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Browsing the archives for the Military category.

Veterans turn to American Legion for medical help in wake of VA scandal

Federal gov & land grabs, Military, Veterans & soldiers

PNP comment: White City, Oregon is also on this list for help by the American Legion. Yay! — Editor Liz Bowen

Associated Press

A counselor at the local Veterans Affairs office looked at Rebecca King, a victim of domestic violence and abuse who was seeking help for depression, and told her she would not be able to see a psychologist. She looked too nice and put together for someone depressed, King was told.

Like others who’ve failed to receive help at troubled VA offices, the Army veteran then gave up.

“I have a son, I’m his only support system, I have to keep it together” King recalled telling the VA office in El Paso, trying to explain why she didn’t look disheveled.

She is now among nearly 1,800 people who have turned to the American Legion, which has held town-hall meetings and opened temporary crisis centers in Phoenix, Fayetteville, North Carolina, and El Paso. People can gain access to health benefits, schedule doctor’s appointments, enroll in the VA and even get back pay.

The centers come in the wake of the VA scandal that brought to light long wait times and false record-keeping among other things, and are being established in towns where the VA audit showed wait times were longer. Between now and October, crisis centers will come to Fort Collins, Colorado; Saint Louis, Missouri and Baltimore, Maryland. They also plan to visit Clarksburg, West Virginia; White City, Oregon and Harlingen, Texas.

Jessica Jacobsen, deputy director of the VA’s regional public affairs office in Dallas, said the VA will use community partners, such as the American Legion, to help “accelerate access and get veterans off wait lists and into clinics.”

“This is an example of this type of partnership and how it is successful,” Jacobsen said, noting the VA is helping the Legion with the crisis centers, providing them with counselors, nurses, schedulers and benefits rates.

But the VA shouldn’t view getting veterans access to benefits and doctors as out of the ordinary, says Verna Jones, director of the American Legion’s Veterans Affairs and Rehabilitation Division.

“This is not extra, this is what is supposed to be happening,” she said.

On the first day the Legion’s crisis center team arrives in a town, they typically hold a town-hall meeting, where they take questions from veterans — sometimes, the head of the local VA is there to answer as well. In the days following, veterans come to the Legion post and talk to counselors, who assess the best way to tackle a given problem, be it benefits, retroactive payment, scheduling a doctor’s appointment or enrolling a veteran in the VA’s system for the first time.

During the center’s three days in El Paso, 74 veterans were told they are eligible to more than $461,000 in retroactive payments for uncollected benefits, American Legion Post 58 commander Joe Ontiveros said.

King divorced her husband, who was also in the military, after years of abuse and moved back to El Paso in 2012. She got by until January, when she learned her ex-husband wanted to take their son for the summer.

“I started having nightmares, started feeling depressed,” she said. A counselor at the VA dismissed her claims, saying a depressed person would not be well-dressed and with a nice hairdo.

“I told her I didn’t want to look how I’d been looking,” King said. The counselor said that in order to prescribe medication, King would have to be evaluated by a doctor.

“She said they would schedule an appointment, but I was never called back,” she said. “I’ve been calling and calling but nothing.”

After talking with the American Legion representatives at the El Paso crisis center, King will get help — an appointment with a psychologist that had yet to be scheduled as of Friday. “I believe this will be helpful,” she said.

Navy veteran Rik Villarreal had given up on the VA as well. Twenty years after a torpedo nearly crushed his hand, he lives with chronic pain. When the VA closed his case, the document also acknowledged he had Complex Regional Pain Syndrome — the same diagnosis he received from a private neurologist to which the VA had sent him.

“I appealed, but they didn’t return my emails. They tire you out, you get to a point where you say: ‘The VA wins.’ That’s when you give up,” he said.

His mother encouraged him to go to the El Paso crisis center — “Mijo, you gotta get over there,” he said she told him — where he sat with an American Legion attorney who told the VA representatives to reopen his case.

When told he might be due some retroactive payment, Villarreal shrugged it off: “I don’t want money. All I want is treatment for the pain.”


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Remember, thank and pray for our veterans and military

Military, Veterans & soldiers, youtube videos

After having found this video many years ago, I’ve been sharing it on this day as a tribute to our Vietnam Veterans.

Remember them, respect them, honor them – Welcome Home. — Tim Grenvik, Siskiyou Co Veterans Service Officer


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Small Legal Victory for Military Veteran Arrested After ‘Rudely Displaying’ Rifle on Hike With His Son

2nd Amendment rights, Military

PNP comment: Thank you Christopher Grisham for standing tall! — Editor Liz Bowen

Oct. 18, 2013 9:00pm

Story by the Associated Press, curated by Jason Howerton

BELTON (AP) — A mistrial was declared Friday in a Texas case against a soldier carrying his assault rifle on a hike, in a proceeding that was being closely watched by gun-rights advocates.

The six-person jury in Belton was deadlocked after two days of deliberations Thursday and Friday. Prosecutors did not immediately reveal whether they intended to retry him.

Army Master Sgt. Christopher Grisham, who was charged with misdemeanor interference with the duties of an officer, declared victory afterward. Grisham was arrested in March by a Temple police officer responding to a report that Grisham was carrying an assault rifle while hiking with his 15-year-old son for a Boy Scouts merit badge.

Mistrial declared in Army Master Sgt. Christopher Grishams Texas Case Watched by Gun Rights Advocates

Army Master Sgt. Christopher Grisham was charged with misdemeanor interference with the duties of an officer. Credit: Andrew D. Brosig/The Associated Press

“The state, the entire time, has looked and gone out of its way to find something to charge me with,” Grisham said in an interview.

Grisham said he was driven by the fear that a conviction or guilty plea in the case would create “ripple effects” for gun owners elsewhere, “if we’re allowing our police officers to go around stealing people’s weapons for no reason.”

Grisham also expressed frustration Friday of having to go through an entire trial because of the “actions of an abusive police officer.”

He was defended by Blue Rannefeld, an attorney for the National Association of Legal Gun Defense.

Temple police officer Steve Ermis, whose confrontation with Grisham was captured on cellphone video and posted online, testified Wednesday that Grisham’s behavior concerned him and that he wasn’t entirely sure why Grisham had the AR-15 rifle.

Grisham, who’s stationed at Fort Hood, was carrying an AR-15 rifle and a concealed handgun, for which he had a permit. Texas law allows for rifles to be carried in public.

Court documents say Grisham tried to prevent Ermis from taking his rifle and later resisted as the officer attempted to place Grisham’s hands behind his back. Prosecutor John Gantt Jr. told jurors that Grisham refused to follow Ermis’ orders.

Grisham’s son used his cellphone to record the confrontation. Watch the original video below:


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Martial law’ declared by Democrat in Congress

Federal gov & land grabs, Military

Ratcheting up argument over federal shutdown

Video at:    http://www.wnd.com/2013/10/martial-law-declared-by-democrat-in-congress/#W2vgfPUK6mW0d8lm.99

A Democratic congresswoman from Texas has declared “martial law” is the solution to the current partial shutdown of the federal government.

The comments from Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Texas, took some listeners by surprise, since a common understanding of “martial law” would be of an authority – a president or a military commander – using military force to impose its will on an uncooperative people.

Think tanks, machine guns and jail cells.

It came up during Lee’s speech on the House floor on Monday, when she was lamenting those plight of those left with uncertain futures because of the partial federal government shutdown brought on when Senate Democrats refused to consider compromises to a budget plan offered by House Republicans.

She said, “Our economy is bigger than the European Union. That means countries like Spain, Germany, France, England, all those members who as well are our allies, but look to America – how shameful it is for someone to be held, and if you will, tied up by their own individual personal interests.

“One would ask if the Founding Fathers, as imperfect as America was as she began, had come from the 13 colonies and various districts, and probably interests, and had held to those specialized interests, would we have created a nation that started out by saying we organize to create a more perfect union? Albeit that there were groups of populations that did not have dignity and justice and citizenship at that time, something that I could look back at in bitterness, but I do not, because this is the greatest nation in the world. But we are not showing ourselves that way.

“It is not the truth to suggest that there are not enough voters, members of Congress, that would vote right now today to open this government. It is something called a continuing resolution, but it’s a bill that you put on the floor that has been passed already by Republicans and Democrats in the United States Senate. ”

She said, “This is not an idea of anyone over another person. Republican and Democratic senators have already voted for this clean bill that we could vote on today. We have martial law. What that means – and my colleagues know what it means – is that you can put a bill on in just minutes.”

She accused Republicans of forcing people to decide “amongst your children which ones to feed.”

At Washingtonsblog was the comment: “The last time we heard Congress members use the phrase martial law was when Congressmen Brad Sherman and Paul Kanjorski, and Senator James Inhofe, all said that Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson warned of martial law if the TARP banks bailouts weren’t approved.”

A commenter suggested Jackson Lee was using it in the context of House rules that call for one day between announcing legislation and a vote:

“Instead, under ‘martial law,’ the leadership can file legislation with tens or hundreds of pages of fine print and move immediately to debate and [vote] on it, before members of Congress, the media, or the public have an opportunity to understand fully what provisions have been altered or inserted…”

Critics noted that Jackson Lee wasn’t exactly following the Constitution anyway, because she advocated for House approval of a spending bill from the Senate.

“Article I, Section 7, Clause I of the Constitution … states, ‘All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives,” said one of the YouTube users who uploaded the video to share with Americans.

One other observer, who also loaded the footage onto YouTube, noted, “Can someone please explain why the representative from Texas used this language?”

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/10/martial-law-declared-by-democrat-in-congress/#W2vgfPUK6mW0d8lm.99


NBC: Police Remove Vietnam War Veterans at Memorial Wall

Federal gov & land grabs, Military


Oct 5, 2013 • By JOHN MCCORMACK

Via William Jacobson, NBC’s affiliate in Washington, D.C. reports that police ordered tourists and Vietnam war veterans who were visiting the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall to leave the memorial at one point on Friday.

After one group of veterans went around the barricade, “the park ranger told them the wall was closed,” NBC’s Mark Seagraves reported. “Later another group of vets showed up and moved the barricades. At that point, the memorial filled with vets and tourists. That’s when police came and moved everyone out.”

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall is a black granite outdoor wall on which the names of the 58,272 service members who died or were unaccounted for during the Vietnam war are inscribed.

It takes more manpower and costs the government more money to close down an outdoor wall than to let people walk past it and pay their respects.

The Obama administration has been very selective in devoting resources to shutting down memorials.

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Police Department Acquires $600k Military Vehicle ‘Built to Withstand Arms Fire, Mine Blasts, IEDs, and Other Emerging Threats’

2nd Amendment rights, Constitution, Military

Sep. 28, 2013 9:20am

The Blaze.com

UPDATE — 10:45am ET: 

Dallas County Sheriff’s Department Spokeswoman Carmen Castro told TheBlaze in an email that the vehicle will be “an efficient way to ensure that deputies are prepared if and when a dangerous situation arises.”

“It’s acquisition is a great way to put a special tactical vehicle to use on domestic ground,” she added. “The vehicle was obtained at no cost to tax payers [sic].”

Police Department Acquires $600k Military Vehicle Built to Withstand Arms Fire, Mine Blasts, IEDs, and Other Emerging Threats

An image of the armored vehicle. (Credit: Dallas County Sheriff’s Department)

The Dallas County Sheriffs Department acquired a military vehicle designed for overseas combat earlier this month.

Dallas County sheriff’s deputies traveled to Fort Hood earlier this month to pick up a MaxxPro MRAP (Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected) vehicle, according to the Dallas Observer.

“The International® MaxxPro is Navistar Defence’s Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle and incorporates the latest design in armoring technology,” according to the Navistar website. “Extensively tested by the military and used in theater today, the MaxxPro features a V-shaped hull and other design features that greatly improve survivability.”

“The MaxxPro MRAP is built to withstand ballistic arms fire, mine blasts, IEDs, and other emerging threats,” the website continues. “Its V-shaped hull helps deflect blasts out and away from the crew and its armoring can be customized to meet any mission requirement.”



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Comment on armored vehicles

2nd Amendment rights, Constitution, Military

By Liz Bowen, PNP Editor:

Actually, I can understand Dallas Sheriff”s Department obtaining and even paying for these vehicles. Texas is on a leaky Mexican border, but little ol’ Yreka in little ol’ Siskiyou County?

Yreka is only 7,500 large — that is in residents — and Siskiyou County has a population of around 44,000.

I question if these armored vehicles are truly for criminal (terrorist) activities. I believe our SWAT Teams have been well-trained for most anything that can occur in Yreka or surrounding Siskiyou.

So, what is the real reason for such an armored and armed vehicle?

Hum, a passing thought makes one wonder, if the armored vehicles may be used on local citizens. Is a Civil War or possible uprising a concern by the powers-that-be?

And really, who will be on which side?

Is this why the federal and California governments are working so hard to disarm the public with the attacks on the 2nd Amendment? Or to make ammunition so difficult to obtain that our guns won’t be of any use?

Does boggle the mind if you think too hard.

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YPD gets armored truck

Constitution, Military

Yreka Police Department Chief Brian Bowles stands beside the  MaxxPro Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) armored vehicle that his department has recently obtained at no cost.

  • Yreka Police Department Chief Brian Bowles stands beside the  MaxxPro Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) armored vehicle that his department has recently obtained at no cost.

  • Siskiyou Daily News

  • By Ami Ridling Daily News Staff Writer Posted Sep. 26, 2013 @ 10:54 am

    YREKA – In light of multiple active shooting incidents around the nation, Yreka Police Chief Brian Bowles is pleased to announce that his department has obtained an armored vehicle that will greatly enhance officers’ abilities to respond swiftly to incidents that pose various potential threats. It was acquired at no cost to the department.

    “This will be a very important resource. I want my officers to have the best equipment possible to effectively do their jobs and keep the residents of Yreka safe,” commented Bowles.

    He noted that last year alone, Yreka had two incidents of armed suspects taking hostages on Turre Street.

    Furthermore, he commented that having an armored vehicle allows officers to negotiate with, engage or search for active shooters or armed suspects and rescue injured or trapped officers or citizens while minimizing risk to officers and other first responders.

    Bowles worked for seven years to obtain the vehicle. He submitted his request to a United States Department of Defense program which distributes used, federal property – that has been decommissioned – to agencies at no cost.

    Last year, he received notification that armored vehicles used in Afghanistan operations had been decommissioned.

    He was recently notified that the vehicles had arrived at the Fort Lewis, Wash. Army Base and was subsequently approved to receive a MaxxPro Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle. It is five years old.

    Last week, Bowles, Lt. Dave Gamache and a city mechanic traveled to Washington, examined the MRAP, took it on a test drive around the base, and drove it to its new Yreka home. It cost the city of Yreka approximately $300 in gasoline to transport the MRAP from Washington.

    “It gets better mileage than I expected,” said Bowles, noting that it gets 9 miles to the gallon.

    The 43,500-pound armored MRAP cost the federal government $658,000 to build in 2008, said Bowles. According to the vehicle’s documentation, it seats six as well as a gunner. It is equipped to plow through fire, and its airtight features allow for safe transport during chemical warfare. There are no weapons mounted on the MRAP.

    “To my knowledge, there are no other vehicles like this in Siskiyou County,” commented Bowles.

    The MRAP will be outfitted with communications equipment, emergency lighting and new seating. Ultimately, it will serve as a mobile command center and will be available to other law enforcement agencies when and if necessary.

    “Hopefully we will never have to use it,” said Bowles, adding he hopes citizens will have better peace of mind knowing the department has one in the event of a tragedy.

     “My staff is excited to receive training on the new vehicle and learn about its capabilities,” stated Bowles

Read more: http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/article/20130926/NEWS/130929811#ixzz2gL3EkdbI

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Special tribute to U.S.A Independence Day

Constitution, KSYC radio, Mark Baird, Military, Sheriff Jon Lopey

Buffalo Broadcasting is broadcasting a special 4th of July show on Liberty and Constitution and the sacrifice of patriots.

The show will air on KSYC and KSIZ  at 8am and 5 pm Pacific time on the 4th of July.

Tune in to 103.9  102.3  101.7 or 99.3 to listen

Internet listeners go to  www.ksyc1039.com  click on listen live.  Please let us know if you like the broadcast and what types of program you would like to see in the future.

Mark Baird

Buffalo Broadcasting

Yreka, CA.



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Memorial Day Special Program on KSYC / KSIZ

KSYC radio, Mark Baird, Military, Veterans & soldiers

Mark Baird, owner along with his wife, Cyndi Baird,

of Buffalo Broadcasting Inc. in Yreka, CA.,


is hosting a special one hour

Memorial Day Program to honor

the fallen from all of America’s Wars.

The program will feature points of history reminiscences

of former servicemen and

letters from soldiers.

It will air 3 times on each station

Listen LIVE on the web on KSYC !

 click on link


Broadcast on KSYC 103.9 FM Yreka, CA

And KSIZ 102.3 FM from Mt. Shasta, CA.

down I-5 through Sacramento Valley

8 a.m. Sunday May 26

8 a.m. Monday, May 27


5 p.m. Monday, May 27


Thank you to sponsors

McQuoid Well Drilling  in Fort Jones, CA.


Dr. Michael Hess in Fort Jones, CA.

for supporting this Special Memorial Program.


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