Aug 09 2018

Post 1503 Member Dan Duitsman wins at CMP National Championships

VFW Post 1503 member Dan Duitsman wins at Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP) National Matches at Camp Perry, OH July 28-Aug 4, 2018. Dan Duitsman won the M1 Garand Unlimited Rifle National Championship AND the Springfield M1A Rifle National Championship. A seasoned competitor, Dan was a member of the Marine Weapons Training Battalion at Quantico, VA, while on Active Duty.

Additionally, Dan Duitsman is the Shooting Sports Program Director and Head Shooting Coach for Camp Valor Outdoors (CVO), and also won the High Military Veteran trophy at the 2018 NRA National High Power Rifle Championships. Camp Valor Outdoors sent 12 veterans to the Championships at Camp Atterbury, IN, 6-11 July. Dan went on to shoot in the NRA Long Range Rifle National Championships and NRA Mid-Range National Championships, 12-22 July. Dan seeks out wounded, injured, and ill veterans who have an interest in competitive shooting. CVO begins at the local level with the basic fundamentals and firearms safety, holding clinics in service rifle, service pistol, and vintage rifle (M1, M1A, 1903) for any veteran, any Service, any generation. This competitive season sees an expansion to the 3-gun events with six warriors scheduled to compete in the NRA World Championships at the Peacemaker range in West Virginia.

Post 1503 member, Clifton Peele, shot his first National Championships this year with Camp Valor Outdoors experiencing the excitement of shooting on a firing line exceeding 1,000 competitors and learning to fire in many different conditions – heat, rain, wind, and keeping a good attitude through it all

Another Post 1503 member, Denise Loring (Col Ret USAR), Chief Operating Officer and coach/competitor for Camp Valor Outdoors, was selected to the US National Shooting Team for 300M rifle. Denise will compete for the United States in Changwon, South Korea, this September in the Women’s Prone event and Women’s 3-position event for 300M Rifle at the International Shooting Sports Federation (ISSF)World Shooting Championships. She attended the National 300M Championships in St. Francis, MN, hosted by the Minneapolis Rifle Club, in May, and won the Women’s 3-position event.


Camp Valor Outdoors connects wounded, injured, and ill veterans in the outdoors. This is through guided hunting, fishing, recreational shooting, and competitive shooting. The camp is located in Kingsville, MO, where the guided hunting, fishing, and archery are primary events. The competitive shooting program is centered in Northern Virginia with Quantico and the Fairfax Rod & Gun Club being a central base for local shooting. Out of the local program veterans can decide if they would like to participate in regional matches, from this participation they can compete among the group for a position on the 12-man National Team. The team of 12 are funded with lodging, equipment, ammunition covered for the matches. Additional veterans wanting to experience the National Matches would need to self-fund the trip, but would be lodged with the CVO team and would shoot with the team on the firing line.

      CVO has a volunteer staff of five who work to grow the program and ensure wounded, injured, and ill veterans are matches with the programs of interest. Any veteran in CVO can attend hunting and fishing events and will often have full costs covered to include transportation to/from the camp and all meals and lodging.



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Aug 01 2018

Virginia District 10 Achieves #1 in Division 1 Worldwide “All American”


National VFW Convention, Kansas City, MO.  For the better part of 2017-18 year, Virginia District 10 led VFW division 1 worldwide, and was in a tight competition with Europe District 3.  Division one is arguably the toughest to compete in due to the large size of the districts. 

 With the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2018, Virginia District 10 won 1st place, yes 1st place, in Division 1, worldwide and has achieved “All American” status. Virginia District 10 Commander Chuck Wilson (2017-18) was awarded “All American” Commander at the VFW Convention in Kansas, City, MO.  “To achieve this honor, District commanders must meet strict requirements in their role to include exceptional leadership, authentic accomplishment in membership growth and strong support of VFW core programs.” According to a VFW press release. Wilson’s home post is Post 7916 located in Occoquan, Virginia.

 Virginia District 10 also won “All State” and is Virginia’s largest district, with over 8,000 Veteran and Auxiliary members. Virginia “All State” Districts excel in membership, program execution, and compliance with the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW) By-Laws, Manual of Procedure, and Ritual and Department of Virginia By-laws and standing orders. 

 Congratulations to the VFW Virginia District 10 “All American” Team!

 The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is the nation’s largest and oldest major war veterans’ organization. Founded in 1899 and chartered by Congress in 1936, the VFW is comprised entirely of eligible veterans and military service members from the active, Guard and Reserve forces. With nearly 1.7 million VFW and Auxiliary members located in almost 6,500 Posts worldwide, the nonprofit veterans’ service organization is proud to proclaim “NO ONE DOES MORE FOR VETERANS” than the VFW, which is dedicated to veterans’ service, legislative advocacy, and military and community service programs.


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Jul 18 2018

Occoquan Honors Military Veterans

July 18, 2018, Occoquan, VA.  Visit the historic town of Occoquan and you will see Military Veterans are being honored throughout the town.   Over thirty military banners are hung many of the poles throughout the town. 

The custom-designed banners contain a photo, name, military branch, and important decorations of a service member.  They are displayed for the annual Military Tribute Banner Program, which is managed by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 7916.

The Military Tribute Banner Program is designed to help our communities never forget the brave men and women who have served and those serving our nation today.  “These banners honor those serving, and those who have served and sacrificed in defense of our nation,” said Post Commander Jeff Lett. 

The custom-designed banners contain a photo, name, military branch, and important decorations of a service member. A sponsorship program helps fund the Military Tribute Banner Program. The military banners will be on display through Veterans Day and, at that time, a new series of military banners is planned for display.  

Families, community members, and businesses can sponsor signs and choose a veteran or active service member they would like to honor.  To learn more information about the Military Tribute Banner Program or to sponsor a banner next year, visit this link: MILITARY BANNER INFO

Front and Rear displayed below

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Jul 04 2018


HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!  Today, we celebrate America’s 242nd birthday. America has much to be proud of!  Americans pioneered the establishment of modern democracy, experienced both domestic and global wars, and paved the way for the digital age. Throughout this period, we have been blessed with the dedication of our Armed Forces. Yes, for these 242 years, our military has worked to preserve the freedoms which were dearly valued by our Founding Fathers.  

On July 2, 1776, the Continental Congress voted in favor of independence from Great Britain and its king, and two days later delegates from the 13 colonies adopted the Declaration of Independence, the birth certificate of America. 

In a letter from John Adams to his wife, Abigail, dated July 3d, 1776, Adams refers to that day as “the most memorable epoch in the history of America.”  He continued:  “I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward, forevermore.” 

Adams concludes his letter with this stirring paragraph: “I am well aware of the toil, and blood, and treasure, that it will cost us to maintain this declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet, through all the gloom, I can see the rays of ravishing light and glory. I can see that the end is more than worth all the means, and that posterity will triumph in that day’s transaction, even although we should rue it, which I trust in God we shall not.” 

This Independence Day, may we celebrate the birth of our nation proudly, resolutely determined to preserve our freedom, just as our Founding Fathers proclaimed so boldly over 242 years ago.

God Bless America!

“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.” 
– Ronald Reagan

                                                                                                    -Chuck Wilson,                                                                                                                                                                  Commander Virginia District 10 2017-2018


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Jun 05 2018

Memorial Day 2018 Ceremony -D10 in Lead Role


May 28, 2018, Quantico National Cemetery (QNC), Virginia. Braving the cool, rainy morning, an estimated 1,200 Soldiers, Sailors, Airman, and Marines, along with many families and distinguished guests who came to remember those who have fallen, fighting for our nation,… the ones who gave all, and those who are still unaccounted for.

 Major General Niel Nelson, the Deputy Commanding General Quantico, was the keynote speaker. “We must remember our Soldiers, Sailors, Airman, and Marines, who sacrificed and gave their lives for us to be free,” said Maj Gen Nelson.  In his remarks, MajGen Nelson described the history of this special day going back to General Logan’s General Order #11 of May 5, 1868.

In this Order , “The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land… It is the purpose of the Commander-in-Chief to inaugurate this observance with the hope that it will be kept up from year to year, while a survivor of the war remains to honor the memory of his departed comrades. He earnestly desires the public press to lend its friendly aid in bringing to the notice of comrades in all parts of the country in time for simultaneous compliance therewith.”  This day was then named “Decoration Day,” and, in later times, it became known as “Memorial Day” and celebrated the last Monday in May. 


The Chairman of Potomac Region Veterans Council (PRVC), CHUCK WILSON was the Master of Ceremonies whose opening remarks set the stage for this solemn ceremony. Wilson is a retired Air Force Colonel who is the Commander Virginia VFW District 10 that includes five counties in Northern Virginia. He was also the past Commander of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7916 in Occoquan.  



Colonel Joseph Murray, Commander, Marine Corps Base Quantico, gave welcoming remarks. 



PRVC Vice Chairman Randal Coker announced The Avenue of Honors,” that honors veterans who have been called from our midst and donated by family members of those fallen.”  VC Coker is also the Senior Vice CDR of District 10 and former Commander of Post 1503 Dale City. 



Colonel Frank Harris, USMC (Ret) provided “A Toast to the Flag.”  The “21-Gun Salute” was provided by the Marine Corps Rifle Team.




US Marine Corps Band played The National Anthem, the Medley of Service Hymns, and patriotic music throughout the ceremony.



The Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts, organizations chartered by VFW Post 7916, assisted in setting up over 1,200 chairs for this Memorial Day ceremony.


 The National Sojourners carry the Colors.

Quantico National Cemetery has hosted this event since 1983. The US Marine Corps Base at Quantico has supported this event since its beginning at Quantico National Cemetery in 1983. 

PRVC Chairman Chuck Wilson shakes hands of the disable veterans who came in from the VA Hospitals.  

Both Memorial Day and Veterans Day Ceremonies are is sponsored by the Potomac Region Veterans Council (PRVC) that represents 26 Veteran Service Organizations and an estimated 15,000 veterans in Northern Virginia.  Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1503 and Post 7916 are charter members.

Pictures taken by VFW Post 1503, VFW Post 7916, Nelson Betancourt, and QNC


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May 24 2018

Memorial Day 2018: Its History Worth Remembering


Memorial Day this year falls on Monday, May 28thThis is a special day where we take time from our busy professional lives to remember our fallen.  Those men and women of our Armed Forces who gave there all, died in the line of duty, for us to be free.  It is this day that we must recognize an unfortunate fact of life: our beloved country was formed and is protected by the blood of warriors.  But when did we first begin this special day?

Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day, as the holiday was centered on decorating the graves of those who had fallen in the Civil War.  There is much debate as to the location where Memorial Day originated from. Sometime during the late years of the Civil War (1861 – 1865), groups began decorating the graves of their loved ones who had died in battle. Depending on the source, there are perhaps over a dozen locations that claim to be the town where the practice began being observed – the birthplace of Memorial Day. Some of these towns include Columbus, Mississippi; Macon, Georgia; Richmond, Virginia; Boalsburg, Pennsylvania; and Carbondale, Illinois.

Today, cities and towns, both in the North and the South, claim to be where this tradition began. Veterans Administration Page states that on April 25, 1866, in Columbus, Mississippi, a local group of women went to decorate the graves of Confederate soldiers. They noticed barren graves of Union soldiers and decided to place flowers there in remembrance.

Wikipedia  Wikipedia  says that by 1865 the practice was already widespread in the North. It is likely that the tradition began in many locations independently, with many variations on the same idea. Over time, as word spread, these traditions could have expanded from town to town.

Another site, Gen Logan’s General Order #11   Washington DC May 5, 1868:  “The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land…”

In 1866, in a town in New York called Waterloo, a drugstore owner named Henry Welles suggested that the town shops close on May 5 to commemorate the soldiers buried at Waterloo Cemetery who had died during the Civil War.  Wikipedia   states that  On May 26, 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson designated an “official” birthplace of the holiday by signing the presidential proclamation naming Waterloo, New York, as the holder of the title.

In 1882, the name of the holiday was changed from Decoration Day to Memorial Day. After World War I, the holiday was expanded to remember soldiers from all American Wars. In 1971, Richard Nixon made Memorial Day a national holiday that was to be celebrated on the last Monday in May. 

Today Memorial Day is celebrated across the United States. Regardless of where it originated, it is an important holiday that remembers those that died for the country, and serves to remind people of the costly price of war. There are many formal ceremonies that take place in observance. Most of these are held in local communities, and can be found by contacting your local Veterans of Foreign Wars Post or office, or local city government agency.

The   NATIONAL MOMENT OF REMEMBRANCE  encourages all Americans to pause wherever they are at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day for a minute of silence to remember and honor those who have died in service to the nation.

So this Memorial Day, let us take time out to pause to remember and honor those who have died in service to our nation.

                                                                   CHUCK WILSON 

                                                          Commander VFW District 10 Virginia



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May 16 2018

District 10 Holds Joint Convention Featuring Election of Officers

May 6, 2018, Dale City, VA. The Department of Virginia’s District 10 held its last Joint Convention, with the District 10 Auxiliary, for the 2017-18 fiscal year and presided over by the outgoing District 10 Commander Chuck Wilson.  

At this Joint Convention, Wilson praised the entire District 10 team for its superb performance this past year.  “District 10 is recognized as the leading District in Division One worldwide…ahead of Europe!”    

Wilson recently returned from VFW HQ in Kansas City MO where Virginia District 10 was recognized the top district in Division 1, arguably the toughest division to compete in due to its large size.  “Well done, I have been proud to have worked for and with this great District Team!” Wilson stated.


During the “New Business” portion of the convention, District 10 held its election of officers for the 2018-2019 fiscal year.  Department SVC Ken Wiseman was the Installing Officer.  The officers that were elected/appointed and listed on the District 10 Election report** are:

 Commander                                     Randy Coker

Senior Vice Commander                Mike Delvechio

Junior Vice Commander                Bob Fenlason

Quartermaster                                 Sterling Moninghoff

Judge Advocate                                Richard Garlick

Surgeon                                             Ken Wiseman

Chaplain                                            Ed Bennett

Trustee                                              Gary Kelch

Trustee                                              Bob Dugas

Trustee                                              Dave Meyers

Service Officer                                  Mike Niblack  

**These officers will assume their positions upon the installation of the Virginia Department Commander in mid-June.          

***Photos courtesy of VFW Post 1503

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May 13 2018

Virginia District 10 Presents VFW Award to Outstanding AFJROTC Cadet

May 11, 2018, Dale City, VA, this joyful Friday evening, the Air Force Junior ROTC at Hylton High School held their annual Dining Out at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1503.  Almost 300 Soldiers, Sailors, Airman, Marines, Cadets, School Administrators, teachers, moms, dads, brothers, sisters and distinguished guests came to celebrate and recognize achievement.  The Virginia District 10 Commander Chuck Wilson , and Post 7916 Junior Vice Commander Bob Fenlason were part of this memorable event. 

Sponsored by VFW Post 7916 located in Occoquan, VA, The Veterans of Foreign Wars Award of Excellence was presented to JROTC Cadet Nicholas Lorenzo. Cadet Lorenzo was recognized for his outstanding leadership and Americanism as an AFJROTC Cadet. District 10 Commander Chuck Wilson, Col USAF Ret, presented the award. Cadet Lorenzo also received a $200.00 scholarship award from VFW Post 7916.

The Order of Daedalians Achievement Award was presented to the JROTC Cadet TyVelt Singleton. Cadet Singleton received this award for superior academic achievement, and leadership, in his Hylton High School Class, along with intent to pursue a military career.  Colonel Chuck Wilson presented this Order of Daedalians Achievement Award.  The Order of Daedalians is the National Order of Military Pilots, of which Wilson is a USAF Command Pilot and 35-year Daedalian member, was founded by World War I Army Air Service Pilots.  At that time the Air service was part of the Army Signal Corps.

Some background on Dining-Ins and Dining-Outs:

A dining-in is a formal event for military organizations believed to have begun in 16th-century England, in monasteries and universities. The British Army incorporated it during the 18th century, in the form of formal dining within the regimental mess. Rules of the mess were institutionalized as “the Queen’s Regulations.” The “mess night” or “dining in” became a tradition in all British regiments.

Our Army, Navy and Air Force refer to this event as a dining-in. The Marine Corps and Coast Guard call it mess night, while the Army sometimes calls it a regimental dinner. The Air Force dining-in probably began in the 1930s with General H. “Hap” Arnold’s “wing dings.” The close bonds enjoyed by Air Corps officers and their British colleagues of the Royal Air Force during World War II surely added to the American involvement in the dining-in custom.

A Dining-In involves only the members of the unit. Dining-Outs allow guests. The dining-out follows the same basic rules of the dining-in but is sometimes tailored for the civilian guests to encourage their involvement.




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May 09 2018

VFW Recognizes Top Districts & Posts Including Virginia District 10

Kansas City, MO, May 3-6, 2018.  Veterans of Foreign Wars Commander-in-Chief Keith Harmon recognized the top two Districts and posts, in their division, worldwide.  Virginia’s District 10, represented by District 10 Commander Chuck Wilson, received that recognition.  District 10, with over 8,000 veteran and auxiliary members, is Virginia’s largest VFW District.  District 10 is in the VFW’s Division One, and due to its large size, arguably the toughest division to compete in worldwide.

“Serving about 6,500 posts, VFW headquarters was most impressive!  We all saw the high morale and efficiency exhibited throughout this nine-story headquarters!” Said Virginia District 10 Commander, Chuck Wilson.  Wilson’s home VFW Post is Post 7916 located in Occoquan, Virginia.

VFW Auxiliary Member, and Air Force Veteran, Judy Wilson said, “Wow, I learned so much and this was a treat!”

Commander-in-Chief Harmon was a gracious host and escorted this distinguished group of commanders, and their spouses, on a complete tour of the VFW nine story headquarters, the National World War I Memorial and Museum, and President Harry Truman’s Library and Museum. 

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Apr 10 2018

National VFW Junior Vice Commander Visits District 10


National Junior Vice Commander Visits District 10



March 22, 2018 Woodbridge VA.  In his whirlwind trip through Virginia, The Veterans of Foreign Wars Junior Vice Commander “Doc” Schmitz came to District 10 and stopped by Occoquan Post 7916 for Lunch (above picture) and Dale City Post 1503 for light refreshments. 

 (pictured above left side: D10 CDR Chuck Wilson, National JVC Doc Schmitz, Post CDR Jeff Lett, Post Auxiliary President Liz Mack, D8 CDR Ron Link; Right side: State CDR Mike Boehme, Post SVC Ken Strafer, Post JVC Bob Fenlason, Post QM Jim Adams, State SVC Ken Wisemen, and past State CDR Tom Gimble)




Chuck Wilson D10 CDR, Doc Schmitz Nat JVC, Jeff Lett Post CDR, Jim Adams Post QM, Mike Boehme State CDR, Ken Wiseman State SVC


While visiting Post 7916, both National JVC Doc Schmitz and State Commander Mike Boehme presented the Honor Post Award to Post 7916.  Post 1503 has also earned the Honor Post award. 



VFW Dale City Post 1503 rolled out the red carpet and hosted Doc Schmitz to a superb reception with over 100 members present.  In all, the National Junior Vice Commander had a superb visit.

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