July 2017 Newsletter

Michael O'Day
By Michael O'Day June 5, 2018 14:27

Next Meeting:  Monday, July 24, 2017  at 7:00 P.M.                                                              Issue: July 2017_

Published Monthly – Distributed to all members of VVA and AVVA

Chapter 885*

801 Princess Street

Wilmington, North Carolina

Tel: 910-762-4288

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


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

President:  Don Betz

1st Vice president:  Tony Mortillaro

2nd Vice President:  K. C. Jones

Treasurer:  Bob Doleman

Secretary:  Michael O’Day

Sergeant at Arms:  Thurmond Bethea

Service Officer:  Tony Musolino

Chaplain:  Abdul Shareef

AVVA Chapter Representative: James Bryant


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




With the fourth of July behind us and the hot days of summer upon us, we are all grateful for family and friends to spend time with and yet keeping in mind our members and other veterans who are not so fortunate.  The visitations started by our president of the AVVA and chapter members to visit assisted care facilities is a great example of Chapter 885’s veteran outreach and it has meaning for those who do the visitations and those on the receiving end!

A special shout out to Tony (last month’s birthday man!) and several others, for a great effort on Saturday June 24th reaching out to veterans and their families concerning VA recognized benefits associated with the drinking water at Camp Lejeune! Also a great effort by chapter members at fundraisers on Friday June 23rd and Saturday June 24th up in Ogden.

As busy as we seem to be getting it’s always important to reach out to veterans at these events as they are a great resource for new members just like Ed Dunn who recently picked up an application after meeting guys at an event in Leland and attended our last meeting.  Welcome Home Ed!

I got a chance to welcome back Mac at the July 4th event at the National Cemetery! It was great to see him after his return from England!  The planning is in full swing now concerning our annual “Fish Fry” at Brunswick Forest on September 30th, please plan to attend and enjoy the fellowship.

Together in service!



As we celebrate our Nation’s Independence this July 4, 2017.  May we keep before America and the world at large “All Gave Some. Some Gave All” to make it happen and to keep it real. As we visit our Nation’s Capital and stroll across The National Mall and view the many military memorials of different wars and the many grave markers in our National Cemetery. And likewise across The United States Of America let us not forget the Statement in quotations.

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


Abdul Rahman Shareef

Chaplain VVA 885


If you know of a death or illness of a chapter member or their family, please notify our Chaplain, Abdul Shareef, and/or the office so that we may provide support to the family and get the information to Chapter members in a timely manner.



At the request of FRA, Rep. Walter Jones (NC) has introduced the “Military Retiree Survivor Comfort Act” (H.R. 3011) which would authorize the retention of the full final month’s retired pay by the surviving spouse (or other designated survivor) for the month in which the member was alive for at least 24 hours.

Surviving spouses who are unaware that the Defense Finance and Accounting Services (DFAS) should be notified immediately on the death of the military retiree are surprised to learn of this requirement. Those who had joint bank accounts, in which retirement payments were made electronically, gave little if any thought that DFAS could swoop down and recoup any overpayments of retirement pay from such accounts. This action could easily clear the account of any funds remaining whether they were retirement payments or money from other sources.
Please use the FRA Action Center to contact your U.S. Representative to ask them to support this important legislation.


Fund Raisers

July 29                                 Piggly Wiggly, Leland

August 5                             Harris Teeter, Hanover Center

August 12                           Piggly Wiggly, Burgaw

September 16                   Golf Tournament

September 23                   Car Show at the Battleship

September 23, 24            Spot Festival

October 7, 8                      Riverfest

October 21, 22                 Autumn at Topsail

November 4                      Sam’s Club



September 30                   Chapter Fish Fry

Nov 11                                           Veterans Day at the Cemetery, Market St. Wilmington, NC



In June, AVVA visited two nursing homes: Elderhaus Pace in Wilmington and Woodbury Wellness in Hampstead.  We gave out a few hats and put some smiles on some veterans faces.  Our next scheduled visits will be in September.  If you wish to take part in the visitations please see either James Bryant or K C Jones.


Is it work?

A U.S. Marine Colonel was about to start the morning briefing to his staff.  While waiting for the coffee machine to finish its brewing – the colonel decided to pose a question to all assembled.


He explained that his wife had been a bit frisky the night before and he failed to get his usual amount of sound sleep. He posed the question of just how much of sex was “work” and how much was “pleasure?”


A Major chimed in with 75-25% in favor of work.  A Captain said it was 50-50%. A lieutenant responded with 25-75% in favor of pleasure, depending upon his state of inebriation at the time.


There being no consensus, the colonel turned to the PFC who was in charge of making the coffee. What was HIS opinion?


Without any hesitation, the young PFC responded, “Sir, it has to be 100% pleasure.”


The colonel was surprised and, as you might guess, asked why.


“Well, sir, if there was any work involved, the officers would have me doing it for them.”


The room fell silent.



The 4th of July has come and gone.  The fireworks have all been expended; family cookouts have come and gone along with all of the sales in the stores.  What I hope remains is the remembrance of what the day was all about, America’s independence.

Over 240 years ago a bunch of patriots fought for and won our freedom.  Over those many, many years many more patriots fought to maintain that freedom and that battle continues today.

As we sit in our air-conditioned houses and cars keep in mind all those that have fought for our freedom and pledge to yourself that you will do all that you can to assure that those freedoms remain in place for all Americans regardless of race, religious pursuit or political ideology.



Thurmond Bethea                          1st

Alphonzo Zanders, Jr.                    1st

Jack Hannon                                     1st

Cliff Romer                                       2nd

David Newberry                               3rd

James Torr                                        6th

Mike O’Day                                      7th

Leonard Rice                                    9th

Terry Summers                                 12th

Ted DeBose                                      17th

William Stevens                               18th

James Marley                                   19th

Carlos Irwin                                      20th

Kenneth Lowe                                 20th

Don Howard                                     22nd

James Mercer                                  25th

Edward Hess                                    30th

Steve Cranford                                 30th

William Tesauro                              30th



Julian Greenwood                           1st

Donald McFee                                  7th

Dan Tato                                           7th

Malcolm Ballard                              8th

Donald Nixon                                   8th

Eddie Davis                                       13th

Peter Martin                                     13th

Ted Barley                                         15th

Ed Covan                                           19th

Ron Lloyd                                          19th

William Doran                                  21st

David Johnson                                  25th

O T Thompson                                  25th

Patricia Martin                                 25th

Barbara Bartlow                              26th

John Mitchell                                    26th

Elmer Howell                                   29th

William Sidberry                              29th

Charlie Futrel                                    31st

Floyd Palmer                                    31st


Happy Birthday to all.

If you do not see your birthday mentioned here please get in touch with the Chapter Secretary, Mike O’Day.



Chapter Meetings Sponsored

Board member Curt Farrison was able to arrange sponsorships for the pizza served at our monthly Chapter meetings.  Curt arranged for a year’s worth of sponsors, at $100 each, beginning with our May 2017 meeting.  Curt and his wife sponsored the May meeting; Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin Grieco sponsored June’s meeting; July’s meeting will be sponsored by Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Dwyer; and August will be sponsored by Mr. and Mrs. Robert Winzinger.  Robert is a Chapter member.  Well done Curt.


Presentation to Rosalie Colarco

At our June 26 Chapter meeting the Chapter presented a plaque to Rosalie Colarco.  Ms. Colarco is a senior constituent advocate for Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina and prior to that she had the same responsibility with former North Carolina Congressman Mike McIntyre.  The wording on the plaque read:  For all the Veterans whose cases have passed your way – we can only say “Thank You”.  Your tireless efforts to aid in every way exemplifies your dedication, not only to your job, but to those who have given to our country, and who, through your dedication to help, are given the help they need in their time of stress.  Your understanding and compassion in each case is exemplary and from all the Vietnam Veterans whose life and work you have touched – Welcome Home and God Bless.


Plaque given to Mack Mitchell

At the Chapter’s last Board meeting on June 22, Mack Mitchell was given a plaque in appreciation for what he has done for the Chapter over the years as both President and Board member.  The plaque read: for all that you have done and continue to do for Chapter 885, thank you.



New Schedule for the Newsletter

The editor is calling a time out and taking a bit of a break.  Beginning this year the monthly newsletter will not be issued in August.  Instead, the July issue will be issued mid-month and the next issue will be sent out in the beginning of September.

Why All Veterans Should Apply for Benefits


Darlene McMartin is the director at the Pottawattamie County Veterans Affairs Office, located at 223 S 6th St #6, Council Bluffs, IA 51501.  Ms. McMartin provides a brief narrative as to why it is in a veteran’s best interest to file a claim for benefits.  Ms. McMartin advises veterans whose diseases aren’t on the list to file claims. Even though a claim may be rejected in the future, the disease and/or medical condition may be added to the presumptive list at some future time. The record of a claim now may entitle the veteran to months or years of retroactive benefits.


The same is true for Navy and Marine Corps veterans whose ships aren’t currently recognized by the VA as having been exposed to Agent Orange.


“They’re adding constantly,” McMartin said. “We don’t know when they’ll add that ship to the list.”

Ms. McMartin goes on to mention that many veterans are too humble to apply for disability benefits.

“They don’t think they deserve it,” McMartin said. “A lot of the vets are very proud. They’re not whining. They don’t want to be sick.”


Bottom line, Ms. McMartin maintains that all veterans should apply for benefits to provide an opportunity for their family to be eligible for monetary compensation in the event the veteran is not around.  Many of the presumptive conditions currently on the list were not there just 10 short years ago.  Apply now, because you never know what condition you might have now that will appear of the VAs list of presumptive disabilities in the future.


New Scam Targeting Older People (That’s us)

It seems there is a new telephone scam out there.  The caller(s) identifies themselves as a member of law enforcement and states that there is an open warrant for the person receiving the call.  Furthermore, if you will make a payment via credit card the warrant will be dismissed.  Do not fall for this scam because if you do you will have given out your credit card information and guaranteed your card will be maxed out before you can say Merry Christmas.

Never give out personal information over the phone unless you know for sure who you are talking to.


New VA Complaint Hotline Open for Business

On June 1, 2017, the VA Veterans’ Complaint Hotline went live.  There will be limited access until August 15 when the hotline will become available 24/7.


All calls will be confidential.  If you have a complaint about the VA, VAMC, CBOC, Vet Center, Regional Office or any other VA facility please call 1-855-948-2311.


Lunch by Mission BBQ

On June 27 Mission BBQ catered lunch for all those that were hanging out at the Chapter that day.  This was part of Mission BBQ’s outreach to the veteran community.  The food was great.  You never know what is going to happen around the Chapter.  Not only do we have some crazy discussions but every once in a while food shows up.  If you have nothing else to do, come on out and hang out.


Golf Tournament

Our second annual golf tournament will be held on September 16, 2017 at Olde Point Golf & Country Club.  Once again Jeff Gordon Chevrolet will be sponsoring prizes: a hole in one package with prizes at each par 3 with a 2017 Chevy Silverado as the top prize; two tickets to the 2018 Coca Cola 600 stock car race; and a chance to win $1,000,000 yes that’s right, $1,000,000 with a shot at a hole-in-one.


The golf committee is hard at work but they could use your help as well. The committee is reaching out to various businesses to see if they will act as sponsors of the tournament.  Last year we had 31 companies and or individuals, including some Chapter members that sponsored a hole at $100 each.  This year we would like to more than double that number and you can help. However, we are running out of time so If you know of a company that we should talk to please let Mike O’Day or Curt Farrison know, and if you would like to sponsor a hole yourself please see Mike or Curt and thank you.


PX Privileges

This was in the last few Newsletter’s and will continue to run through November when the program goes live.


According to Stars and Stripes, after two years of study and debate, the Department of Defense has made a policy change, effective November 2017, to allow 16 million honorably discharged veterans to shop online for discounted military exchange products.


The entire article can be read on the Chapter’s website at vvachapter885.org.


Membership Totals

Our Chapter continues to grow.  As of July 15, we have 209 Chapter members.  There are a couple more that are in the pipeline which have not been added yet by National.  Each month we continue to add members and this is a reflection on many of you who continue to network within the community, thank you for your efforts.



We have had a number of fund raisers in the month of June and the first half of July.  June we were at it every Saturday of the month and in July it has been every other Saturday.  Thank you to all that have come out each Saturday, not easy to do when it gets hot out.  In addition to our Saturday routine we participated in the Downtown Sundown concert series by selling wristbands to the folks that wanted to booze it up while they listened to the music.  We had nine people turn out to sell the wrist bands and while doing that they also picked up almost $450 in donations.  For our efforts the Downtown Organization presented the Chapter with a check for $423.50.


You just never know what will happen at a fund raiser.  The Friday concert had great music which our guys enjoyed a lot plus a lot of hugs were given out in thanks for our service.  At our most recent fund raiser at Harris Teeter, at Oak Landing in Porter’s Neck, we had one gentlemen buy all of us lunch and this is after he had already dropped $100 in the donation bucket and someone else wrote us a check for $200.  When things like that happen you get a good feeling and you realize that no matter what happened when we returned from the war, we certainly are appreciated now.


Camp Lejeune Water Problem

On Saturday, June 24, the Chapter, led by VSO Tony Musolino, put on a Town Hall regarding the Camp Lejeune water problem.  We provided guidance on how to and where to properly file a claim with the VA for the Veteran and or the family member, the process is different for each.

Despite having some media coverage before the event we did not get the turnout that we had hoped for.  However we were the lead item in that night’s television news on WECT and they gave us a good review putting our efforts in a positive light.


It seems that one of the reasons we did not get the turnout is that the veteran in the family had died and the remaining family members did not think that there was any point in attending the Town Hall.  If you know of anyone who felt that way please tell them to come in and see us as we may still be able to get them some help with the VA.







Michael O'Day
By Michael O'Day June 5, 2018 14:27


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V V A Chaper 885

801 Princess Street

Wilmington, NC 248401

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