All veterans are invited to a Town Hall meeting with the six leading candidates for governor from 10:00-noon on June 7 at the Burton Barr Library in Phoenix. The auditorium holds 250 and we want these candidates to realize there are 600,000 plus veterans in this state that they must listen to. Brahm Resnick, anchor and reporter for Channel Twelve TV, will moderate this forum. If you have any questions you would like to ask, please forward them by e-mail to me as soon as possible so we may compile a list for the town hall. Please email me or call 602-943-7834 if you want to attend so we will not exceed the capacity of the hall. My e-mail is at the end of this column.
Bugles Across America will provide a bugler for any funeral or memorial that is needed. These are live persons, not canned music. There is no charge for his service but if you want to give an honorarium please do and they guarantee it will go to a charity. Reach them at www.buglesacrossamerica.org or call 480-831-3322.
Think that the armed forces are easy to get into? A startling 75 percent of 17-24 year olds in the U.S. are not eligible to serve because they are too poorly educated, too overweight or have a serious criminal record. Add to this tattoos and certain body piercing that will make many also ineligible. Talk to your grandchildren about this well-paying job with travel and other fringe benefits. The lowest rank in the service starts at over $21,000 a year.
Hundreds of veterans and veteran supporters attended the opening of the new VA Clinic at Val Vista and Market St. on April 24 for the dedication and tours of the clinic. This clinic in the East Valley will relieve some of the load from the VA Hospital in Phoenix. It is twice as big at 60,000 square ft. as the clinic at old Williams Field. Two groups have already helped by buying two new golf carts to bring patients in from the very large parking lot. They are the Department of Arizona of the Korean War Veterans and Post 619 in Sun Lakes of the Jewish War Veterans. Many veterans in Sun Lakes and south Chandler use this clinic and it saves them many extra miles in travel. If you want to register or need an appointment immediately you may walk in or call your old PACT team number.
Arizona StandDowns are held presently in six locations throughout the state in Maricopa, Prescott, Tucson, Bullhead City, Pinal County and Flagstaff. There was a new one in Safford May 16 and one scheduled for Sierra Vista in August. Many organizations and churches in Sun Lakes help raise funds, clothing and also participate in the Maricopa StandDown in Feb. StandDowns are to help homeless and needy veterans get not only help but find housing. This past February the one in Maricopa, the largest in the U.S., had 1759 attendees.