October 2015 Newsletter

Michael O'Day
By Michael O'Day February 25, 2016 22:32

Next Meeting: October 26 at 7:00 P.M.___________________­­__________________Issue: October 2015

Published Monthly – Distributed to all members of VVA and AVVA

Chapter 885*

801 Princess Street

Wilmington, North Carolina

Tel: 910-762-4268

Editor: Mike O’Day (email: mod199th@yahoo.com)

Publisher: Mack Mitchell

“Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another.”

President: Mack Mitchell

1st Vice president: Tony Mortillaro

2nd Vice President: Charlie Garner Jr.

Treasurer: Bob Doleman

Secretary: Les Heller

Service Officer: Tony Musolino

Sergeant at Arms: John Mitchell

Chaplain: Abdul Shareef

AVVA Chapter Representative: Deborah Musolino


*Chapter 885 is a member of the New Hanover Veterans Council


Presidents Message

Thank you Tony Musolino for all of the work you put in arranging last month’s Town Hall on Veteran’s benefits. While we didn’t have quite the turnout that we had hoped for we did help more than 40 Veterans. In an informal exit poll, all of the people that were seen left satisfied and in some cases the Vet received a decision on an existing claim and found out what the disability rating would be. While we were disappointed in the relatively low turnout the VA representatives from Winston Salem were pleased, so all in all it was a successful day. If we had gotten any cooperation from the media prior to the event we could have had even more of a success.

Thanks also to the Chapter Members of the VVA and AVVA who volunteered their time and service. There were a lot of green shirts in the room. Again, thank you all.

Chaplain’s Report

As September rolls out and October rolls in, we witness nature expressing its best beauty through diversity of all its beautiful colors as leaves fall to the oncoming signs of fall and winter. As members of VVA 885 may we continue to express the beauty of warm comrades and friendship as we work continuously to build a strong and productive Chapter, following in the footsteps of those who preceded us.


In due time, we will break out sweat shirts and jackets for those cool Saturday fundraiser activities. Come with a smile and a day full of energy.


Remember those who may be sick or not feeling well;

Allen Grantham is all smiles and doing well at this time;

Condolences to Artie Johnson on the passing of his daughter, Sharon Hardy;

Condolences to James Bryant on the passing of his father, James;

Best wishes and get well notices to Debbie Musolino who recently had knee surgery.


Say a prayer also for the hard workers who always respond to the call and for those spending the extra hours behind the scenes working with administration, financial and Veterans benefits assistance.

Service Officer’s Comments

The Veterans day event at the Elks Lodge was a success, not in numbers but in the Veterans we were able to assist. Through the active participation of raters from the Winston Salem VA we were able to satisfy 38 claims – some of which resulted in on the spot ratings. In addition, we were able to help others in getting claims prepared heading them in the right direction.


I want to personally thank each and every Chapter Member who came out to help – our presence was there.


During the event we were visited by staff from Channels 3 and 6 and their after action reports reflected the desire of Vietnam Veterans to reach out to all Veterans and give assistance to those in need. I just wish they would have helped us in getting the word out prior to the event.


A special thanks to all the ladies of the AVVA that were present – you helped us in our mission. As I told both TV reporters, you were our first line of contact with the arriving Veterans and an outstanding line you were. TV 6 showed your entrance table and stated that the ladies of Vietnam Veterans were our greeters. Thanks again.


I cannot go forward without thanking Crystal Treanor for the Billboard; it was great and helped a lot. Many came because of it, thanks for your support and caring.


It is with endeavors such as this that we show our pride in our service, our duty in Vietnam, and most importantly our pride in ourselves. I am proud to be a part of 885 and proud of all our members.   Let us continue to work together to “Welcome Home” all our brothers from all branches of service and from all conflicts, we are truly a Band of Brothers.


Thanks and welcome home.


Upcoming Events

Chapter Fund Raisers

The Chapter has the following fund raisers scheduled:

Saturday and Sunday, October 3 and 4, 2015, at Riverfest;

Saturday, November 7, 2015, at Sam’s Club;

Sunday, November 8, 2015, at the Battleship Half Marathon, at 7:00 A.M.;

Saturday, November 14, 2015, at Piggly Wiggly, in Leland.

As always if you can volunteer time between 9:00 A.M. and 3:00 P.M., come out and support us. If you can’t do a full day come out for just the morning or the afternoon. As we used to say “try it you might like it” and we always manage to have lots of laughs.

Taking a long walk!

One of our own, AVVA member Daphne Smith-Hayes, wife of Raymond Hayes, is embarking on a long walk. On October 16 through 18, in the Atlanta area, she will be walking 60 miles over the 3 days and camping out at night with thousands of other men and women.

The event is the Susan G Komen 3-day. The purpose of the event is to raise money to fund research and scientific programs as well as grants for education, screening, and treatment programs at both the national and local level.

Susan G Komen is the world’s largest breast cancer organization, funding more breast cancer research than any other non-profit while providing real-time help to those facing the disease.

Please consider making a donation and also ask your employer if they will double your donation with a matching gift. To make a donation, go to The3Day.org and click on donate and search for Daphne’s personal fund raising page.

Chapter Fish Fry

There will be a Chapter Fish Fry for all members and associate members on Friday, October 16, at the Brunswick Forest Pavilion in Leland, beginning at noon. Please bring a side dish.

Phoenix Mission’s 2015 Annual Veteran’s Christmas Party and Outreach Service

The Christmas party will be on Sunday, December 13, 2015 from 2:00 P.M. until 6:00 P.M. at the Elks Lodge at 5102 Oleander Drive. The party is free to all Veterans and their families and will include a “southern style” dinner, music, 50/50 raffle and a silent auction. RSVP for reservations to: Beverly @ phoenixmission@aol.com by Sunday, December 6, 2015.

The Mission is now collecting the following new items for distribution to homeless and Veterans in need: deodorant, winter hats/beanies, men’s socks, winter gloves, individual bar soap, individually wrapped toothbrushes, toothpaste, hand sanitizer, individually wrapped rolls of toilet paper, new sweat pants (any size and color), any “pop top” canned goods, chap stick, and Walmart gift cards (any denomination appreciated”). The Mission will also be accepting new or gently used winter jackets.

There is a collection box for all donated items in the lobby of the Chapter.


A huge Thank You to all who participated in our Chapter’s Veterans Benefit Open House held at the Elks Lodge on Saturday, September 12th. Our Chapter did not learn until Thursday evening that the VA’s Regional Office in Winston-Salem was sending four employees to process new and check on existing VA claims.

The Elks Lodge was so very supportive of this even for which we are most grateful.

AVVA Life Membership “Fire Sale”

The National Membership Committee is offering a ONE-TIME $100 Life Membership Sale beginning November 1 and ending December 31, 2015. The application is now on-line; please use this application when submitting. Please read the criteria before filling out the application at http://www.avva.org/news/html.

Any and all AVVA applications for membership must be sent to this address: Monument Bank, AVVA Lock Box, 8602 Colesville Road, Silver Springs, Maryland 20910. Please take the time to mail them yourself to ensure you are within the membership discount time frame of November 1 through December 31, 2015.


Humor in Uniform

Getting Drafted

Like many a young boy growing up he dreamed of being drafted by a professional sports team either the NBA, MLB or the NFL. Then the fateful day came, the notice that he was drafted arrived, unfortunately this letter started with Greetings and well you know the rest.

Induction day was when the fun really began. It was April 1, 1968 and he had thought about not going as maybe it was an April fool’s joke but then thought better of it. That month was the first month in a long time that Uncle Sam was also drafting for the Marine Corps. So when he showed up at the induction center he did not know which branch of the service he was going into (more about that later) and he and the 99 others that were there with him that day were informed that of the 100 of them, 12 would be Marines. Volunteers were asked for and they all sat on their hands. He didn’t know why but that day he had chosen to wear a bright red shirt and he thought they were going to say: you with the red shirt and the 11 guys next to you, you have just volunteered. But fortunately that was not the case. The military officials said that they would make the selection and would let the draftees know later. So the 100 spent the rest of the day worrying about their fate as they went through all of the required medical tests. At the end of the day the selections were made and it seemed that the 12 scrawniest guys in the bunch had been chosen for the Marine Corps and luckily he was not one of them.

Now, it was time to take the oath and the soon to be Marines went first. However, three of the 12 chose not to take the oath and were led off in handcuffs to the brig. Imagine that, your first day in the service and you get arrested.

As this was the first time in a long time that they drafted for Marines, the procedures for indicating which branch of the service you were going to go to were not yet in place, hence the call for volunteers. Later on, draftees knew where they were going before they reported and that probably helped fill other military recruiter’s quotas as soon to be draftees tried to avoid being drafted into the Marine Corps by volunteering for another branch of service. However, until the procedures were in place a little skull doggery was used. When draftees arrived they were asked “who wants to join the Department of the Navy,” all kinds of hands went up, only to hear “congratulations, you are now Marines.”

Editor’s Comments

I would ask all of you to go back and re-read the Chaplain’s and Service Officer’s, Abdul Shareef and Tony Musolino, respectively, comments again as there is a powerful message in their words. As the editor it makes me proud to include comments such as theirs in this newsletter.

Did You Know?

Leaving coins on the headstones of those who served in the Military, especially those who died in combat, dates back at least as far as the Roman Empire.

The practice became especially popular in the United States during the Vietnam War because of the political climate throughout the 1960s and 1970s. Friends of those who died in combat left coins to let family members know that someone had visited the gravesite. Leaving a coin on the headstone was more practical than contacting the family and risk becoming involved in a discussion about the war.

Generally speaking, a visitor who did not know the deceased well enough to be considered a friend might leave a penny. Someone who went through boot camp or a training class with the deceased might leave a nickel. A friend who served in another platoon within the same company might leave a dime. A buddy who served in the same outfit, or was with the deceased when he died, might leave a quarter.

Some Vietnam Veterans left coins as a “down-payment” to purchase a beer or play a hand of poker when he was eventually re-united with his deceased buddy.

Today, the denomination of the coin left on the headstone has become less significant because so few people carry coins other than quarters.

The coins left on headstones within National Cemeteries and State Veterans Cemeteries collected by cemetery staff from time to time are used to maintain the grounds. Some cemeteries use the coins to help pay for the burial costs of indigent Veterans.

This article was found at Military Salute – Pro-boards Articles (http://militarysalute.proboards.com/).

October’s Birthdays

Happy birthday everyone.

John Tullous                       8th                         Mary Daugherty                11th

Eric Eberhardt                   16th                       George Clark                                    21st

Harold Pickett                   24th                       David Miller                                      25th

Peter Joyce                        27th                       Fred Allen                                          31st

Other News

Facebook Page


The Chapter has a new Facebook page. To follow us on Facebook go to VVA Chapter 885 hit like and continue to check in to see what is going on at the Chapter. The Facebook page is linked to the website as well as the website being linked to Facebook.



The Chapter recently purchased a grill for future use by the Chapter. The grill is the same one that was used for the cook-out, in April, as part of the 50th anniversary commemorating the start of the Vietnam War and was also used for the May cook-out for the nurses at the VA facility. The grill will also be available for rental by individuals or groups at a cost of $55 per day or $75 for two days. Please contact the office (910-762-4288) for availability.

Life Membership Offers

VVA National has offered to lower the payment for Life Time Membership beginning August 1 through December 31, 2015. The cost to become a Life Time Member will be $100. AVVA National has also offered Life Membership at a cost of $100, to begin starting November 1 through December 31, 2015. You may wish to consider becoming a life member.

Recent Fundraisers

Last month we had fund raisers at: Sam’s Club and the Corvette Car Show at Independence Mall. We raised a few dollars for the Chapter and had some laughs doing it. The Corvette Show was particularly interesting as we had a chance to talk to a number of people some of whom may join our Chapter and others that will definitely come in and see Tony for assistance. We got rained out of the Car Show at the Battleship and the forecast of rain and a logistical problem caused us to bail out of the Spot Festival. Thank you to all that supported us by volunteering their time.

NC VVA State Fund Raiser

The State VVA Council is conducting a fund raiser that began on August 1 and ends October 11, 2015. The State Council is holding a raffle that will split the profits as follows: 1/3rd to the State Council; 1/3rd to Phoenix Mission veterans Winter Outreach serving homeless Veterans and Veterans in need; with the remaining 1/3rd to be split proportionately with each VVA Chapter in the state.

Tickets will cost $10 each and the winners will receive 3 levels of gas cards: 1 card for 55 gallons of gas; 1 card for 25 gallons of gas; and 1 card for 10 gallons of gas. The winners will be drawn on October 17th at the State meeting in Durham.

Anyone interested in purchasing tickets please contact the office.

Veterans Discount Program

Tammy Beasley, the New Hanover County (NHC) Register of Deeds, recently announced her office is launching a new Veterans Discount Program and needs local businesses to help.

The registrar for NHC said they will be giving veterans who have recorded their DD 214 in NHC a “Thank you for your service” photo ID card. The card will allow veterans to get discounts at participating businesses in NHC. “They will be able to go into a business and show them the card and the business will recognize it right away and give them their discount,” said Beasley. She said the goal is to make it simple and easy for veterans to get the discounts they deserve.

The new program is intended to both honor veterans and encourage them to record their DD 214 (discharge papers) in New Hanover County. Veterans won’t be able to get the discount card until their DD 214 is recorded in New Hanover County. If they have lost it, the Register of Deeds office will work with Veterans Services to help them find the documentation and record it. If they already recorded their DD 214, they will be able to come in and get their photo ID made starting in September.

Once the DD 214 is recorded, Beasley said no one except for immediate family will be able to look at it for 80 years. It has important information, including a veteran’s social security number, branch and how many years they served. “History for New Hanover County is here. Birth, marriage, death, the military and so much more,” Beasley explained. “Two hundred years down the line, if you want to search your family, you will be able to come and search and find out where they served our country.”

Participating businesses will be given a sign they can display if they want. The participating businesses will also be listed on the Register of Deeds website, and a list will be given to all veterans who come into the Register of Deeds office to get their photo ID made.

When the website goes live in a few weeks, businesses will be able to sign up themselves. Until then, anyone who wishes to participate should call Tammy Beasley, Registrar, at 910-798-7736 or email her at tbeasley@nhcgov.com.

Veterans will be able to start using the cards on Veterans Day, November 11.

Beasley said they will start taking photos and handing out the photo ID cards in September.

www.veterans.newhanoverdeeds.com is the source of info for the participating businesses in the New Hanover County veterans ID program.

Michael O'Day
By Michael O'Day February 25, 2016 22:32


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801 Princess Street

Wilmington, NC 248401

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