative issues. The proposal should include a discussion of why the issue is important to the veterans’ community, and how the fellowship candidate plans to address the issue through community-based advocacy. Selected fellows will then be flown to Washington to ensure the veterans’ voice is delivered to Capitol Hill alongside 500 fellow veterans’ advocates as part of the 2018 VFW L...


Rhode Island Veteran Receives National VFW Award

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is proud to announce VFW Life member and retired Army Col. Raymond Denisewich as its VFW Accredited Service Representative of the Year 2017. 

The colonel is an Iraq and Afghanistan veteran who served 36 years in uniform before being appointed as VFW Rhode Island’s Department Service Officer in June 2016. According to his awards package, he used his personal experiences and leadership skills to successfully implement several best practices that streamlined office procedures, enhanced electronic recordkeeping, and developed and expanded higher-quality training methods. He is a Life member of VFW Post 2812 in Cranston, R.I.

“Colonel Denisewich earned this national honor for his tireless work ethic and commitment to ensuring America’s veterans received the benefits they earned from the Department of Veterans Affairs,” said VFW National...


Post-9/11 GI Bill Becoming Greater

WASHINGTON — The signing of the Post-9/11 GI Bill in 2008 was the culmination of a decade’s worth of effort by the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States to fight for a new military education benefit. Now that historic bill is becoming even greater, thanks entirely to strong congressional support and the intense advocacy of the VFW and other veterans and military service organizations in Washington and around the country.

On July 13, the VFW hosted a roundtable with several veterans and military service organizations to discuss the Forever GI Bill.
VFW GI Bill RoundtableNew Mexico VFW Post Earns National Award

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is proud to announce Sacramento Mountain VFW Post 11999 in Cloudcroft, N.M., has been selected to receive the prestigious Fred C. Hall Memorial Outstanding Post Special Project Award in honor of its “Warriors in Transition Event” project. 

The VFW’s Fred C. Hall award recognizes VFW Posts, County Councils, Districts and Departments for unique and outstanding community service projects.

VFW Post 11999 is being recognized for helping service members from the nearby Fort Bliss (Texas) Warrior Transition Battalion and their families to rest and recuperate from their traumas of war in a peaceful, alpine environment. Since 2011, Post members have generously donated their time and money, working with the local community to ensure visiting service members and their families receive accommodations, meals, and access to activities like fishing, hi...


WWII Veterans Widow Receives Long-Overdue VA Benefits

Paul Pirlot, state director of the VFW Detroit Service Office in Michigan, knew the best way to honor extraordinary WWII veteran Adelore Palmiter after his passing was by making sure his widow, Wilma Palmiter, was well cared for in the years following.WWII Vet Widow Benefits Insert

“Mr. Palmiter was a patient at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System when we first got in touch with him. We realized he had never filed a VA claim, even though he was eligible for benefits as a WWII veteran,” explained Pirlot.

At the time of his death, Adelore Palmiter was one of only 22 survivors o...


Dont Miss the VFW Live from New Orleans

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Make sure to have your electronic devices ready as the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States begins streaming live from its 118th VFW National Convention in New Orleans starting July 23.Don't Miss NOLA

More than 10,000 VFW and VFW Auxiliary members are expected to attend the weeklong convention at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in downtown New Orleans, July 22-26. Livestreaming begins with the annual memorial service on July 23 at 8:30 a.m. (CDT), and continues for the duration of the convention beginning at 7:30 a.m., July 24, and culminating with the election of a new national commander on July 26.  


VA Accountability, Whistleblower Protection Act Becomes Law

WASHINGTON — The national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is saluting President Trump for signing into law today the VFW-championed Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017.

VA Accountability Law

“Accountability must be a two-way street, and today’s signing now provide...


Burger King Franchisees Kick Off Fundraiser for Vets

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is pleased to announce that participating BURGER KING® franchisees are set to kick off their summer fundraiser to benefit the VFW’s Unmet Needs program.

Members of VFW Post 56 in Leavenworth, Kan., visit their local Burger King to say 'thank you' for their support of the VFW Unmet Needs program.
BK July 2017

During the month of July, patrons are encoura...


VFW Presents U.S. Coast Guard Band

NEW LONDON, Conn. — Friday, July 28 at 7 p.m., the U.S. Coast Guard Band performs at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts as part of its 2017 concert tour. Director, Lieutenant Commander Adam Williamson and Assistant Director Richard Wyman lead an engaging program with works by Shostakovich, Maslanka, Brubeck, Oquin, Sousa, and others. Dazzling soloists include the Band’s native Texans and soprano Megan Weikleenget. This concert is presented with the generous support of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S.Kauffman Center

The United States Coast Guard Band is the premier band representing the United States Coast Guard and the Department of Homeland Security...


NRAEF, VFW Team Up for Second Hospitality Career Connection

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. and the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) are teaming up to help service members, veterans and their spouses explore career opportunities and apply for openings at some of the restaurant and hospitality industry’s top companies.

The Hospitality Career Connection virtual career fair takes place June 21 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. EDT, and includes businesses such as Applebee'sBJ’s RestaurantsEcolabSodexo and ...


VFW Continues Opposition to Individual Unemployability Cuts

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Yesterday, during a hearing of the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. testified in strong opposition to a provision of President Trump’s budget proposal, which would cut up to $22,000 from the annual compensation of severely disabled veterans who receive Individual Unemployability (IU) benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs. 

Veterans who are on the IU program have service-connected disabilities that prevent them from working, rendering them unable to pay into Social Security. The provision would have moved veterans from IU to Social Security at age 62, resulting in a significant decrease in compensation. Other benefits, such as dental care and medical coverage for their dependents, would have also been impacted. Many veterans have recently contacted the VFW to voice their concerns over how the proposal would have impacted the property and automobile tax breaks granted...


VFW Champions Added Benefits for Disabled Vet

Retired Master Sergeant Jim Carver, 53, of Powhatan, Va., describes the initial process of separating from the military as “hectic.”

A disabled veteran who served over 21 years on active duty, Carver “had the basics taken care of” with his initial VA claim. However, when he heard about the VFW’s National Veterans Service program, he reached out to his VFW Department Service Officer, Ms. Bobbiejo Lazo.VFW Service Officer Lazo

“Once I was on the phone with her, I knew I was talking to the right person,” C...


Annual VFW Youth Scholarship Competitions Now Open

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is now accepting entries into its 2017-18 Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen youth scholarship competitions. The announcement comes after students from across the globe recently took home their share of more than $3.3 million in scholarships and awards from last year’s competitions.

The VFW’s Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen essay competitions are dedicated to encouraging a better understanding and appreciation of America, and to help foster patriotism among today’s youth. Students are required to submit an oral or written essay in response to a question or statement on a subject which prompts them to consider how American history and democratic ideals and principles apply to their lives.

VFW Statement on Comedian Kathy Griffin

WASHINGTON — “The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. strongly condemns comedian Kathy Griffin's incredibly revolting attack on the President of the United States. Her apology is not accepted. What she did was not humorous nor should it be protected speech or expression. Playing to an audience with a severed head is what our enemies do. The USO should immediately end its relationship with her.” — VFW National Commander Brian Duffy...


VFW Statement on Comedian Kathy Griffin

The USO has informed the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. that although comedian Kathy Griffin had performed several USO tours in the past, they have not had any relationship with her for a number of years. The VFW appreciates this information and apologizes for mentioning them in our May 31 press release.

...


Yuengling's Lagers for Heroes Campaign to Support VFW

Pottsville, Pa. – D.G. Yuengling & Son, Inc. is pleased to announce it will enter its second year of support of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. through its “Lagers For Heroes” campaign.

D.G. Yuengling & Son, Inc. will recognize the sacrifices that America’s veterans have made with a significant donation to the Veterans of Foreign Wars’ assistance programs in the amount of $100,000. Yuengling, America’s Oldest Brewery began supporting the VFW through their “Lagers For Heroes” program in 2016. This year’s program runs May 29 to July 4, 2017 and promotes Yuengling Traditional Lager and Light Lager with the line “Grab A Lager & Toast A Hero.”Yuengling Lagers for HeroesVFW Names National Teacher Award Winners

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is proud to announce its selection of three teachers in its 2017 Smart/Maher VFW National Citizenship Education Teacher Award contest. 

Each year, one teacher is selected from the elementary (K-5), middle (6-8) and high school (9-12) levels.  2017 VFW Teacher Award

Theresa Early, a fourth-grade special education teacher at Laurel Ridge Elementary School in Fairfax, Va., was named the elementary school winner for her involvement in her school’s Military Kids Club, establishing a student color guard, and encouraging students to draft cla...


Former Marine Linguist Pursues Educational Goals

“As a Marine, I learned how to adapt to uncertainty and persevere in difficult circumstances. I conducted regional threat analysis and worked closely with diplomatic and military leaders across the world.”Former Marine Pursues Goals

Robert Dahlhausen, 27, of Cincinnati, Ohio, served five years as a Corporal in the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit. After studying Arabic at the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, Calif., Dahlhausen deployed as a Linguist. He worked in countries across the Mediterranean, including Morocco, Jordan, Bahrain, and Kuwait.

“I worked with almost every unit we had, including our in...


VA, VFW and Walgreens Collaborate to Enhance Veterans Access to Mental Health Resources

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the Veterans of Foreign Wars and drugstore chain Walgreens announced a collaborative agreement May 6, which will help improve mental health care for veterans through enhanced education, access to resources and outreach.

Celebrating a collaborative agreement of their three organizations to help improve mental health care for veterans are, from left, VFW National Commander Brian Duffy, Walgreens Medical Director for Clinical Programs and Quality Dr. Chet Robson, and VA Executive Director for the Office of Suicide Prevention Dr. Caitlin Thompson.
VA VFW WalgreensVFW Posts Again Support 'Salute Our Troops'

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. and Tractor Supply Company (TSC) are teaming up for the fifth consecutive year to make this year’s Memorial Day weekend a community event across the nation!2017 Salute our Troops

On May 27, TSC, the largest farm and ranch store chain in the United States, is offering local VFW Posts the opportunity to distribute “Buddy”® Poppies and program information ranging from service officer claims assistance to scholarships and financial assistance grants. Many Posts will also have cookouts. 

Encourage your Post to join in and


May is Mental Health Awareness Month

One in five Americans experience some form of mental illness each year, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness. This includes the nation’s veterans.

To this end, the Department of Veterans Affairs recognizes May as Mental Health Awareness Month.Mental Health Awareness

According to Dr. Wendy Tenhula, VA Deputy Chief Consultant for Specialty Mental Health, the theme of the month is Use Your Voice (#useyourvoice).

Tenhula said the goal is to encourage ev...


VFW Applauds Presidents Executive Order

WASHINGTON — President Trump today signed a new executive order that will help the Department of Veterans Affairs better hold its employees accountable for their actions or inactions.

“Proper leadership, management and accountability are only watchwords without the authority to enact change,” said Brian Duffy, the national commander of the 1.7 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States and its Auxiliary.

“Today’s action, bolstered hopefully soon by the passage of the VA Accountability First Act, will help ensure that only the very best employees are hired and retained by a department that was created for one purpose, and that’s to care for our nation’s wounded, ill and injured veterans.” 

Read more about the accountability and whistle blower protections, among other actions contained in the executive order, VFW Members Mobilize to Give Back

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. and its Auxiliary will be out in force on Armed Forces Day, Saturday, May 20, 2017, to show their support and appreciation for BURGER KING® franchisees as part of #ThankBK Appreciation Day.ThankBK Appreciation Day

Since 2007, BURGER KING® franchisees and their customers have contributed over $4.3 million to the VFW Unmet Needs program. This program provides grants of up to $5,000 to qualified applicants who’ve fallen on hard times as a result of deployment, injury, or other military-related activities. To date, BURGER KING®’s generosity has directly assist...


VFW Auxiliary Announces 2017 Continuing Education Scholarship Winners

Kansas City, Mo. — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW) Auxiliary is pleased to announce the winners of its annual Continuing Education Scholarship contest. Four $1,000 scholarships were awarded, one in each of the four Auxiliary Conferences.VFW Auxiliary Scholarship Winners

Candy Applegate was named the winner of the Big 10 Conference. Applegate, a member of Auxiliary 5178 in Gravois Mills, Mo., is enrolled to study accounting and business management at Ozark Technical Community College. Applegate said the scholarship will help her be able to afford the cost of continuing ...


Winners of Publications Contest Announced

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — VFW has announced the winners of the 2017 National Publications Contest. Two years ago, the publications contest underwent significant changes to encourage continued participation. The contest’s reorganization created two new categories: Magazine and Best Feature Article. This year’s competition retained those changes.

Two non-VFW-affiliated journalism professionals served as judges for the competition. This is designed to guarantee impartiality and objectivity in the judging. To reiterate, VFW staffers play no part in judging the entries.

The winning publications in each category are:

Magazine

Grand Award:
Texas VFW News
Roy Grona, Editor

Silver Award:
The Leader Magazine 
Greg Stafford, Editor


VFW Honors Pearl Harbor Survivor with Award

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. honored a Pearl Harbor survivor and author on May 2, 2017, at VFW National Headquarters.

Retired U.S. Navy officer Jim Downing, 103, was presented a certificate of recognition by VFW Quartermaster General Debra Anderson in appreciation for his 24 years of Navy service. Downing is a VFW Life member.Jim Downing

“I feel I don’t deserve it, but I will accept the honor on behalf of all veterans,” Downing said of the honor.

Downing is the second-oldest known Pearl Harbor survivor. He fought in and survived the Pearl Harbor ...


Accountability is a Two-Way Street

By Brian Duffy — This month marks the third anniversary of a nationwide crisis in access to care that branded the Department of Veterans Affairs as an inept and corrupt government bureaucracy that was failing in its primary mission to care for those who had borne the battle.

In the aftermath, Congress quickly crafted a new law to improve the Secretary of Veterans Affairs’ authority to remove senior VA executives for performance or misconduct. The new authority did not last long.

Soon after enactment, then-VA Secretary Bob McDonald demoted and fired several senior executives for failing to properly disclose and address egregious wait times, and for manipulating the agency’s hiring process to secure large bonuses. The law was later deemed unconstitutional — over alleged due process rights violations — and the disciplinary actions against the VA executives were reversed.

So the question today is whether the VA Accountability First Act is the right vehicle to finally enable ...


VFW Offers SVA Chapters Grants to Change Dialogue on Mental Health

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is pleased to announce the VFW-SVA Mental Health Stand-To grant in support of its commitment to the Student Veterans of America (SVA) and to changing the dialogue surrounding mental health.

 The VFW will support events planned and executed by SVA Chapters in support of mental health awareness with a $500 VFW-SVA Mental Health Stand-To grant. Chapters are encouraged to be creative in hosting events focused on educating their members and their communities about the important topic of mental health and wellness, offer proven tools to intervene on behalf of veterans in crisis, and to participate in or host a community service event. Events may include hosting a run/walk, march or other sporting event, a community clean-up, or cookout, culminating with a gathering to initiate dialogue about mental healt...


VFW Strongly Opposes New Tax on Troops

The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is strongly opposed to a congressional proposal to reinstate GI Bill enrollment fees on service members.

Prior to 2009, troops had the option of paying into the Montgomery GI Bill, an educational benefit created during peacetime that came with a $1,200 non-reimbursable enrollment fee. As the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan continued, Congress worked with the VFW and others to create what is now known as the Post-9/11 GI Bill. This benefit, like other military and veteran benefits such as health care, is earned through honorable service – not through out-of-pocket fees. But now, while American forces are still actively fighting in the war on terrorism, Congress wants to claw back this critical educational benefit and charge veterans twice as much to access their GI Bill benefits. 

“We are still a nation at war. We have troops actively engaged in Iraq, in Af...


Creating a Powerful Elevator Pitch

It happens daily: You meet someone standing in line for coffee, at a job fair, or at a networking event, and they turn to you and ask, “So, what do you do?” How do you respond?

An elevator pitch is what we call that brief response that introduces you to a stranger. It might actually happen in an elevator! The goal of the elevator pitch is to be succinct and interesting enough that the other person will want to continue talking to you, and a possible professional relationship can develop.

Creating Your Elevator Pitch

For veterans, the elevator pitch might feel awkward and unnatural. It can feel like bragging to sell yourself in this way. These feelings are completely real – you likely didn’t have to “pitch” yourself when you were in uniform. Now, in your civilian role, you should help others see your value when you don’t have a uniform to reflect your history and career. This is a natural state of discomfort.

For civilians, the el...


VFW Help A Hero Scholarship Recipient Pursues Doctorate

“When I joined the military, I found strong role models who helped me figure out the direction I wanted my life to take. I depended on them, and they knew they could depend on me.”

Zach Dochnahl, 29, who served with the 82nd Airborne Division of the U.S. Army, was recently awarded a VFW “Sport Clips Help A Hero Scholarship.”

...


VFW Offers Emergency Assistance Grants to Westech Student Veterans

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is offering up to $5,000 in emergency assistance grants to each of the nearly three dozen student veterans who once attended Westech College, a now defunct for-profit vocational school in southern California. VFW Offers Emergency Assistance Westech
 
“The affected student veterans were receiving a monthly stipend to go to school, but with Westech’s sudden closure, they are now left without a school and without an income, yet the bills keep coming,” said VFW National Commander Brian Duffy. “These student veterans are in a financial crisis th...


WWI Centennial Commemoration Ceremony Recap

Washington D.C. – The premiere production with moving tributes, compelling imagery and performances brought crowds to tears and to their feet as the United States World War I Centennial Commission hosted “In Sacrifice for Liberty and Peace: Centennial Commemoration of the U.S. Entry into World War I” yesterday at the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Missouri.

The commemoration events began with a moving prelude that included remarks by descendants of notable Generals John J. Pershing and George S. Patton. Highlights of the landmark day included a long-overdue Purple Heart Reuniting Ceremony with World War I Military Order of the Purple Heart medal recipient Cpl Leo George Rauf’s great nephew Michael Staton and marked his family’s four generations of military service. Native American Muscogee Creek spiritual leader Wotko Long offered a special blessing ceremony in recognition of the day, a reminder of the...


VFW Applauds Choice Program Extension

WASHINGTON — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is applauding Congress for passing legislation this week that extends and improves the Veterans Choice Program. The bill now heads to the White House for the president’s signature.

The Choice Program was created by the VFW-supported Veterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014, in response to the nationwide access to care crisis that embroiled the Department of Veterans Affairs. It provided the VA an additional $10 billion in emergency funding to expand veterans’ access to care in the community. The legislation came with a three-year sunset clause, however, which meant the VA had to either use or lose the funds by this August. 

With about $1 billion estimated to remain unobligated, the VFW is pleased the money will continue to help wounded, ill and injured veterans receive the quality care they earned and deserve. The leg...


VFW and SPARC to Kick Off Venice Memorial Restoration

B.J. Lawrence, national junior vice commander-in-chief of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S., and several VFW members from local Posts will join the Social and Public Art Resource Center (SPARC) at a special ceremony on April 5, to commence the restoration project of the POW/MIA Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Venice, Calif., and speak out against memorial desecration.

The Venice memorial was recently vandalized for the second time in the past year, and restoration efforts will be extensive given the over 2,273 names which appear on the memorial.VFW, SPARC CA Restoration

Reports of veterans memorials bei...


World War I Veterans Who Shaped Future Decades

Since the birth of our nation, many veterans have gone on to greatness in a variety of fields. From U.S. presidents to well-known authors, athletes and actors, WWI is no exception.  Here is a look at some of those famous vets from the “Great War.”

 

Harry S. Truman
(1884-1972) b. Lamar, Mo.
33rd President

Ranked No. 7 (a “near great”) among U.S. presidents, Harry Truman (1945-1953) brought the war in the Pacific to a swift end in 1945. He also launched the Truman Doctrine to contain communism.

Pictured above: Zach Dochnahl with his wife, Melissa and their 8-month-old son, Jack.
Scholarship Recipient Pursues Doctorate
VFW Survey: Veterans Want VA Fixed, Not Dismantled

WASHINGTON — President Trump announced Monday the creation of the White House Office of American Innovation to “bring together the best ideas from government, the private sector, and other thought leaders to ensure that America is ready to solve today's most intractable problems, and is positioned to meet tomorrow's challenges and opportunities.” One of the new White House office’s targets is to fix an old problem — the Department of Veterans Affairs — and the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States wants to help be part of the solution.

“The VFW prides itself in evaluating what works at the VA and in identifying what needs to be fixed,” said VFW National Commander Brian Duffy. “Veterans turn to VA for the high-quality, individualized care they provide, but there is always room for improvement, especially in the areas of information technology, scheduling, data analysis, and access to quality care ...


VFW Unmet Needs Program on Track for Record-Breaking Year

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is proud to announce that its Unmet Needs program has already exceeded $1 million in financial assistance grants to more than 420 military and veteran families since the VFW’s fiscal year began in September. Helping When Families Need it Most

This puts Unmet Needs on track for the highest level of assistance provided in a single year since the program’s inception in 2004, more than doubling its previous assistance record with six months left to go.

“Reaching this milestone has been monumental for the VFW and the hundreds of families...


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