Column by Jesse Church
Hello veterans, old Jesse here with the veterans’ news and upcoming events. After the recent disaster in Japan, our veterans staked out the front of Friendly Market on March 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and took donations to help the people of Japan. I am pleased to tell you that our veterans raised $814, and the money will be given to the American Red Cross, Hawaii chapter, for the people of Japan. Our veterans want to thank the people of Molokai for their generosity.
Commander George Harada would like to remind members of the local VFW post 3870 that our next meeting will be on April 12 at 12:30 p.m. at Commander Harada’s home. If you have yet to become a member, call George Harada at 553-5730.
A recent article in Veterans of Foreign Wars magazine (March 2011) reports that the Veteran Affairs office has their eyes trained on women veteran issues. The VA now realizes that women are a high percentage of service members and veterans – 6 percent of veterans who use VA health care are women, a number that has doubled since 2004, and is expected to double again by 2020. A proposed bill, HR5953, sponsored by Rep. Bob Filner (D-Calif.) would require women veterans’ bill of rights to be displayed prominently in every VA facility, and distributed to veterans. Among the 24 rights is comprehensive primary women’s health care, to be treated with respect and dignity, and get treatment by physicians with specific training in women’s health issues. At a July 2010 forum for women veterans, VA officials outlined initiatives to improve women’s mental health, PTSD treatment, prosthetics, benefits awareness, and reduce homelessness.
Also in the March 2011 issue was a short article on hearing loss, which is now the number one health concern shred by VFW members. To find out how VFW can help you get treatment for your hearing loss, call the member benefits department at 1-800-821-2606, ex. 3.
I am sad to report the death of Hawaiian veterans due to enemy action in Afghanistan from Nov. 9 to Dec. 17, 2010. As reported by VFW magazine, we salute these veterans for their courage, and pray that their sacrifice will not be in vain: Army Cpl. Sean M. Collins, 2nd Bn., 502nd Inf, 2nd BCT, 101st Abn. Div, Ewa Beach; and Marine Corps, Sgt. Matthew T. Abbate, 3rd Bn., 5th Marines, 1st Marine Div., Honolulu.
If anyone has any news, or stories they would like to share, give old Jesse a call at 553-3323. Or call to tell me about your experiences while in the service of this great country, I would really love to hear them. A big mahalo to all our veterans, and the people of Molokai, I love you all.