NORMAN — We are recognizing Mark Holden as the volunteer of the week. Mark has been with us for four years doing his part to support veterans and their families. He served in the U.S. Army and has been one of the regular volunteers supporting the VFW and Veterans Corner. Mark and his wife Lucy reside in the Washington area.
I attended a VFW meeting at the Red Lobster in Norman, while there one of the staff told me she found a Navy ring while cleaning up with the name Stephen Welch engraved on the inside. If you know this person, call me at 550-8806.
If any of you need a tax deduction before the end of the year, think about donating that old car or truck as we are a 501(3) non-profit. The individual is the one who places the value on items that are donated.
Shirley called yesterday to tell us about our first male surviving spouse to be approved for DIC benefits. His wife served in the military in the medical field for several years. Our crew of ladies processed 11 surviving spouses for VA benefits. If you know of any of these ladies who lost their veteran husband, ask them to check with Shirley at 361-9322 about possible VA survivor benefits.
There were 122 veterans and surviving spouses who were assisted with their VA claims and questions on Thursday. Of this number, there were nine who received a 100 percent rating for their service connected disabilities. Many of the veterans that we see are not aware that they can ask for a re-evaluation of their service connected disability one year after their original VA decision. On another point, if your disability requires medical treatment such as surgery you may be eligible to receive a temporary 100 percent rating during convalescence. I recommend that you check with us before receiving any type of treatment for your service connected disability. There were 18 veterans who filed their first claim for benefits last Thursday.
I would like to say thanks to those of you who have supported our benevolence fund. With your help we have been able to help more than 6,000 veterans and surviving spouses with claims service, food items, medical expenses, rents, transportation to medical appointments and the many other types of needs.
Jerry Baxter, treasurer, was able to provide assistance to 10 veterans who needed help with medical expenses, gas cards for transportation and household expenses. Sid Smith provided food and other items to eight families last week. If you need this service, visit with us any Thursday morning at the Goldsby Community Center.
Bring your family by the Goldsby Park to enjoy the Christmas decorations and lights.
Clayton Lee, 684-8860, and other transportation drivers provided rides to seven veterans to the Oklahoma City VA Hospital for their appointments. If you need a ride or know a veteran who does, call Clayton to set up a driver. For the Norman area, call Harold Martin at 227-3239 or Robert Root at 919-3008. For the Moore area, call Howard Robertson at 205-4895.
For all of your questions and assistance about Veterans benefits, we are at the Goldsby Community Center each Thursday. The doors open at 8 a.m. Take time to visit www.veteranscorner.org.
You also may send donations to Veterans Corner, P.O. Box 704, Washington, OK 73093.
Dale K. Graham is service officer for VFW Post 4890.