Veterans’ Voice

Art Sloane

Retired military veterans under age 65 and their families are likely to pay hundreds of dollars more each year for health care coverage if Congress approves a 2017 budget proposed by the Pentagon. If you do not belong to a veterans organization and receive up to date information in their publications join one of them now such as VFW, Vietnam Veterans and American Legion. You may see an increase of over $500.

The State Vocational Rehabilitation program is an employment program for people with disabilities. They provide priority services to veterans and their families (spouses and children over 14). Their program operates very similarly to the VA/VRE program in that they provide training, education, evaluations and assessments; the difference is that they will accept all veterans regardless of their VA compensation rating or issues with entitlement from the VA/VRE. Their program has no effect on VA benefits, nor are there any time limits to how long they have to use services. Contact Todd McCraw at 602-771-6688 for more information.

Used or new bikes are needed for formerly homeless veterans that have been obtaining employment but need transportation. Buses do not run all hours in Phoenix. The CRRC, Community and Resource and Renewal Center is a one stop location for homeless veterans. They will pick up. Please call Terry Titus at 480-341-3904.

The East Valley Military Support Group is in need of both funds and names of military members overseas that would like to receive packages from home. If you know of someone serving in a military address with an APO or FPO please contact them. If you would like to contribute to the expenses they have for the mailing expenses they would be grateful. This group sends items for both men and women such as toiletries, food items and things you might like to receive if you were away from home. Contact them at East Valley Military Support Group, President Carl Brueckman, 8500 Southern Ave., No. 54, Mesa, AZ 85209. Their phone for information is 480-695-5566.or [email protected]

Phoenix Veterans Day Parade is seeking Grand Marshals for the 2016 parade which is the fourth largest in the U.S. Those wishing to honor veterans can submit nominations by May 31 on the KTAR website of There will be a Grand Marshal representing each conflict to include WWII 1941-1946, Korea 1950-1953, Vietnam 1964-1975, Cold War 1945-1991, Desert Storm 1990-1991, Operation Enduring Freedom 2001-to present and Operation Iraqi Freedom 2003-2011. The winners from the nominations will ride in the parade and be featured on KTAR and attend parade events.

The parade honors our veterans and serves as an annual reminder to educate Americans about the service and sacrifices our veterans have made to protect our freedoms.

The Phoenix Veterans Day Parade will be held November 11 at 11:00 a.m. in Central Phoenix. It starts at Central and Montebello Avenues. The nomination program is being held by one of their partners KTAR radio with support from Sanderson Ford, who is committed to supporting veterans.