VFW Officers Installed for 2018-19

The Pennsylvania VFW 28th District held its district meeting Sunday, May 6. Officers were nominated, elected and installed for the year 2018-2019. The results are: 28th District Commander Donald E. Christy; Sr. Vice Commander Michael J. Pierce; Jr. Vice Commander Jim Brown; Quartermaster Elizabeth Miller; Judge Advocate Donald W. Ramsey; Chaplain Reelected Charles J. Castelluccio; Surgeon Larry Hawthorne; and 3-Year Trustee Cecil Dennis. The 28th District covers Mercer, Erie and Crawford counties.

VFW Rallies Support for VA Mission Act of 2018

Last week, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Chairman Phil Roe, M.D., introduced H.R. 5674, the VA MISSION Act of 2018. The act is the culmination of hard work by members of the House and Senate Committees on Veterans’ Affairs to consolidate and improve VA’s Choice Program; improve VA’s ability to hire high-quality health care professionals; expand caregiver benefits to pre-9/11 veterans; and establish a process to evaluate and improve VA buildings to better serve veterans. “VFW members around the country have made it clear that the VA health care system must be improved, not dismantled,” said Keith Harman, national commander of the 1.7 million-member Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. and its Auxiliary. “This agreement strikes a balance between improving access to VA doctors and leveraging the capabilities of the private sector when VA is unable to meet veterans’ health care needs.” The VFW calls on its members and supporters to contact their members of Congress and urge them to co-sponsor and swiftly pass this important legislation.

Congress Hosts Panel Discussion on Women Veterans

VFW National Legislative Service Associate Director Kayda Keleher participated in a panel discussion with the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, alongside other VSOs, VA, congressional staff and researchers working to improve the quality of life for women veterans. The panel, which was moderated by Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Dee McWilliams, president of the Women in Military Service for America Memorial Foundation, discussed issues faced by women veterans regarding health care, benefits, transition from military service and social stigmas.

POW/MIA Update

Marine Corps Reserve 1st Sgt. David H. Quinn, 24, a WWII veteran, of Temple, N.H., whose identification was previously announced, was buried May 5 in his hometown.

Marine Corps Reserve Cpl Raymond A. Barker, 22, a WWII veteran, of Evanston, Ill., whose identification was previously announced, was buried May 5 in Delavan, Wis.

Marine Corps Pfc. Harold V. Thomas, 21, a WWII veteran, of Columbus, Ohio, whose identification was previously announced, was buried May 7 in Arlington National Cemetery.

Army Pfc. Billy R. Ball, 20, a WWII veteran, of Matthews, Mo., whose identification was previously announced, was buried May 4 in St. Louis.

Army Cpl. Terrell J. Fuller, a Korean War veteran, was a member of Company D, 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division, supporting Republic of Korea Army. Interment services are pending.

Army Sgt. 1st Class Rufus L. Ketchum, a Korean War veteran, was a member of Medical Detachment, 57th Field Artillery Battalion, 31st Regimental Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division. Interment services are pending.

Army Pfc. Oscar E. Sappington, a WWII veteran, was a member of 3rd Platoon, Company C, 1st Battalion, 309th Infantry Regiment, 78th Infantry Division. Interment services are pending.

Army Pvt. Kenneth D. Farris, a WWII veteran, was assigned to Company B, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division. On Nov. 28, 1944, Farris was wounded by artillery and left the front line for the battalion aid station. Interment services are pending.

Marine Corps Pfc. William F. Cavin, a WWII veteran, was assigned to Company F, 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, Fleet Marine Force. Interment services are pending.

Till next week, praying for all service members.


– Charles Castelluccio