GENERAL ORDERS


VETERANS OF FOREIGN WARS

DEPARTMENT OF VIRGINIA

NUMBER 4
SERVICE, HONOR, PRIDE

October 1, 2002



1. STATE COMMANDER'S MESSAGE:

Comrades and Sisters, it was my vision that all the attendees to the Fall Council Meeting made it the success it was. Thanks so much for making it a productive and a memorable conference.

As many of you know rumors are flying around the Department. And a lot that I am hearing are not true. They are fabricated by or for an individual that no longer works for the Department. I would ask anyone in the Department VFW or Auxiliary that has specific questions to please call me so that we can tone down if not extinguish rumors.

The next item I would like to discuss seems a long time in coming but I feel it needs to be addressed. That is the Legislative and Community Service Conference being held in Washington D.C. 9 -13 March 2003. I personally find it embarrassing to see Departments like Europe, Pacific, Michigan and others have 6 or 10 tables at the banquet and Virginia delegation may take 2 tables. If you plan to attend, now is the time to call the Adjutant/Quartermaster and reserve your tickets so that when asked by National he will be able to give them an approximate amount.

Another issue that comes to mind is "Day On The Hill" in Richmond on January 16, 2003. This coming year I've asked our legislative chairman to invite the Auxiliary to attend with us. What a concept, ladies joining the cause for what we believe needs to be done. Somewhere in my years in the VFW I have been told the ladies have a legislative mission as the VFW does. Another observation I have had is that on the "Day On The Hill" we have a lot of appointments and not enough people to cover them. Please come out and support this most important day.

I've instructed the Senior Vice to contact all District Commanders to obtain the schedule for all of us to come and help where needed. Membership is not the only area we are here to work with. Programs and reports are just as important. Ignorance is not bliss when it comes to team work. One final note, and that is if you want the Honor Guard or a State Representative at a function, please insure you get it on my calendar as soon as planned. There for I can make sure that a Department representative is there. If you ask we are here to provide. Each Post no matter how big or small is important to this Department's mission. The only way a request will be rejected will be in the case of double commitments. Having said that, Honor Guard Captain George McCracken is looking for people to build his Honor Guard. My desire is to have two separate units so that we can meet all the demands. If interested in joining please contact him as soon as possible.

As always, your team is awaiting your call.

Lawrence F. (Larry) Mattera
Department Commander


2. MEMBERSHIP REPORTS:

We are now three (3) months into this membership recruitment and retention year. Membership is being received at State Headquarters at a very good rate, however, there are some Posts which HAVE NOT SENT IN ANY RENEWALS OR NEW MEMBERS. If your Post has any renewals or new/reinstated members please submit them now. National has updated the Life Membership listing and these numbers are available on the web. National's numbers are only a starting point. New life members sent to the Department will be credited as soon as possible. Please bear with us, we are trying to get National's numbers to agree with your Post Count. Posts are reminded that the Department Goal is 103%. We hope to reach 100% by the end of December and then work on the additional numbers. With the help of Post members, WE can reach our goal. I ask each member to take an application and sign up ONE member. I also ask each Post Commander to read the Membership Campaign, taking special note to the section on recruitment awards for individual members. Make this information known to members of your Post. If the Department can be of any assistance in recruitment, please contact us.

Membership Transmittals must be received at State Headquarters no later than October 29, 2002 to be counted for the month of October.

Peter M. Snelling
Membership Chairman


3. GENERAL ORDER CUT OFF DATES:

PLEASE NOTE: ANY information to be published in the General Orders must be in by the 20th of each month. Changes of address or phone numbers within the Department must be in writing or via e-mail. Headquarters can accept hand-written, typed and faxed information, BUT we would prefer to receive your input as an email that we can import directly into our draft of the next edition.


4. IMPORTANT INFORMATION:

The Department of Virginia, VFW now has a Homepage. Your General Orders can be found on the Homepage at http://www.vfw-virginia.com. It is now possible for individual Posts, with their own Website, to become linked to our Homepage. Posts who already have web sites can incorporate a Department of Virginia link on their Website. Please contact the State Adjutant/Quartermaster at State Headquarters: 1-800-888-3521. State Headquarters e-mail address is stateheadquarters@vfw-virginia.com (case sensitive).


The State Officers now have e-mail addresses on the state web page:
State Commander Larry Mattera - commander@vfw-virginia.com
Senior Vice Commander Pete Snelling - seniorvice@vfw-virginia.com
Junior Vice Commander Mike Hoiness - juniorvice@vfw-virginia.com
Judge Advocate Tom Hines - judgeadvocate@vfw-virginia.com
Surgeon Dan Boyer - surgeon@vfw-virginia.com
Chaplain Ed Powers - chaplain@vfw-virginia.com
Adjutant/Quartermaster Fred Wolking - quartermaster@vfw-virginia.com

State Headquarters also has voice mail, where you can call and leave messages before or after business hours, a drop located right outside the front door, where you can drop things off before and after business hours.

Any of you who have not received Commander's manuals, Program Books, or Quartermaster kits, please notify State Headquarters immediately.


5. FROM YOUR NEW STATE ADJUTANT/QUARTERMASTER:

Greetings Comrades. Some of you may know me from my service in the State Honor Guard. Some may remember me from my two campaigns for this office. And a few may have met me in my brief tour as Commander of District 4, or my interminable term as Adjutant/Quartermaster of Post 2163, Chesterfield County. The rest of you I count as comrades who will become good friends as soon as we have a chance to get to know one another. It was only 26 days ago I was asked to step into the vacancy as State Adjutant, and only 16 days ago I was elected and officially installed as your State Quartermaster. They have been busy and exciting days. I have found out there are many things that I knew about in general but now must learn in intimate detail. Please bear with me as I go through that learning process. In the short time I have served I have noticed a few points on which I ask your help:

1. Annual dues are $8.50 for national and $3.00 for state. Every time I work on annual dues, I find at least one post using different values. This slows down the processing because I have to write a letter asking for the balance due, or write a check to refund the overpayment.

2. On life membership applications, PLEASE enter the date of birth of the comrade applying for life membership. National will not process it without the date, and I cannot verify the amount due without that date. Since some Posts are still using the old scale, the payments are often short.

3. VFW procedures and practice require two signatures on checks. Most Posts follow those procedures and practices. The few that do not, require extra work on my part before I can send their dues transmittal on to Kansas City.

Several of you have asked about my living plans. I plan to be in Staunton, at State Headquarters, Monday thru Friday most of the time, and at home in Richmond with my wife most weekends. The quartermaster's cell phone [540-290-0924] will reach me. If you want to send e-mail my address is quartermaster@vfw-virginia.com. All of the office numbers in the roster still work. And, as last resort you can always call 804-276-5668 and speak with my better half, or leave a message on that answering machine.

I look at the challenge you have presented me as another opportunity to serve all of my fellow veterans in ways we have yet to explore.

Finally, I want to lay to rest or set straight one rumor you may have heard. It is true that I have told Harry Huff, the Buildings and Grounds Chairman, that if he brings me a check for ten thousand dollars for Operation Uplink, he will be allowed to publically shave my mustache at some point during the 2003 State Convention (oh, I plan to grow another one, so it will only be a temporary change).


6. DISTRICT MEETINGS:

FIRST - TBA

SECOND - 11-16-02, OCEAN VIEW POST 3160, 12:00 NOON Lunch, 1:00 Meeting, Representative, Tom Hines, State Judge Advocate

THIRD - 12-7-02, Third District Headquarters, Meeting 2PM, Meal to follow, Representative Lawrence F. Mattera, State Commander

FOURTH - 11-03-02, CREWE COMMUNITY CENTER, Meeting 1:00 p.m. hosted by Post 8719, Representative Peter M. Snelling, State Senior Vice Commander

FIFTH - 11-17-02, STUART POST 7800, American Legion Post, Stuart, Lunch 12:00 NOON, Meeting 1:00 p.m., Representative Peter M. Snelling, State Senior Vice Commander

SIXTH - 11-17-02, VA MEDICAL BUILDING 10, Meeting 2:00 p.m., Lunch to follow, Representative Michael J. Hoiness, State Junior Vice Commander

SEVENTH - 12-08-02, WINCHESTER, Post 2123 11:30 a.m. Lunch, 1:00 p.m., Meeting, Representative Lawrence F. Mattera, State Commander

EIGHTH - 2-23-03, Post 7589, MANASSAS, 1:00pm Meeting, Representative Lawrence F. Mattera, State Commander

NINTH - TBA

TENTH - 12-08-02, WOODBRIDGE POST 7916, (Occoquan), Meeting 1:00 p.m., Meal to follow, Representative Peter Snelling, State Senior Vice Commander

ELEVENTH - 12-1-02, Bridgewater Post 8644, TBA

TWELFTH - 01-05-03, POUND POST 9600, Pound Elementary, 11:00 a.m. Registration, 12:00 NOON Lunch, Meeting to follow, Representative Michael J. Hoiness, State Junior Vice Commander

THIRTEENTH - 12-08-02, GORDONSVILLE POST, 1:00P.M. meeting, Meal to follow, Representative Michael J. Hoiness, State Junior Vice Commander


7. ROSTER CHANGES:

POST 609 - Commander John R. Ayers, 1702 DeWitt Avenue, Alexandria 22301-1208, telephone 703-683-4778
SVC - J. Howard Lanham, 2518 King Street, Alexandria 22301-2732
JVC - Walter E. Sanford, 608 Woodland Terrace, Alexandria 22302-3319; telephone 703-836-0001
ADJ/QM Michael M. Reddan, 6504 Melia Street, Springfield 22150-1148, telephone 703-719-0587

POST 8599 - Quartermaster John Wilson, phone 434-376-3046

POST 9805 - Commander Herbert A. King, 243-d Browns Mill Road, Rustburg 24388, telephone 434-332-5443
Quartermaster Herbert Hines, 2196 Red House Road, Rustburg 24388, telephone 434-332-6236
POST 9864 - Commander Donald G. Wallice, RR 3 Box 85, Castlewood 24266, telephone 276-738-9809
SVC Roger L. Edmonds, P O Box 692, Lebanon 24266-0692, telephone 276-889-2683
JVC Robert C. Musick, P O Box 2252, Lebanon 24266, telephone 276-889-5600
Adjutant Phillip E. Burchett, P O Box 1565, Lebanon 24266, telephone 276-889-2073
Quartermaster Rev. Clyde Stanford, P O Box 2104, Lebanon 24266, telephone 276-889-2073

8. E-MAIL CHANGES: [also see new addresses for state officers in item 4 above]

Legislative Chairman - John P. McAnaw - JTMTOG29@AOL.COM
State Headquarters - Administrative Assistants - stateheadquarters@vfw-virginia.com
6th District Commander Berkley Simmons - tobyvfw6distcmdr@aol.com
Past 8th District Commander Joe Dawson - jldawson@powernet.org
Post 1033 6th District - VFWPOST1033@AOL.Com Fax # 540-962-6426


9. REPORTS AND FORMS:

PLEASE NOTE THE INDIVIDUAL RECRUITING AWARD FORM, THE COMMUNITY ACTIVITY REPORT, HOMELESS VETERANS REPORT, HOSPITAL REPORT AND EVALUATION GUIDE CAN BE FOUND ON THE WEBSITE AND ALSO IN THIS GENERAL ORDERS. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE E-MAIL PLEASE LET US KNOW AND WE WILL SEND THE FORMS TO YOU. PLEASE SEND FORMS TO THE CURRENT COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN, NOT STATE HEADQUARTERS. THE ONLY REPORT THAT SHOULD BE FORWARDED TO STATE HEADQUARTERS IS THE DECEASED COMRADE FORM.

PLEASE NOTE: THE AUDIT REPORTS NEED TO BE SIGNED BY AT LEAST TWO TRUSTEES BEFORE SUBMITTING TO STATE HEADQUARTERS OR THEY WILL BE RETURNED.

Forms Revised May 2002

10. QUARTERLY AUDIT REPORTS:

The Quarterly Audit Report for July 1 - September 30 2002 is NOW DUE at State Headquarters.


11. IMPORTANT 2002-2005 DATES:

Oct 31 Nov 3, 2002 Southern Conference, Little Rock, Arkansas
March 9-12, 2003 Community Service Conference, Washington, DC.
March 10-13, 2002 Legislative Conference, Washington, DC.
July 19, 2003 Satellite Training
August 23-29, 2003 National VFW Convention, San Antonio, Texas
August 14-20, 2004 National VFW Convention, Cincinnati, Ohio
August 20-26, 2005 National VFW Convention, Salt Lake City, Utah


12. BUDDY POPPIES:

Buddy Poppies are now $102.00 per thousand. We also have a limited supply of 9-11 Commemorative Poppies still available. The price is $115.00 per thousand.


13. SCHOOL OF INSTRUCTION:

2003 July 11- 13 Holiday Inn Select, 601 Main Street, Lynchburg, Virginia 24504; Rates are $69.00; phone 434-528-2500


14. YOUTH ACTIVITIES:

Please send all Youth Activities material to: Donald L. Hall, Youth Activities Chairman, 35 Eidson Creek Road, Staunton, VA 24401.


15. WINTER COUNCIL MEETINGS:

2003 - January 17-19, 2003, Clarion, 500 Merrimac Trail, Williamsburg 23185, rates are $45.00 a night, telephone 1-800-666-8888


16. DONATIONS:

Please send your donations (WWII Memorial, telephone cards, etc.) to VFW State Headquarters, P O Box 2067, Staunton, VA 24402.


17. VOICE OF DEMOCRACY:

2002-2003 THEME: "Freedom's Obligation"

September is here and schools are in session, this year's Voice of Democracy Program should be in the schools. At the School of Instruction, in Lynchburg, the question was posed to me as how could Posts participate in the program when the schools aren't willing to participate. There are many ways to participate in the program. Your Post can get the information to a Boy Scout or Girl Scout Troop, home school students, or you next door neighbor's children are all eligible to participate. If your Post cannot find anyone to participate then you do have another option. National Commander In Chief Ray Sisk has stated that when all other efforts to sponsor a child have failed, the Post may contribute $25.00 to the Department of Virginia, VFW to be used for the VOD Program. By submitting the monies to Department you will receive credit that will entitle you to receive participation points for "All State". Also, a certificate of participation will be issued by National signed by the Department Commander and myself. All checks must be sent to the Department Quartermaster and designated for the VOD program by the deadline date for Department Judging..

Dates to remember: Post Judging by November 1, 2002
District Judging by December 15, 2002
Department Judging by January 15, 2003
National Judging February 1, 2003

There is no reason why the Department of Virginia, VFW should not be 80% reported for The Voice of Democracy Program for 2002-2003. I encourage all District Commanders to work toward achieving 80% for your District in the program. If I can assist you in any way, please feel free to contact me at 540-879-2066 or by e-mail at weekslock@adelphia.net

Earle (Buddy) P. Weekley


18. PATRIOT'S PEN:

2002-2003 THEME: "My Pledge to America"
2002-2003 DEADLINES: Student Entry - December 1, 2002
District Deadline - January 15, 2003
Department Deadline - February 1, 2003
National Deadline - February 10, 2003

Please send all Patriotic Pen materials to: Earl E. Harris, Jr., Patriotic Pen Chairman, 2601 North Augusta Street, Staunton, VA 24401.


19. VETERANS DAY PARADE:

There will be a Veterans Day Parade in Downtown Staunton, Virginia on Saturday 9 November 2002 at 11:00 a.m. Everyone is invited to attend or participate for more information please call 540-885-8837 (day), 540-885-7970 (night) 0r 540-887-8024. VFW Post 2216 will have an Open House following the parade. Any donation would be gratefully appreciated; please mail them to: Veterans Day Parade, P O Box 1843, Staunton 24402.

Harry Huff
Parade Chairman


20. MILITARY ASSISTANCE PROGRAM:

5th Annual Warrior Relay Run - The VFW'S Military Assistance Program (MAP) urges your support for the 5th Annual Warrior Relay Run to be conducted October 14 - 17, 2002. Starting at the Ft. Bragg, NC and ending at the Pentagon, the run is intended to raise money for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation to support the 386 children of SPEC OPS warriors left fatherless since 1980 - 10% of theses during our war on terrorism alone. Stopovers are scheduled as follows: 1830, Oct 14 - Wilson, NC (Hwy 301); 1430, Oct 17 - Arlington National Cemetery (pick up VIP runners) and conclude at 1530 at Pentagon Riverside Terrace, Boundary Channel Drive. POC is Edie Rosenthal, 813-805-9400. VFW Posts along the road are encouraged to provide support to this endeavor.

M.C. "Connie" Agresti
Department MAP Coordinator


21. AWARDS AND CITATIONS:

All entries for Outstanding Fireman, Outstanding Policeman and Outstanding Emergency Medical Technician must be at Department Headquarters no later than Saturday 19 October 2002. Late entries will not be considered. Please include a photograph of the contestant and the name and address of the individual to whom the entry should be returned.

Randolph E. Moon
Awards and Citations Chairman


22. LEGISLATIVE:

THE FINAL PUBLIC MEETING OF THE GOVERNOR'S ADVISORY COMMISSION FOR VETERANS AFFAIRS - 15 OCTOBER 2002

Three public meetings were scheduled by the Governor's Advisory Commission on Veterans Affairs. Two have already been held, in Richmond on 31 July and in Annendale, Fairfax County, 12 September.

The last meeting will be held on Tuesday, 15 October in Hampton. It will be held from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. at Thomas Nelson Community College, Peninsula Workforce Development Center, 99 Thomas Nelson Drive, Hampton, Virginia.

VFW members are strongly urged to speak to members of cited Commission and express their concerns and recommendations. The first part of the meeting will be devoted to speaker input. For the remainder of the public meeting the Commission will break down into the following sub committees:

1. Veteran Needs & Patriotic (VFW Department Commander Mattera is on this submitted)
2. Agencies & Programs
3. Funding Sources
4. Structure & Strategies

Then, there will be a final meeting of all Commission members prior to adjournment at 3:00 p.m.

Based in large part on input from various Veterans groups in the Commonwealth and individual Veterans, the Commission will put together a final report which will presented to Governor Mark Warner sometime in November 2002. I cannot stress enough how important VFW member input is to the preparation of the final report to the Commission. Our last chance to weigh in on 15 October is at the Peninsula Workforce Development Center, located on the campus of Thomas Nelson Community College in Hampton. For early sign up to speak at the 15 October public meeting in Hampton, contact Samantha Anderson at 804-786-1201 or sanderson@gov.state.va.us. Please note that all individuals who desire to speak will be given the opportunity to do so, whether or not they signed up in advance or note.

VFW "LEGISLATIVE DAY ON THE HILL" IN RICHMOND, VA IN JANUARY 2003

The VFW Department of Virginia will conduct its annual "Legislative Day on the Hill" in Richmond on Thursday, 16 January 2003. We will meet in the General Assembly Office Building at 8:20 a.m. in a conference room yet to be determined. Following a briefing and the distribution of Issues Booklets we will break down into teams and visit all 140 members of the General Assembly. The 2003 of the Virginia General Assembly will address issues of importance to the Veteran Community. According to various sources, significant budget cuts to all Commonwealth departments/agencies are under consideration. Across the board cuts, ranging from 5 to 15 percent have been mentioned in the media. As an example, permit me to address the impact of any budget cut on the Virginia Department of Veterans Affairs (VDVA). Effective 1 July 2002, the VDVA suffered cuts on its budget that permitted the funding of only 49 of its 56 authorized positions. At the present there are insufficient Claim Agents in the Commonwealth to provide responsive and efficient service to Veterans who are filing claims for the first time or need additional help on claims already filed. Any additional budget cuts will only exacerbate an already unsatisfactory. Not only should all 56 VDVA positions be funded, there is ample just justification for additional Claims Officers within the Commonwealth. On 16 January 2003, we need the support of VFW members throughout the Commonwealth to oppose proposed cutbacks in the VDVA and other agencies/programs deemed important to the Veteran Community. Join the Senior Leadership of the Department for our "Legislative Day On The Hill" in Richmond. Numbers do count! There are 3 components to a successful Get Out The Vote campaign. They are :

1. Host a Town Hall Meeting or Meet Your Candidate (s) Night
2. Organize a voter registration drive
3. Educate the candidate (s) on the issues

Guidance on how to conduct cited meetings is contained in the General Orders for June 2002. The goal of the VFW Department of Virginia is for every District and Post to participate in the Get Out The Vote Campaign. The next article in this issue of the General Orders provides questions to ask candidates at meetings. We need to know where they stand on issues of importance to the Veteran Community.

WHERE DO THE CANDIDATES FOR NATIONAL OFFICE STAND ON VETERANS ISSUES?

On 5 November 2002, Virginia voters will select all of its 11 members in the U.S. House of Representatives and 1 member of the U.S. Senate. As I have mentioned in previous issues of the General Orders, a very effective way to determine where the candidates stand on various issues is to host Town Hall Meetings. Listed below are questions for the candidates that were of importance to the VFW Community:

VA HEALTH CARE:

1. VA funding has been flat-lined for nearly a decade and has only seen slight increases in the past couple of fiscal years. As a result, veterans are waiting months and even years for medical appointments. Would you support and work for passage of annual Budgets/Appropriations providing fully sufficient funding for veterans" medical care?

2. Currently, Medicare is prohibited from reimbursing VA for services provided to non-service connected Medicare eligible veterans. Would you support or introduce legislation that would allow the VA to be reimbursed for the treatment of non-service connected Medicare eligible veterans (Medicare Subvention)?

3. At this time VA Health Care is funded on a "discretionary" basis resulting in annual battles to secure sufficient dollars for this purpose in the Budget/Appropriations process. The result has been successive years of inadequate funding. Would you support legislation to fund our veteran's health care system on a "mandatory" basis in accordance with a formula to ensure adequate dollars as well as enhanced planning options for VA?

MILITARY RETIREE (CONCURRENT RECEIPT)

1. Recent Law authorized military retirees to receive both their military pay for longevity and their VA disability compensation without offset. However, Congress did not appropriate the funding to carry out concurrent receipt. Are you in favor and will you work toward providing full funding for concurrent receipt?

2. Will you vote in favor of concurrent receipt for military retirees following President Bush's announcement that he would veto the Fiscal year 2003 Defense Authorization Act if it contained any concurrent receipt language?

VA BENEFITS:

The VFW has long envisioned the creation of a GI Bill for the 21st Century, one modeled after the highly successful GI Bill of 1944. Would you support or introduce legislation that would provide an educational benefit that covers the cost of tuition, fees, books and related expenses along with a stipend to cover housing expenses, at the institution of higher learning at which a veteran accepted?

NATIONAL SECURITY AND FOREIGN AFFAIRS:

1. Do you support a Department of Homeland Security as proposed by the President? If not, what do you envision?

2. There have been recent articles in the media reducing overall troop strength in order to be able to cover the costs of changing the force structure. Do you support reducing end strength to achieve this goal? Or would you support an increased Defense budget that would allow DOD to maintain current levels?

ACTIVE DUTY QUALITY OF LIFE:

1. With the changing demographics of the military, many more active duty members are married with children. Will you support legislation that will improve the substandard and often limited housing available to support our force structure?

2. Regarding reservists, many are required to deploy more often and for longer durations and their military pay is often significantly less than what they earn on their civilian job. This results in financial hardship. Will you support legislation to address this issue?

3. Given the continuing pay gap between military members and their civilian counterparts for equivalent work, Congress has approved significant increases in military pay in recent years. Will you support additional increases to completely eliminate this disparity?

4. Will you support legislation and funding for programs to provide assistance to the military spouses overseas for employment opportunities?

If you have any suggested input on matters of concern to the Veteran Community here in Virginia, please contact me or another member of the Legislative Committee.

John P. McAnaw
Legislative Chairman


23. COMMUNITY SERVICE REPORTS:

We need Community Activity Reports for this reporting period which terminates October 31, 2002, those Post's that HAVE NOT SUBMITTED ONE, PLEASE COMPLETE A PROJECT AND SUBMIT REPORT. Post's that HAVE NOT submitted a report as of September 20, 2002 are listed below :

DISTRICT 1: 5500, 8692, 9358
DISTRICT 2: 100%
DISTRICT 3: 4639, 8356
DISTRICT 4: 5313, 7559, 8048, 8228, 8446, 8599, 8902, 9618, 10570, 10571
DISTRICT 5: 6130, 8243
DISTRICT 6: 1444, 1841, 2157, 4165, 7854, 8184, 9805
DISTRICT 7: 4698, 7899, 8613, 9292, 9660
DISTRICT 8: 472, 1177, 1811, 4468, 7728, 8208, 9835, 9865
DISTRICT 9: 2719, 4667, 7360, 7969, 9343, 9864
DISTRICT 10:609, 9478
DISTRICT 11:1499, 3136, 7578, 7814, 9480
DISTRICT 12: 3782, 4301, 5715, 8652, 9600, 9830, 10298, 10611
DISTRICT 13: 1827, 2217, 2613, 7638, 8169, 8717, 10295, 10574

If you have any questions, please give me at 804-276-5457. You may also e-mail your Community Service reports to me at Post2163@aol.com or fax them to 804-276-6639.

Ken Vitale
Community Service Chairman


24. YOUTH ACTIVITIES:

Following posts HAVE NOT reported:
District 1: 5500,8629,9358,9636.
District 2: 2582,3160
District 3: 4639, 8046
District 4: 5313, 5371,7559, 7897, 8048, 8228, 8446, 8599, 8902, 9618, 9855, 10570, 10571
District 5: 6130, 8243
District 6: 484, 1033, 1841, 2515, 4165, 4318, 5311, 7854, 8184, 9805
District 7: 621, 2123, 2447, 4698, 7899, 8613, 9292, 9660
District 8: 472, 1177, 1811, 4468, 7728, 8208, 9835, 9865
District 9: 2719, 4667, 6000, 7360, 7969, 9343, 9864
District 10: 609, 5412, 8241, 8815, 9274, 9478
District 11: 3136, 7578
District 12: 1994, 5715, 6975, 8652, 9600, 9830, 10298, 10611
District 13: 1827, 2044, 2217, 2613, 7638, 8169, 8717, 8947, 10295, 10574

District Totals are as follows:
Number of completed projects: 368
Number of volunteers: 1200
Number of hours: 6818.25
Number of miles driven: 19,592
Amount of monies expended: $30,771.02

The end of the first half is fast approaching, get your reports to me as soon as you can.

Don Hall
Youth Activities Chairman


25. AMERICANISM:

11 September was Patriot's Day did your post recognize it with any special ceremony? Have your reported that?

"Citizenship Education: Make a Difference" Chairman's Booklet from National Headquarters: Page 2 has guidelines for U.S. Flag disposal. One idea from other Posts: Ask the U.S. Post Office to donate old and unused mailboxes. Paint the mailboxes and clearly indicate they are to be used for collection of old flags. Place them at your Post Home or appropriate location where your townspeople can find them and drop their old flags. There are also ideas for teaching school children how to say the Pledge of Allegiance, proper care of the flag, etc. There are possible speeches to be used on various special days, such as for POW/MIA Recognition day September 27.

Other Items: Vietnam War Memorial will mark its 20th Anniversary ove3r Veterans Day Weekend. They are seeking persons to help read the names on the Wall. See http: //www.vvvmf.or or call 202-393-0090 ext 21 for further information. Their Echoes Program mailed teaching guides on the Vietnam War to every high school in the country. Check with your local high school library or History Department to see if they have it. Call number above to reorder a teaching guide. The Fiftieth Anniversary of the Korean is still accepting applications from organizations wishing to become an official "Commemorative Partner." Posts will receive a certificate and official flag and various educational materials, etc. The reporting requirements have been modified - lessened - for this last year. The application is in the Commander's Packet with the Citizenship Book. Or call 866-KOREA-50. There are currently 16 Posts in Virginia and the State Headquarters registered as Commemorative Partners.

Americanism Reporting Form:

It is not necessary to send in photos and news clippings, etc. Keep those for Americanism Book to be submitted to the Awards and Citation Committee for judging in May. Do NOT report events out of period. Some Posts are reporting events which have not yet happened, such as Veterans Day or Pearl Harbor Day. You cannot receive credit for them in August or September. Similarly, do not send in a report specifying the dates for September, for example, and claim Memorial Day.

Consider adding some upcoming date to you Post calendar of events:

13 October - US Navy Birthday 14 October - Columbus Day
28 October - Statue of Liberty Birthday 5 November - Election Day

138 reports have been received from 101 Posts. As of 20 September 2002 the following Post's HAVE NOT reported:

DISTRICT 1: 8629, 9358, 9636 (70%)
DISTRICT 2: 993, 2582, 4411 (70%)
DISTRICT 3: 394, 4639 (88%)
DISTRICT 4: 637, 5313, 5371, 7559, 7819, 7897, 8048, 8228, 8446, 8599, 8902, 9618, 9855,10570, 10571
DISTRICT 5: 644, 6130, 8243 (70%)
DISTRICT 6: 484, 1033, 1264, 1444, 1841, 2157, 2515, 4165, 4318, 5311, 7854, 8184, 9805
DISTRICT 7: 4698, 7899, 8613, 9292, 9660 (50%)
DISTRICT 8: 472, 1177, 1811, 4468, 7228, 8208, 9835, 9865
DISTRICT 9: 2719, 4667, 7136, 7360, 7969, 9343, 9864
DISTRICT 10: 609, 7327, 8241, 8815
DISTRICT 11: 1499, 3136, 4805, 4989, 7157, 7578, 7814, 9339, 9480 (50%)
DISTRICT 12: 3782, 4301, 5715, 6975, 8652, 9600, 9830, 10298, 10611
DISTRICT 13: 1827, 2044, 2217, 2613, 7638, 8169, 8717, 10295, 10546, 10574

J. Gary Wagner
Americanism Chairman


26. HOSPITAL REPORTS:

The following Post's HAVE NOT Submitted Hospital Reports for the 1st half:

DISTRICT 1: 7167, 8629, 9358
DISTRICT 2: 2582
DISTRICT 3: 2583, 8529, 9501
DISTRICT 4: 5313, 5371, 7559, 8048, 8228, 8446, 8599, 8759, 8902, 9855, 10570
DISTRICT 5: 644, 6130, 8243
DISTRICT 6: 1444, 1841, 2515, 4165, 4318, 5311, 7854, 8184
DISTRICT 7: 4698, 7899, 9660
DISTRICT 8: 472, 1177, 2524, 4468, 7728, 8208, 9835, 9865
DISTRICT 9: 4667, 7360, 9343, 9864
DISTRICT 10: 609, 5412, 7327, 8241, 8469, 8815, 9274
DISTRICT 11: 2424, 7578, 7814, 9480
DISTRICT 12: 3782, 4301, 5715, 6975, 8652, 9830, 10298, 10611
DISTRICT 13: 1827, 2044, 2217, 2613, 7638, 8169, 8436, 8717, 10295, 10574

Lynn Harris
Hospital Chairman

27. SAFETY REPORTS:

As of September 9, 2002, the following Post's HAVE submitted Safety Reports:

DISTRICT 1: 176, 824, 960, 2296, 3219, 4856, 6002, 7167
DISTRICT 2: 1211, 2894, 3160, 4411, 4809, 8545
DISTRICT 3 : 100%
DISTRICT 4: 622, 2163, 2584, 7166, 7559, 8617, 9954
DISTRICT 5: 647, 873, 2820, 4637, 7800, 7568, 8467, 10840
DISTRICT 6: 776, 4299, 4491, 4522, 4920, 5895, 9877
DISTRICT 7: 621, 1150, 1860, 2123, 2447, 6044, 9760
DISTRICT 8: 2524, 3103, 7589
DISTRICT 9: 956, 1184, 7136, 7328, 9640, 9696
DISTRICT 10: 1503, 3150, 7916
DISTRICT 11: 452, 632, 2216, 2424, 3060, 4204, 8279, 8479
DISTRICT 12: 1994, 8979, 10310
DISTRICT 13: 8436

Victor A. Weaver, Safety Chairman


28. AUGUST GENERAL ORDERS CORRECTION:

Please note on the Homecoming insert included with August 2002 General Orders, the correct exit is 19 instead of 18. Sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Kim A. DeShano
Homecoming Chairman


29. DEPARTMENT SERVICE OFFICER'S INFORMATION:

The VA Regional Office in Roanoke has reorganized it's Claims Processing Section in compliance with the results of the study by VA Claims Processing Task Force. Six teams have been created in an attempt to speed up claims processing. The six teams are:

Triage - processes claims that do not require the claims file
Public contact - handle phone and personal contacts
Pre-determination - fully develops claims before sending them to the rating board
Rating board - decision makers
Post-determination - implement decisions
Appeals - processes appeals

DRO's - conduct hearings and file reviews with liberal attitude to grant claims if possible

Results of the changes:

Cases Pending April 2002 July 2002 September 2002
Total 22,731 20,554 18,523
Rating board 2,823 2,054 1,848
Over 6 months old 9,552 8,117 7,404
DRO 326 270 244

Estimated Claim Processing Times

Original claims 16 to 18 months

Reopened claims 11 to 13 months

Agent Orange

The VA has determined that any conditions not currently recognized as related to Agent Orange exposure do not warrant presumptive service connection. It is still possible to establish service connection on a direct basis but it will be extremely difficult in most cases.

Veterans Exposed to Radiation and Radioactive Materials

Veterans who participated in radiation-risk activities may now be able to establish service connection if they development cancer of the bone, brain, colon, lung or ovary.

Death Benefits

The Veterans Education and Benefits Expansion Act of 2001 increased certain death benefits for veterans. The families of veterans who die after December 27, 2001 can now obtain government markers even if private markers have been installed. The burial allowance for service connected deaths was increased from $1500 to $2000 and the plot allowance doubled from $150 to $300 for veterans who qualify.

Future Plans

VA is planning to open a combination Claims Service Center and VocRehab Operation in the old Coast Guard Post Office Building in Portsmouth. No date announced yet.

UPDATE ON Virginia Department of Veterans Affairs

Colbert (Bert ) Boyd has been appointed as the Director of the Virginia Department of Veterans Affairs. He is a Vietnam veteran who served with the U.S. Army and earned the Combat Infantry Badge. Bert has been with the Department since October 1983 in various positions including Deputy Director immediately prior to assuming his new position.

State budget problems have magnified VDVA's funding and personnel shortages. The Department is currently operating within the spending limit required by Governor Warner. The amount of additional budget cuts is unknown at this time.

Care Centers

The Virginia Veterans Care Center in Roanoke is operating under a new contractor, Rexton Management. Preparations for the new Care Center in Richmond are progressing.

State Cemeteries

The Virginia Veterans Cemetery in Amelia is operating smoothly with the number of burials increasing. The Hampton Roads Veterans Cemetery in Suffolk is moving toward actual construction with a groundbreaking ceremony scheduled for November 2002.

State Web sites

Virginia Department of Veterans Affairs official web site is http://www.VDVA.vipnet.org

New state website dedicated to veterans is www.administration.state.va.us/Services/Veterans/veterans.cfm

Fred Fralin
State Service Officer


30. ENVIRONMENTAL COMMITTEE

The VFW Department of Virginia Environmental Programs has the goal of protecting that environment and passing on to generations that follow us. Many federal, state and local laws, statutes and ordinances have been enacted to provide for every American, a clean, safe and healthy environment. The goal of the of the VFW Environmental Program is to make Virginia a better place to live. How can we do that? Let us start by asking each of our Post's to have their Commander and a few dedicated comrades tour their local Post area. Virginia is heavily endowed by nature with beaches, oceans, caves, forests, lakes, mountains, rivers and streams. Man has enhanced all of these with more parks, forests, battlefields and memorials. A list of needed improvements can be made. The local librarian and elected officials can advise what programs are ongoing or planned by other organizations for your area. Make contact with local business and real estate groups that can help with donations of money, material or manpower. Invite them to participate and let them contribute whatever they please. Name a program director and set a date to get everyone involved. On the work day keep VFW membership applications handy. Be sure to ask each volunteer to join if they are eligible. Tell them why they should. Send the completed applications to State Headquarters so Commander Mattera can put Virginia back in the "All American" category where we belong. Remember, a job well planned is well done. The results of a successful Environment Program will remain with you long after your backaches are forgotten. Your children will to the they helped plant. Ask Charlie Wilkerson.

Ernest B. Glynn
Environmental Chairman

31. NATIONAL SPECIAL ORDERS

SPECIAL ORDER NO. 6:

Upon the recommendation of the Commander, Department of Virginia, and in accordance with the provisions of Section 211 of the National By-Laws, the charter of Rockfish Valley Post No. 9794, Nellysford, Virginia mustered October 19, 1990, is hereby cancelled and the Post declared defunct. The Commander, Department of Virginia, will at once recover the charter, rituals, paraphernalia and all monies and other property of the Post in accordance with the provisions of National By-Laws.

By order of
Raymond C. Sisk
Commander-in-Chief


SPECIAL ORDER NO. 8:

Upon the recommendation of the Commander, Department of Virginia, and in accordance with the provisions of Section 211 of the National By-Laws, the charter of Clinchport-Duffield Post No. 10673, Clinchport, Virginia mustered October 19, 1990, is hereby cancelled and the Post declared defunct. The Commander, Department of Virginia, will at once recover the charter, rituals, paraphernalia and all monies and other property of the Post in accordance with the provisions of National By-Laws.

By order of
Raymond C. Sisk
Commander-in-Chief


32. CONDOLENCES:

We wish to express our deepest sympathy to Jim Couper, Department VAVS Representative at Martinsburg, whose wife passed away on September 19, 2002. Also, our thoughts and prayers go out to Harry Lee Gilbert, District One Commander and his family for the untimely death of his brother.


October 2002 Flyers

Official: By Order of:
Fred L. Wolking Lawrence F. Mattera
State Adjutant State Commander