The month of March has many important dates. Here are just a few:
March 3, Navy Reserve birthday (103 years), established in 1915.
March 5, Seabees birthday (76 years), established in 1942.
March 11, Daylight saving time (spring forward).
March 13, K9 Veterans Day.
March 17, St. Patrick’s Day.
March 29, Vietnam Veterans Day.
WW1 Memorial sculpture unveiling
Last Wednesday, the World War I Centennial Commission held an unveiling ceremony of the sculpture that will be the focal point of the National WWI Memorial.
The ceremony was intended to give veterans advocates and other stakeholders a rare opportunity to see a 3-D rendering of what the final sculpture will look like. VFW National Legislative Service Deputy Director John Towles was in attendance, along with other members of the veterans community and members of Congress.
The sculptor, Sabin Howard, provided remarks concerning his own connection to WWI and explained the underlying story behind the sculpture.
The sculpture, dubbed “A Soldiers Journey,” is composed of five distinct panels and highlights the key events that embodied the journey to war that millions of Americans made beginning in 1917: departure, initiation, ordeal, aftermath and return.
Forever GI bill education benefit restoration
The VA recently updated its website on opportunities for veterans to potentially restore and utilize their education benefits.
A provision was added to the Forever GI bill to allow student veterans whose benefits were wasted at schools that abruptly closed to seek restoration of those benefits. Also added was an extension of benefits for students pursuing STEM degrees, full eligibility for Purple Heart recipients, removal of the expiration date for veterans who left service after January 2013, and many other provisions for veterans, families and survivors.
The VFW strongly supported these additions and worked closely with Congress and our veterans community partners on this legislation.
Navy Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class William F. Hellstern was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored off Ford Island, Pearl Harbor. Interment services are pending.
Navy Machinist’s Mate 2nd Class Lorentz E. Hultgren was assigned to the USS Oklahoma, which was moored off Ford Island, Pearl Harbor. Interment services are pending.
Navy Seaman 1st Class Henry G. Tipton 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.
Marine Corps Reserve Pfc. Joe Lukie was assigned to Company K, 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division. Interment services are pending.
Marine Corps 2nd Lt. Harvel L. Moore was assigned to Company K, 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division. Interment services are pending.
Army Staff Sgt. Leo J. Husak was a member of Company A, 1st Battalion, 309th Infantry Regiment, 78th Infantry Division, serving in the European theater. On Jan. 30, 1945, Husak was killed while out on patrol. Interment services are pending.
Army Cpl. Leonard V. Purkapile was in Company E, 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division in late November 1950. Interment services are pending.
Until next week, praying for all service members.
– Charles Castelluccio