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Talk to text telephone

Veterans with Hearing Loss can obtain a talk-to-text phone at no cost

     Through the Heroes with Hearing Loss program, eligible Veterans can listen and read word-for-word captions of everything said to you over the phone. Please see the program website, then contact Westmoreland County Veterans Affairs office at 724-830-3530 for more information on applying. Download a brochure here.
     Non-Veteran seniors with hearing loss are also eligible under a separate program. See info here.

New Veterans ID card application process delayed

The VA has not yet published the process for obtaining the cards but is expected to later this month. Veterans can register now on Vets.gov to verify eligibility, which will be necessary before obtaining the cards. 

A Headline

DMVA DigestDMVA Digest
A publication of Pennsylvania's Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
November 8, 2017

 
DMVA Still Needs To Locate 54 Photos From PA For Vietnam National Memorial:
Help honor those from Pennsylvania who paid the ultimate sacrifice as a result of the Vietnam War. The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund virtual Wall of Faces in Washington, D.C. still needs to locate 54 photos from 12 different counties in Pennsylvania to put a face with a name. To see a full list of names and for information on how to submit a photo, please visit website.
DMVA To Team With Department Of Agriculture During Farm Show:
Adjutant General Major General Tony Carrelli and Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding announced that the DMVA is partnering with the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture to host Veterans, Military, and Their Families Day on Jan. 11, 2018 as part of the 102nd Pennsylvania Farm Show. Read more.

Military Experience Gives Pennsylvania Army Guard Soldier Focus In Civilian Postal Career:
Specialist Breyonnha Chester, a resident of Philadelphia, PA (Philadelphia County) serves as a motor transport operator with the Pennsylvania Army National Guard based out of Fort Indiantown Gap, PA. Primarily responsible for supervising or operating wheeled vehicles to transport personnel and cargo, Chester and her fellow truck drivers form a core component of the Army's support and sustainment structure. Being able to provide that support is one element that drew Chester to enlisting. Read more.
 Around the State
After 66 years, Korean War POW's Remains Returned Home:
Private First Class Walter Hackenberg died in September 1951 when he was a prisoner of war. Then 22 years old, Hackenberg, who grew up on a farm among the rolling hills of rural Snyder County, PA, had been drafted and sent to the Korean peninsula to fight for his country. Read more.
North Huntingdon Civil War Veteran Gets Tombstone, Military Marker More Than 125 Years After His Death:
A Civil War soldier from North Huntingdon, PA (Westmoreland County) who spent 125 years in an unmarked grave now has a headstone and flag in time for Veterans Day. Read more.
Military Veteran Finds Success Through Adult Learner Programs And Services:
After serving four years active duty and two tours in Iraq as a combat engineer with the U.S. Army, Andrew Artz found himself at a crossroads. He could continue on with a professional career in the military or he could leave and make use of his GI Bill benefits by pursuing higher education. Read more.
PA Supreme Court Justice Special Courts Help Veterans Find Way Home:
As Americans, we owe a debt of gratitude to our military veterans. The justices of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania are committed to doing everything they can to support the men and women who have served our country as they transition back to civilian life. Read more.
Small Businesses Honor Vets With Outing To DC Memorials:
About 675 veterans from south-central Pennsylvania gathered for a special day created in their honor by local small businesses with support from fraternal and veterans groups. Read more.
VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System Uses Telehealth:
As the nation’s largest integrated health care system, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is uniquely positioned to eliminate barriers to care and is a recognized world leader in development and use of revolutionary technologies in telehealth. Telehealth uses technology to connect veterans with providers, essentially bringing VA care to their community, or even their home. Veterans Connect.

Veterans Share Concerns Over Access To Benefits At Harrisburg Roundtable:
Military members transitioning to civilian life have access to a number of educational and medical benefits to help them adjust. Some veterans are concerned a lack of education discourages their peers from pursuing such opportunities. Sen. Bob Casey held a roundtable with veterans at Harrisburg Area Community College to learn how to help. Read more.
Veteran Who Lost His Home In Puerto Rico Gets New Home In St. Clair:
Army veteran Vercio Wiley was gifted a new home in St. Clair, PA (Schuylkill County) by an organization called We Agape You. Wiley was injured by an IED in Iraq. Tragedy struck him again this year when hurricanes Irma and Maria came through. Read more.
Vietnam War Hero To Be Honored As A 'Living Legend':
Bill Beck of Hampden Township, PA (Cumberland County) is being honored as a "Living Legend" for his heroism during the Vietnam War 52 years ago. Read more.
WWII Veteran Honored For Work On Annual Veterans Day Parade:
World War II veteran Sam Greenberg has taken part in every Wyoming Valley (Luzerne County) Veterans Day parade since returning home from the great war. He remains an integral part in planning the parade as a committee member and treasurer. Read more.
 Across the Nation
From IHOP To The Top – Senior Enlisted Advisor Driven To Serve:
As a 17-year-old, Command Sgt. Maj. Christopher Kepner could not have known that his enlistment into the Army would lead him down a path of growth to become the top enlisted member of the National Guard. Read more.
Hunting With Heroes: Combat -- Wounded Veterans Participate In Weekend Pheasant Hunt:
Recently, eight combat-wounded veterans from across the country spent the weekend in the fields, during a trip sponsored by the Wounded Warriors in Action Foundation. This event hosted the eight veterans for a four-day guided pheasant hunt. The men's injuries sustained in battle range in severity, as some have limited mobility and others sustained traumatic brain injuries and permanent limb disabilities. Read more.
Jones’ Journey – Wounded Veteran Running 31 Marathons In 31 Days To Raise Awareness:
A U.S. Marine veteran and double-amputee ran his 20th of 31 marathons to raise money and awareness for veteran charities issues. Rob Jones said he decided to run 31 marathons in 31 days in different cities throughout the country to dispel the belief that if a veteran comes home from a deployment with a psychological or physical injury that they’re somehow broken. Read more.
President Trump Proclaims November Veterans And Military Families Month:
President Donald Trump was joined by Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin in the Oval Office for the President’s signing of a proclamation establishing November as Veterans and Military Families Month. Read more.
Richard Tylicki Named Charles K. Murphy Patriot Award Winner:
Richard Tylicki, a lieutenant colonel in the Pennsylvania Army National Guard and director of stadium operations for the Binghamton Rumble Ponies (Class AA; Eastern League), has won minor league baseball‘s Charles K. Murphy Patriot Award. The Charles K. Murphy Patriot Award is presented to a team or individual in minor league baseball for outstanding support of the United States Armed Forces and veterans, both at the ballpark and in the community. Read More.
Service Member In Need of Help With Research Project:
Service member Gabrielle Caldara is working on a doctorate degree in Public Health at East Tennessee State University (ETSU) and is looking for some help. Her research study is titled "Exploration of Rape Myths Among Former Military Professionals" and focuses on the beliefs surrounding rape myths. The purpose of this project is to raise awareness, reduce stigma associated with sexual violence, dispel false rape myths by enhancing knowledge, and improve the health status of sexual violence survivors. Active duty service members and veterans are invited to complete a survey to support the research. The survey takes less than 10 minutes. This research project, including the survey, is not endorsed by or affiliated with the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. Participation is voluntary. If completing this survey has raised any concerns for you, contact the Veteran's Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255 and press 1, or the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE to have a confidential chat. Please click on this link to begin the survey: Website.
Statement From Secretary Of Veterans Affairs On Agent Orange Presumptive Conditions:
U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. David J. Shulkin announced that he is considering possible new presumptive conditions that may qualify for disability compensation related to Agent Orange exposure. Read more.
Veterans Affairs (VA) Launches Program Aimed At Providing Veterans More Options In Claims Disagreements:
The Department of Veterans Affairs announced that it will launch the Rapid Appeals Modernization Program, or "RAMP" to provide expanded opportunities for veterans to enter the new, more efficient claims review process outlined in the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act of 2017, which was signed into law by President Donald J. Trump on Aug. 23, 2017. Read more.
Veterans Affairs (VA) Researcher Earns Award For Advancing Wheelchair Technology:
Recently, VA researcher and U.S. Army veteran Rory A. Cooper received a Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal (also known as a “Sammie”) for his groundbreaking work on wheelchair technology. Through his designs, Rory has helped improve the mobility of hundreds of thousands of disabled veterans and other people with disabilities. Read more.
Veterans Affairs (VA) Working To Free Up Time For Veterans:
VA announced today that it is making changes to its inbox notifications system, a messaging system intended to communicate important clinical information, such as test results, referrals, medication refills or high-priority messages. Read more.
Veterans Learn That Their Service Can Help Them Succeed In Business:
More than 13 percent of the people starting a business have military experience. “Maybe they just don’t want to take orders anymore,” joked Sara Hudson, director of the six-state Veterans Business Outreach Center. Read more.
 Employment Opportunities
This listing is offered as a resource to both Pennsylvania's veterans and businesses that seek to employ veterans. The DMVA has not investigated the positions being offered or the businesses listed, and does not warrant or guarantee either the availability or the terms and conditions of the positions listed. Please contact the employers represented in this listing directly. To have an employment opportunity listed please email: RA-VA-Newsletter@pa.gov
Governor Wolf Announces Expansion Of Highwood USA, Creating Of 58 New Jobs:
Gov. Tom Wolf announced that Highwood USA, a manufacturer of low-maintenance synthetic wood components, will be expanding its operations into Hazleton, PA (Luzerne County), and will create 58 new Pennsylvania jobs. Read more.
Warwick Family Service Employment Opportunity For Veterans:
Job opportunities available at a residential treatment facility for children in Warminster, PA (Bucks County).
Contact Jason Thompson at 267-525-7000 ext. 2204 or email recruiter@warwickfamilyservices.com
Apply.
Waste Management Hiring Experienced, Non-Experienced Residential Drivers & Residental Helpers In Homer City:
Text waste to 51893 or call 877-220-5627 for more information.
Requirements: No experience required for non-experienced residential driver position; six months related experience for Helpers; one year for residential. Residential helper must be 18 years of age, (No CDL required) Must be 21 for residential drivers. Must hold current Class A or B commercial drivers license with air-brake endorsement.
Apply.
Waste Management Is Now Hiring Residential, Rolloff And Swing Drivers In West Sunbury And Greenville:
Text waste to 51893 or call 877-220-5627 for more information.
Requirements: must be at least 21 years old, must hold a current Class A or B commercial drivers license with air-brake endorsement and minimum one year of commercial drivers license driving experience two years for swing driver). Up to $3,000 sign-on bonus.
Apply.
 Veteran Events
This listing is offered as a service to individuals and organizations to promote their veteran and military-oriented events being held in Pennsylvania. The information is taken directly from emailed submissions from requestors. DMVA is not responsible for incorrect information submitted. Please send details on events to RA-VA-Newsletter@pa.gov and include the following key pieces of information: 1. Name of event, 2. Date of event, 3. Time of event, 4. Address of event, 5. County of event, 6. Event website, 7. Point of contact name, 8. POC phone number, 9. POC email address, and 10. Additional details/coordinating instructions (fees, pre-registration, etc.)

McKean County Veteran Resource Fair:
- Nov. 16, 2017, 5:30-8:30 p.m.
- University of Pittsburgh, Bradford, 300 Campus Dr., Bradford, PA (McKean County)
- POC: Zachariah Pearson 814-887-3241
- Veterans in McKean County area are invited to attend a free one-stop shop to learn about VA services and community resources available to local veterans and their families. Veterans who have never enrolled in VA healthcare are encouraged to bring a copy of their DD-214 and speak with an eligibility representative right on-site to determine if they are eligible for VA services.
Event.
Veterans Breakfast Club (VBC) At Night:
- Nov. 17, 2017, 7-8:30 p.m.
- Seven Oaks Country Club, 132 Lisbon Rd., Beaver, PA (Beaver County)
- R.S.V.P. to 412-623-9029 or Nick@VeteransBreakfastClub.com. Please mention DMVA Digest when you R.S.V.P.
- The VBC is a nonprofit that creates communities of listening around veterans and their stories. Storytelling events, both morning and night, are held throughout western Pennsylvania. Veterans from World War II to Iraq and Afghanistan share their stories. They are open to the public, and you don’t need to be a veteran to attend.
Stand Down Pittsburgh:
- Nov. 18, 2017, 8 a.m.-3 p.m.
- Stage AE, 400 North Shore Dr., Pittsburgh, PA (Allegheny County)
- Point of contact: Toshua Jarrett at 412-481-8200 or email jarrettt@vlpwpa.org
- The purpose of the Veterans Stand Down is to provide hot meals, clothing, shelter, barbers, employment assistance, benefits and claims assistance, as well as drug & alcohol treatment services to homeless veterans. The program is successful because it brings these services to one location, making them more accessible to homeless veterans.
Website.
Veterans Thanksgiving Banquet:
- Nov. 19, 2017, 10:30 a.m.
- Heritage Baptist Church, 502 E. Adele Ave., Manheim, PA (Lancaster County)
- Call or text 717-478-1450 or email hbclancaster@gmail.com to R.S.V.P.
- Admission is free for the event.
Website.
Veterans Expo At Montgomery County Community College:
- Nov. 20, 2017, 9 a.m.-noon
- Montgomery County Community College, College Hall, 340 DeKalb Pike, Blue Bell, PA (Montgomery County)
- Point of contact: Rep. Harper's District Office, at 610-277-3230 or email mdiehl@pahousegop.com
- Information for veterans of all ages, with special emphasis on services for men and women returning to civilian life. Featuring organizations that provide support, education, employment and more to veterans. The Montgomery County Recorder of Deeds will be onsite to issue ID cards to Montgomery County Veterans (A DD214 and a picture ID are required for ID card issuance).
Website.
Spring Creek Chapter Of Trout Unlimited Veterans Last Chance In 2017:
- Second and fourth Sunday of each month through November 2017, 1 p.m.-dusk
- Fishermans' Paradise, 1150 Spring Creek Rd., Bellefonte, PA (Centre County)
- Point of contact: Jim Lanning, 951-231-8000 or email at jlanningvsp@springcreektu.org; or Dan Van Winkle, 609-203-5051 or email at dwinvan9@gmail.com
- Open to all veterans and active duty military personnel. Fishing gear, supplies, and fishing license (as needed) are provided.
Military Appreciation Events In State College And On The Penn State Campus :
 A week of military appreciation events in State College and on the Penn State campus have been going on since last Frida

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