By unitedweroll on Oct 12, 2011 | In Military News and Support
VA Launches Outreach Campaign to Eliminate Homelessness Among Veterans
This email notice was just received at 10:32am today (10/12), which is listed as one of the dates where this event is already in progress in some locations. Hopefully this is a good step in the right direction, as we clearly need a lot of effort put into helping our homeless Veterans.
"Make the Call" Events Scheduled for 28 Communities Across the Nation
WASHINGTON (Oct. 12, 2011)- As part of its drive to end homelessness among Veterans by 2015, the Department of Veterans Affairs is launching a nation-wide outreach initiative, "Make the Call," to spread the message about its special programs to help homeless Veterans and their families to 28 communities across the nation in October.
"Those who have served this nation as Veterans should never find themselves on the streets, living without care and without hope," said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki.
Shinseki noted that 28 communities - from Atlanta to Hawaii - will host special programs this fall highlighting local services for homeless Veterans, their families and those at risk of becoming homeless.
"Working with our partners in state and local government, the non-profit and the private sectors, we can restore our homeless Veterans and their families to the lives of dignity they've earned," Shinseki added.
This fiscal year, VA expects to spend $3.4 billion to provide health care to homeless Veterans and $800 million in specialized homeless programs. The latest studies say more than 75,000 Veterans are homeless on a typical night, and about 135,000 spend at least one night a year in a homeless shelter.
VA is encouraging family, friends and citizens in the community to "Make the Call" and help prevent and end homelessness among Veterans. Since March 2010, VA has offered a toll-free telephone number, staffed around the clock by trained professionals, to help homeless Veterans, their families and at-risk people. The number is 877-4AID-VET (or 877-424-3838).
Recently, VA has transformed its efforts in the fight against homelessness. It is changing from a program focus upon temporary, shelter-based services, to prevention, employment, permanent housing, and help to families and Veterans at risk of becoming homeless.
The special awareness and outreach programs in the 28 selected communities are in:
* Alaska - Anchorage, Oct. 12
* Arizona - Phoenix, Oct. 18-19
* California - San Francisco, Oct. 19; Los Angeles and San Diego, Oct. 12
* Colorado - Denver, Oct. 14
* District of Columbia - Oct. 14
* Florida - Miami, Oct. 21
* Georgia - Atlanta, Oct. 29
* Hawaii - Kauai, Oct. 14; Oahu, Oct. 17
* Illinois - Chicago, Oct. 12
* Louisiana - New Orleans, Oct. 22
* Massachusetts -Boston, Oct. 20
* Michigan - Detroit, Oct. 12
* Missouri - St. Louis, Oct. 17
* Montana -- Billings, Oct. 11
* Nevada - Las Vegas, Oct. 6
* New York - Canandaigua, Oct. 12; New York Harbor, Oct. 21
* North Carolina - Fayetteville, Oct. 12
* Ohio - Cleveland, Oct. 12
* Pennsylvania - Lebanon, Oct. 12
* South Dakota - Sioux Falls, Oct. 12
* Tennessee - Memphis, Oct. 11
* Texas - Houston, Oct. 20; Dallas, Oct. 18
* Washington - Seattle, Oct. 12
More information about VA's programs for homeless Veterans, at-risk Veterans and their families is available at www.va.gov/homeless.
# # #
By unitedweroll on Oct 8, 2011 | In Military News and Support
Upcoming Highlights From United We Roll and Stardust Radio
For the Week of October 10 - 14, 2011
Coming up this next week, our United We Roll World Tour Show will be broadcast at its regular live time (as long as Mother Nature does not rearrange equipment with lightning or any other "surprises" ) on Tuesday, October 11th, starting at 2pm Central and will repeat at 6:30pm CT on Wednesday, October 12th. Our deployed guests will include:
1) CH/CPT Anthony Giamello who is currently on deployment with the 376th AEW/HQ where he is the pastor to the Catholic community, among other faith based duties. As a member of the ANG (Air National Guard), Father Giamello splits his time between active military service and in his community at home as Associate Pastor at St Johns The beloved. We salute Father Giamello for maintaining both lifestyles and for watching over our loved ones on deployment and faith guidance here at home.
2) We will have an outstanding visit with SSG Eric Ring who is coming into the 11th month of his third and final deployment to Iraq. On duty with HHC, 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment, 2-1 Advise & Assist Brigade, SSG Ring is a medic who shares so much information and a truly incredible visit with us.
Visits with soldiers such as SSG Ring brings comfort to our families here at home as we hear of the deep concern he has for those with whom he serves.
3) A great honor is upon us as we host a repeat visit with Col Paul Calvert, Commander of the Army's 2-1 Advise and Assist Brigade, and the unit that we have been following with visits every week during their year long deployment. We know that every member is incredibly busy with the wrap-up over there and are very honored that Col Calvert will be able to visit with us as they prepare to close their chapter on Iraq. This conversation looks back over the past several years as the "Big Red One" has been involved in Iraq through OIF and the newer OND (Operation New Dawn) and from the standpoint of this commander who cares so deeply for his unit's soldiers and families.
The second in our series of shows that are taking a very real look at issues our Veterans face each and every day will be broadcast on Monday and Thursday of this upcoming week. John Keith, an injured Navy Veteran himself, has founded an organization to help other Vets in a unique way and they are producing some great results. Called OIF Veteran Community, John will be here to tell us about the type of assistance they provide and how Vets from all dates of service can contact them. In addition, Americans from all walks of life can also participate and in less than 10 minutes of time and effort, can help to improve the quality of life for one and possibly more Vets. John will also tell us about the recent arrest of a man who used a fictitious military career to receive a huge amount of money from unsuspecting victims. This one hour show will be broadcast on Stardust Radio Monday, October 10th at 6:30pm Central and will repeat at appr 9am Central on Thursday, October 13th.
Rick Townsend will also be presenting Firebase Network at its usual weekly time period of 6pm Central on Sunday, October 9th. Rick’s show offers a variety of information for Vets and some very interesting guests.
We are proudly working on more specials to focus on both Active Duty & Veteran issues and will announce the dates of those broadcasts as soon as they are available.
For program updates and more information, check out the United We Roll Blog, located at www.stardustradio.com, click United We Roll page, click World Tour Blog button. News is also on Facebook at www.facebook.com/unitedweroll and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/JudiBUSA
By unitedweroll on Oct 4, 2011 | In Military News and Support
Release No: 220
Oct. 3, 2011
Air Force announces selections to captain
Air Force Personnel, Services and Manpower Public Affairs
RANDOLPH AIR FORCE BASE, Texas – The Air Force selected 126 first lieutenants for promotion during the 2011B Line of the Air Force Judge Advocate General Corps, Nurse Corps, Medical Services Corps and Biomedical Sciences Corps Quarterly Captain Selection Process.
The entire list can be found on the Air Force Personnel Center website here.
The board considered 128 lieutenants for promotion. The results are as follows:
Selection statistics in-the-promotion zone for captain:
LAF-J – 4 selected from 4 considered for a 100.0 percent select rate
NC – 58 selected from 59 considered for a 98.3 percent select rate
MSC – 22 selected from 22 considered for a 100.0 percent select rate
BSC – 42 selected from 43 considered for a 97.7 percent select rate
There were no lieutenants considered for promotion in the above-the-promotion zone for captain category.
For more information on promotions, visit the Air Force Personnel Services website at https://gum-crm.csd.disa.mil.
- 30 -
By unitedweroll on Sep 27, 2011 | In Military News and Support
We are so proud and honored to have hosted interviews with a couple of these Heroes of Freedom and many other members of the units from the 2-1 Advise and Assist Brigade during their last deployment to Iraq. We congratulate the following four soldiers on their visits with the Audie Murphy Club Board representatives and wish them all an invitation to join some of the finest soldiers who have served our country - just as they have been and continue to be.
We salute Staff Sgt. Joshua Bell, Sgt. 1st Class William Mackey, First Sgt. James Lower and Staff Sgt. Julian Colwell!
Deployed “Dagger” Brigade Soldiers attend Sergeant Audie Murphy Club Board
Photos by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C
(photos posted at www.facebook.com/unitedweroll)
BAGHDAD—Staff Sgt. Joshua Bell, left, a gunnery sergeant with 1st “First Lightning” Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd “Dagger” Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center and a Santa Rita, Guam, native, addresses senior enlisted leaders from throughout the Dagger Brigade during a Sgt. Audie Murphy Club board Sept. 23, 2011 at Camp Liberty, Iraq. Bell, who has earned two Purple Hearts during his current deployment, was asked a range of questions about himself and his Soldiers in order to gain entry into the SAMC, an exclusive club for noncommissioned officers whose achievement and performance merit special recognition. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C)
Sgt. 1st Class William Mackey, right, a platoon sergeant with 1st “Dragon” Battalion, 63rd Armor Regiment, 2nd “Dagger” Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center and an Arkansas native, congratulates Staff Sgt. Joshua Bell, center, a gunnery sergeant with 1st “First Lightning” Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C and a Santa Rita, Guam, native, on his acceptance into the Sgt. Audie Murphy Club Sept. 23, 2011 at Camp Liberty, Iraq. Bell, who has earned two Purple Hearts during his current deployment, was asked a range of questions about himself and his Soldiers in order to gain entry into the SAMC, an exclusive club for noncommissioned officers whose achievement and performance merit special recognition. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C)
First Sgt. James Lower, first sergeant of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd “Dagger” Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center, second from left, asks a question of Staff Sgt. Julian Colwell, left, an artilleryman with 1st “First Lightning” Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C and a Colorado Springs, Colo., native, during a Sgt. Audie Murphy Club Board Sept. 23, 2011 at Camp Liberty, Iraq. Colwell was asked a range of questions about himself and his Soldiers in order to gain entry into the SAMC, an exclusive club for noncommissioned officers whose achievement and performance merit special recognition. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C)
Staff Sgt. Julian Colwell, an artilleryman with 1st “First Lightning” Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd “Dagger” Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center and a Colorado Springs, Colo., native, reports to the board during a Sgt. Audie Murphy Club board Sept. 23, 2011 at Camp Liberty, Iraq. Colwell was asked a range of questions about himself and his Soldiers in order to gain entry into the SAMC, an exclusive club for noncommissioned officers whose achievement and performance merit special recognition. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Daniel Stoutamire, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C)
By unitedweroll on Sep 27, 2011 | In Military News and Support
CSI: Baghdad—‘Griffin’ Battalion Soldiers teach Iraqi Police crime scene investigation techniques
By 1st Lt. Richard Snyder, 2nd AAB, 1st Inf. Div., USD-C
BAGHDAD—Members of the Local Police Transition Team attached to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, “Griffin” Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center, hosted a gathering of Iraqi Police investigators from across Baghdad for a crime scene investigation training course Aug. 3 and 4 at Joint Security Station Justice, Iraq.
The two-day course, led by David Carpenter, a civilian police adviser with the LPTT and a Jacksonville, Fla., native, covered forensic evidence collection and tactical site exploitation, or taking evidence from a crime scene or suspect’s home or work area.
The emphasis on CSI is a result of the LPTT’s identification of the need for remedial training to bridge gaps in the IP’s traditional skill set.
“Historically, police cases have been compromised due to improper evidence collection,” said Sgt. 1st Class Roy Gibble, a military police platoon sergeant with HHC, STB, and a Wynonna, Okla., native. “However, with this training we expect to see some strong results, and Iraqi Police will have the required skills to manage crime scenes effectively and therefore help in the arrests and the legal process.”
The CSI training was part of what is an ongoing initiative to create enduring capabilities within the Iraqi Security Forces and ensure they have the capabilities they need to effectively enforce law and order long after U.S. forces leave the country. It is designed to establish the skill sets and create a group of experts who can, in turn, train their fellow Iraqis to have a lasting impact.
The training began with a classroom portion which covered subjects from how to approach a crime scene and how to provide security and cordon off the site, to ensuring proper photography and cataloguing of evidence.
Culminating with a practical exercise on the second day, the training required IP officers to walk into a simulated crime scene and put into practice what they had learned—from start to finish.
“The Iraqi Police were eager and willing to train,” said Sgt. Christian Alvarez, a military police team leader with HHC, STB and a Herington, Kan., native. “This is a strong indication of their ability to conduct independent security operations.”
Upon completion of the course, the IP investigators were presented Certificates of Completion by Lt. Col. John Turner, team chief with the LPTT attached to the STB.
Even as the United States decreases its footprint in Iraq, many units continue to aggressively train their Iraqi partners, allowing for Iraqi Security Forces to manage and secure the nation, as well as create component trainers capable of passing their skills along to others.
“It makes me proud to see the Iraqi Police’s hard work materialize, and I look forward to watching their success,” said Staff Sgt. Henry Pogue, a military police squad leader with HHC, STB and a Vine Grove, Ky., native.
By unitedweroll on Sep 27, 2011 | In Military News and Support
I can not find any reason why anyone would point a laser at the cockpit of an aircraft or helicopter, knowing full well that they could blind the crew and cause a crash, possibly taking lives of those inside the craft and on the ground. I totally support any legislation that would make this a major crime with heavy duty penalties as in plenty of prison time. I would love to hear the excuses these laser pointers give as to why they do this. However, I am quite certain there is no reason to justify the danger.
What is it with our society when a simple laser pointer can become a weapon in the hands of some --- people?
Making a Point about Lasers
Illegal Use of Devices a Serious Crime
Justin Stouder was aiming a laser pointer at a distant tower from his suburban St. Louis yard one April evening in 2010 when a police helicopter appeared in his line of sight more than a mile away. At the time, the 24-year-old had no idea that his decision to point the laser at the helicopter was a federal felony—or that the beam of light might have serious consequences for the pilot and his crew.
“It’s equivalent to a flash of a camera if you were in a pitch black car at night,” said St. Louis Metropolitan Police Officer Doug Reinholz, the pilot on patrol that night when Stouder’s green hand-held laser “painted” his cockpit. “It’s a temporary blinding to the pilot,” he said during a recent news conference highlighting the danger of lasers directed at airplanes and helicopters.
Interfering with the operation of an aircraft is a crime punishable by a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, and laser incidents are on the rise. Since the FBI and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) began keeping records of laser events in 2004, “there has been an exponential increase every year,” said Tim Childs from the Federal Air Marshal Service, who serves as a liaison officer with the Bureau on laser issues.
VIDEO - Watch law enforcement arrest a suspect with a laser pointer.
In 2009, there were 1,489 laser events logged with the FAA—that is, pilots reporting that their cockpits were illuminated by the devices. The following year, that figure had nearly doubled to 2,836, an average of more than seven incidents every day of the year. And the overwhelming number of the incidents involved green lasers—especially dangerous because the human eye is most susceptible to damage from the yellow-green light spectrum.
Hand-held lasers—about the size of fountain pens—are used legitimately by astronomy hobbyists and in industrial applications. Anyone can purchase one, and technology has made them inexpensive and more powerful. Lasers costing as little as $1 can have ranges of two miles—strong enough to target a variety of aircraft.
And what appears as a dot of light on the ground can illuminate an entire cockpit, disorienting a pilot or causing temporarily blindness. That’s because the farther the beam travels the more spread out it becomes. “At 500 feet,” Childs said, “that two-centimeter dot you see on your wall can be six feet wide.” To date, no aircraft have been lost as a result of laser incidents, he added, but there have been eye injuries, and perpetrators have gone to jail.
Those responsible for “lasering” aircraft fit two general profiles, Childs explained. “Consistently, it’s either minors with no criminal history or older men with criminal records.” The teens are usually curious or fall victim to peer pressure, Childs said. The older men simply have a reckless disregard for the safety of others. There are also intentional acts of laser pointing by human traffickers or drug runners seeking to thwart airborne surveillance, Childs added.
As for Justin Stouder, the helicopter pilot he lasered helped guide police to his house, where he was arrested minutes after the incident.
“I had no idea it illuminated the whole cockpit and blinded everybody inside,” Stouder said during the news conference. He offered a public apology and volunteered to tell his story in the hopes of educating the public about the dangers of laser pointing. “It was really a selfish mistake,” he said of his actions.
- Press release
- More information about laser pointers and safety