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Thursday, May 28, 2020

Opinions > Guest Editorial

Honoring those who served

Nov 9, 2018

By Al Etkin

Veterans Day is November 11th. It's one of this nation's foremost National Holidays. A Day set aside to pay honor and to offer a “Grateful Nation's" salute to our living veterans from all wars and conflicts.
The most respected category of people in our country should be our veterans, and not because they consider themselves better than others but because they have preserved, sacrificed and defended our freedoms.
They're further supported by a Congressional Resolution that classified them as "Very Special People."
The Five branches of our military - Army, Navy, Marine Corps.
, Air Force and Coast Guard - form the very essence of America's defense.
They stand ready 24/7 as a constant, vigilant group protecting the lives and property of our citizens without any reservations. They are committed to "Duty, Honor and Country.”
Their constant obligation remains without reservation. The "Good News" for our veterans revolves around the following programs: The McCain defense bill authorizes $716 billion for 2019. This includes a 2.6 percent pay increase for active duty troops. Also included are the following provisions: Granting disabled veterans access to commissaries, PX's and morale and recreational facilities. Requires defense to design and produce a medal or award for veterans exposed to radiation (Atomic Veterans).
President Trump is donating his second quarter salary to a small business administration program that will help veteran entrepreneurs. The amount is $100,000. The money will be used in his veterans program. A seven months intensive training program called "Emerging Leaders:. It will help them transition from military life into private sector if they desire to start their own jobs and their own companies.
The 2019 COLA Increase will be the largest in 7 years: Military and Federal retirees and veterans receiving compensation from V.A. will see a 2.8 COLA increase beginning in 2019. On this special day, please extend thanks to a veteran for his or her service. Fly your flag proudly or attend a local "Veterans Day Service."
Hire a veteran in your workplace, visit a V.A. Hospital or donate to a veterans program to show your support.
Remember that veterans have given us freedom, security and the greatest nation on Earth. It's impossible to put a price on that. We must remember them. We must appreciate them.
God Bless our Veterans and God Bless America.

Al Etkin is a former director of the Sullivan County Veterans Service Agency. He's also served as past District Commander of the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Jewish War Veterans, and as a member of Congressman Gilman's Veterans Advisory Committee and the Castle Point Veterans Advisory Committee.

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