November 2015

A massive food drive outside Chicago has helped more than 1,200 veterans.

11/24/2015 - News article: Thanksgiving food drives with vets in mind

Maybe more than ever before, Illinois' annual Veterans Food Drive is proving to former servicemembers just how much the great state cares.  read more »

In Maine and New York, veterans are getting unique photographic treatment.

11/24/2015 - News article: Honoring vets through photography

Photographers across the country are putting their art to use as a unique means for honoring veterans. read more »

The VA's ambitious new plan looks to expand veterans' access to private health care.

11/23/2015 - News article: VA has new plan to outsource health care

The Department of Veterans Affairs announced a substantial overhaul of its current health care system on Wednesday. In a new plan, the VA will expand the department's nationwide medical services in a way that would allow veterans improved access to private care. read more »

Some great organizations are putting vets in touch with an IT field that wants their experience.

11/20/2015 - News article: Vets are sought after for IT jobs

Transitioning to the civilian world in their life after service isn't always easy, but veterans are finding that the tech industry is eager to employ programmers and technicians with the kind of skill sets they perfected while in the military.  read more »

Starting a business is a great accomplishment for anyone. For veterans, especially, these entrepreneurial pursuits can be an excellent way to get the most out of life after service. Owning a business really helps you integrate into the community and gives you a healthy sense of self-worth. AFBA has listed some useful resources for veteran business owners.

11/20/2015 - Blog: Great resources for veterans business owners

Starting a business is a great accomplishment for anyone. For veterans, especially, these entrepreneurial pursuits can be an excellent way to get the most out of life after service. Owning a business really helps you integrate into the community and gives you a healthy sense of self-worth. AFBA has listed some useful resources for veteran business owners. read more »

Though there are nearly 70,000 homeless veterans in the United States, the commonwealth of Virginia became the first to reach "functional zero," as reported by WTVR 6 News. This means that every homeless former servicemember in Virginia has been housed or offered housing.

11/20/2015 - News article: Virginia becomes first state to end veteran homelessness

Though there are nearly 70,000 homeless veterans in the United States, the commonwealth of Virginia became the first to reach "functional zero," as reported by WTVR 6 News. This means that every homeless former servicemember in Virginia has been housed or offered housing. read more »

Max Zahir, a Redlands, California native, passed many homeless veterans on his way home from work everyday. Zahir finally decided to make a difference for one of the veterans.

11/20/2015 - News article: Civilian's act of kindness brings veteran to tears

Max Zahir, a Redlands, California native, passed many homeless veterans on his way home from work everyday. Zahir finally decided to make a difference for one of the veterans. read more »

Groups supporting vets and their families have been awarded $1.5 million in grants.

11/20/2015 - News article: Foundation awards $1.5 million for vets, military

Newman's Own Foundation announced on Thursday that it would award $1.5 million in grants to organizations that support military servicemembers, veterans and their families.  read more »

In an unprecedented move, the Department of Veterans Affairs recently announced a new plan to improve veterans care services. The program, which will be called the New Veterans Choice Program, will combine all private sectors of the current health network and merge it into one large program, according to RT America.

11/19/2015 - News article: VA hopes outsourcing will improve veterans care

In an unprecedented move, the Department of Veterans Affairs recently announced a new plan to improve veterans care services. The program, which will be called the New Veterans Choice Program, will combine all private sectors of the current health network and merge it into one large program, according to RT America. read more »

One of the original Tuskegee Airmen instructors passed away on Tuesday.

11/19/2015 - News article: An original Tuskegee Airman passes away

Milton Pitts Crenchaw, one of the original Tuskegee Airmen flight instructors, died Tuesday in Georgia. He was 96, and one of the very last of the surviving instructors for that proud and distinguished group of veterans. read more »

After facing several controversies, the VA secretary sees major changes in the near future.

11/19/2015 - News article: VA secretary predicts major changes

Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald anticipates that dramatic changes within his agency will soon improve an organization buffeted by controversy in the last few years. read more »

Major personnel changes have been proposed by the Pentagon.

11/18/2015 - News article: Pentagon's future forces in for major changes

Some of the most significant personnel changes in the U.S. military's history appear to be on the horizon. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter is the driving force behind the reforms.  read more »

The veteran status of National Guard members may change.

11/18/2015 - News article: House passes bill broadening vet status

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill on Monday to broaden the definition of what qualifies servicemembers for veteran status. read more »

A Mississippi firefighter receives the world's most extensive face transplant after being disfigured on the job.

11/18/2015 - News article: Firefighter from Mississippi receives "miracle" face transplant

A Mississippi firefighter receives the world's most extensive face transplant after being disfigured on the job. read more »

When a house fire broke out in Queens in mid-November, the New York Fire Department responded promptly to assist the family. What the firefighters on scene did not realize was that they would soon be hailed as heroes for their efforts.

11/18/2015 - News article: New York firefighters save infant from flames

When a house fire broke out in Queens in mid-November, the New York Fire Department responded promptly to assist the family. What the firefighters on scene did not realize was that they would soon be hailed as heroes for their efforts. read more »

Fort Walton Beach, Fla. is one of the best cities for veteran businesses.

11/18/2015 - News article: Small Florida city great for veteran businesses

Fort Walton Beach, a small beach-side city in western Florida, was recently recognized as one of the greatest in the country for veteran businesses.  read more »

When 80-year-old Billy Aldridge, a Marine Corps veteran from the Vietnam War, passed away, the caretakers at his senior community could not find any records of his family. According to CNN, the funeral home in charge of organizing the burial ceremony for Aldridge wanted to make sure that the veteran received a proper sendoff.

11/18/2015 - News article: Thousands gather to celebrate the life of a veteran with no family

When 80-year-old Billy Aldridge, a Marine Corps veteran from the Vietnam War, passed away, the caretakers at his senior community could not find any records of his family. According to CNN, the funeral home in charge of organizing the burial ceremony for Aldridge wanted to make sure that the veteran received a proper sendoff. read more »

Relationships are hard. They take work and sacrifice, but most importantly, they require communication. This can be difficult for typical couples, but it can be even more challenging for military couples. Read on to see advice for maintaining healthy communication in your military relationship.

11/17/2015 - Blog: Communication tips for military couples

Relationships are hard. They take work and sacrifice, but most importantly, they require communication. This can be difficult for typical couples, but it can be even more challenging for military couples. Read on to see advice for maintaining healthy communication in your military relationship. read more »

The VA's new website aims to be a one-stop shop for veterans.

11/17/2015 - News article: The VA has launched a new website

The beta version of the Department of Veterans Affairs new website, Vets.gov, launched last week on Veterans Day. The site is designed to consolidate the VA's thousands of services and related websites under one roof.  read more »

Retirement benefits for veterans are getting an overhaul.

11/17/2015 - News article: Overhaul of military retirement benefits for 2018

Some historic changes are coming to the military retirement system in the next two years after the Senate approved military retirement reforms as part of the revised defense spending bill last week.  read more »

Be cautious when it comes to using your GI Bill at for-profit colleges.

11/17/2015 - Blog: Before vets attend for-profit colleges, some precautions to consider

The Post-9/11 GI Bill provides veterans with some of the most generous education benefits since President Roosevelt signed the original bill into law more than 70 years ago. This would seem to suggest that veterans are receiving the educational support they are due at little cost to themselves. Unfortunately, that isn't the case.  read more »

On Nov. 15, the Seattle Seahawks hosted their Salute to Service game in honor of the U.S. military. At the halftime of this game, the veterans who participated in the Puget Sound Honor Flight were invited onto the field for an honor ceremony.

11/16/2015 - News article: Seattle Seahawks pay respects to veterans at game

On Nov. 15, the Seattle Seahawks hosted their Salute to Service game in honor of the U.S. military. At the halftime of this game, the veterans who participated in the Puget Sound Honor Flight were invited onto the field for an honor ceremony. read more »

In memory of his father, Santa Cruz-native Jeff Canepa began offering free bay cruises to former servicemembers on Veterans Day.

11/16/2015 - News article: California boat owner gives free cruises to veterans

In memory of his father, Santa Cruz-native Jeff Canepa began offering free bay cruises to former servicemembers on Veterans Day. read more »

With Thanksgiving approaching, here are some ideas for a great care package.

11/16/2015 - Blog: Some ideas for your Thanksgiving care package

We're approaching the end of November, and that means it's Thanksgiving time again. You may want to send your deployed love one a care package in time for the holiday. But what to send?  read more »

Starbucks is just one major company that has focused on hiring and supporting veterans.

11/16/2015 - News article: Companies pledge to hire more vets

Now that Veterans Day has passed, it's important that the country not forget that supporting military veterans is a year-round responsibility. Part of that is to ensure that veterans are employed in meaningful ways.  read more »

Syracuse University has honored its commitment to veterans.

11/16/2015 - News article: Vets a top priority at Syracuse University

Since the end of World War II, when the GI Bill was signed into law by President Franklin Roosevelt, Syracuse University has stood as a shining example of how universities should support veterans. But their good reputation wasn't enough for Syracuse read more »

Boston is on track to functionally end veteran homelessness by the end of 2015.

11/13/2015 - News article: By the end of the year, Boston plans to end vet homelessness

Boston is on course to join several other cities in ending chronic veteran homelessness by the end of 2015. read more »

The holiday season is a time of joy for most people as families come together to celebrate. Yet, for military families, the holidays can be a challenging time. Deployments can keep even the closest of families apart when they really want to be together.

11/13/2015 - Blog: The holiday season and deployment

The holiday season is a time of joy for most people as families come together to celebrate. Yet, for military families, the holidays can be a challenging time. Deployments can keep even the closest of families apart when they really want to be together. read more »

A veteran was rescued after four days spent lost in the Oregon wilderness.

11/13/2015 - News article: Veteran, lost for days, rescued by another veteran

A Gulf War veteran still wasn't totally at ease with his recent relocation to Oregon when he got lost and ran out of gas while driving through the state's heavily forested coast on Saturday, Nov. 7. read more »

The number of uninsured veterans and their families has declined in the last few years.

11/13/2015 - News article: Number of uninsured veterans falling

Data released by the National Health Interview Survey on Veterans Day had good news for everyone who has served in uniform: the number of veterans without health insurance declined rapidly in the last few years.  read more »

Capt. Florent Groberg was awarded the Medal of Honor on Thursday.

11/12/2015 - News article: Army Captain awarded the Medal of Honor

At a ceremony in the East Room of the White House on Thursday, President Obama awarded Capt. Florent A. Groberg the Congressional Medal of Honor for his heroism in Afghanistan in Aug. 2012, read more »

On Nov. 12, Marine Corps Veteran Guy Valentino broke the Guinness World Record for most pull-ups in 24-hours.

11/12/2015 - News article: Veterans of the Marine Corps breaks world pull-up record

On Nov. 12, Marine Corps Veteran Guy Valentino broke the Guinness World Record for most pull-ups in 24-hours. read more »

At Arlington National Cemetery on Nov. 11, President Obama laid a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. During this Veterans Day ceremony, he also spoke on veterans issues.

11/12/2015 - News article: A breakdown of Obama's Veterans Day address

At Arlington National Cemetery on Nov. 11, President Obama laid a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. During this Veterans Day ceremony, he also spoke on veterans issues. read more »

Veteran breweries are spreading awareness of those who paid the ultimate sacrifice.

11/12/2015 - News article: Breweries honoring the fallen, one can at a time

A veteran of multiple combat tours with the U.S. Marine Corps, Seth Jordan is the founder of Dog Tag Brewing Co., a non-profit run by veterans that, in a drive to expand awareness of those who lost their lives defending this country, displays the story of a fallen warrior on every beer can. read more »

Virginia is the first state to fully meet the standards for zero veteran homelessness.

11/12/2015 - Virginia hits milestone on veteran homelessness

Gov. Terry McAuliffe of Virginia chose Veterans Day as the right time to announce that his state was the first in the country to end homelessness among military veterans, as defined by the federal government. read more »

On Nov. 11, a large group of veterans protested in Washington, D.C. to advocate the usage of medical marijuana in treating the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.

11/12/2015 - News article: Veterans advocate for medical marijuana usage

On Nov. 11, a large group of veterans protested in Washington, D.C. to advocate the usage of medical marijuana in treating the symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. read more »

Leaving the military for a civilian life after service can be intimidating to anyone. After years of getting orders and following strict regimens, the new freedoms may be a bit overwhelming. AFBA has listed a few areas former servicemembers can pursue when they enter civilian life.

11/12/2015 - Blog: What to do after leaving the military

Leaving the military for a civilian life after service can be intimidating to anyone. After years of getting orders and following strict regimens, the new freedoms may be a bit overwhelming. AFBA has listed a few areas former servicemembers can pursue when they enter civilian life. read more »

On Veterans Day, it's time to focus on what we've done, and what's still left to do, for those who served.

11/11/2015 - News article: On Veterans Day, some signs of progress

As part of the federal government's campaign to honor those who served and to highlight the efforts made to support them, on Veterans Day, officials from multiple agencies have come forward today to discuss areas where progress has been made and to address those places where more is still needed. read more »

The Senate passed a spending bill for veterans' programs on Tuesday.

11/10/2015 - News article: Veteran spending bill passes through Senate

On the eve of Veteran's Day, the Senate passed an $80 billion spending bill which increases funds for veterans' benefits and military base construction projects. read more »

The tech industry is actively seeking veterans for lucrative careers.

11/10/2015 - News article: US industries are realizing the value of veterans

Veterans are finally getting the employment they deserve, and it's coming from a variety of industries.  read more »

Landing a job after service isn't easy, but these tips will help.

11/10/2015 - Blog: Some essential job interview advice for veterans

The job interview process doesn't have to be a hard one. Veterans know that one of the most crucial aspects of victory is thorough preparation. When it comes to job interviews, the approach is no different.  read more »

Veteran homelessness is on the decline across the country.

11/10/2015 - News article: The push to end veteran homelessness

All around the country, veterans are breaking out of the cycle of homelessness and winning the fight. read more »

As Nov. 11 approaches, Americans prepare for Veterans Day in the U.S. In the U.S., Veterans Day is a time when civilians show their gratitude for the former servicemembers who fought for the country, but how do countries around the world celebrate their veterans?

11/10/2015 - Blog: Veterans Day around the world

As Nov. 11 approaches, Americans prepare for Veterans Day in the U.S. In the U.S., Veterans Day is a time when civilians show their gratitude for the former servicemembers who fought for their country, but how do countries around the world celebrate their veterans? read more »

San Diego, CA is one of the top 10 best cities for veterans.

11/10/2015 - News article: The best cities for veterans

With Veteran's Day right around the corner, now is the perfect opportunity to celebrate the most livable places in the country for those who served. read more »

Most people do not recognize the name Harry Colmery, but The American Legion is trying to change that. The organization plans to commemorate the man who has been called the "unsung hero of American Veterans" by building a memorial park in Topeka, Kansas. Photo courtesy of Architect One .

11/5/2015 - News article: Kansas park project to honor GI Bill author

Most people do not recognize the name Harry Colmery, but The American Legion is trying to change that. The organization plans to commemorate the man who has been called the "unsung hero of American Veterans" by building a memorial park in Topeka, Kansas. read more »

Two years ago when Leigh and Mike Harting opened 3 Daughters Brewing in St. Petersburg, Florida, they wanted to find a way to give back to the veterans in the community. Mike's father, Bruce, served in the military during the Vietnam War and was the inspiration for their patriotic goals.

11/4/2015 - News article: Florida brewery finds unique way to honor veterans

Two years ago when Leigh and Mike Harting opened 3 Daughters Brewing in St. Petersburg, Florida, they wanted to find a way to give back to the veterans in the community. Mike's father, Bruce, served in the military during the Vietnam War and was the inspiration for their patriotic goals. read more »

Nov. 11, otherwise known as Veterans Day, is fast approaching. This is a time for Americans to appreciate our military servicemembers, both active and veteran, for their commitment to the country. Many businesses have announced that they will be offering free or discounted services to veterans and servicemembers as a show of gratitude.

11/4/2015 - Blog: Businesses offering Veterans Day discounts to former servicemembers

Nov. 11, otherwise known as Veterans Day, is fast approaching. This is a time for Americans to appreciate our military servicemembers, both active and veteran, for their commitment to the country. Many businesses have announced that they will be offering free or discounted services to veterans and servicemembers as a show of gratitude. read more »

Growing up in the Bronx, Sgt. Katina Tsahalis always knew that she wanted to help people. She joined the Army and spent five years working in difficult areas. Tsahalis told Pix 11 News that her time in the military gave her many skills that she used to become a physicians' assistant, but it also encouraged her to continue serving others.

11/4/2015 - News article: Bronx veteran gives back to fellow servicemember

Growing up in the Bronx, Sgt. Katina Tsahalis always knew that she wanted to help people. She joined the Army and spent five years working in difficult areas. Tsahalis told Pix 11 News that her time in the military gave her many skills that she used to become a physicians' assistant, but it also encouraged her to continue serving others. read more »

By taking the time to cultivate good working relationships in your station house, you have a better chance of building a stronger unit.

11/4/2015 - Blog: 6 ways to improve relationships at your station house

By taking the time to cultivate good working relationships in your station house, you have a better chance of building a stronger unit. read more »

Most people turn on their porch light every night when they go home. Walmart has decided to take that one simple task and make it a show of support for veterans across the country. The corporation is calling its project "Greenlight a Vet."

11/4/2015 - News article: Greenlight a Vet shines a light on former servicemembers

Most people turn on their porch light every night when they go home. Walmart has decided to take that one simple task and make it a show of support for veterans across the country. The corporation is calling its project "Greenlight a Vet." read more »

It does not matter if you are fighting on the front lines of a combat zone or working to keep your city safe, teamwork is crucial. Any seasoned military servicemember or first responder will tell you that you cannot do the job alone.

11/3/2015 - Blog: Quotes to inspire teamwork

It does not matter if you are fighting on the front lines of a combat zone or working to keep your city safe, teamwork is crucial. Any seasoned military servicemember or first responder will tell you that you cannot do the job alone.  read more »

When a career comes to an end and it is time, to retire many people worry that life will not be as fulfilling as it previously was. However, there are plenty of ways to enrich your life during retirement.

11/3/2015 - Blog: 5 ways to get the most out of retirement

When a career comes to an end and it is time, to retire many people worry that life will not be as fulfilling as it previously was. However, there are plenty of ways to enrich your life during retirement.  read more »

Television is the window into different lives for many viewers. Sitcoms, dramas and reality shows give audiences the chance to experience an adventure they would not otherwise have the opportunity to. Recently, AFBA did an article called "5 of television's most popular shows based on military life." However, first responders get a good amount of airtime as well.

11/3/2015 - Blog: 5 of television's most popular shows about first responders

Television is the window into different lives for many viewers. Sitcoms, dramas and reality shows give audiences the chance to experience an adventure they would not otherwise have the opportunity to. Recently, AFBA did an article called "5 of television's most popular shows based on military life." However, first responders get a good amount of airtime as well. read more »

A student group called Family, Career and Community Leaders of America encourages young adults to be active proponents for a positive community. An FCCLA sector in Tracy, California, recently answered their club's calling by hosting a luncheon for local veterans.

11/3/2015 - News article: California student group hosts veterans luncheon

A student group called Family, Career and Community Leaders of America encourages young adults to be active proponents for a positive community. An FCCLA sector in Tracy, California, recently answered their club's calling by hosting a luncheon for local veterans. read more »

11/2/2015 - Support in Transition: Job Training and Placement Programs for Veterans [Infographic]

Transitioning to life after service can be difficult for veterans. There are many decisions to make, a lot of new challenges to overcome and tons of questions that need answering. Fortunately, there are many resources available to help make the transition from military life a little less daunting for former servicemembers. read more »