GI Bill Changes Are Coming

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There could be some changes coming for some students utilizing their GI Bill benefits. This past summer, the GI Bill was revamped and improved by adding almost two dozen new provisions, and a lot of those changes are being implemented Aug. 1. Some of the changes students will see are different amounts for the Monthly Housing Allowance, Priority Enrollment, and expansion of Work Study programs. We encourage all students utilizing VA education benefits to contact their School Certifying Official, or Veteran Offices, to inquire about any of the changes. Some minor changes have already happened, but most will come later this year. Don’t be caught off guard by some of the new additions to the GI Bill. In order to prepare and take advantage of these programs as best as possible, follow Access Your VA & DoD Benefits, where the new provisions are explained.

Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment (VR&E) Information

The VR&E program, commonly known as Voc Rehab, is an excellent benefit offered by VA that is not utilized by as many eligible veterans who may need it. VR&E services can assist eligible veterans with resume development skills, job search training, employment accommodations, and education in order to keep employed through different avenues. The VR&E program offers individual counselors to accommodate the different needs of the clients they serve.

The VFW Needs You

As a grassroots organization, the power of the VFW is in its membership, that means all 1.7 million of our members. We are stronger together and effective because of what our collective efforts accomplish. Part of being great advocates means renewing your membership and we encourage you to do so. We also encourage you to consider becoming a Life Member of the VFW as a permanent show of your support. If you are not yet a member, we encourage you to join.

Important Days in April

April is the Month of The Military Child, an opportunity to recognize the military children and youth for their heroism, character, courage, sacrifice and continued resilience.
  • April 5 – Gold Star Wives Day: A day set aside to recognize the sacrifice of Gold Star Wives.
  • April 14 – Air Force Reserve Birthday
  • April 17 – Tax Deadline
  • April 23 – Army Reserve Birthday
  • April 25 – ANZAC Day (Australia and New Zealand): A day to remember and honor those who served and died in military service for their countries.
  • April 30 – National Military Brats Day

POW/MIA  Update

Army Sgt. 1st Class Pete W. Simon, 34, of Grindstone, Pa., whose identification was previously announced, was buried March 31 in Northfield, Ohio. Simon was a member of Company G, 2nd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division.

Army Cpl. William C. McDowell, 20, of Stuttgart, Arkansas, whose identification was previously announced, will be buried April 4 in Arlington National Cemetery. McDowell was among more than 1,000 members of the RCT killed or captured in enemy territory and was declared missing on Dec. 2, 1950.

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. William H. Harth, Jr., 22, of Columbia, S.C., whose identification was previously announced, will be buried April 6 in his hometown. Harth was killed when the aircraft crashed.

Marine Corps Pvt. John M. Tillman, 21, of Reno, Nev., whose identification was previously announced, will be buried April 6 in the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu. Tillman was assigned to Company F, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment. Tillman was killed on the first day of the battle.

Army Cpl. Roy J. Hopper, a Korean War veteran, 21, of Miami, whose identification was previously announced, will be buried April 6 in Dayton, Ohio. Hopper was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Battalion, 19th Infantry Regiment.

Air Force Col. Edgar F. Davis, A Vietnam War veteran, 32, of Goldsboro, N.C., whose identification was previously announced, will be buried April 6 in his hometown. Davis was an RF-4C Phantom navigator, assigned to the 11th Tactical Reconnaissance Squadron, 432nd Tactical Reconnaissance Wing.  Davis was declared missing in action.

Marine Corps Pfc. Lyle E. Charpilloz, a WWII veteran, 19, of Silverton, Ore., whose identification was previously announced, will be buried on April 7 in Salem, Ore. His remains were initially buried in a battlefield cemetery on the island.

Navy Reserve Aviation Ordnanceman 2nd Class Ora H. Sharninghouse, Jr., 22, of McComb, Ohio, whose identification was previously announced, will be buried April 7 in Findlay, Ohio. Sharninghouse was reported missing in action.

Navy Radioman 3rd Class Jack R. Goldwater was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored off Ford Island, Pearl Harbor. Interment services are pending.

Navy Water Tender 2nd Class Porter L. Rich was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored off Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when Japanese aircraft attacked his ship on Dec. 7, 1941.  Interment services are pending.

Army Air Forces Capt. George Van Vleet, a WWII veteran, was a member of the 38th Bombardment Squadron, (Heavy), 30th Bombardment Group, stationed at Hawkins Field, Helen Island. Interment services are pending.

Till next week, praying for all service members.

– Charles Castelluccio