Bush celebrated with praise, humor at cathedral farewell

George H.W. Bush was celebrated with high praise and loving humor Wednesday as the nation bade farewell to the man who was America's 41st president and the last to fight for the U.S. in wartime. More...

Veterans Crisis Line graphic with woman behind man, her hand on his shoulder

iPhone users can connect directly with Veterans Crisis Line

Suicide Prevention
Veterans can now reach the Veterans Crisis Line directly with an iPhone. Simply say, “Hey Siri, call the Veterans Crisis Line,” and it will connect you automatically, even if you don’t have the
number 1-800-273-8255 already saved in your contacts.

PA DMVA News from around the region, state,nation

DMVA News 

Deadline Approaching For Veterans’ Trust Fund Grant Applications: 
The Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) is accepting applications for the 2018-19 Veterans’ Trust Fund (VTF) grant cycle. Up to $800,000 in VTF grant funding will be competitively awarded for programs and services benefiting Pennsylvania veterans. Grant applications must be received by 3 p.m. EST on Friday, December 14, 2018. Website.

DMVA Held Christmas Tree Lighting: 
Members of the public along with Fort Indiantown Gap installation soldiers, airmen and employees participated in the annual lighting of the holiday tree and Fallen Hero Tree this past Friday in Lebanon County. The Fallen Hero Tree pays tribute to Pennsylvania National Guard members who have died in service to their country. Check out the Flickr album.

DMVA Still Looking For 11 Photos Of Pennsylvania Veterans Who Paid Ultimate Sacrifice In Vietnam: 
To further honor and preserve the memory of our veterans for future generations, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund in D.C. is leading an initiative to locate a photo for every U.S. service member who died during Vietnam. Please help find the remaining 11 photos from three Pennsylvania counties. For information on how to submit a photo, visit: Read more.

Dr. Darryl Jackson, Chief Medical Officer For DMVA Provides Information On PA's Six Veterans Homes: 
Dr. Darryl Jackson, MD, chief medical officer for the Pennsylvania Dept. of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) recently gave a radio interview – providing information about PA's six long-term care facilities for veterans. Read more.

Vets To Be Honored At PA Farm Show: 
State Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding and Maj. Gen. Tony Carrelli, Pennsylvania’s adjutant general, announced that the Department of Agriculture and Department of Military and Veterans Affairs will join forces to recognize veterans and military service members on Jan. 10, 2019, at the 103rd Pennsylvania Farm Show. Read more.

Wolf Administrations Kicks Off ‘Trees For Troops’ Donation Weekend: 
Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding and Maj. Gen. Tony Carelli, Pennsylvania’s Adjutant General and head of the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA), helped kick off the 2018 Trees for Troops weekend, encouraging Pennsylvanians to donate Christmas trees to active-duty military and their families. Read more.

 Around the State 

Central Pennsylvania Food Bank Helping Hungry Veterans: 
Central Pennsylvania Food Bank is giving meats and produce to military distribution centers across the midstate. "We just have many many veterans in need and we're trying to help them," said Joe Arthur, executive director of the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank. The White Rose VFW is one of five military distribution centers in York County. It feeds close to 400 veterans and family members every month. Officials never expected it to grow into this large of an operation. Watch video.

Onward To Opportunity Is Coming To Pittsburgh: 
The Syracuse University Institute for Veteran and Military Families is excited to announce that Onward to Opportunity (O2O) is coming to Pittsburgh in January 2019. O2O is a free, comprehensive career skills program that provides civilian career training, professional certifications and job placement support to transitioning service members, members of the selected reserves, veterans, and military spouses. For additional information contact Dwight Boddorf at 412-298-3359 or email ddboddor@syr.edu.

Pennsylvania Commission For Women Seeks To Honor Female Veterans: 
Gov. Tom Wolf administration will continue to show support for women across the state by honoring female veterans in the spring. The Pennsylvania Commission for Women is seeking nominations for its fourth annual Female Veterans Day ceremony as part of Women’s History Month in March 2019. Read more.

Pennsylvania’s Forgotten African American Cemeteries Are Getting Their Historical Due: 
To Crystal Crampton, the empty spaces that separate dates of birth and death on headstones at Historic Bucktoe Cemetery represent the forgotten life stories of those interred there. Beginning in the early 1800s, the Kennett Township graveyard took in 122 African American occupants before it was abandoned a century later. Read more.

U.S. Senator Pat Toomey Welcomes Vietnam Veterans Home At Pinning Ceremony: 
U.S. Senator Pat Toomey welcomed Vietnam veterans home with a pinning ceremony in the Hamlin Fire and Banquet Hall in Wayne County. Quoting General Norman Swartzkoff, he said, "It takes a hero to go into battle." Toomey, a Republican, said he worked with Indiana Senator Joseph Simon Donnelly Sr., a Democrat, to bring pinning ceremonies to Vietnam veterans, to recognize them for all they've done for the country. Read more.

Veterans Recount Their Wartime Experiences: 
Four Pennsylvania veterans shared their wartime experiences and what civilian life was like after their tours of duty ended. Here are their stories in their own words. Read more.

Wreath Donations Needed To Honor Local Veterans: 
Organizers of Wreaths Across America at the Washington Crossing National Cemetery are making a plea for donations as the annual event is approaching and there are not yet enough wreaths to honor all veterans buried there. "As of today, we only have 6,494 wreaths donated," organizer Geri Lewis explained. As the cemetery has approximately 11,000 veterans buried there, "we need additional donations or we won't be able to honor every veteran at our cemetery," Lewis said. Read more.

 Across the Nation 

2019 Freedom Award Nomination Season Closes Soon: 
Do you have a story to tell about how exceptional your employer’s support is to Guard and Reserve service members? If your employer goes above and beyond in their support for Guardsmen or Reservists, nominate them for the 2019 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award – it only takes a few minutes! For more information about the Freedom Award, or how to nominate your employer, visit our Website.

Daughters Of The American Revolution Honors Deceased Veterans: 
Recently, the Bee Line chapter of the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution provided refreshments and support for families of deceased veterans. Two services were conducted to accommodate the large number of family members wishing to attend. The ceremonies are sponsored by the Chaplain Service at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Martinsburg, WV. Read more.

Facebook Live Dec. 11 – Convenient Health Care At Your Fingertips: 
Smartphones, tablets and computers make accessing VA health care easier than ever. Join representatives from VA and Team Red, White & Blue for a Facebook Live event on Dec. 11, 2018, at 3 p.m. as they discuss these tools and how to enroll in VA health care. Learn how you can communicate securely with your VA health care team, easily refill prescriptions, keep track of appointments and discover other virtual offerings. Read more.

Melwood Veterans Services: 
Melwood Veterans Services is excited to announce, Operation Tohidu, a program for men and women struggling with post-traumatic stress, anxiety, depression, traumatic brain injury, and other service-related issues such as military sexual trauma. “Tohidu” is a Cherokee word meaning peace of mind, body, and spirit and Operation Tohidu retreats continue to promote “Peace with the past through power in the present” for hundreds of veterans each year. Read more.

Military Father Cooks Up A Sweet Way To Thank Veterans: 
Who doesn’t love cookies? For Frank French, the answer is obvious—everybody loves cookies, including military veterans. Veterans are the reason he bakes. French bakes cookies for vets, and sometimes he even drops them off himself at their doors. Read more.

Thousands To See GI Bill Housing Payment Bump: 
Thousands of veterans using the post-9/11 GI Bill could see larger monthly housing allowance payments as the Department of Veterans Affairs backpedals changes to how payments are calculated. Read more.

Trees For Troops 2018: 
Delivering the spirit of Christmas to military families – one Christmas tree at a time. Website.

VA Announces Fully Capable Tele-counseling Service Within Its Vocational Rehabilitation And Employment Program: 
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Program (VR&E) announced the ability for veterans nationwide to meet with more than 1,000 Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors (VRC) via “tele-counseling,” or virtual communication. Tele-counseling increases VA’s responsiveness to veterans’ needs, reduces travel costs and time for both veterans and VRCs, and improves veterans’ access to necessary VR&E services. Read more.

Veterans On Parenting: 
Raising children can be tough for anyone, and some veterans’ challenges can make parenting more stressful or complicated. Discover how these veterans learned to manage their mental health through treatment and became better mothers and fathers as a result. “My therapy actually helped everybody in the house, because now I get to share my experiences and my tools,” says Jennifer, a U.S. Navy veteran. Watch video.

Vets Aren’t Eating Their Veggies, Study Says: 
An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but veterans don’t seem to be buying the advice. A comprehensive Wounded Warrior Project survey of more than 33,000 veterans and service members shows a vast majority of vets aren’t eating the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables each day — and could be missing out on key health benefits as a result. 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

Put your military experience to work in Pennsylvania!: 
Returning to civilian life? Starting a second career? Looking for an employer that values active National Guard and Reserve service? Bring the unique experience and personal qualities you developed in the military and continue your work in public service with the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania! Join the tens of thousands of PA'ians working for our commonwealth. Read more.

Symmetry Financial Group Hiring: 
Symmetry Financial Group is looking for veterans who are motivated, have high integrity and are willing to learn a sales process. Veterans and their spouses receive the fast-start veterans program. Visit Website and apply or call 610-742-1413 or email Terry@sfgsales.com/careers.

USA Jobs: 
Veterans: Find your fit in the federal government by exploring employment opportunities at www.usajobs.gov. This site will allow you to create a profile, upload your resume, and apply for federal positions that match your skill set.

Veteran Job Seeker Resource Center And Quick Start Guide: 
RecruitMIlitary and MyComputerCareer are here to support you on your path to success. Use these resources to strategically separate yourself from the crowd, and stand out in a top-tier fashion. Complete your professional profile, build your resume, or improve your interview techniques. Find upcoming job fairs and careers near you! Read more.

Veterans Ascend Introduction: 
Veterans Ascend is a new veteran employment system that changes the way employers find and hire veterans. Veterans Ascend wants to help make the transition process easier for servicemembers by helping them find employment. The system is partnering with employers throughout the country who are looking to hire veterans by matching a veterans’ known skills set, based on their military job and other skills, to an employers’ job profile which require those same skills. Think of it as a “Match.Com” for Employers & Veterans. This is a free service for servicemembers/veterans. All they need to do is visit the website Website and take 5-10 minutes to complete a profile.

Veterans Take Flight With Career Tips For Airline Industry: 
Veterans met with Hawaiian Airlines to learn about commercial airline job opportunities available to them through Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) career counseling services. Veterans learn about commercial airline job opportunities through Wounded Warrior Project event. Read more.

Waste Management Hiring CDL Truck Drivers And Diesel Technicians In North Huntingdon: 
- Dec. 14, 2018, 7 a.m.-4p.m.
- 310 Leger Rd., North Huntingdon PA (Westmoreland County)
- Walk-Ins welcome. Please bring a copy of your Resume! Immediate opportunities available!
- Text WASTE to 51893 or call 1-877-220-5627 for more information. This position is eligible for up to $7,000 in bonuses available.
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.)

WWII Round Table Pearl Harbor Survivor - Revisiting And Reflecting: 
- Dec. 6, 2018, 7 p.m.
- Grace United Methodist Church, 435 East Main Street, Hummelstown, PA (Dauphin County)
- Register with Bev at 717-319-3430.
- Anyone with an interest in WWII is invited to attend the meetings. There are no membership or admission fees. For more information about the speaker, please contact Terry L. Hartzell, tlee.hartzell@gmail.com or (before 9 p.m.) at 717-939-3629. For more information, contact Charlie Lloyd at charlie.centralpaww2rt@gmail.com or 717-503-2862.

Veterans Breakfast Club (VBC) At Night: 
- Dec. 6, 2018, 7 p.m.
- Heinz History Center, 1212 Smallman St., Pittsburgh, PA (Allegheny County)
- This event is free, free food, cash bar. R.S.V.P. to 412-623-9029 or Lauren@VeteransBreakfastClub.com. Please mention DMVA Digest when you R.S.V.P.
- Women veterans of various eras and ages will talk about their experiences serving our country. Open to the public, all are welcome.
Facebook page.

Pennsylvania Outdoor Veterans-Military And Childrens' Christmas Party: 
- Dec. 9, 2018, Noon-5 p.m.
- Orioles Community Center, 475 Orioles Dr., Lehighton, PA (Carbon County)
- Point of Contact: Miranda Moyer at 610-390-0963 or email mmoyer1219@gmail.com or rbowman430@gmail.com 
- Pre-registration is required. Facebook event.

Veterans Breakfast Club (VBC) Morning Event: 
- Dec. 12, 2018, 8:30-10:30 a.m.
- Christ Church at Grove Farm (in the ‘Event Barn’ to the right of the church), 249 Duff Rd., Sewickley, PA (Allegheny County)
- Breakfast is $12. Without breakfast is free. R.S.V.P. to 412-623-9029 or Lauren@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.
Facebook page.

Veterans Breakfast Club (VBC) Morning Event: 
- Dec. 15, 2018, 8:30-10:30 a.m.
- Christ United Methodist Church, 44 Highland Rd., Bethel Park, PA (Allegheny County)
- Breakfast is $12. Without breakfast is free. R.S.V.P. to 412-623-9029 or email Lauren@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.
Facebook page.

Air National Guard Band Of The Northeast To Appear In Concert This December: 
- Dec. 16, 2018, 3 p.m., doors open at 2 p.m.
- The Scottish Rite Cathedral Auditorium, 2701 N. Third St., Harrisburg, PA (Dauphin County)
- The concert is FREE! Call The Valley of Harrisburg Office at 717-238-8867 or Reserve Tickets. Tickets may also be picked up at our business office.
- The Air National Guard Band of the Northeast will present an exciting concert of holiday favorites. The Band of the Northeast represents the Pennsylvania Air National Guard, the United States Air National Guard, and the United States Air Force as musical ambassadors for both military and civilian audiences throughout the entire MidAtlantic and Northeast region.

Veterans Breakfast Club (VBC) Morning Event: 
- Dec. 19, 2018, 8:30-10:30 a.m.
- Robert Morris University, RMU Yorktown Hall (former Holiday Inn), 8256 University Blvd., Moon Township, PA (Allegheny County)
- Breakfast is $12. Without breakfast is free. R.S.V.P. to 412-623-9029 or Lauren@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.
Facebook page.

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