This morning I went to our Veterans Day Ceremony at Village at Deaton Creek, a Del Webb Community. Our community has about 350 men and woman who are veterans. You can see by the photo at the top, there was a great attendance at our Veterans Day Ceremony.
Saul Levenson, President of the Military Support Club gave the opening remarks, acknowledging the veterans in attendance, many of which had their uniforms on. A special acknowledgement was made of the 10 WWII veterans who are residents of VDC, who were at the meeting.
Mr. Levenson then introduced VDC resident Col Glenn Vogel, who was the guest speaker and who had an exceptional career in the U.S. Air Force. Glenn gave an excellent speech about what it means to be an American, both the responsibilities and benefits. He reminded us of the sacrifices of our veterans and to reminded us to tell them “thank you for your service”.
The Village Singers presented the Star Spangled Banner and several patriotic songs and the audience participated in many of them. Yes, they knew the words! There was a Pledge of Allegiance recited by all in attendance.
Next Captain Ron Jaeh reached out to those in the audience to recognize or remember family members, friends or fellow comrades who served our country. Many, many people recognized and shared a story about a family member, friend or comrade who served in the military. This was touching and you could tell just about everyone in the room had their life influenced by a veteran.
Afterwards, Block ‘n Blade served a cookout lunch of hamburgers and hotdogs and more stories and experiences were told over lunch. Thanks to Block ‘n Blade for providing lunch and by the way, they have some excellent Brunswick Stew at their Flowery Branch store.
Reported by Robert Fowler, VDC resident.
By the way, the Village at Deaton Creek Choir did an excellent job. They perform year around at our community and at outside locations including nursing homes and hospitals. Can’t wait to hear their Christmas Carols next month.
Veterans Benefits are not taken by many US veterans who need and who qualify for them.
We have a large Veterans group here at Village at Deaton Creek, a Del Webb community in North Georgia. I attended the Veterans Day Ceremony last year and have learned we have hundreds of fellow veterans living in our community. I suspect most Active Adult Communities also have many veterans, as those of us now in retirement are of the age to be Korea and Vietnam era veterans.
I was informed recently by Captain Ron and Neil from our Veterans Group about veterans benefits. I went to the Gainesville office of the Georgia Department of Veterans Service and found them helpful. The stipulation was that I inform other veterans of these benefits.
I now have a Veterans drivers license and a Veterans tag. I made a claim for Tinnitus, a ringing in the ears condition that has been bothering me for some time. A few months ago, I wrote about how sensitive my ears have been and getting acoustic ear plugs to help.
There are too many veterans benefits for me to cover in this post, but I have a recommendation below of how to find out which benefits are available to you. It’s worth your time. You and your spouse may qualify for long term care benefits through the VA. That’s a big one.
Why Veterans Do Not Apply for Veterans Benefits
Many Veterans are reluctant to apply for available benefits for many reasons including:
1) They do not know about the benefits they have earned. I would highly recommend to any veterans to visit their state’s Department of Veterans Services. They are not the VA but are there to assist you in finding out about your benefits. I found them to be extremely helpful. Just take your form DD214 and get to their office early. It is not bad and you will be glad you went.
The Georgia Department of Veterans Service is an agency of state government created for the purpose of advising, counseling, and assisting Georgia’s veterans and their families in receiving their rightful benefits under the vast and complex framework of veterans’ laws.
2) They do not want the hassle of filling out all of the paperwork and chances of getting turned down. I would again refer you to your state’s Department of Veterans Service. They pretty much fill the applications out for you. They are in your corner, advocating for you.
3) They do not want a handout or government assistance. Veterans if you were active duty, then you qualify. If you were drafted for two years like I was, you qualify. This is not a handout. Many veterans are suffering ailments that are now just showing up that were service related, now that we are in our 60’s and beyond. Many veteran benefits are not service related but are there because you did your service to the country.
Captain Ron in his email to me said it best:
Now finally there is one condition for this information, OK?
You must share this information with another deserving veteran that is hesitant to put in a VA claim. We all deserve it and were willing to give up our life for our country, some did, only we are the lucky ones that didn’t. Deal?? So many have done it here at VDC through word of mouth. My friend Neil Eisenberg may be the champion for getting the most to VA. I’m a close runner up. ?
From what I know, the best and simplest advice for anyone who severed on active duty with an honorable discharge would be:
1. Get your DD214 and go down in person to your state’s Department of Veterans Services. Just tell them about your service and ask what benefits are available.
2. Just do it. Don’t wait. Don’t get bogged down in research, it will overwhelm you. See step one above. Benefits accrue from the time of application.