We are stunned at the passing of our National President, Mr. Joe Bean. It was totally unexpected, and devastating news to the nation-wide Chapters. RIP Joe, and blessings to your family and friends.
We are saddened to learn of the passing of former Chapter 1 member, and current member of Chapter 6, Gary Bauer.
One of the highlights of Gary's career in the Army, was his sentinel duties at the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington National Cemetery.
His gentle and charismatic personality will be missed.
The Department of Veterans Affairs intends to propose adding certain rare respiratory cancers to the list of presumed service-connected disabilities in relation to military environmental exposure to particulate matter.
VA determined through a focused review of scientific and medical evidence there is biologic plausibility between airborne hazards, specifically particulate matter, and carcinogenics of the respiratory tract, and that the unique circumstances of these rare cancers warrant a presumption of service connection.
Based on these findings, VA’s Secretary is proposing a rule that will add presumptive service connection for several rare respiratory cancers for certain Veterans. The cancers under consideration include:
Squamous cell carcinoma (larynx).
Squamous cell carcinoma (trachea).
Salivary gland-type tumors (trachea).
Adeno-squamous carcinoma (lung).
Large cell carcinoma (lung).
Salivary gland-type tumors (lung).
Sarcomatoid carcinoma (lung).
Typical and atypical carcinoid (lung).
VA Secretary Denis McDonough said “This is the right decision. The rarity and severity of these illnesses, and the reality that these conditions present a situation where it may not be possible to develop additional
evidence prompted us to take this critical action”. He also said “We’ll continue to hold ourselves accountable to Veterans to provide more care, more benefits and more services to more Veterans than ever before.”
The VA intends to focus its rule on the rare respiratory cancers above in Veterans who served any amount of time in the Southwest Asia theater of operations and other locations. VA will invite and consider public comments as part of this process.
Once rule making is complete, the VA will conduct outreach to impacted veterans and survivors to inform them about their potential eligibility.
This Monday, April 11, 2022 marks the 122nd anniversary (1900) of the U.S. Navy's first commissioned submarine, the USS Holland, that was acquired by the United States Navy. The Holland was not the first Navy sub, however. That honor goes to the USS Alligator which was the first submarine ordered and built by the Navy, although it was never commissioned. The Alligator, pictured on the right, was built in 1862, and sank in 1863.
Admiral Linda Fagan has been nominated by President Biden to be the first woman to serve as U.S. Coast Guard Commandant. Admiral Fagan has served in the Coast Guard for 36 years. She has served as Vice-commandant since June of 2021. Previously she was commander of the Coast Guard Pacific Area, overseeing operations from the Rocky Mountains to the waters off the east coast of Africa. Fagan is also the Coast Guard's first Gold Ancient Trident, the officer with the longest service record in the Marine Safety field. She graduated from the Coast Guard Academy in 1985 with a B.S. degree in Marine Science. She later earned a Master of Marine Affairs degree from the University of Washington in 2000 and an M.S. degree in National Security Strategy from the National Defense University in 2008. The nomination requires Senate confirmation.
What is happening with our administration is an abomination, and we, the American public, are on the bottom rung of a very tall ladder. We do have a voice however, and that is with our 8th Congressional District Representative, Congressman Bill Posey. Mr. Posey is everything Brevard, and a champion for Americans - and especially our first responders and veterans.
Recently I received an email from Mr. Posey's office, and immediately felt the information in that message needed to be addressed. Below is the text of that message. What do you think?
April 7, 2022
The crisis along our southern border has grown from bad to worse as a record 2 million illegal immigrants cross the border in the past year, as crime waves have swept the border and beyond and as human trafficking and drug cartels have enriched themselves at the expense of their victims.
Sadly, the worst days of the border crisis appear to be ahead of us. President Biden will soon end a policy that expedites deportations of illegal immigrants – commonly called “Title 42 deportations.” This is one of the last policies that allows Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) agents to expeditiously turn away someone crossing the border and it has been successful in reducing the flow across our Southern Border.
U.S. Customs and Border Protections (CBP) estimates that there are as many as 170,000 people currently across the border in Mexico waiting for President Biden to end Title 42 deportations. CBP is currently preparing for as many as 18,000 illegal immigrants to illegally enter the U.S. each day if Title 42 deportations are ended. This will overwhelm an already overwhelmed CBP.
There are also reports that the federal government is gearing up to assist the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to address this influx, which may include the sharing of agency staff and funding. One such idea that allegedly is being considered details removing medical personnel from VA facilities to help at the border. I oppose this effort and have joined my colleagues to stop the diversion of already-scarce resources from veterans in need to the border.
There is no doubt that border security legislation would pass the House - and the Senate - if we were only allowed a vote. I have joined with 210 other Members of Congress in signing a "discharge petition" which would immediately force the bill to the House floor for a vote. Every House Republican has signed onto this.
We have been pleading for at least one Member from the majority party to sign our petition to bring H.R. 471 up for a vote to stop the Administration from ending Title 42 deportations. We could stop this now, we just need 7 more to join us.
Now I want to know your thoughts:
Do you agree with me that Title 42 should be kept in place?
Paid for by official funds authorized by the House of Representatives."
Each spring, VVMF works with the Department of Defense to make updates to The Wall. If the Department of Defense determines that a service member has met the criteria for addition to The Wall, their name is added. Service members repatriated in the previous year have their status symbols changed.
This year, there were two additions to The Wall, bringing the total number of names on The Wall to 58,281.
There were also two service members who were repatriated in 2020 and those service members had their status symbols changed on The Wall. The number of Americans still listed as missing and unaccounted for from the Vietnam War stands at 1,584.
Beside each name on The Wall is a symbol designating status. The diamond symbol denotes that the service member is known dead or presumed dead. The cross symbol denotes that the service member was missing or prisoner status when The Wall was built in 1982 and remains unaccounted for today. When a service member is repatriated, the diamond is superimposed over the cross.
These service members will be officially welcomed home at the Memorial Day ceremony at The Wall on May 31.
These two service members had their names added to The Wall in 2021:
ANDREW J SMITH
PFC, U.S. Army
Panel 36E, Line 86
LARRY R TENDA
PFC, U.S. Marine Corps
Clarksburg, West Virginia
Panel W30, Line 70
These two service members were repatriated in 2020:
PAUL A AVOLESE
MAJ, U.S. Air Force
East Meadow, N.Y.
Panel 23E, Line 25
ALVA R KROGMAN
1LT, U.S. Air Force
Panel 14E, Line 45
Two years ago today we said goodbye to member Mario Esposito. May we never forget his commitment to the Chapter and the joy his positive attitude brought to everyone who met him. Forever Rest In Peace.
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