Mail Call

Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 203
Mail Call
PO Box 23405
Chattanooga, TN 37422
October 2014
Next Meeting:
October 15, 2014
Dinner at 6pm
Meeting at 7pm
Post 95
3329 Ringgold Rd
East Ridge, TN
Inside this issue:
Membership Update
Website Article
Website Article
Above: Picture of Chapter 203 members at the Welcome
Home Parade in Pigeon Forge, TN
Below : VVA Chapter 203 Members - (Left to Right) Bud Alley, Chris Linville & John Sparks - Speaking to STEM High
School students
Photos provided by: Charlie Hobbs
Chapter 203
Officers and
Board of
President - Charlie Hobbs
3619 John Sims Road
Chattanooga, TN. 37412
423-495-0202 (H)
423-991-5858 (C)
423-495-1108 (F)
[email protected]
1st VP - Rick Simpson
170 Creeks Jewell Drive
Ringgold, GA. 30736
423-902-1359 (C)
Board of Directors:
Larry Anderson
[email protected]
Fred Huskey
423-899-2133 (H)
423-883-9297 (C)
Larry Gregory
423-396-3191 (H)
423-667-2415 (C)
[email protected]
2nd VP - Larry Johnson
727 Godsey Lane
Chattanooga, TN. 37415
423-875-3949 (H)
423-718-9056 (C)
[email protected]
Bob Holloway
[email protected]
Treasurer – James Lowery
Ralph Price
[email protected]
Secretary - Danny Arnold
2014 - 2015
AVVA - Elected Officers:
President: Joyce Simpson
Vice President: Charlene Holloway
September 28th: Sunday - Gold Star Mothers Day
Secretary: Vacant
Treasurer: Susan Price 423-629-7242
October 15th: Monthly Chapter meeting - Monday 7:00 PM
- American Legion Post #95 - Ringgold Rd.
Appointed Positions in Chapter 203
Membership Chair: Dan Taylor 423-9915628
October 21st: Tuesday @ 7:30 PM - Tompkins Masonic
Lodge - Ft. Oglethorpe, GA.
November 1st: Saturday - 12:00 Noon - Colonnade - GA
Hwy 2A Salute to Veterans - 21 gun salute
Chaplain: Phil Minton
Historian: Gerald Sniff 423-326-3177
Honor Guard Coordinator: Tom Sloan 423762-2522
Armory Sergeant: Wayne Walker
November 11th: Tuesday - 11:00 AM - Chattanooga National Cemetery - Posting Colors, 21 gun salute
November 11th: Tuesday - 6:00 PM - Ridgedale Baptist
Church - Chattanooga, TN - Posting Colors
Website: Sharon Hobbs 423-495-0202
November 27th: Thursday - Thanksgiving Day
Newsletter: David Carne 423-413-0012 or
email: [email protected]
November 28th - December 6th: Christmas Collection Hwy 153 Walmart - 9 AM - 6PM Daily
Social Events: AVVA
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Mail Call
President’s Message
Let me begin this message on a sad note, due to Judy
Baker’s resignation as our Chapter Secretary because
of medical reasons and Dan Lovin retiring and moving,
we are having to replace two valuable members of our
management team. The Chapter BOD recommended
that Danny Arnold replace Judy as Secretary and James
Lowery replace Dan as Treasurer. This recommendation
was ratified by the membership during the last meeting.
Judy and Dan, we are going to miss you.
Chapter 203 continues to hold the second largest Chapter
spot in the nation. That is due in part to some of you who
are out there recruiting and the new three-year renewal
incentive the chapter is offering. Keep up the good work
and let’s continue to widen the margin from the third place
Rick Simpson and I met with the new owner of the old Army Reserve Center on 23rd street last week. The meeting
is a step in the right direction and very positive, but we
I am pleased to report that the trip to the Sevierville have several things to work out. Details will be forthcomWalmart and Welcome Home Parade in Pigeon Forge ing in the near future.
was very successful. I had several TN VVA Chapters
Our Veterans Assisting Veterans program, is making retell me that they could not believe the number of chapter
markable strides. Since we started the program, we have
members we had to make the trip. Counting the twelve
placed wheelchairs, walkers, canes, motorized scooters
man setup crew and all of the chapter members that
and hospital beds in over 30 needy families’ homes. If
came on their own, we had forty-two (42) who helped on
you, or if you know of someone who needs a wheelchair
the collection; most everyone participated in the parade
(electric or manual), walker, hydraulic lift, bedside toilet, or
on Saturday too. We took the Chapter Bus and four trailcane, please contact me.
ers with us; we had a police escort all the way from
Knoxville to the Walmart store. Way to go 203.
Last, I must apologize that the newsletter did not get
Our planned “Faces of Agent Orange Town Hall Meet- out on time this month. We will do better in the future.
ing” for October has been put off until the spring of
2015. A tentative date has not been set but we will give
you a date as soon as we confirm with the powers to be.
Chaplain’s Corner: God, We Need Help!
The terrible tragedy of September 11, 2001, is almost unbeliev- • Instead of hatred, accept others, as you would like to be
able. Let this reminder be our wake up call for today. We were accepted.
all caught off guard when such perpetrators unleashed their
terror and madness. This tragedy served to bring America to- • Instead of ingratitude, give thanks in all things.
gether again. Partisanship was forgotten as Congress united in • Instead of sending the children to church, go yourself and
outrage. A resurgence of patriotism was seen from every corner take them with you.
of our great United States. People from all walks of life united
• Instead of seeing the bad in your neighbor, find the good.
together to give, to share, to pray and to ask, “Why?” The terrorists’ hatred for others was at the core of that horrific catas- • Instead of road rage, practice road kindness.
• Instead of revenge, seek reconciliation.
As most of us have returned to our jobs and are trying to enjoy
our families, there is still much suffering and pain, even 13
years later. For those most directly affected, we must continue
to pray and provide as much help as we can. Beyond that, what
can we do? Tell God we need help as never before. As we do
so, here are a few other suggestions.
Instead of family squabbles, love--really love, your family.
Instead of getting all you can, help others.
Instead of talking about the Ten Commandments, read
them and heed them.
• Instead of complaining about not being able to pray in
certain places, make sure you pray where you can.
• Instead of complacency, make a firm commitment to the
• Instead of cursing, console.
PO Box 23405
“But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my
trust in the Lord God, that I may declare all thy
works” (Psalms 73:28).
“My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and
earth” (Psalms 121:2).
Sadly today, there are still patriotic Americans who fail to understand that there still remains the constant threat from terrorists, both outside and inside our borders. We must remain alert
and on guard for any sign of questionable conduct that might
lead to another tragedy. Pray for our brave and over-worked
troops who continue their vigil against those who would destroy our way of life. Pray for the peace of Israel. Pray that
ISIS will be defeated.
Phil Minton
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Membership Update and Renewals
**Membership Renewals**
At this time Chapter 203 is offering a onetime incentive to our active & inactive
members, a 3-year membership will cost
only $30. (A three-year membership is normally $50). Of course, the one-year and life
membership options are still available at the
normal price.
This incentive is only available through
Chapter 203, so be sure to mail your renewal to:
VVA Chapter 203, P.O. Box 23405, Chattanooga, TN 37422-3405.
Memberships Due
Lloyd Hodges
John Hudnall
Dennis E. Smith
Virgil R. Smith
Roy Veal
Terry Brewer
George Conrad
Ross Hensley
James Ronsiek
Donnie Sisco
Joe Camp
Robert Dickerson
James Hammond
George Ingle
Bill Prater
Junior Richerdson
Jim Welch
Donald West
Steve Bettis
Terry Dungan
Matt Farrell
Terry Gann
Johnny Hobbs
Larry Houser
Michael Meyer
Paul Nealon
John Nichols
Phil Roerdink
Charles Thomas
Dan Taylor,
Membership Chair
We want to thank you if you
have already paid your dues.
Please call me if you have made
any change of “Address” or
“Phone Number” in the past year.
Please send your renewal payments to:
VVA Chapter 203
P.O. Box 23405
Chattanooga, TN 37422-3405
This will be a GREAT help
in tracking the renewals.
Dan L. Taylor, Jr.
Robert Hendrix
(423) 991-5628
Membership Chair
VVA Chapter 203
Update As of 9/8/14
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Mail Call
The following article is reprinted from the website:
September 11, 2014
VA Secretary McDonald Meets with Congressional Leaders and Military & Veteran Groups to
Lay Out His Vision to Reform and Reorganize Department
WASHINGTON – VA Secretary Robert A. McDonald met today with the chairmen and ranking members of the Senate and House Veterans Affairs Committees to affirm his commitment to working together to
better serve Veterans. McDonald outlined his Road to Veteran’s Day, a series of strategies and actions that
will enable the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to rebuild trust with Veterans and the American people,
improve service delivery, and set the course for long-term excellence and reform.
This meeting today at Veterans Affairs (VA) headquarters between Secretary McDonald, Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) and House
Veterans’ Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller (R-FL) and Ranking Member Mike Michaud (D-ME) follows a press conference Secretary McDonald held Monday, his first testimony as Secretary before Congress
Tuesday and a meeting Wednesday with the leadership of 29 Military and Veterans Services Organizations to
discuss his vision to reform and reorganize the department.
“I sincerely thank the members of the committees and our Veteran and Military Service Organization
partners for their leadership and support of our Nation’s Veterans, their survivors and dependents,” said Secretary McDonald. “I told them that caring for our Nation’s Veterans is a non-partisan responsibility and that we
have a lot of work to do to rebuild the trust of our Veterans. But I know that with the help of these partners,
VA will be better able to meet the needs of our Veterans and effectively and efficiently provide them with the
high-quality care and benefits they’ve earned.”
# # #
PO Box 23405
Page 5
The following article is reprinted from the website:
September 8, 2014
No. 14-20
Mokie Porter
301-585-4000, Ext. 146
Press Release
VVA on DoD Announcement of Guidance for Upgrading Discharge Requests
“Vietnam Veterans of America is very pleased with the recent announcement by Secretary of
Defense Hagel regarding the September 3, 2014, Department of Defense (DoD) guidance to
Military Department Boards for Correction of Military/Naval Records (BCM/NR) when considering petitions regarding discharge upgrade requests by veterans claiming Post-traumatic Stress
Disorder, who received Other Than Honorable (OTH) Discharges,” said VVA National President John Rowan.
“It is the right thing to do, especially for our Vietnam veterans. Many of our brothers and sisters
were inappropriately discharged under other than honorable conditions after serving their country, because PTSD was not recognized at that time. In many cases, a PTSD diagnosis was not
made until decades after their service was completed. And, because of their OTH discharge, they
were unable to receive VA benefits. VVA has been advocating for these veterans for a long time,
and we are very grateful that Secretary Hagel has taken this action,” said Rowan.
As stated in the September 3 guidelines, “…in cases where service records or any document
from the period of service substantiate the existence of one or more symptoms of what is now
recognized as PTSD or a PTSD-related condition during the time of service, liberal consideration will be given to finding that PTSD existed at the time of service. Liberal consideration will
- Continued on Page 7 -
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- Continued from Page 6 also be given in cases where civilian providers confer diagnoses of PTSD or PTSD-related conditions when case records contain narratives that support symptomatology at the time of service, or when any other evidence which may reasonably indicate that PTSD or a PTSD-related
disorder existed at the time of discharge which may have mitigated the misconduct that caused
the under than honorable conditions characterization of service.”
“We thank Secretary Hagel for this effort,” said Rowan, “However, now begins the challenge of
reaching out to all those Vietnam veterans affected by such OTH discharges and helping them
get their discharges upgraded, so they can access the health care and other benefits due them.
We urge the DoD and the VA to initiate such efforts to identify and reach out to the affected
Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA) is the nation's only congressionally chartered
veterans service organization dedicated to the needs of Vietnam-era veterans and
their families. VVA's founding principle is “Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another.”
©2006-2013, Vietnam Veterans of America. All Rights Reserved.
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Mail Call
Vietnam Veterans of America
Chapter 203
PO Box 23405
Chattanooga, TN 37422
We’re on the web!
“Never again will one generation of veterans
abandon another”