Dec 31 1969

Christmas Mailings to Wounded Warriors

STOP!!!!!!!! Absolutely do not send any mail to

A Recovering American Soldier

c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Center

6900 Georgia Avenue,NW

Washington,D.C. 20307-5001

Mail will not be delivered to this address..!!!!!!!


This is to protect the safety of American servicemen and women. Likewise, according to a statement dated November 8, 2007, the Walter Reed Army Medical Center will not accept such mail at its facility (though mail addressed to specific individuals will still go through).

VFW Post 8208 will be happy to deliver any unsealed cards and unwrapped gifts to the wounded troops and hospitalized Veterans.

Mail these unsealed cards and unwrapped gifts to:

VFW Post 8208

PO Box 653

Ruckersville VA 22968

John Miska CDR

VFW 8208

One of the consequences of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 is that the U.S. Postal Service will no longer deliver mail addressed to “Any Service Member,” “A Recovering American Soldier,” or any similar generic addressee.

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Dec 31 1969

First Annual Hampton Roads Veterans Job Fair , July 2nd

You’re Invited to Congressman Glenn Nye’s

First Annual Hampton Roads Veterans Job Fair

On Thursday, .July 2nd, 2009 Congressman Glenn Nye will host his first annual Hampton Roads Veterans’ Job Fair at VFW Post 4809 in Norfolk.

The fair is intended to bring together employers in Hampton Roads with local veterans who have valuable skills and training from their rnilitary service.

There is no cost to participate -and all veterans from ac/’Oss the area are invited.

The fair will feature:

Twenty local employers, including the public and private sector, as well as staffing firms.

Resume counseling and interview training sessions

Up to several hundred local veterans with valuable skills and training from their service in the military, and

The world premiere screening of a new episode from the In Their Boots documentary series. 1 he episode "Vets for Hire," focuses on the stories of three veterans battling to find work after returning home from IrClq and Afghanistan. Congressman Nye was interviewed for the program, discllssing his Veterans Business Center legislation, which recently passed the House of Representatives.

A panel discussion of veterans employrnent issues with the producers of In Their Boots, representatives of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and Congressman Glenn Nye.

The fair will take place on Thursday, July 2nd, 2009 from 12:00 noon until 5:00 PM at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4809 al 5728 Bartee Street, Norfolk. VA 23502.

For more information, call 757-326-6201 or visit hltp:l/ and click the link for the Hampton Roads Veterans Job Fair.

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Dec 31 1969

Old Vets Scorched by Strain of New Wars

Old Vets Scorched By Strain of New Wars

Tom Philpott | November 12, 2009

Even Old Vets Scorched By Strain of Current Wars

   A small group of U.S. war veterans, the age difference among them as wide as

70 years, gathered last Saturday at American Legion Post 177 in Fairfax,

Va., for a special event at the annual Veterans’ Day Community Fair. They

had agreed to participate in a "living history," co-hosted by VFW Post 8469,

and organized by its commander, Floyd Houston, a man committed to ensuring

local war heroes, old and young, don’t fade away. For two hours they told

war stories and stood by to answer questions that never came from local Boy

Scouts seeking to earn merit badges for their time there. The public too was

welcomed but didn’t show.

   What they missed was more than the usual compelling personal accounts of

war. They missed how deeply some veterans of past wars are disturbed by

burdens being carried by the current generation of volunteers. Avon

Blevins, a retired Navy chief, began his talk by pulling a few mementoes

from a paper bag. He was a teenage radioman aboard USS O’Brien when that

destroyer escorted 50 landing craft, with 200 infantrymen apiece, toward

Omaha Beach on D-Day, June 6, 1944. "We took them in on the first wave. We

got them there on target and on time.Patrolled up and down the beach all day

and fired when they asked us to fire," Blevins said. O’Brien’s guns took

out enemy pillboxes and a machine gun nest. It was relieved that evening by

its sister ship, USS Meredith. When O’Brien returned at dawn, its crew could

see the Meredith on fire and sinking from an explosion later confirmed to

have been caused by a German mine. Three weeks later, an eight-inch German

shell from a shore battery would rip into O’Brien below its bridge, causing

32 casualties, Blevins said. After repairs, the ship sailed to the Pacific.

Blevins was still aboard when Japanese Kamikaze aircraft struck, twice. In

the second attack, a plane with 500-pound bomb penetrated to the ship’s

ammunition magazine. "Almost blew the ship in two. We had a lot of

casualties," Blevins said. "We had part of the pilot too. I never will

forget he had three or four uniforms on. I had one of his shoes until an

officer took it away from me."

   John Swart was 19, part of 8th Regiment, 4th Infantry Division, which landed

at Utah Beach in the second wave ashore at Normandy. "Some troops got out

in water over their heads, carrying 30 pounds packs. Where I landed was

probably knee high," he said. The first town they liberated was Sainte

Marie du Mont. At dusk that evening, Swart recalled, he and other troops

watched in horror as Army gliders tried to land in fields the German had

planted with telephone poles. "A lot of those boys were butchered up,"

Swart remembered. Swart’s own mortar platoon suffered 60 percent casualties

within weeks. He was wounded twice that year, in July and November. For the

second set of wounds he spent 10 months in various hospitals before

discharge. He let the scouts passed around one of his Purple Heart medals.

Lehman Young, a former Navy test pilot, recalled delivering an F4U Corsair

fighter to a base in California early in WWII. He had arrived with extra

fuel and so, before landing, decided "to do some sightseeing." He was set

on flying under the Golden Gate Bridge until he was close to it. Instead he

flew up the coastline. Suddenly he saw puffs of black smoke in the air ahead

of him, exploding shells from anti-aircraft batteries. "I wasn’t supposed

to be there," Young said, holding his cane and smiling. "I did a real quick

180, got back over the bay, got down real close to the ground, went up in

the mountains and hid for a couple of hours." Young said he had five forced

landings while flying naval aircraft, but "that was as close as I came to

getting shot down."

   By the time retired Army Col. George Juskalian, 95, arrived at Legion Post

177 in his wheel chair, the Boy Scouts had moved on. But sharing his

experiences through three wars, including capture by the Germans in Tunisia,

wasn’t his priority this afternoon. Where should we start, I asked him.

"It starts with my anger at our present military policies. We have military

personnel redeploying to theaters of war five and six times and we’re not

doing anything about it," said the colonel, his voice rising. "We expand

the Army by about 20,000, which is a drop in the bucket. But nobody is

mentioning the draft. Nobody! Most of the country doesn’t even know we’re in

a war! After eight, nine years of fighting, when in the hell are we going to

level with them? How are we going to continue this all-volunteer business,

especially for the Army and Marines taking the losses?" Yes, he said,

because of a poor economy the military is meeting recruit requirements. But

before civilian jobs grew scarce, the services were lowering standards,

Juskalian said. "Who’s kidding who?" "I don’t hear anybody at the White

House, anybody in the Pentagon, any of these generals we have, anyone in the

Congress using the word ‘draft.’ It’s become a dirty word! We can’t rely on

volunteer effort forever!" He said he reads letters in newspapers from

military spouses worried that loved ones are going off to war, again and

again, perhaps this time never to come back, while they raise their young

children alone. "Well it bothers me. Jesus Christ, I could cry," he said,

voice growing soft and eyes moist. Eventually he recounts some of his own

experiences in WWII and wars in Korea and Vietnam, not mentioning until

prompted by Houston his two Silver Stars. Soon Juskalian returned to why he

was there. "If it’s a war worth fighting for," he said, "the whole country

has got to fight for it." Houston, with a son returning to Afghanistan the

next day, agreed.

To comment, e-mail

VA, 20120-1111 or visit:, write to P.O. Box 231111, Centreville,

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Dec 31 1969

(No title)


Contact: Anne Atkins
(804) 371-0441

New legislation provides vital records to veterans at no cost, hunting licenses at reduced cost

RICHMOND —Two pieces of legislation passed unanimously by the 2011 General Assembly and signed into law by Governor McDonnell will provide veterans with copies of vital records at no cost and hunting licenses at a reduced cost.

Vital records at no cost

            Veterans and their survivors may receive a certified copy of vital records, such as birth, death, and marriage certificates, from the Virginia Department of Health, Division of Vital Records at no charge if the records will be used to obtain military service-connected benefits.  The legislation was patroned by Delegate Massie and Senator Northam.  To obtain more information, veterans or their survivors should contact the Division of Vital Records at (804) 662-6200.

Hunting licenses for disabled veterans at a discounted cost

            Beginning July 1, discounted hunting licenses will be available to disabled veterans. Resident veterans rated by the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs as having a 70 percent service-connected disability may purchase an annual state resident basic hunting license at half price.  Veterans with a 70 percent service-connected disability residing out of state may purchase an annual non-resident basic hunting license at half price.  The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries already offers a lifetime hunting and fishing license and a life-time trapping license to disabled veterans at a reduced cost.  The new law was sponsored by Delegate Armstrong.  An application for the license is available on the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries’ website at

            Although not part of the legislative package, earlier this year Governor McDonnell granted veterans free access to all state parks through the end of 2011.

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Dec 31 1969

Edwards' Call to Protest Dishonors Memorial Day

WASHINGTON, May 17, 2007–A website plea by presidential candidate John Edwards to encourage war protests at Memorial Day events across the country has drawn the anger of the national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S.

"Memorial Day is a solemn occasion to remember the service and sacrifice of more than one million American servicemen and women who gave their lives to create our nation, to save our Union, and to help free the world from tyranny," said Gary Kurpius, who leads the 2.4 million-member VFW, the nation’s oldest major veterans’ organization and its largest organization of combat veterans.
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