VFW Holds Mid-Winter Conference

The Pennsylvania Annual VFW Mid-Winter Conference was held in Pittsburgh over the weekend. During the event, there were chairmen that gave their reports and work shops were held. The highlight of the event was The Voice of Democracy Banquet. Awards were given to the following: Melissa Fulmer, Teacher of The Year, sponsored by District 29 Post 914, West Mifflin, PA; Annika Sullivan, Patriots Pen 1st place winner, sponsored by District 7, Post 3460 and its Auxiliary, Media, PA. The Pennsylvania VFW State 2016-2017 Voice of Democracy results are: Nicholas Grube, 5th place, sponsored by District 19 Post 1132, Kane; Christine Troll, 4th place, sponsored by District 23 Post 554, Somerset; Noah McCloskey, 3rd place, sponsored by District 26, Post 7377, Cresson; Joshua Marzak, 2nd place, sponsored by District 12 Post 298 Danville; Haley Butina, 1st place, sponsored by District 22 Post 4559 Tyrone. Haley will be going on to The VFW National Voice of Democracy held in Washington, D.C., in February.

SASC Clears Defense Nominee

Confirmation of retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis as defense secretary occurred last Wednesday by the Senate Armed Services Committee. He received the VFW Dwight D. Eisenhower Award at the 116th VFW National Convention in Pittsburgh.

Medal of Honor Reception

VFW National Commander Brian Duffy hosted a reception last Wednesday evening for nearly three dozen Medal of Honor recipients who are in town for the inauguration. Also in attendance was the nominee to become the next Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Dr. David Shulkin, as well as Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, Sergeant Major of the Army Dan Dailey, Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Steven Girodano, the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Command Sgt. Maj. John Troxell, among many others.

VA to Host Summit for Women Veterans

The Department of Veterans Affairs Center for Women Veterans is slated to host the Summit for Women Veterans from March 17-18 in Dallas. The summit will be the first national-level event for women veterans since 2011. Topics will include training, information and guidance particular to female veterans, regardless of VA enrollment. There will be lectures, panel discussions, exhibits and open forums promoting forward-thinking dialogue, collaboration with industry best practices and research. The target audience includes women veterans, public sector partners, academics and community partners. “Attendees will have an opportunity to hear from VA leadership and participate in breakout sessions focused on employment, mental health, entrepreneurship, military sexual trauma, reproductive health, culture change and more. Additionally, plenary sessions will focus on VA care and benefits, partner organizations and a special ‘Voice of the Veteran’ panel,” said Kayla Williams, the director of VA’s Center for Women Veterans. To learn more about the summit and how to register, visit www.blogs.va.gov.

MIA Update

Army Air Forces 2nd Lt. John D. Mumford was a P-51C “Mustang” pilot assigned to the 318th Fighter Squadron, 325th Fighter Group, 15th Air Force. On June 6, 1944, Mumford flew escort for B-17 “Flying Fortress” bombers on their mission to bomb and destroy a German occupied airfield at Galati, Romania. Following the bombing, the formation was attacked by German fighters. Mumford pursued two German fighters before crashing near present day Novi Troyany, Ukraine. Interment services are pending.

Till next week, praying for all service members.


– Charles Castelluccio