RockVets E-Newsletter: March 2020 Edition
Editor: Pat McGlade   Email: newyorkvets@gmail.com
Website: www:rockvets.com. 
New York Vets, P.O. Box 387, Tomkins Cove, NY 10986
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RockVets Newsletter                  March 2020                               www.rockvets.com

Volume 12
Issue 3

info@rockvets.com 
 




 

RockVets Is Getting a Make-Over

As we noted last month. some design changes are in the works for the RockVets Newsletter. Over the next few months, we will be working on a new design for the www.RockVets.com website, and a new format for the monthly e-newsletter.  The transition will probably be in March or April.  The platform we are currently using is being eliminated so we need to create a new format. We will keep you posted as we progress.

Marking Two Years

The 23rd of March is the second anniversary of Jerry Donnellan's passing.  For those of us who knew him well, there is a huge void left in our hearts.  Jerry was Director of the Veterans Service Agency of Rockland County for many years, but his was not a 9:00 a.m  - 5:00 p.m. job. He put in innumerable volunteer hours, in his efforts to help people, and make this world a better place, which he did so well. If there was a vet who needed his help - even in the middle of the night - Jerry was there.  He raised public awareness of the good people who have served this country and kept important issues on the top of our politicians' agendas that resulted in benefits for veterans. 

So it seems it's left to us to carry on Jerry's legacy. Thanks to all of you who have continued to do that!

The volunteers at New York Vets are trying to do our part in continuing Jerry's work by publishing  this newsletter, which goes out to about 1600 veterans every month, and maintaining our RockVets.com website.  Please let us know of any upcoming events, programs, outreach efforts, employment opportunities, or other information of interest to veterans so we can publicize it here.  If your organization sends out a newsletter, please add us to the list. Our E-mail address: NewYorkVets@gmail.com.

PTSD:  Vietnam Memories Linger 

Some of you have seen this before, some have not....but most people benefit from hearing Jerry's words again and again.  Jerry wrote this a few years ago and an excerpt from it was published in Purple Heart Magazine in July/August 2016 edition.  

PTSD: Vietnam Memories Linger

It was the 24th of October, 1969. We were on a Search and Clear Operation which, a few months earlier, would have been called a Search and Destroy Mission. However, the grown-ups further up the chain of Command for some reason felt that search and destroy sounded too violent -- so it became Search and Clear. We did exactly the same thing. Who knew that the politically correct police had its roots back then?
I was an Infantry Buck Sgt. - 3rd Platoon, Company D, 3rd of the 21st, 196th Light Infantry Brigade working off LZ Center. Why it was called Center wasn’t hard to figure out. It was right between LZ East and LZ West. That was home although we spent very little time there. Most of our time was spent in what we called Indian country wandering the Central Highlands – although I guess we couldn’t call it that today. We’d have to call it Indigenous Personnel Country. At 22 I was the second oldest in my company.

The Highlands from a distance looked like the Catskills, only the vegetation was a bit different. They called this Triple Canopy Jungle.  It was so dense that at noon on a sunny day the floor of the jungle would seem like night time. The temperature and humidity both were around 100 and to add to the fun of this sleep away camp, we’d have to carry anywhere between 80 and 100 pounds on our back – 8 pounds of which was water that was far more valuable than a number of other things we carried, especially the food.  In those days it was C-Rats or C-Rations some of which you literally couldn’t eat. There was one can that contained ham and lima beans.  We would pray that we were resupplied before we got to the bottom of our rations and had to eat that! Many of these meals had nicknames but in polite company they can’t be printed. This stuff would truly gag a maggot.

To give you an idea of the toll that takes, when I got to Vietnam I was 6’2” and weighed 185 pounds and was in reasonably good shape.  When I got home I weighed 122 Pounds. To be fair, part of that weight loss was my right leg. But still, even considering that, it’s a fair amount of weight to drop in a relatively short time. I mean how much could a leg just below the knee weigh? 15-20 pounds?

Anyway, it happened on Hill 370. A couple of clicks off of the LZ. I remember it was very loud. The loudest thing I ever heard. There was a huge fireball and I was thrown...I’m guessing 10 yards... landing on my back and I knew it wasn’t good to be lying out in the open. My 12-gauge was gone. According to the Geneva Convention we weren’t supposed to have scatter shot weapons. But they issued Model 37 Ithaca pumps. The Army also gave the Duper gun (M79) guy a canister round, which made the 79 a super-sized shotgun. But then again, I never saw a referee out there to enforce any of these rules. A buddy seemed to be comforted by the fact that the Geneva convention said they could shoot you but they couldn’t eat you.

So I picked up my right arm and it fell off mid shaft – between the wrist and the elbow. What they call a double-compound fracture – 2 bones sticking out of each half of a bloody hunk of meat. And yes, your bones are white. Using my left arm, which had also been wounded, I carefully placed the broken right arm across my chest and lifted up my left leg to try and see if I could push my way back to cover. That leg was riddled with shrapnel...the inside of which looked like hamburger meat.

I carefully placed it down and lifted up my right leg...it was gone. That was kind of hard to wrap your head around. Even though I didn’t feel pain – at least the kind of pain that you think would accompany what I was seeing, there was a terrific burning sensation. Since my limbs weren’t working too well, I tried to prop myself up on my left elbow to see if I could see anyone. However, leaning forward caused a bloody head wound to run into my eyes, which blinded me. Just then I felt someone grab me. Not being able to see I didn’t know if it was the enemy or one of my own guys. Of all the things that were going on, that was simply the most terrifying. I was totally helpless. Thank God it was our medic - God bless him - without regard for himself. He started working on me. He shot me up with morphine for the pain, which you think would help. However, it had kind of an opposite and frightening effect because as the drug began to take effect I didn’t know if it was the drug entering my body, or life leaving it.

A lot of good men died in those Highlands. In a funny way I think I was born there because the guy that went to that War didn’t come home. I believe that was the case with a lot of us. I don’t know how much time passed but my buddies eventually got me onto a poncho. I remember every time they moved, it hurt but it had to be done. Then I saw the greatest sight in the world. The belly of that dust-off which, close to 20 years later became the logo symbol of our Vietnam Veterans group. But it just brought more pain. The down draft from the rotor blades was so strong that it began opening the wounds that had started to heal.  My buddies literally threw me onto the floor of that Huey, which was awash with blood of the other wounded. Then we were out of there and on our way to Hawk Hill.

It was someone else’s war now. At Hawk Hill I was placed on a real stretcher. In turn, the stretcher was placed on a pair of saw horses. A guy came towards me with one of those bent surgical scissors. I thought he was coming to help me. Instead he cut away the right saddlebag pocket and took my AO map that was wrapped in a plastic ANP RC-25 battery bag. Then I was pissed. It seemed my maps were more important than I was. I lay there for what seemed like a long time. Oh, did I tell you that my wife was 8-months pregnant?  Then I was put onto a cleaner Huey and off to the 95th EVAC in DaNang. I refused to go to sleep for fear that I would never wake up.

I came off the chopper in DaNang and who was waiting for me but the Chaplain. Somehow last rites may help the soul, but doesn’t do much for the morale. Then into the OR, which was ice cold. It was air conditioned. I hadn’t felt air conditioning in forever. In there they finally knocked me out. The next week or so was mostly a blur. I went from there to the 106th in Yokota, Japan. In and out of surgery, when I came to on the ward, Bonanza the old western was on TV, but in Japanese – and seeing Hoss Cartwright in a high pitched Japanese voice was hard to believe. Then I was sure I was dead.
 
Actually I was beginning to feel better. I could tell because I was getting pissed again. Here I was damn near killed and nobody seemed to give a damn. Everybody else was just doing their day-to-day routine. It was just another day at the office or hospital. There were no parades, no bands, nothing.

Then I’m moving out of Japan after God knows how many more surgeries. By now the calendar has turned over and it’s November and we’re heading into Anchorage, Alaska at night. We were lining the walls of the plane hanging in litters. When we landed it was snowing. They dropped the tail gate of the plane. Mind you, all we were wearing were light pj’s that were meant for tropical weather. The blood we had left was thin from tropics. So why were we opening this huge door? Simple. So the donut dollies could bring us hot chocolate, which by the time it got to us was ice cold. But I guess it’s the thought that counts.

We were into the second week of November and into the inky blackness over the Canadian landscape into the U.S. I think we landed once or twice – maybe to refuel or to drop off casualties at hospitals along the way. My feeling is they kept us pretty well drugged up. It was easier to deal with us because we were all starting to feel a little better. That and there were no in-flight movies to keep us busy, so drugs were the answer. But then again it was the 60’s.
 
By the time light had begun to break, we were coming down approaching Maguire Air Force Base in NJ, which sits side by side with Fort Dix. By the time we landed and got loaded off the plane and onto ambulances, it was full daylight. I remember being frightened by the speed of the ambulance. It seemed like it was going 100 mph or more. It wasn’t, but to me it seemed dangerously fast. The reason I was told was that for months we had moved either on foot or in choppers and in the choppers we got used to going relatively quickly, but it wasn’t the same as being on the ground – you didn’t see things pass so quickly.

There at Walson Army Hospital at Fort Dix, my family came to visit except for my wife who was now in her 9th month and wiser souls felt that she had been through enough recently and would not do well with a 2-hour trip. The rest of the family showed up and lied and lied and lied about how good I looked. Later my brother told me I looked like someone who had just come out of Auschwitz.

Before I left for Vietnam, I had taken my father out, at my mother’s request, to get him a decent pair of shoes. I bought him a nice pair of wing tips. My mother was pleased. The problem was my mother wasn’t going to wear the shoes. My father hated them. My father was born in Ireland and came to this country in 1929, just in time for the Stock Market Crash. He always had a great sense of timing.
 
Anyway, that night despite his hatred of them, he wore the ‘bloody shoes.’ Never at a loss for a stupid thing to say I said, “My God, what you have to do to get this man to wear a pair of shoes.” I thought I was being funny. He left the room crying. Then my Uncle tried to paper it over and change the tone by saying, “Well, at least you made it back in one piece.” Not to be outdone I said, “Well, two anyway.” And he was out of the room.

The next morning, they loaded me onto the cleanest Huey I had ever seen. My stretcher was high and going from left to right on the bird behind the pilot and co-pilot’s head so I could see over their shoulders.
We took off nose down as Hueys have a tendency to do and headed west towards Valley Forge Army General Hospital, Pennsylvania. I knew that because as soon as we cleared the tree, the co-pilot took out a Texaco road map that was marked for Valley Forge. This was the Army I knew and loved. As the chopper banked coming into Valley Forge Hospital, I saw men in colonial uniforms - in nice straight lines, setting up by the side of a vintage cannon. Well, I figured it’s about time – about time I got some kind of reception to fit what I had been through. Not really. I had lost track of what day it was. It turned out we just happened to be landing at 11:00 a.m. on November 11th. You got it – it wasn’t about me at all. It was dumb old Veterans Day – and I just landed in the middle of their ceremony. But what was cool was the 4 guys that carried my litter off the chopper were all amputees, and I thought, "Maybe this could work." 

I tell you this because there are 58,000 who can’t – and someone should speak for them.    Jerry....

World War II Veteran Alan Moskin Event 

The public is welcome to attend this New City Rotary Event on Monday, March 16th at 6:00 p.m.
 
Come hear WWII Veteran and concentration camp Liberator Alan Moskin speak. This will be an amazing opportunity and the event is open to all. It will be held at La Terrazza Restaurant at 291 South Main Street in New City, New York.   Limited seating so please register in advance.
 
Cost is $25/person and includes dinner and the presentation.

Clarkstown Rotary Fundraiser for Veterans

You are invited to join the Clarkstown Rotary for Food, Cigars, and Open Bar at Hearth and Tap, 125 North Kinderkermack Road, Montvale, New Jersey.  The event will be held on March 24th, 2020 from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.  The cost is $99.00 per person.  This is a celebration of friendship and good work for our veterans' community. Please RSVP to Scott Milich via email: swmilich@yahoo.com or phone: 914-282-3703, or Nick Longo - email: nlongojr@optonline.net, or Mike DiBella - email: mdibe@optonline.net.

Bob Hope Division Monthly Trip to Montrose

From Chip Hayes:  The next monthly trip to the Veterans Nursing Home will be Saturday, March 28, 2020.
We will show the patients a celebrity show or a Movie.  We will muster (meet) in the lobby at 1230hrs (12:30 P.M. for you civilians).Thereafter, we will go to the wards, bring the wheelchair patients to the Show or movie. This is a great way for you to help disabled Veterans. Without us helping them, many would be unable to attend the show. The nursing home is located at: 2090 Albany Road, (Route 9) Montrose, NY 10548.  For further information, contact Chip Hayes - e-mail:  chip1440@lawyer.com

World War II -- Operation Benjamin 

More than 405,000 American service members were killed during World War II, and not all of them were buried under the correct headstones. Operation Benjamin estimates that hundreds of Jewish service members could have been buried under Latin Crosses instead of Jewish Stars of David, and they're working to fix that — one service member at a time. 

Operation Benjamin began unintentionally when organization president Shalom Lamm came across the issue in 2014 "serendipitously." 

"It was really quite by accident that we came across it, but we were scratching our heads trying to figure out what happened. What could be done?" Lamm explained.

Now, the operation is named for that first case. Private Benjamin Garadetsky was a Jewish soldier mistakenly buried under a Latin Cross at the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial. It took four years for Lamm and his team to navigate exactly how to have the issue corrected — which it was during the summer of 2018. The nonprofit has been working to do the same for other Jewish service members ever since. Read more....

https://connectingvets.radio.com/articles/operation-benjamin-corrects-crosses-to-jewish-stars?utm_source=NEWSLETTER&utm_medium=EMAIL&utm_campaign=GENERAL&utm_term=GENERIC

 February 29th - Wrestling Event and Fundraiser 

On February 29th, 2020 there was a wrestling event held at the Palisades Center Mall to benefit the Rockland County Association for the Visually Impaired. This was a live Pro-Wrestling Television Event.  

VVA #333 was offered two tables at the event to hold a fundraising and public awareness campaign for their Hand-Cycle Program.  This opportunity is courtesy of Mr. Phil Tisi, Town of Ramapo, Assistant to Town Supervisor Michael B. Specht. For further information on VVA #333 Hand-cycle program, contact Roy Tschudy via e-mail: LDTRT16@aol.com or Marcus Arroyo at: mvaselone@optonline.net.  100% of all donations goes directly to the VVA #333 Hand-cycle Program.

Sons of the American Legion 

Note of Appreciation from Roy Tschudy, Rockland County's Veteran of the Year and Co-Founder of the VVA #333 Handcycle Program: 

I was invited by the "SON'S OF THE AMERICAN LEGION" to speak regarding Chapter 333's HAND CYCLE PROGRAM at the American Legion Post in New City.  Speaking on behalf of said program from the inception in 2013 to our current status inclusive on  providing photos of all cycle recipients along with our three page Hand cycle program flyer, it was received warmly. "SAL" then provided a check in the amount of $1,000 to the Chapter 333 HAND CYCLE PROGRAM!  

I have sent a thank you letter to this wonderful organization expressing our appreciation for their contribution. Once again I want to take this time and thank each one of our chapter members along with other volunteers who have at one time or another given up their own personal time and or financial contribution at fund raising events to make this endeavor a beautiful success story. Helping those who have suffered from injuries both on the physical level as well as the emotional is a most humbling journey, chapter 333 is filled with gracious men, thank you. Roy

To The Members of The SON’S OF THE AMERICAN LEGION,
It is with both great humility and appreciation to have been provided the opportunity to speak before you regarding Vietnam veterans Chapter 333 HAND CYCLE PROGRAM. Allowing us to continue forth on our mission to assist our “Brothers and Sisters” who have received debilitating injuries in service to this great Country, you have played an integral part in their rehabilitation and or recreation. The funding provided in the amount of $1,000 will most definitely be used to help provide a deserving injured military veteran with access to either a Hand cycle or sports adaptive item of their own choice (not provided by the veterans administration) in the quest to a healthy life style. Thank you once again for the generosity shown not only to Chapter 333 but to the Rockland County community along with veterans as a whole!
Respectfully submitted,
Roy Tschudy, Chapter 333 V.P.
Co founder Hand cycle Program

Vets Relying on DVA for Long-Time Care

Veterans are increasingly relying on the Department of Veterans Affairs for long-term care as they age, and with the cost expected to double in the next 20 years, the department must be prepared, the Government Accountability Office has warned.

In 2018, more than 500,000 veterans received long-term care from the VA — either in a nursing home run by the VA, the states or private companies, or through elder care and home support programs. By 2037, the number is expected to increase with rising number of aging veterans, especially those in the highest service-connected disability groups.  To read more.....

https://www.militarytimes.com/news/pentagon-congress/2020/02/20/gao-va-must-improve-plans-for-providing-long-term-care-to-aging-veterans/

Steps Taken Towards Expanding Caregiver Benefits

Veterans Affairs officials this week took another step towards expanding caregivers benefits to veterans who separated before 2001, but still have not finalized a date for when those families will see the payouts.
The issue has been a focus of lawmakers and outside advocates for months, and was a key part of the VA Mission Act signed into law last summer and repeatedly heralded since by President Donald Trump.
In recent weeks on Capitol Hill, numerous veterans organizations have listed in congressional testimony that the inclusion of older spouses and caregivers in the benefits program is a top legislative priority for this year, and lamented delays in the effort so far.  Expansion of veteran caregiver program delayed until at least next summer.  Department officials missed a deadline get new technology to process new enrollments in place by this fall.

In preliminary language published on the Federal Register on Wednesday, the department said it is moving ahead with the mandate to expand the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers to veterans who served before May 1975.  That move was supposed to happen last year, but has been delayed because of issues with technology infrastructure to handle the expected influx of new applicants. Officials have said they hope to have those concerns finalized by this fall.

But the new rules do not specify a specific start point when the new rules will take effect, noting that “the timeline for development of an information technology system can be unpredictable.”

About 20,000 veterans — all of whom left the service after Sept. 11, 2001 — are currently participating in the VA caregiver program. The payouts provide thousands of dollars a month in compensation to spouses, parents and other partners of severely injured veterans who otherwise would require expensive institutionalization.

Leo Shane III for MilitaryTimes.com - March 4, 2020

To read full article on Military Times, see link:   Veterans' Caregivers

National Vietnam War Veterans Day - March 29th

Borne The Battle Podcasts from Monday, March 2nd, 2020.  You can subscribe to all of the Borne the Battle Podcasts through the link.

National Vietnam War Veterans Day is fast approaching (March 29). Army Veteran Major General James T. Jackson (Ret.) is the national director of the Vietnam War Commemoration. Directed by Congress and executed by Department of Defense, the commemoration’s goal is to reach out and thank those–our Vietnam Veterans–that never got a proper welcome home.

Currently, there are over 6.2 million living Vietnam Era Veterans. They deserve a proper thank you for raising their right hand. On this episode of Borne the Battle, Major General James T. Jackson shares the vision and mission behind the efforts of this program and how you can help participate.Long Description

The commemoration seeks to give a lapel pin to each Vietnam Veteran. This small token of appreciation has meant a lot to so many.

Later, Jackson talks about mentors, his time in service, different resources to help Vietnam Veterans, and the stories of healing and reconciliation he has seen as a result.

To hear the Borne the Battle Podcast #184 with Major General James T. Jackson, use this link:

https://share.transistor.fm/s/f41ae984

Veterans Get More Banking Options 

Veterans get more banking options, under new VA partnership
Karen Jowers
February 17
www.militarytimes.com

Check out your new banking benefits.
Some veterans may have better access to banking now, through a partnership between the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Association of Military Banks of America. It’s especially beneficial for those who haven’t been able to open bank accounts in the past, which hampers their ability to get their VA benefit funds by direct deposit.

The VA delivers about $118 billion each year in benefits and services for veterans and their families. About 250,000 veterans and beneficiaries receive their benefits through a pre-paid debit card or paper check, and may not have a bank account.

An added plus is that these banks are already familiar with the financial needs and challenges of service members, and can also support veterans with financial education and resources tailored to their needs, said Paul Lawrence, under secretary for benefits for the VA. Some of the participating banks have branches on bases, but they also have a large number of branches outside the gate, which will be accessible to veterans, said Andia Dinesen, vice president of communications and operations for AMBA.
There are currently seven banks participating in the Veterans Benefits Banking Program: Armed Forces Bank; Bank of America; First Arkansas Bank and Trust; Fort Hood National Bank; FSNB; Regions; and Wells Fargo. Dinesen said other banks and credit unions are welcome to join the effort, too.
For more information, visit https://www.benefits.va.gov/benefits/banking.asp.

5th Annual NY State Suicide Prevention Conference

Helping Those Who Help Others -- 5th Annual New York State Suicide Prevention Conference

SEPTEMBER 15 & 16, 2020 The Desmond Hotel and Conference Center, Albany, NY

Convening New York Stakeholders for Suicide Prevention with a special focus on Suicide Prevention and Support for:

• Veterans
• Active-duty Military
• Law Enforcement
• Firefighters
• Corrections Officers
• Emergency Medical Technicians

VA Resolution of Legacy Appeals Reaches Milestone

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 3, 2020

VA resolution of legacy appeals reaches another milestone WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) Veterans Benefits Administration’s (VBA) disability compensation appeals dropped below 75,000, Feb. 11.   Notices of Disagreement (NODs) and substantive appeals filed in the “legacy” system decreased from 292,452 in March 2016 to 74,439 despite VBA receiving 779,720 new legacy appeals.  Both inventories represent appeals within the initial stages of the appeals process, in place prior to the department’s February 2019 implementation of the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act of 2017(AMA).

"VBA is on track to eliminate its NODs and substantive appeals inventory by July.” said VA Secretary Robert Wilke. “Our progress on reducing the number of legacy appeals is proof of the modernization efforts we’ve undertaken.”

The AMA modernizes the current claims and appeals process by:
  • Including three review options for disagreements with decisions. 
  • Requiring improved notification of VA decisions.
  • Providing earlier claim resolution.
  • Ensuring Veterans receive the earliest effective date possible.
Visit Appeals Modernization for more information at this link: Appeals Modernization                            

Real Warriors E-Mail Update for March 2020 

March is Sleep Awareness Month

Sleep keeps your mind sharp and helps you stay mission ready. However, almost half of service members report poor sleep quality. Not getting enough quality shut-eye can negatively impact your performance and health. During National Sleep Awareness Month, read and share these Real Warriors Campaign articles and videos to encourage better sleep habits:
• Treatment Options for Sleep Conditions
• How to Develop Healthy Sleep Habits
• Video: 5 Tips for Better Sleep

To read further, use this link:

Real Warriors March Newsletter

Iwo Jima Film Footage Shows Human Side of Battle 

Recently Digitized Iwo Jima Footage Shows the Human Side of the Famous Battle
The archival clips show Marines mourning friends, enjoying downtime and moreWhen most Americans think of the World War II battle for Iwo Jima – if they think of it at all, 75 years later – they think of one image: Marines raising the U.S. flag atop Mount Suribachi, the island’s highest point.

That moment, captured in black and white by Associated Press photographer Joe Rosenthal and as a color film by Marine Sergeant William Genaust, is powerful, embodying the spirit of the Marine Corps.

But these pictures are far from the only images of the bloodiest fight in the Marines’ history. A larger library of film, and the men captured on them, is similarly emotionally affecting. It can even bring Americans alive today closer to a war that ended in the middle of the last century.

Take for instance, just one scene: Two Marines kneel with a dog before a grave marker. It is in the final frames of a film documenting the dedication of one of the three cemeteries on the island. Those two Marines are among hundreds present to remember the more than 6,000 Americans killed on the island in over a month of fighting. The sequence is intentionally framed by the cinematographer, who was clearly looking for the right image to end the roll of film in his camera.

I came across this film clip in my work as a curator of a collection of motion picture films shot by Marine Corps photographers from World War II through the 1970s. In a partnership between the History Division of the Marine Corps and the University of South Carolina, where I work, we are digitizing these films, seeking to provide direct public access to the video and expand historical understanding of the Marine Corps’ role in society.

Over the past two years of scanning, I have come to realize that our work also enables a more powerful relationship with the past by fostering individual connections with videos, something that the digitizing of the large quantity of footage makes possible.

The campaign within the battle
Iwo Jima, an island in the western Pacific less than 1,000 miles south of Tokyo, was considered a key potential stepping stone toward an invasion of Japan itself.

During the battle to take the island from the Japanese, more than 70,000 Marines and attached Army and Navy personnel set foot on Iwo Jima. That included combat soldiers, but also medical corpsmen, chaplains, service and supply soldiers and others. More than 6,800 Americans were killed on the island and on ships and landing craft aiding in the attack; more than 19,200 were wounded.

More than 50 Marine combat cameramen operated across the eight square miles of Iwo Jima during the battle, which stretched from Feb. 19 to March 26, 1945. Many shot still images, but at least 26 shot motion pictures. Three of these Marine cinematographers were killed in action.

Read further and view the videos via this link: Iwo Jima Video and Story

Historical Films of the U.S. Army Signal Corps 

Now Playing: Historical Films of the U.S. Army Signal Corps
The U.S. Army Signal Corps Historical Films digitization project is now complete! More than 400 reels of film from Record Group 111 (Records of the Office of the Chief Signal Officer), Series H (Historical Films) have been digitized in their entirety to view in the National Archives Catalog.
To read further and to view the videos, use this link: 

https://mailchi.mp/nara/0rjknzxchj-763597?e=0b68aa755c

Buffalo Soldier Award 2020

Retired U.S Army Command Sgt. Major Kenneth Nurse, 70, right, of Spring Valley, received the 2020 Rockland County Buffalo Soldier Award pin from the 2019 award recipient, Lewis Green, during a ceremony at the Rockland County Fire Training Center in Pomona on Tuesday, February 11, 2020.  

All New PTSD Coach Mobile App Released

Introducing the newest release of PTSD Coach, VA’s first mobile app for mobile devices. The app has even more features to help you learn about and manage symptoms that can occur after trauma. First launched in April of 2011, the app has been downloaded about 500,000 times in over 115 countries.

The app is now available in Spanish, thanks to the efforts of the U.S. Department of Health and Social Services Hurricane Maria Recovery Team in Puerto Rico. App users can change the language from English to Spanish once they download the content.

Additional features include:

  • More tools to help you manage stress symptoms
  • More information about PTSD and treatments that work
  • Improved graphics to help you track your progress
  • New ways to personalize your app with the ability to turn on or off daily quotes and the distress meter
The app is free and can be downloaded for iOS and Android.

Watch a video walk-through of the app and how to use the PTSD Coach mobile app on our website.  
View this link:  https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/USVHA/bulletins/2778827

Free Flu Shots Available at Walgreen's

VA and Walgreens are national partners, providing no-cost quadrivalent flu shots to enrolled Veterans of the VA health care system. Now through March 31, 2020, enrolled Veteran patients nationwide have the option of getting their flu shot at any of Walgreens’ 9,600 locations, in addition to their local VA health care facilities. Long Description

How do I get my flu shot for free at Walgreens?

No appointment is required. Simply go to any Walgreens, tell the pharmacist you receive care at a VA facility, and show your Veterans Health Identification Card and another form of photo ID. (Patients will also be asked to complete a vaccine consent form at the time of service.)

Walgreens has the capability to electronically send vaccination information to the VA and your immunization record will be updated in your VA electronic health record.

The VA-Walgreens national partnership is part of VA’s eHealth Exchange project. This national program ensures that many Veterans get their no-cost flu shot at their local Walgreens, satisfying their wellness reminder because they either found it more convenient or did not have a scheduled appointment at a local VA health care facility.

Can I get my flu shot at no cost at the VA?

Yes! If you are enrolled with VA you may receive a no-cost flu shot during any scheduled VA appointment or at one of the convenient walk-in flu stations. For more information on locations and hours contact your local VA health care facility.

Need to apply for VA health care? Visit: 
https://www.va.gov/health-care/how-to-apply/

Read further:
https://www.blogs.va.gov/VAntage/66403/free-flu-shots-for-veterans-at-your-local-walgreens/

VVA Chapter #333 - Handcycle Program Helps Vets

Here is an update on the HANDCYCLE PROGRAM from Roy Tsudy of the Vietnam Veterans of America, Chapter #333 and Rockland County's Veteran of the Year:

CHAPTER 333 HAND CYCLE PROGRAM INFORMATION
VIETNAM VETERANS OF AMERICA CHAPTER 333 BEGAN OUR FUND RAISING PROGRAM FOR SPECIALLY CRAFTED HAND CYCLES IN 2013.

OUR MISSION STATEMENT:  WE ARE COMMITTED IN HELPING TO PROVIDE AN ACTIVE LIFESTYLE FOR VETERANS WITH SEVERE INJURIES BOTH ON A PHYSICAL AND MENTAL LEVEL. THESE TRUE HEROES DESERVE OUR HELP.  OUR ABILITY AND WILLINGNESS TO RAISE SAID FUNDS ALLOWS US TO PROVIDE HAND CYCLES ALONG WITH A FEW OTHER ITEMS NOT ALLOWED BY THE V.A. HEALTH SYSTEM FOR DESERVING PHYSICALLY CHALLENGED VETERANS.  THIS MISSION IS INCLUSIVE OF US AS A VETERANS CHAPTER TO HELP BRING ABOUT THE HEALING OF BOTH BODY AND MIND VIA COMPETITIVE RACING OR JUST THE JOY OF RECONNECTING WITH THEIR PHSICAL SKILLS. SIMPLY, OUR OBJECTIVE IS TO HAVE A POSITIVE IMPACT ON THEIR OVERALL WELL BEING.

COMMITMENT:
V.V.A. CHAPTER 333 IS COMMITTED TO REACHING OUT TO VETERANS WITH LEG AMPUTATION(S) AND OR SPINAL CORD INJURIES AND PROVIDE THEM WITH THE MEANS OF OBTAINING A HAND CYCLE. THROUGH THE GENEROSITY OF PEOPLE AT OUR FUND RAISING EVENTS WE ARE ABLE TO PURCHASE AND PROVIDE HAND CYCLES.

PROGRAMS:
THROUGH FUND RAISING EFFORTS, SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS, AND OTHER PUBLIC FORUMS, IT IS ESSENTIAL TO CREATE PUBLIC AWARENESS OF OUR CAMPAIGN TO ASSIST OUR “BROTHERS AND SISTERS” IN NEED.  WE ARE FORTUNATE INDEED TO HAVE DEVELOPED A FRIENDSHIP WITH FELLOW VETERAN AND WOUNDED U.S. NAVY SEAL HAND CYCLE PROPRIETER AND COMPANY PRESIDENT, CARLOS MEDINA. CARLOS INTERACTS WITH OUR CHOSEN SELECTED VETERANS ON THE SPECIFIC NEEDS EACH VETERAN HAS WANT FOR, THIS ENSURES THAT PERSON HAS THE EXACT TYPE HAND CYCLE NEEDED. IN ADDITION, CARLOS WILL ONLY CHARGE OUR CHAPTER 333 A FEE EQUAL TO HIS OWN, NOT MAKING ANY PROFIT. THIS IS HIS WAY OF “GIVING BACK!”  

ANY WHO WISH TO MAKE A CONTRIBUTION TO THIS MOST WORTHY CAUSE MAY DO SO BY CHECK MADE OUT TO  V.V.A. CHAPTER 333 P.O. BOX 243 NEW CITY, NY 10956
“PLEASE WRITE HAND CYCLE ON YOUR CHECK”

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT COMMITTEE MEMBERS VIA EMAIL: 
ROY TSCHUDY:   LDTRT16@AOL.COM or
MARCUS ARROYO:  MVASEALONE@OPTONLINE.NET
100% OF ALL DONATIONS IS DIRECTED TO THIS PROGRAM!

Roy Tschudy, Vietnam veteran and Co-Chair of the Handcycle Program, has written a book about Vietnam titled:  "ENDLESS."  All proceeds of the sale of Roy's book will be donated to the Hand-Cycle Program.  

"ENDLESS" is available in paperback or e-book form and can be purchased on Amazon.com at this link: 
or simply type in BOOKS and then enter the name: ROY TSCHUDY. "ENDLESS" will appear and the purchase can then be made. 

Employment Opportunities 

Census Jobs for Veterans Posted on Tuesday, February 18, 2020 in  #VetResources, Employment by  VAntage Point Contributor 
To our Nation’s Veterans:  Throughout our history, you have rallied time and again to protect and serve your family, neighbors, and friends. Your leadership, patriotism, and entrepreneurship exemplify the American spirit.  As Article I Section II of the Constitution directs, every 10 years, we conduct a census to determine representation in Congress. Think of it as a national roll call. The next national roll call is coming, and we must hear from you. The 2020 Census is a mission-critical opportunity to make your numbers known. This opportunity only comes once a decade, so 2020 will be the time to make sure your community is counted.

We need your help! Please get your community prepared by taking the following steps:

JOIN OUR TEAM. We want to hire Veterans for temporary census jobs. Apply to work as a census taker at 2020census.gov/jobs. If you know others who are looking for work, please spread the word.

RAISE AWARENESS. Tell other Veterans how the 2020 Census impacts services they rely on. Discuss this at Veteran service organization chapter meetings or the next Veteran gathering you attend.

PARTNER WITH US. Visit 2020census.gov/partners to learn more, become a partner, and download materials to share with other Veteran leaders, business owners, and nonprofit partners in your community.

RESPOND TO THE CENSUS. Mark Census Day, April 1, 2020, on your calendar, and plan to respond to the short census questionnaire for your household as soon as you can. Mailings will go out, and the online response portal will open in mid-March. You can choose your preferred method of response: securely online, over the phone, or by mail.

Veterans benefit directly when their communities are counted correctly. Billions of dollars in federal funds are distributed each year based on census data that support education, housing, health care, hospitals, fire stations, and more. An accurate count is especially crucial for Veterans in rural communities, those with disabilities, and those at risk of homelessness. Data from the 2020 Census will also help the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs plan programs and assess emerging needs for Veterans.  To get started, visit 2020census.gov.   Sincerely,  Steven D. Dillingham, Director, United States Census Bureau

New York Veterans Job Fair, New York, NY
Thursday, September 3rd -- 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Metropolitan Pavilion. --  125 West 18th Street -- New York City, New York

FedEx Independent Service Provider:  FedEx is looking to hire full time and part time drivers to deliver and pickup packages from Blauvelt, NY. Full time schedule is Monday – Friday and part time schedule has weekend positions available. Must be over 21 years old, have a clean drivers license, and be able to pass physical and drug tests. Background checks are also required. Salary for full time starts at $700 per week. Please contact 201-724-7781 to see if you qualify.

Pearl River Hilton Hotel:   The Pearl River Hilton Hotel currently has numerous job openings and would like to employ qualified veterans. Please see the attached list job opportunities and qualifications.
Please contact Maria Marcolini at the Pearl River Hilton Human Resources Department via phone or email for additional details and resume submission:  Maria Marcolini 845-735-9000 ex 7172 or Maria.marcolini@hilton.com

Resources for Disabled Veterans:   View this link:  Resources for Disabled Veterans

Careers for People with Disabilities:  401 Columbus Ave., Valhalla, NY 10595 (914) 741-JOBS (5627).  Helps individuals with learning, intellectual, developmental, psychiatric, and/or physical disabilities find jobs. Provides extensive on-the-job training and ongoing support services.  For further information: http://www.careersforpeoplewithdisabilities.org/

USIS-US Information Systems, Pearl River, New York has numerous jobs available and we appreciate their reaching out to our veterans.  USIS is located at 35 West Jefferson Avenue, Pearl River, NY10965.  Their website is:  http://www.usis.net/.  If interested in any of these positions, please send an updated resume to: Anjelica Pagnozzi - Recruitment@usis.net    (845) 353-9248.    Please submit resumes and questions to Anjelica Pagnozzi: recruitment@usis.net

Montefiore-Nyack Hospital, Nyack, New York 10960
See link for full listing and information about career opportunities at Nyack Hospital, Nyack, New York.

Good Samaritan Hospital, Suffern, New York.  Good Samaritan Hospital is affiliated with Westchester Medical Center.  See this link for available employment - https://wmchealthjobs.org/search-jobs/

NYC Green Book Online: The Green Book is the official directory of the City of New York. An indispensable reference guide for anyone living or working with New York City. Includes detailed listings of agencies. Website: http://a856-gbol.nyc.gov/GBOLWebsite/

Rockland County Employment Information:
Here is a link to current job openings available in Rockland County
http://rocklandgov.com/departments/personnel/job-opportunities/

Rockland County Veterans' Credits:
http://rocklandgov.com/files/8115/1120/9567/Veterans_Credit_Info.pdf

New York City Civil Service Jobs, Tests, and Results as listed in The Chief:
http://thechiefleader.com/news/civil_service/

MTA Metro-North Railroad has ongoing employment opportunities:
To apply for current jobs with the MTA, please go to the MTA Employment Portal at:  http://web.mta.info/mta/employment/

Local Veterans Organization

For your information, here are the addresses for some of our local veterans' organizations:
  • Rockland County Marine Corps League, 20 Station Road, Pomona, New York 10970  
  • Military Order of the Purple Heart, 20 Station Road, Pomona, New York 10970
  • Vietnam Veterans of America, P.O. Box 243, New City, New York 10956
  • Nam Knights, 1 Western Highway, Tappan, New York 10983
  • Korean War Veterans, P.O. Box 304, New City, New York 10956
  • R.C. Military Order of the Purple Heart, 20 Station Road, Pomona, New York 10970
  • Jewish War Veterans, P.O. Box 38, New City, New York 10956
  • Veterans of Foreign Wars, P.O. Box 921, New City, New York 10956
  • Air Force Association, Chapter 251, 207 Treetop Circle, Nanuet, New York 10954
  • Rockland County American Legion, 86 South Reld Drive, Pearl River, New York 10965
                                                                                                                                                                        
Combat Vet ID Cards Available
                                               
Combat Veteran ID Cards are available.  If you are a combat veteran, you can get this card at the County Clerk's Office which is located at 1 South Main Street, Suite 100, New City, New York 10956.  To apply for the Combat Veteran ID Card, or the F.A.V.O.R. card for all veterans, if you don't already have one, bring your DD214 to the County Clerk's Office.  They'll take your photo and make up a card for you. 
For further information, contact the Rockland County Clerk's Office at (845) 638-5076.

This Combat Veteran ID Card offers all of the same benefits as the F.A.V.O.R. (Find and Assist Veterans of Record) card, which includes almost 1000 discounts to Rockland's veterans, but this new CVID card has specific advantages. The CVID card is co-sponsored by the Rockland County Police Benevolent Association and will be recognized by our local law enforcement agencies. So if you ever get pulled over, along with your license, registration, and insurance card, show the police officer your Combat Vet ID card so he knows you're an in-country vet.
                                                                                                                                                                                              
Useful Telephone Numbers for Veterans

Rockland County Veterans Service Agency

845-638-5244

Rockland County Sheriff’s Office

845-638-5400

Veterans Peer-to-Peer (Counseling)

845-521-5361

People to People (Food)

845-623-4900

Montrose VA Hospital

914-737-4400

New City VA Clinic

845-634-8995

Housing Unit

845-364-3150

Rape Crisis Services (Main)

845-634-3391

Rape Crisis Services (24/7)

845-634-3344

Home Health Care

845-358-2002

Good Samaritan Hospital Emergency 

845-368-5029

Nyack Hospital Emergency

845-348-2345

Domestic Violence

845-634-3391

Suicide Hotline

800-273-8255

Mental Health Association of Rockland County

845-267-2172

Mobile Mental Health

845-364-2378

West Point (nearest military base)

845-938-4011

New York National Guard (Orangeburg, NY)

845-340-7167

Army Reserve (Orangeburg, NY)

845-359-6903

Military Recruiter

845-624-6185

Rockland County Housing Action Coalition

845-708-5799

Alcoholics Anonymous

845-352-1112

Emergency Shelter

845-364-2907

Meals on Wheels

845-624-6325




Rockland County Marine Corps League Auxiliary

The Rockland County Marine Corps League Auxiliary continues its on-going campaign - Pet Rescue - to reunite our troops with pets they may have had to leave in Afghanistan. Cans and bottles (no glass bottles) that can be recycled for cash, may be brought to Kearsing Edwards American Legion Post 1600, 20 Station Road in Pomona, New York. They are collected by ARC Pet Rescue volunteers and recycled. Contributions for the Pet Rescue Project are also welcome! The funds pay for food and water to sustain pets on their journey home; their transportation is free. For more information contact Chairman Dale Fisher 845-304- 3595.

Rockland County Marine Corps League - MASH Unit

We regularly receive donations of handicap assistance equipment for disabled veterans from people who want to help.  Our donated equipment is available for free to military veterans and their families.  The items include the following:
  • Handicap-Accessible van
  • Motorized Wheelchairs
  • Manual Wheelchairs
  • Oxygen Generator
  • Walkers
  • Bath Chairs
  • Transfer Benches
  • Braces
  • Crutches
  • Canes 
If you have need of any of this equipment, contact the folks at the Rockland County Marine Corps League - 845-323-8774 or via e-mail: drobin137@icloud.com.

RockVets Newsletter - A Project of New York Vets  

RockVets is an Outreach project of New York Vets, Inc. - a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit organization established in 1992, to advocate for those who have worn the uniform of the U.S. Military, no matter where or when they served. 


You can find information, useful links, and view our website at: http://www.rockvets.com/

Previous copies of our newsletters are also available on our website at 

The volunteers at New York Vets / RockVets publish this monthly e-newsletter.  We welcome your thoughts, questions, and feedback. E-mail:  NewYorkVets@gmail.com

We are not affiliated with Rockland County Government nor the Veterans Service Agency of Rockland.

At the discretion of the editor, we'd be happy to add your upcoming events to our newsletter.  Please submit the details to us as soon as possible, but no later than the 25th of each month so we can get the information in the following issue. Send information to NewYorkVets@gmail.com

Please pass this newsletter along to others who may be interested. You can sign up to receive the newsletters through our website:  http://www.rockvets.com/Contact-Us

If you would like us to publish information about any upcoming events or other items of interest to veterans, be in touch.  Email:  NewYorkVets@gmail.com

RockVets website:  http://www.rockvets.com/

RockVets newsletters: http://www.rockvets.com/newsletters

Mailing Address
New York Vets, Inc. / RockVets
Pat McGlade
P.O. Box 387
Tomkins Cove, New York 10986








   
  



               
                                                                                                                                 
     
     
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