From The Editor

Welcome to the VFW News from the Department of New Mexico. The Newsletter is on-line only and is published 3 times a year, September, January, and May. This is the official publication of the Department of New Mexico Veterans of Foreign Wars and Auxiliary. All advertising, articles, photos and current news items will be provided by the Department VFW and New Mexico VFW Posts and Auxiliaries. Any outside advertisements or news articles will be approved by the Department Communications Officer before publishing.

I am proud to serve as Editor along with Betty Decker as the Assistant Editor.

We are committed to providing accurate, timely and relevant information to our readers and members that they can use in their everyday lives while offering unique perspectives on challenges faced by veterans and their families.

A media kit is available for presentation to all potential advertisers. Participation by all Posts, Auxiliaries, and Officers is essential in providing advertising, articles, photos of events, and human interest stories along with information that will make our newspaper well read.

I would like to ask all Department, District, and Post Officers on VFW, VFWA, MOC, and MOCA to support and distribute our newspaper.


Mark Decker


Issue Dates and deadline for Articles


Material Due Date

Publication Date


August 10

September 10


December 10

January 10


April 10

May 10

 To view click on date.                                                      


News Paper

Submissions Due By November 15, 2017 for December Issue.

Air Force Veteran Forges His Own Path

“I joined the Air Force right out of high school for financial independence, and so I could get a college education. I received extensive training with the Air Force as a vehicle mechanic, and that allowed me to secure employment as an instructor after being discharged in 2015.”

Eric Rubio, 32, of Barstow, Calif., served 12 years in the United States Air Force as a special purpose mechanic. Serving with both the Air Force and the Army, he received an Army Commendation for his support of Operation New Dawn in 2010 and 2011.AF Vet Path

Wanting to continue his education in a new field, he enrolled at ITT Technical Institute to pursue his Associate’s degree in System...

Want a Résumé That Gets Noticed?

While it’s an important part of the job search process, the résumé is only part of the hiring equation. People get hired because the employer sees potential in how they can offer value, will contribute to the growth of the company, and compliment other members of the team. The résumé is simply a document that lists what you’ve done in the past, to qualify you to move through a hiring process.

Résumés List Your Past

An effective résumé should include a comprehensive and readable listing of your career experiences, volunteer activities, training, certification, education and any relevant talents in particular that the potential employer will be looking for. 

Your résumé is not your life story …

Make Your Résumé Stand Out

Your résumé only gets noticed when it’s relevant and compelling to your target audience: the potential employer. To make your résum...

Vietnam Veterans Memorial Turns 35

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial was dedicated 35 years ago on Nov. 13, 1982. Since then, more than 100 million people have visited the iconic structure, according to Jan Scruggs, founder of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund. The National Parks Service noted that nearly 5.6 million people visited in 2016, making it the nation’s second-most popular memorial or monument. The Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., was the top attraction with nearly 8 million visitors last year.

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is more popularly known as “The Wall” because its central feature is a long black granite wall that lists the names of all 58,318 (as of May 2017) U.S. troops who died in the Vietnam War. 

Donations from more than 275,000 individuals and other entities paid for the wall’s construction. VFW contributed more than $300,000 and was one of its earliest champions.Vietnam Memorial 35 F...</p>
								   <h3 class=VFW Member's Photography on Display at Smithsonian

When Stacy Pearsall entered the Air Force in 1998, she didn’t know the adventures before her. A photographer with the 1st Combat Camera Squadron based in Charleston, S.C., Pearsall would travel to 41 countries before she was medically retired in 2010 from wounds sustained while serving her second tour in Iraq in 2007.

A member of VFW Post 10256 in Goose Creek, S.C., Pearsall said serving in the military was important to her. Her dad was in the Navy, and both of her grandfathers were veterans. Her sister, Meggen, was the first active-duty female A-10 crew chief in the Air Force. Pearsall’s great-grandfather was a Marine in WWI. Veteran Portraits

VFW Posts Restore WWI Memorials

VFW Post 968 in Raymond, Wash., is one of 22 Posts nationwide that could receive up to $2,000 in matching grant funds to help restore World War I memorials.

Post 968 Adjutant Gordon Aleshire said the Post decided to restore the monument, in part, because of the 100 Cities/100 Memorials program.VFW Restores WWI Memorials

“This community embraces the honoring of their servicemen and women so it’s important to get [the monument] back in a respectable condition,” said Aleshire, who served in Vietnam in 1970 with the 132nd Assault Support Helicopter Company as a flight engineer on Chinooks.

The program, created by the U.S. World War I Centen...

VFW Announces New Mental Wellness Campaign

WASHINGTON – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is launching a new nationwide campaign to focus on mental wellness within the military and veterans’ communities. Joined by three high-profile national partners, Give an Hour, One Mind, and PatientsLikeMe, the campaign kicks off during a joint press event inside the National Press Club’s Lisagor Room at 2 p.m., Tuesday.

The VFW Mental Wellness Campaign, commissioned by VFW National Commander Brian Duffy and VFW Auxiliary National President Colette Bishop, leverages the power, influence and reach of nearly 1.7 million members in more than 6,600 VFW Posts around the world with the nation’s leaders in mental health care, research, and peer-to-peer support. Th...

#MoreThan PTSD: Darryl Shares Why His Condition Doesn’t Define Him

PatientsLikeMe, a member of the VFW’s Mental Wellness Campaign, recently kicked off a new video series that asked patients, “What are all the roles you play in life beyond ‘patient’?” One of the many stories we heard was from Darryl, a member of the PatientsLikeMe veteran community. Darryl is a veterans’ advocate, a State Officer in the Veterans of Foreign Wars and is living with PTSD.  

He's also a father and a grandfather, and he owns an embroidery business, "It helps me calm down by focusing on outward things, and not inward things."

Darryl shared his story with us, and how he came to recognize that he was more than PTSD. 

Watch Darryl’s video below. 


Centennial Commission Announces Donations from VFW, American Legion

WASHINGTON, DC - The U.S. World War I Centennial Commission announced today that the commission has received leadership gifts from the American Legion, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Each of the gifts is in the amount of $300,000, and will be used for the creation of America's World War I Memorial, in Washington, D.C.

The Centennial Commission was established by Congress in 2013 to provide education programs, public outreach, and commemorative events regarding the American involvement in the war. The Centennial Commission was also authorized by Congress to create a new national-level memorial in the nation's capital, to honor the men and women who served. 

The American Legion was founded by World War I veterans in 1919, as a veteran support organization made up of former and current U.S. military members. It has since become the nation’s largest veterans organization. Throughout its history, The Legion has been...

VFW Receives WWP Grant to Aid More Transitioning Vets

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. has been awarded a Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) financial grant in the amount of $443,145 to expand its reach to service members at the time of transition. The grant will be applied to the VFW’s Pre-Discharge claims program, which offers free assistance on military installations across the country to transitioning service members and veterans in filing VA claims, and understanding the benefits available to them through the Department of Veterans Affairs.

“One of the VFW’s top priorities is ensuring our returning military service personnel receive the benefits they’ve earned,” said VFW National Commander Keith E. Harman, a retired county veterans’ service officer. “We’re thankful for the continued support shown by Wounded Warrior Project. With 24 Pre-Discharge claims offices across the country, this grant helps ensure the VFW is ...

Amplifying Veteran Voices in Health Care

Ever wondered how many other veterans are seeking treatment for post-traumatic stress (PTS)? What kinds of treatments they’re trying? And if those treatments are helping? At PatientsLikeMe, we’re also interested in the experiences of veterans and wanted to learn more about this community.  

PatientsLikeMe is an organization that works to bring people together. It’s a network of more than half a million members living with chronic conditions and connecting with others to learn, share and track experiences. 

In 2015, PatientsLikeMe partnered up with One Mind, a non-profit organization dedicated to benefiting those affected by brain illness and injury by transforming the approac...

‘Agent Orange Made Veterans Sick’

WASHINGTON — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States is thanking the leadership of the House Veterans Affairs Committee for attempting to pass the Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act, and is now calling on President Trump to fix the 15-year inequity.

At issue is the Agent Orange Act of 1991, which regarded all Vietnam veterans as the same, regardless of where stationed. A regulation change in 2002 stripped coverage from nearly 100,000 so called “Blue Water Navy” veterans — all with valid service-connected disability claims.

“Excluding Blue Water Navy veterans is a long-standing wrong that essentially marginalizes the service and sacrifice of thousands of Vietnam veterans, ” said VFW National Commander Keith Harman, who served in Vietnam as an Army helicopter crew chief and door gunner. “Agent Orange has made Vietnam veterans sic...

VFW Kicks Off Fundraiser with Participating BURGER KING® Franchisees

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — For the 11th consecutive year, the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is pleased to announce that throughout the month of November, participating BURGER KING® franchisees will be raising funds for the VFW’s Unmet Needs program. Customers are encouraged to donate $1 or more to the program upon checkout. The fundraising campaign officially begins November 1 and runs for the entire month of November.2017 BK Donate

Assisting service members and military families during times of financial hardship, the Unmet Needs program provides grants of up to $5,000 towar...

VFW TRICARE Changes Survey

Last year’s National Defense Authorization Act contained a number of changes to TRICARE, most of which take effect Jan. 1, 2018. The VFW believes service members, veterans and their families must be able to voice how these changes will impact them.

To ensure your views and preferences are heard, the VFW has developed a survey to gauge our members’ awareness of these changes and how they will affect beneficiaries. The data collected will be used to advocate for policy and legislative changes that are based on the needs of TRICARE beneficiaries.

Help the VFW hold DoD and Congress accountable for fulfilling their mission to provide accessible, affordable health care to service members, veterans, and their families by taking a short survey regarding your preferences and thoughts on health care and the upcoming TRICARE changes. Apply Today for a 100 Cities/100 Memorials Matching Grant

WASHINGTON – In observance of the centennial of World War I, a total of 100 matching grants of up to $2,000 apiece are being awarded for the restoration, conservation or even creation of 100 World War I Memorials across the United States.  

The first 50 “WWI Centennial Memorials” were announced on Sept. 27, 2017 and grant applications for the second 50 awards are being taken now. Applications can be submitted until Jan. 15, 2018. The program management expects to announce the second group of 50 awardees on April 6, 2018. 

Any organization, group, municipal government, or individual may apply. The memorial or monument must be WWI related, must be in the 50 United States or U.S. territories, and the project must be, or have been completed between Jan. 1, 2014 and Nov. 18, 2018. 

To date, both American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars Posts from around the country have participated, as well as many other veterans service organizations, community groups, ...

VFW, USO Team Up to Support Troops and Their Families

The VFW is excited to announce a new partnership with the USO, providing VFW and Ladies Auxiliary members with additional volunteer and service opportunities in their local communities. This partnership brings together two organizations that share common missions and rich histories supporting our troops and military families. 

VFW members have a proud tradition of community service with volunteerism benefiting education, America’s youth and civic projects. Each year VFW and Ladies Auxiliary members donate more than 11 million volunteer hours to community service projects and local VA medical facilities. 

The USO is a private, nonprofit organization that lifts the spirits of America’s troops and their families. It provides a touch of home through centers at airports and military bases, top-quality entertainment and innovative programs and services. The USO also provides critical support to those who need i...

Authorities Warning Area Residents of Veteran Funeral Arrangement Scam

Original article

If you’re a veteran, and a smooth-talking salesman comes to your home claiming to be from the Department of Veterans Affairs hawking funeral arrangements, watch out, authorities say.

That’s the word from the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department, which is warning area residents about a potential scam involving the company American Veteran KCA.

The Kansas Attorney General’s Office has heard complaints, too, and last month reached a settlement with the company. If the account from a Jefferson County couple and sheriff’s office are true, the company could have violated the terms of that settlement.

A Jefferson County couple called the sheriff’s office saying they were visited at home by a salesman described as having an “Adolf Hitler-type mustache” and dark, unkempt hair with wire-rimmed glasses, according to Sheriff Jeff Herrig. Officers said the couple wrote a check for more than $6,000 to pay for what they thought was a funeral package, but...

Bachmann Removes VA Budget Cut Suggestion

WASHINGTON — Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) posted a statement on her congressional website today that she would remove from consideration a $4.5 billion suggestion that would have affected payments made to disabled veterans.   

She had previously posted on her website a list of $400 billion in suggested federal spending cuts, to include $4.5 billion from the Department of Veterans Affairs.  This elicited an immediate and strong reaction from the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. on Jan. 28.   

"We appreciate her listening to the VFW and others," said VFW National Commander Richard L. Eubank, a retired Marine and Vietnam combat veteran from Eugene, Ore. 

Read the congresswoman's ...

Budget Proposal a Starting Point for VA

WASHINGTON — The national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. is appreciative of the funding increase President Obama proposed Monday for the Department of Veterans Affairs, but he has some serious concerns about proposed reductions in programs ranging from construction and infrastructure to medical and prosthetic research. 

"The VFW appreciates the proposed increase because it recognizes that the proper care and treatment of wounded and disabled veterans are ongoing costs of war," said Richard L. Eubank, who leads the 2.1 million-member VFW and its Auxiliaries.  "Our concern, however, is that the total discretionary request of almost $62 billion is just not enough for VA to improve all the programs and services on their watch." 

The proposed VA budget for fiscal year 2012 is $132.2 billion, of which $70.3 billion is for mandatory benefits such as disability compensation ...

Second Annual Live Streaming of VFW Legislative Conference

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — For the second year in a row, VFW will stream live video from the 2011 VFW Legislative Conference in Washington D.C., March 5-9, on

Streaming will begin with the Voice of Democracy and Patriot’s Pen Parade of Winners at 6:00 p.m. (EST) on March 6. 

We’ll pick it back up with the Conference’s Opening Session, set to begin at 8:00 a.m. the next morning, featuring guest speakers Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Eric Shinseki and
General Cartwright, USMC, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

A delayed stream of VFW Commander-in-Chief Richard Eubank’s testimony on Capitol Hill, will all air the afternoon of Tuesday, March 8.

In addition to streaming the segments live, all events will also be available through the on-demand feature.

For the most curren...

VFW Now Accepting Entries for the 2011 WebAward Competition

Now VFW Departments, Districts and Posts have an opportunity to show off their creative talent in the 2011 VFW WebAward Competition. 

·  Websites will be evaluated based on easy navigation, quick load time, overall content and creative design.  

·  Judging will be done by the VFW Communications Department in two categories: “Department Websites,” and “District/Post Websites.” Awards will be given to the first and second-place winner in each category. 

Winners will be announced the first week of May.

How to enter:
1. Submit entry via email before midnight April 20 to:
2. Subject head of email message should read 2011 VFW WebAwards/Contest Category (Department or District/Post) 
3. The body of...

2010-2011 Voice of Democracy State Winners

The Veterans of Foreign Wars is proud to announce the Department winners of the 2010-2011 Voice of Democracy audio-essay competition. This year's theme is "Does My Generation Have a Role in America's Future?" The following students are competing for a chance to win up to $30,000 in college scholarships and other incentives. Click here to check out the winner from your area! 


The Unnoticed Surge in Afghan Security

A little known but potentially decisive story developing in Afghanistan is the "surge of Afghans," that is, how Afghan men and women have swelled the ranks of the Afghan National Security Forces to levels more than double the U.S. surge.

Since Dec. 1, 2009, when President Barack Obama announced the surge of 30,000 U.S. troops, more than 79,000 Afghans have committed to serve their country. Over the past year, these young Afghans have put their lives at risk volunteering to serve their country. In a little over a year, the Afghan National Security Forces has grown to more than 270,000 from 191,000, a 42 percent expansion. The Afghan National Army increased by 57 percent to more than 152,000 from 97,000.

This story comes at a decisive point in the decade-long struggle to secure Afghanistan against the existence of transnational terrorists. While the international community has expended tremendous blood and treasure for this just cause, the rem...

Motorcycle Enthusiasts Ride to 'Return the Favor' to America's Heroes

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — In conjunction with Michigan International Speedway, the VFW Foundation is happy to announce the “Ride to Return the Favor” will be held on Saturday, May 21st. Check-in for the event will be at VFW Post 423 in Ann Arbor, MI. Participants will ride from VFW Post 423 to Michigan International Speedway and enjoy a lap around the track, a photo in Victory Lane, an official ride patch, and tickets to the Great Lakes Wine Fest being held that day at the speedway.  

Tickets are $50 per person, which includes a $25 donation to the VFW Foundation’s “Return the Favor” campaign. The rider who raises the most money will receive two pre-race hospitality passes, garage passes, and grandstand tickets to the Heluva Good! So...

VFW Says President is Keeping His Promise

WASHINGTON — The national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. left the Oval Office yesterday knowing that President Obama shares his same concerns for properly caring for military veterans, servicemembers and their families, and for continued progress to account for 88,000 Americans still listed as missing-in-action since World War II.      

"It was a very positive meeting and we're grateful for the opportunity," said Richard L. Eubank, a retired Marine and Vietnam combat veteran from Eugene, Ore., who was in Washington for the VFW's annual legislative conference, which included presenting the organization's top legislative priorities before a joint hearing of the House and Senate Veterans Affairs Committees on Tuesday.    

Leading his list of concerns was the claims backlog, which the VFW is working with the VA to find a viable and achievable solution.  "There is no...

VFW, USAA Pair Up on Credit Card Investments

SAN ANTONIO — USAA and the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) are joining forces to offer a uniquely designed credit card and USAA’s investment solutions to more than 1.6 million VFW members. 

The new co-branded credit card allows VFW members to apply for the Veterans of Foreign Wars USAA Rewards™ World MasterCard®, which will help support the organization's activities and programs. Additionally, USAA is now the VFW’s preferred provider of investment solutions for its membership. 

According to Nathan McKinley, USAA vice president of military affinity, the relationship expands USAA’s efforts to serve those who served the nation during times of war, along with organizations committed to advancing veteran benefits and care. 

“We’re proud to be working with the Veterans of Foreign Wars to help meet the financial needs of i...

VFW Partners with Ricky Lee in Latest Troop Support Effort

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The VFW is pleased to announce it has teamed up with country artist Ricky Lee to benefit soldiers through its Military Assistance Program (MAP). Lee will donate five dollars from each purchase through the VFW Store of his newest album, Freedom, directly to MAP. 

Lee’s, Freedom features patriotic songs like, “American Hero,” and “100% American.” He describes his latest CD as, “songs of real stories and inspirations of the heroes whom I have met throughout the years. It’s in honor to all that have served this great country and to their families.”  


VA: Committed to Suicide Prevention and Good Mental Health in Veterans

The VA is committed to addressing the issue of suicide among our Veterans and offers a network of support available to those who have served our country.

VA provides a confidential 24/7 Veterans Crisis Line for Veterans in crisis and their families. Trained VA professionals are available at all times to assist Veterans and their family members.

Veterans and their families do not have to be enrolled in VA to use the free, confidential Veterans Crisis Line.

To learn more about suicide prevention and the well being of veterans' mental health, visit their sucide prevention website.


VFW National Commander Urges Congress to, 'Do What is Right for America’s Only True Heroes'

Richard L. Eubank, the national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S., delivered testimony today before a joint hearing of the Senate and House Veterans Affairs Committees.

In his presentation of the VFW’s national priorities, Eubank, a Marine Corps retiree and Vietnam combat veteran from Eugene, Ore., urged congressional members “to do what is right for America’s only true heroes” by fully funding the VA, even as lawmakers wrestle with efforts to rein in federal spending. Eubank, who leads the nation’s largest and oldest major combat veterans’ organization, reminded committee members of the heavy burden placed on current service members, veterans and their families.

“There is a tremendous cost of war, most especially on those men and women who fight it.  And that the consequences of defending America do not end when the last bullet is fired.”

Eubank reiterated the legislative concerns of the veterans’ ser...

VFW Presents the 2011 Bataan Memorial Death March

KANSAS CITY, Mo. VFW is pleased to announce it is the presenting sponsor of the 22ndAnnual Bataan Memorial Death March to be held at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, March 27, 2011. 

The March was created to honor the American service members who defended the Philippine Islands during World War II. These soldiers endured horrendous conditions, including malaria-infested regions, no medical attention, meager rations and outdated equipment. On April 9, 1942, tens of thousands of soldiers were surrendered to the Japanese and were forced to march for days to a war camp, enduring the high heat of the Philippine jungles and extreme brutality of their captors, causing many to perish. This tragedy became known as the Bataan Death March.   

The Memorial March is open to the public and each year about 5,000 supp...

Persian Gulf War Vets Not Forgotten

 The following column first appeared in the January 2011 issue of VFW magazine. 

 Often in history, one war tends to overshadow another. To a certain extent, this has been the case with the Persian Gulf War. Sandwiched between Vietnam and the Iraq/Afghanistan wars, vets of 1991 are sometimes forgotten. 

On the war’s 20th anniversary it is only appropriate that we commemorate the service and sacrifices of the Americans who evicted Saddam Hussein’s Iraq from Kuwait. No one questions the superb welcome home they received in the summer of 1991. But memories of that swift victory in Kuwait have faded over time. 

Yet at VFW, this has never been the situation. Besides the 17 articles VFW magazine published in 1991, seven major features since have tracked developments regarding Gulf War illnesses. Two pieces provided a combat overview of the war and a review of its v...

VFW Free Call Days Tops 5 Million Connections

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As of Jan.16th VFW Operation Uplink™ “Free Call Day” (FCD) surpassed 5 million connections made from deployed military personnel to their loved ones.  Operation Uplink initially provided calling cards to deployed and hospitalized troops, but on Mother's Day 2006, due to the growing popularity of the program and thanks to the generosity of corporate donors like Sport Clips and Harleysville Insurance, the program began hosting "Free Call Days." 

Operation Uplink hosts a Free Call Day for service members serving in Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, and hospitalized veterans, giving them the opportunity to call their loved ones in the States at no cost.    

Free Call Days are ...

VFW Announces Annual Publications Contest

The VFW Publications Department announced today that it is accepting submissions for VFW’s 2011 National Publications Contest. All publications will be categorized by the membership size of the Department, District or Post they represent. For the contest,  

Departments will be defined as:  

  • large (24,000 or more members), 
  • medium (10,000-23,999) and 
  • small (9,999 or fewer). 

Districts will be defined as:  

  • large (2,100 or more), 
  • medium (1,300-2,099) and 
  • small (1,299 or fewer). 

Posts will be defined as: 

  • large (180 or more), 
  • ...

VFW Thanks Russia for Renewed POW/MIA Support

The national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. returned this week from a trip to Europe to meet with Russian officials regarding their revitalized support of America's POW/MIA mission, and to meet with U.S. troops stationed in Italy to discuss how VFW can better serve them and their families. 

In Moscow, Richard L. DeNoyer met with the leadership of the Committee for Veterans Affairs in the State Duma and the Russian Federation Council Committee for Security and Defense, as well as with Yekaterina Priyezzheva, the new Russian co-chair of the U.S. Russia Joint Commission on POW/MIAs.  Ms. Priyezzheva was appointed in June along with 31 other commissioners after the VFW earlier this year led an effort by seven U.S. veteran and POW/MIA family organizations to write Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to ask him to restore his side of the joint presidential commission, which was created in 1992 by former Presidents George H.W. ...

VFW's Giving Away $3.2 Million in College Scholarships and Savings Bonds

Only twenty-seven days remain for students, grades 6-12 to enter for their chance to win their share of the $3.2 million in college scholarships and savings bonds awarded through the 2011 VFW Voice of Democracy and VFW Patriot’s Pen essay contests.  

VFW’s annual scholarship contests were enacted to foster patriotism among America’s youth by allowing students the opportunity to express their opinions on democracy based on an annual theme. Nearly 200,000 students participate in the contests annually.    

“VFW scholarship programs provide more than $3.2 million in scholarships and incentives each year.  However, the deeper value and long term benefits of these programs is that America’s youth learn the value of our system of government and its history; including the service and sacrifice of America’s veterans,” states Steve Van Buskirk, Director of VFW Programs.    &n...

VFW Testifies that Veterans' Needs Must Come First

WASHINGTON — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. testified this morning before the House Veterans Affairs Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations to help ensure veterans receive the timely care, benefits and opportunities they have earned.  

VFW National Legislative Service Deputy Director Ryan Gallucci presented the VFW’s view on bills addressing VA’s "duty to assist" requirement, Department of Labor auditing of veteran employment by federal contractors, and ongoing efforts between the Defense Department and VA to establish a joint electronic health and service record. 

The VFW generally supports many of the ideas proposed by the subcommittee’s bills to improve accountability and efficiency in veterans’ programs, such as allowing VA to communicate electronically with claim applicants and establishing a chain of authority for the creation of the joint electroni...

VFW Testifies to Improve Veterans' Access to Care

WASHINGTON The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. testified yesterday before the House Veterans Affairs Subcommittee on Health on seven pending bills that address issues such as removing hurdles to care for veterans, improving services for those suffering from the invisible wounds of war, and ensuring that VA land is used to serve the mission of VA.  

VFW Senior Legislative Associate Shane Barker presented the organization's views on access to health care facilities for veterans with service dogs, broadening the scope of rehabilitative models for veterans suffering from traumatic brain injuries, strengthening zero-tolerance policies for sexual assault inside VA medical facilities, and ensuring that VA’s enhanced use-lease agreements conform to VA’s mission of providing services to veterans.

The VFW supports many of the ideas proposed by the subcommittee, such as improving ...

VFW to Join President for Twitter Town Hall

The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. will join President Barack Obama in the White House today at 2 p.m. (EST) to discuss the economy and jobs in a live, first-of-its-kind Twitter Town Hall. 

The event will stream live through both the Twitter service and the official White House website,  The president’s answers will be posted under the usernames @townhall and @whitehouse.  

In the wake of daunting unemployment figures for young veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the ongoing debates in Congress to modify or cut certain veterans’ benefits to help balance the budget, VFW members from coast-to-coast are encouraged to submit their questions to the president via Twitter at or by tagging tweets with #AskObama. 

The VFW will also provide ...

VFW Report from Afghanistan

The national commander of America's oldest and largest major combat veterans' organization is returning from Afghanistan today extremely concerned that White House and congressional proposals to eliminate or reduce military pay and benefits is impacting the morale of 190,000 deployed American troops.   

"The troops are of one voice against proposals to change their pay and allowances, the existing military retirement system, and the overall TRICARE health program," said Richard L. DeNoyer, the national commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S., who arrived in Afghanistan on Monday as part of a Defense Department-sponsored trip that also included the leadership of the American Legion, AMVETS, and the Military Officers Association of America.      

"They see it as a breach of faith and a complete lack of support, understanding and appreciation for what it is they do daily for the rest of America," said DeNo...

VFW to 'Join Forces' with White House Initiative

The national commander of America's largest and oldest major combat veterans' organization is calling on his membership to redouble their outreach efforts in response to yesterday's White House "Joining Forces" initiative to encourage Americans everywhere to do more to support the troops and their families.  The initiative is the result of countless encounters by First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden with military families across the country and overseas. 

"Our military and their families have been fighting for almost a decade in a war that has had virtually zero impact on the rest of country," said Richard L. Eubank, the national commander of the 2.1 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. and its Auxiliaries.   

"What the first and second ladies are asking is for America to do more to support the troops and their families by getting actively involved through employment, education and wellness.&nb...

Win a Free Trip Through VFW's 'Return to Vietnam' Drawing

If you received a Purple Heart for being wounded in Vietnam, you could be one of 9* lucky vets to win VFW’s “Return to Vietnam” trip. This in-country tour from January 5-18, 2012, will visit Hanoi, Saigon (Ho Chi Minh City), Khe Sanh, Chu Lai, Hue, Da Nang, Hoi An, Marble Mountain, Cu Chi, Lai Khe and Phuoc Vinh.. Airfare, accommodations and meals are included. Don’t miss this chance to revisit battle sites and to share your experiences with fellow Vietnam vets.  

Entries must be received prior to the drawing on October 14, 2011. Winners will be notified by mail or e-mail immediately after the drawing. To claim their trip, winners must send a copy of their Purple Heart documentation to VFW National Headquarters by November 15, 2011, and their passport by November 30, 2011. If you do not have a passport, please apply immediately upon notification that you are a trip winner and that your Purple Heart has been documented. 

Federal Goverment FY 2011 Budget Update

Budget Update: 

As of this morning, Congress and the Administration have not reached an agreement to fund the Federal Government for the remainder of FY 2011.  If no federal budget or temporary funding agreement is reached, the Federal Government will be forced to curtail nonessential services beginning tonight at 12:01 a.m., April 9.  The following is what we have been told will occur should the government shut down: 

  • Department of Veterans Affairs: 

-- All VA medical centers and clinics will remain open.  This is in large part due to the VFW-supported advanced appropriations legislation that became law on Oct. 22, 2009. 

-- VFW service officers will be able to enter their offices inside VA facilities and have access to the VA computer system. 

-- Disabi...

Meeting the Needs of a Changing Membership

The Huffington Post, original article: 
By: Dorian de Wind
Ret. U.S. Air Force Major

Frank Buckles, the last surviving U.S. veteran of World War I -- of nearly 5 million Americans who served during that war -- died last month at age 110.

Buckles, who served in England and France, was a member of a steadily aging and shrinking group of heroes from our "early" major wars -- where I am also including World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War -- the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).

One of these veterans is John Tschirhart, a decorated World War II combat veteran who, at age 91, is the oldest member of VFW Post 4443, a beautiful, brand new post in the scenic hill country surrounding Austin, Texas.

John was among a group of World War II veterans who stood proudly when asked to rise by the past national commander of the VFW, John E. Nier, during the grand opening of Post 444...

Buffalo Wild Wings to Partner with Veterans of Foreign Wars Foundation

Participating Buffalo Wild Wings® locations are showing their support of the troops by partnering with the VFW Foundation to support the Return the Favor™ campaign. Participating restaurants will donate 10 percent of guest’s food purchase when the guest shows their military ID card, VFW membership card or Return the Favor card. To find participating restaurants or to print a Return the Favor card, visit The program will run from May 16 through June 12. 

“Buffalo Wild Wings happily serves as a gathering place for local military personnel and this is our way for thanking each of them for their service to our country. We are proud to support the men and wom...

[CORRECTION] VFW Names 2011 Webaward Winners

The VFW Communications Department has selected the winners of the 2011 VFW WebAward Competition.

This year nearly 60 entries were received.  Judging was based on navigation, load time, design and overall content. Entries were divided into two separate categories: VFW Departments and VFW Posts/Districts.

The first-place winner in the Department category is the Department of Wisconsin. Second place has been awarded to the Department of Pacific Areas.

In the Post/District category, Post 5702 has been named this year’s first-place winner, with *Post 5627 being awarded second place.  

This year’...

Preserving the Memory of the Fallen

Memorial Day needs a public revival. Far too few Americans genuinely appreciate the sacrifices made on their behalf.  

“Let no neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.” 

It is only appropriate that on the 150th anniversary of the Civil War’s beginning that we quote the founding words of Decoration Day, long since called Memorial Day. John Logan, then head of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), called General Order No. 11 (issued May 5, 1868) the proudest act of his life. 

That’s saying a lot considering his military record as a Civil War general. Declaring May 30 a national day of remembrance throughout the North was indeed a monumental moment. However, the divisions caused by the war prevented that day from being universally accepted until WWI.&nb...

The Roasterie Coffee Company Creates VFW 'Return the Favor' Coffee Blend

The Roasterie Coffee Company has partnered with the Veterans of Foreign Wars Foundation to create a VFW coffee blend now available for purchase. Ten percent of all proceeds from the VFW blend will be donated to the VFW Foundation's Return the Favor campaign which supports active duty military, veterans, and their families. "The VFW Foundation is proud to partner with our hometown coffee company," said VFW Foundation Director John Lowe. "The Roasterie Coffee Company is not only committed to providing the finest air-roasted coffee but also giving back to the communities it serves." To purchase the VFW coffee blend, please visit  

The Roasterie has become one of the most nationally recognized coffee roasters by sourcing the best coffee available on the market...

Veterans Crisis Line

The Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) is unique because all of our members have served overseas in a combat zone. Our nation is in debt to all of those who served, and we understand that returning home and reintegrating into society can cause stress in many aspects of life. Because of this, VFW is participating in a campaign with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to increase awareness of the Veterans Crisis Line (1-800-273-8255 and Press 1). 

The campaign revolves around the confidential Veterans Crisis Line (formerly the Veterans Suicide Prevention Hotline), establishing a unique identity designed to lower the threshold for Veterans and their families to make that critical call for help. 

The line, available 24 hours a day and seven days a week, has answered more than 390,000 calls and has made more than 13,000 life-saving rescues since its launch. 

The campaign is a national outreach effor...

VFW Unmet Needs' Grants Soar Beyond $4 Million Mark

The VFW National Headquarters is proud to announce it has reached $4,022,760 in emergency financial grants disbursed to U.S. service members and their families through the VFW Unmet Needs program.  

Officially launched June 6, 2004, Unmet Needs has become one of VFW’s most acclaimed programs among service members and their families, offering a “lifeline” for those in critical need of financial assistance. 

With generous contributions by both individuals and corporate sponsors like Burger King, the program has helped more than 2,789 families across America. The assistance comes in the form of a grant, not a loan, so the recipients aren’t required to repay it. Furthermore, 100 percent of donations received go directly to the program.  

The grants help military families with everything from major home repairs to infant formula. Grants are available to all five bra...

Winners of 2011 Publications Contest Announced

VFW has announced the winners of the 2011 National Publications Contest. Two non-VFW-affiliated journalism professionals—a photojournalist and a former 20-year newspaper editor—served as judges for the competition. This is designed to guarantee impartiality and objectivity in the judging. To reiterate, VFW staffers play no part in judging the entries. 

Because all levels of VFW have seen declining membership in recent years, the small, medium and large qualifications were re-evaluated for the 2011 contest. The winning publications in each category are: 

Department Publications 

Large (24,000 or more members) 

1st Massachusetts VFW News
    Richard E. Slowey, Editor
2nd The California Veteran
    James R. Rowoldt, Editor<...

VA Taking Applications for New Caregiver Program

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) published the interim final rule for implementing the Family Caregiver Program of the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act 2010. This new rule will provide additional support to eligible post-9/11 Veterans who elect to receive their care in a home setting from a primary Family Caregiver.   

“We at VA know that every day is a challenge for our most seriously injured Veterans and their Family Caregivers,” said VA Secretary Eric K. Shinseki.   “I know many Veterans and their Family Caregivers have been waiting anxiously for this day and I urge them to get their applications in as soon as possible so they can receive the additional support they have earned.”   

On May 9, staff in VA’s Office of Care Management and Social Work will open the application process for eligible post-9/11 Veterans and Servicemembers to designate their...

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