Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 299 PO Box 6076 Rock Island, IL 61201-6076 www.QCVVA299.

org

PRESORT STANDARD NON PROFIT ORG US POSTAGE PAID ROCK ISLAND IL 61201 PERMIT NO 167

APRIL 2008

A Nationally acclaimed and award winning Veteran Newsletter & Website
Vietnam Veterans of America Quad Cities Chapter #299

L ECIAON SHOULDER SP CTI ELESSUE TO SHOULDER I
www.QCVVA299.org
FINAL PROPOSED CHAPTER 299 CONSTUTIONAL BYLAW CHANGE TO BE VOTED ON AT THE APRIL 2008 ANNUAL GENERAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING
SECTION 6 – FINANCE A. A spending cap adjustment, increase or decrease, approved by the Chapter Board in the form of a standing motion, must be approved by the Chapter membership at a General Chapter Meeting at which a quorum is present (15%). The spending cap can be exceeded, but not more then doubled, by a vote of the membership at a General Chapter Meeting at which a quorum is present. B. An exception to the spending cap shall be a designated Chapter EVENT. A Chapter EVENT is a special circumstance or occurrence in which the Chapter may exceed the spending cap to fund an EVENT that will generate income or is an occasion for the “good of the order”. C. The decision to designate a Chapter EVENT must be initially approved by the Chapter Board. If and only if approved by the Board, it will then be brought to a General Chapter Meeting for discussion and final approval by a quorum. D. All requests for EVENT status must be accompanied by a line item planning budget estimate.

President-Bill Albracht 309.797.2660 w.albracht@mchsi.com Vice President-Joe Murphy 309.788.0350 jpmurf48@aol.com Secretary-Bob Albracht 309.786.6454 bobalbracht@hotmail.com Treasurer-Todd Harlow 309.752.9749 tharlow@co.rock-island.il.us Membership-Larry Tschappat 309.788.2729 let289@hotmail.com VVA National Offices 800.882.1316 VA Outpatients Clinic Bettendorf 563.332.8528 VAMC Iowa City, IA 800.346.1843 319.338.0581 IL Dept of Veterans Affairs Dan Bebber VSO 309.793.1460 RI County Vet Ast Comm. Todd Harlow - Supt. & VSO 309.558.3546 The Vet Center Fred Waymen 309.762.6954 Iowa Veteran Affairs David Woods 563.326.8723 VVA Service Officer Al “Butch” Huber 309.721.1453 Steve Lowther 309.737.2954 Honor Guard Co-Captains Dennis Laird - Funerals H: 309.797.3625 C: 309.2303559 Andy Anderson - Parades C: 563.940.5980

A FARWELL MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT
I have been your president for two terms and it is without reservation that I say to our membership that it has been an absolute privilege and honor to be at the helm of this ship for two years. Although the president is the focal point for anything good…or bad, that is associated with the Chapter, I can truly say that it has been all good. Here is a short list of the accomplishments of our Chapter in the last two years: • Spearheaded the expanded membership VVA National constitution change that brought nationwide attention to the importance of reaching out to our Gulf War Veteran, brothers & sisters. • The Chapter’s first (& second) WELCOME HOME VETERAN’S DAY DANCE that pays honor to all veterans, but especially the Viet Nam Vets. This event drew over 750 people last year and we see no reason that it will not be bigger in 2008. • Created the Chapter web site and dramatically enhanced and expanded the Chapter Newsletter. The aforementioned garnered us the VVA National award for best Newsletter/web site. • Initiated a campaign to secure sponsorship for the Chapter Newsletter which enabled the expansion and increased circulation. • The John Baker Bridge Initiative whereby our Chapter is one step away

“message” continued on page 3

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Sponsorship Page

SUMMARY OF MINUTES AND MOTIONS FOR THE MARCH BOARD & MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS
Minutes of the Chapter Board Meeting & General Membership Meeting: BOARD MEETING On 11 March, 2008, the Chapter Board meeting was held at the Moline VFW. Vice President Joe Murphy called the meeting to order. The Pledge of Allegiance was said and a moment of silence for our troops, past and present was observed. Todd Harlow presented the Treasures report, which was accepted, subject to review. After the Chapter election of April 2008 all members are invited to partake in food and drink at the Cabañas Bar located at 2120 - 4th Ave, RI. Cabañas (owned by Phil Scott) was selected as they are a Major Sponsor of the Chapter Newsletter. The normal location, the RIA Club was booked. Bob Brooks was appointed the task of chairing a three-person committee to study the cost of the Chapter’s Rock Island office. Since the main reason to have a “brick & mortar” office is to archive Chapter records and secure the Honor Guard’s weapons, Bob is going to explore the possibilities of combined Chapter weapon and record storage. MAVA, VVA 776 & 669 will be surveyed to see if there exists any interest. Bob Brooks announced that the Chapter picnic/Hog Roast would be held at the Arsenal Sports Complex (on the North side of the RIA adjacent to the Mississippi) on 21 June, 2008, between 1200 hrs and 1800 hrs. The cost will be $5.00 for adults and $3.00 for children under 12 years of age. The Picnic will be open to all VVA area Chapters (776 & 669), AVVA Members, as well as MAVA members. A short ‘bio’ will be required of each person running for office and it will be published in the April Newsletter prior to the election. A $231.00 receipt was received from the John Lewis shelter for donated food left over from the last Wednesday night Chapter dinner held in January. MOTIONS: No. 1. A motion was made and approved to give $20 to Dennis Laird for the gas used to drive to Savanna, IL for Color Guard business. No. 2. A motion was made and approved to charge $6 each for the remaining Chapter Challenge Coins after each member (present or not) receives one at the April election & General Meeting. No. 3. Due to the extra driving involved for our Chapter’s Honor Guard Co-Captains, a motion was made and approved to provide a stipend of $200 to Andy Anderson for his duties as Co-Captain of the Chapter Honor Guard. No. 4. A motion was made and approved to provide Paul “Frenchy” Eaves $600 for the up coming Vets Day funding. The matter is now referred to the Charities/ Donation Committee for approval and presentation to the general membership. The Board meeting was adjourned after business was concluded. GENERAL MEETING On 18 March 2008, Quad Cities Chapter 299 held its general membership meeting at the RI Arsenal cafeteria. President Bill Albracht called the meeting to order at 1900 hrs. The Pledge of Allegiance was said and a moment of silence for our troops, past and present was observed. The Secretary’s report was accepted as printed in the April Newsletter. The Treasurer’s report was accepted, subject to review. COMMITTEE REPORTS: Membership Chair Larry Tschappat reported that the chapter has 299 members, 139 life memberships, and 48 AVVA members. Larry also reported that our Chapter is currently the 12th largest in the nation. He also advised that we were only seven members short of being 11th! See Larry’s Membership report else ware in this Newsletter. Bob McSparin reported that the Chapter Charities Committee has allocated $2,850.00 so far this year. All donations were approved at the Chapter’s General Meeting by the membership. Dennis Laird reported on upcoming Honor Guard events that are online on the Chapter’s web. Ray Hamilton, Baker Bridge Project Chair, reported that the Illinois House has passed the bill (introduced & shepherded by Representative Pat Vershoore) naming the I280 Bridge after QCA MOH recipient John Baker and it now rests with the Illinois Senate and our State Senator, Mike Jacobs. More to follow as Ray stays on top of this very important piece of legislation. The 2008 Summer Picnic/Hog Roast will be held on 21 June, 2008 at the Rock Island Arsenal Sports Complex (North side of RIA on Mississippi) between 1200 and 1800 hrs. The cost will be $5.00 for adults and $3.00 for children under 12 years of age. All members from MAVA, Bettendorf Chapter 776 & Moline 669, and our AVVA members will also be invited. See the ‘DINE ON SWINE’ story else ware in this Newsletter. The next order for the Chapter Varsity Jackets will be taken in August & September and an order filed in late September, with delivery at the November meeting. As with gasoline, the jacket price is going up. Additional information can be found on the Chapter web www.qcvva299.org . Click on Chapter Jackets & Pins right side. Any member who decides to run for office should be able to send and receive e-mails and have WORD document capability. SIDEBAR: In the April Newsletter, there will be some type of designation to denote which candidates have the needed basic computer skill. As stated time and again by the Chapter President, basic computer skills for the Chapter leadership is of paramount
“MINUTES” CONTINUED ON PAGE 10

All financial services provided, all the time, to all of the Quad Cities...and beyond.

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Sullivan - Phillips

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will then depart for the Iowa City Veterans Hospital after breakfast. All volunteers contact “Frenchy” at 563.386.1696. The Chapter pays for breakfast. Congratulations to ‘Moose’ Maranda who won the $25.00 monthly ‘POT-O-GOLD’ drawing. Congratulations to Ed Ramos who won the 50/50 life membership. Raffle tickets are still available for the 1964 Ford Galaxy 500, two door hardtop being raffled off by the VVA Illinois State council. No. 1. A motion was made and passed to purchase a $145.89 Vietnam Commemorative KABAR knife with oak display stand. This will be raffled off as a means of defraying the cost of the Chapter’s 21 June Summer Picnic/Hog Roast. SIDEBAR: This beautiful commemorative which depicts the VN memorial statue in WDC etched in the blade, will be available to view at all meetings. Raffle tickets are $1 each and 6 for $5. The drawing will be held at the Hog Roast on 21 June. No. 2. A motion was made and approved to increase Sean Murphy’s (the Chapter Newsletter publisher & Webmaster) stipend from $150month to $200/month. SIDEBAR: Sean’s expertise was instrumental in securing the 2007 Newsletter/Website of the Year award for the Chapter from VVA National. As our Chapter grows, we rely on Sean more and more for his technical expertise & guidance. Respectfully submitted by R.D. Albracht Secretary – Chapter 299

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“message” continued from page 1
from having the I-280 Iowa/ Illinois Bridge officially named after the QCA’s only Medal of Honor recipient. • Ensured a solid financial future by regularly investing in our Chapter’s “401-K” so that our Chapter will remain when others have long closed their doors. • Held two Chapter “mug nights” where all in attendance received distinctive Chapter 299 VVA mugs. • Created an open forum atmosphere at every Chapter meeting ensuring that all members can be heard and all issues are addressed. After all, it is OUR Chapter, I merely ran the meetings. • Organized and empowered the Chapter’s Donation/Charities Committee that has brought order and accountability to the charitable giving for which this Chapter is famous. Further, the Chapter membership is once again the final voice in all chapter charity expenditures. In closing, let me say that it was not a one man effort; I

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had help…a lot of help. You elected a superior group to lead the Chapter and now it is time to do it again. You will see in this issue of the Newsletter, we have dedicated the lion’s share to the upcoming April 15th election. Each candidate has provided a “bio”. Read them and decide on the best qualified. Make a list and bring it with you to the meeting. Every candidate will introduce themselves so you will have an opportunity to put a face with a name. Voting will commence immediately after the candidate introduction. After the vote and short meeting, we will adjourn and re-form at CABANAS on Fourth Avenue in Rock Island for our complimentary election reception where we will have hot & cold hors d’oeuvres, house wine, draft beer, and well drinks. Come enjoy and welcome in our new Chapter leadership. All members and invited guests are welcome. Have someone you are truing to recruit into the Chapter? What better time to bring them and let them meet the membership in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere? Thank you all for your support and guidance in my two terms.

“MINUTES” (CONTINUED)
importance to the effective day to day operations of the Chapter. Further, newly elected members will be expected to help at Chapter events such as; the Vets Day Dance, Poppy sales, dinners, et al, and assist at Bingo at least once per month. OLD BUSINESS: The list of candidates for the upcoming election was read and verified. At present, there are 23 candidates running for 12 elected positions. It is incumbent on voting members to read the candidate’s bios, make an informed decision, and come to the meeting April 15th and vote. SIDEBAR: This much participation in a Chapter election is unprecedented. If members make only one meeting a year, let this be the one. NEW BUSINESS: Walt Carlin addressed the Chapter membership regarding IL House Bill #4197 which provides for reduced property taxes for Veterans rated at 100% and unemployable. Walt suggested that veterans contact their IL Representative and/ or State Senator to encourage passage of this bill. It is further noted that the percent of veteran taxes reduced is directly correlated to the amount of your VA disability percent. For further information call Walt at 793.1120. If you are told that the state can not afford such legislation, Walt says to simply reply “How can we not afford it.” GOOD OF THE ORDER: Vet 2 Vet - Paul “Frenchy” Eaves announced that Chapter 299 and MAVA members will be meeting Tuesday, 13 May 2008 at the “Flying J” truck stop on Northwestern Blvd off I-80 at 0700 hrs for breakfast. They

• The newly minted Chapter Challenge Coins that every member will receive free of charge at the April meeting. Stunning in design, quality, and heritage, it will be a constant reminder to our members of their commitment in serving our country. • In less then two years, we have almost doubled the size of our Chapter. We are now the 11th largest in the nation and closing in on the top ten. • Changed the Chapter’s constitution by-laws to protect the Chapter’s assets and give control of all major fiscal decisions back to the membership. • Resurrected the Chapter Varsity Jacket sales. To date, approximately a third of our Chapter now owns these fine quality jackets and every time it is worn, it is a walking advertisement for our Chapter.

Bill Albracht

NEW ONLINE OPTION FOR CHAPTER 299 NEWSLETTER
If you have been to the website, www. QCVVA299.org in the last few weeks you have seen the newest element added to the site, an inline viewer for your monthly newsletter. This new system allows the reader full access to all the e-features of the online newsletter without email, downloading, or printing on a home computer.You can read the newsletter page by page with the “mangnfying glass” zoom feature, view the pages as individual, print or forward a copy via email. This allows more acces to our award winning website and newsletter at the full resoultion able to be distributed around the world with just one click.An added advantage of this format is direct linking to websites or pages mentioned in the articles by a simple click of the mouse, no more typing cumbersome www. addresses. The March issue will be posted prior to our normal press time, so please come and visit the site and send you feedback, good or bad, to our webmaster at tlsmurphy@gmail.com

VIET NAM COMMEMORATIVE KA-BARR KNIFE & STAND RAFFLE
Our Chapter has purchased (see minutes) a Viet Nam Commemorative Ka-Barr presentation knife and oak display stand. It is truly a fitting tribute to remember all those who served during those turbulent times. The black blade depicts the three troops etched in gold emerging from the ‘bush’. This is the same as that of the famous statue at the VN Memorial in WDC. The chances are $1 each and 6 for $5. The proceeds will go to help defray the cost of the 21 June Hog Roast. This event is a “coming together” of our area Viet Nam Chapters & ( 7 7 6 6 6 9 ) , MAVA, & our AVVA m e m b e r s h i p. We also wish that each member would invite a fellow VN vet to the picnic as we could use this opportunity to recruit additional membership. The only caveat is that we need to know a ballpark figure so we can ensure we will have enough food. The VN Ka-Barr will be on display and tickets sold at every meeting from now until 21 June.

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CANDIDATES FOR APRIL 15TH ELECTIONS
CANDIDATES
Albracht, Bill Albracht, Bob Brooks, Bob Cobb, Brent Eaves, Paul Ellis, Mike Goodwin, Jerry Hamilton, Ray Harlow, Todd Laird, Dennis Loveless, Jim Marxen, Tom Murphy, Joe Ortiz, Andy Segura, Bob States, Ron Tschappat, Larry

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member or friend who would like to support our Chapter by becoming a Chapter 299 AVVA member.......think about it !! On a serious note, please remember that only those VVA members who have paid their dues BEFORE our April meeting will be allowed to vote in our Annual Election. We can no longer allow someone who pays his dues on the night of 15 April to legally vote. Our National Office must receive and acknowledge such payment before any person is eligible to vote now. For those of you whose membership expiration date is April 2008, you still can vote. this is because your membership actually expires on the 1st day of the following month, which in this case would be May 1st. If there’s any question in your mind about if you’re eligible to vote or not, please call me at 309 788-2729. Now, for the really importent news......our 300th member is Ron Roman, who was recruited by Bob Jackson. Our thanks to you both !! Our other newest IND 1-year members are Darryl Anderson, Paul Bogosian, Hart Bondi, H.J. Priest, Jim Brozovich, Dennis Carlson and Ty Simmons. Plus, a welcome back to David Hawks and Charles Gibbs. Our newest IND 3-year members are Jim Lavell, David Langel, Ed Cox, Fred Miller, Don Johnston, Larry Joiner, Rich McDonald and Wayne Thompson. And our newest LIFE members are Robert Early, Earl Higgins, Richard Parkinson, Paul Hymes Jr, Gary Sawvell, Gary DeDecker and Januarys’ 50/50 Life dues winner Terry Lynch. Last, but not least, our newest AVVA members are Tammy Sue Vaughn, Dennis Laird Sr. and Andy Ortiz. Please give all these folks a very big ‘Welcome aboard !!’ from our Chapter. And thanks again to you all. Respectfully,

OFFICE
T D D D D&S VP D&S P T&S D D S D D&S D D&S D&S

E-MAIL
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WORD
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THE MEMBERSHIP REPORT
HEY, WE DID IT !! Chapter 299 now has 300 members. My thanks to all of you who helped us reach this goal. This firmly places us as the 12th largest chapter in VVA. It also puts us right behind 11th place Chapter 317 with 305 members. Who knows.....maybe we could keep trying atad longer and overtake them too !?! Of course, it’s up to you folks, but I know each of you know at least one Vietnam era vet who is not a VVA member yet. Sooooooo, I think it’s worth a shot, but only if you want to take it !!?!! O’yes, we also now have 48 AVVA members, which is getting close to the biggest AVVA Chapter in Illinois who has 53 members. I’m sure there must be a family

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The * by the candidates name denotes a basic working knowledge (or better) in e-mail or WORD Documents, or both. The capital letter adjacent to their name identifies the office sought. A total of six Directors, two State Delegates, and the top four positions are up for election.

Larry Tschappat Membership Chairperson

RAY HAMILTON PRESIDENT I came to my first Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 299 meeting one year ago with an open mind and a cautious curiosity.What I found was truly impressive.I found friends, old acquaintances and an “esprit de corps.” I also found commitment, dedication, team work and cadre of veterans with which I am proud to stand “Shoulder to Shoulder.” My 30 years as a Special Agent in the FBI and 6 years active duty in the Corps as a “rifleman”/fighter pilot has sufficiently instilled in me the requisite qualifications necessary to lead this important organization. I would be honored to be your President and I can provide you with a style of leadership that embraces the philosophy of service to others through hands on participation, a can do attitude, visionary thinking, treating your associates respectfully while recognizing and taking pride in their accomplishments. And yes, setting and working toward worthwhile and achievable goals of a civic nature. The John Baker Bridge Initiative is nearly a done deal and our next goal is equally as worthy if not ambitious. Let’s move forward and do some good together!

MIKE ELLIS VICE PRESIDENT I served in the US Navy from 1970-1978 and 1982-1988 at which time I left active duty as a Chief Petty Officer having served fourteen and a half years. Although I volunteered for Vietnam duty in, I was never sent. I now own Sullivan–Phillips Mortuary Ltd., East Moline and I am a proud sponsor of our award winning Chapter Newsletter. I have been a funeral director for 15 years and owner for three. It is an honor and a privilege to serve the veteran community in my capacity. I truly love being of help to a veteran’s family when they need it the most. I’m running for Chapter Vice President because I believe in what we are all about. I want to be able to carry on where our previous officers have left off. I want to be able to fight for the veterans of not only our era, but all veterans from all eras. I believe our mandate as older veterans is to pass our institutional knowledge on to our young brothers and sisters and assist & mentor them in any way we can. I have the distinct privilege of belonging to our Honor Guard and I also plan to make myself available as needed for other Chapter events and functions

IL VET PROPERTY TAX REDUCTION
The State of Illinois has passed a property tax reduction for disabled Veterans in Illinois. TheVeteran must be 50% disabled by the Veterans Administration. The Veteran must have two things to apply for the Property Tax Assessment reduction. First, a current updated disability rating, this can be obtained from the VA Regional Office in Chicago. Their number is 1-800 827 1000. Note: 1st recording Press 1, 2nd recording Press 1, 3rd recording asking for 5 digit number, press O. Second, the veteran must have a certified copy of their DD214 or other separation papers. The Veteran who is 50 to 70% disabled will receive a $2500.00 reduction in their property tax assessment. The Veteran who is 80 to 100% disabled will receive a $5000.00 reduction in their property tax assessment. Warning, if the veteran is receiving 100% Individual Unemployability, will receive the actual VA percentage they have for the tax assessment reduction. Once the veteran has the information, they may go to the Tax Assessors Office in their respective county to apply for the reduction. If the Veteran is a returning veteran from the current conflicts, they may apply for a $5000.00 assessment reduction for the year they return from active duty.

Any questions? Todd Harlow, Superintendent, Veterans Assistance Commission, Rock Island County. 309 558 3546

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WILLIAM ALBRACHT CANDIDATE FOR TREASURER I have been your President for two terms and I wish to continue to serve our Chapter as your Treasurer. As I have said, I believe in term limits and the Treasure’s job is no exception. I will bring to the position fiscal responsibility and over 25 years of financial experience from my years as a financial crimes criminal investigator with the US Secret Service. Although a budget is at the core of every organization, our Chapter has never had one. Without one, there is no clear projection for expenses, investing, and our charitable giving. Further, our Chapter has not had a financial audit in at least four years and maybe longer. If elected, my first order of business will be to prepare and present an annual budget and schedule an independent audit. Understand, our current Treasure has done his job, but I believe I can do it better. I ask you now for your vote as it will be a vote for change and an accounting discipline. TODD HARLOW
TREASURER AND STATE DELEGATE

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CANDIDATES FOR DIRECTOR
BOB ALBRACHT DIRECTOR I served from 1962 to 1966 as a Military Police Officer and K-9 Officer and from 1966 to 1969 with Special Forces Group at Ft. Bragg and theVietnam. My tour of duty in Vietnam was from 1967 through 1969, where I engaged in border reconnaissance and search and destroy missions in the Central Highlands. I retired from the Army Reserve with 21 years of service. During that time I worked as an Intelligence Analyst, a Counterintelligence Special Agent & instructor, Counter Narcotics Agent, and a Special Agent with the Criminal Investigation Division. I was deployed for 2 years and assigned to the post 9/11 Pentagon Evidence Recovery Team and the Protective Services Unit for various high level military and civilian dignitaries. My last assignment was as the Special Agent In Charge of the Narcotics operations at Ft. Stewart. When not on duty in the Army Reserve and prior to retirement, I was with the DEA Tactical Intelligence Group For the past two years I have served your Chapter Secretary, and in doing so, I have enjoyed the challenges and the opportunities to help the Chapter grow to the 12th largest in the nation. In April I will run for a seat on the Chapter Board in the hope of continuing to serve the Chapter, its members and the Veteran community. BOB BROOKS DIRECTOR I have over 23 years active and reserve military service. I attained the rank of Warrant Officer and Captain prior to my discharge. I joined this Chapter in 1987and at one time or another; I have held all elected offices at least once. I am running for Director for a second term because I want this Chapter to continue on the road that it has embarked upon. We are focused and driven in coming together as a voice in the community as well as a voice in the National VVA network. I believe that we must continue to plan projects and functions in advance to maintain our established reputation and member involvement. I also firmly believe that one form of revenue (Bingo) should not dictate and over ride the other fundraising activities of the Chapter. We want to have to have our members’ involved, not just to turn a profit, but for the camaraderie and friendship that develops in working together. I have the drive, administrative skills, and leadership to help lead this Chapter and all I need is your vote. BRENT COBB DIRECTOR I served in Vietnam in 1969 with the 9th Infantry Division. I retired from the Rock Island Arsenal in 2004 after 25 years in the RIA security force. During my career in the government, I was called upon on numerous occasions to be the principal instructor in classes relating to issues pertaining to local as well as national security. There are two organizations that I divide my time between now that I am retired and they are my church and our chapter. In both cases, I volunteer to help anywhere I am needed. I have been a member of VVA #299 for 4 years and last year started participating in working Bingo about every Saturday Night. I believe by helping earn revenue for the Chapter at Bingo, it translates into helping our community and especially area veterans. I wish to be a Director of Chapter 299 because I believe I can make a difference in the growth of the chapter.

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Closure. A word meaning the events that have haunted you and reminded you of an unresolved issue can now be settled in your mind. That’s how it was for QCA VA Homeless Veteran Advocate Sara Oliver-Glover when she picked up her January issue of SHOULDER TO SHOULDER and read the news release article from the Department of Defense stating that the remains of USAF pilot Major Robert Lapham had been recovered in I Corp Viet Nam. He has since been sent home and interred at Arlington National Cemetery. Sara has worn Major Lapham’s MIA/POW bracelet for eight years and did not know his fate until the STS article. In her own words “T cannot describe how meaningful it was for me to read of his homecoming. I’m not sure anyone else was waiting for him, but I had not forgotten. Now

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Robert Lapham is home to rest I am not sure how else I would have heard of his homecoming, so thanks for including that in the Newsletter. ” Our Chapter will always be indebted to Maj. Lapham for his ultimate sacrifice and his devotion to duty and we thank Sara for remembering for us all. Bill Albracht

THE VIGLE ENDS WITH A BRACELET RETIRED

DINE ON SWINE

A SOLSTICE CELEBRATION
I’m sure you have all wondered from time to time what those Druids were thinking of when they constructed the Stonehenge. I know it crosses my mind every June 21st then I have a beer and just go back to doing what I was doing at the time and forget about it. WELL, not this year by golly, this year we are going to do the thing right give the Druids their due respect by having a picnic!!! Yes, dress up in your finest fur thongs and a light coat of oil then assemble on the banks of the Mississippi around noon on June 21st at the pavilion located closest to the Mississippi on the northwest corner of Arsenal Island for some roast pork and the trimmings. Hopefully the Druids will appear after some sacrificial toasting and before the assemblage disburses for the day. Druids are most likely to appear if a $5.00 offering is conveyed by adults and the “smellers” under 12 cast a thrupence ($3.00) on the alter of financial survival. Adult malted beverages (beer) and soda will be served. What the heck, it’s the longest day of the year. Mark your calendar now. More to follow in the future Newsletters. This event is open to all QCA VVA Chapters & MAVA members plus families and invited guests. Proceeds will be used to cover costs and help fund a QCA scholarship fund. Ray Hamilton & ‘Bobby 2 Spoons’ Brooks – Co-Hog Chairmen

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I am Todd Harlow and I am running for Treasurer of Chapter 299. I have held this position since 2003. I am a Vietnam Veteran serving in the 4th Infantry Division and the 32nd Medical Depot in Cam Ranh Bay from 1969 1970. I have held elected Chapter office for 12 years. During this time, I have served as President, Secretary, Treasurer, Trustee, and Director. I am honored to serve in our Chapter’s Honor Guard. I have cochaired VVA 299’s Bingo for three years. Bingo is the life blood of this Chapter. I along with others have been the income makers for this Chapter. I am currently Superintendent of Rock Island County Veterans Assistance Commission and enjoy helping Veterans with assistance through claim work and financial assistance. I believe that we need to be conservative in spending of the chapter funds in the future, as in the past; I will continue to be conservative with the funds.

VET 2 VET – The Quarterly Iowa City Pilgrimage
When: Where: Why: Who: Time: Departure: 13 May, 2008 Iowa City VA Hospital Visit To let them know they are not forgotten Anyone who wishes to brighten a hospital bound vets day Meet at the Flying “J” Truck Stop on Northwestern Blvd. & I-80 at 0700 0800 heading west on I-80 Other Details: Frenchy (aka Paul Eaves) is forming yet another excursion to the Iowa City VA Hospital to spread cheer and good will to the veteran shut-ins. Our Chapter is buying breakfast at the Flying J for all those volunteers making the trip. Questions? - Call Frenchy at 563.386.1696.

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Volume 22 Issue 4
PAUL “FRENCHY” EAVES DIRECTOR AND STATE DELEGATE I am running for Director and State Delegate because I feel that I can and will make a difference. I strongly believe in our Chapter and its mission. I step up to volunteer where ever help is needed. I have served as Chair for the VET 2 VET initiative and organize the quarterly pilgrimages to the Iowa City VA hospital as well as Veteran’s homes in Iowa & Illinois. Last year I received the Chapter’s award for Volunteer of theYear, which I am humbled and yet proud to have received. I am a simple man, but I possess the honesty and integrity that is critical in leading an organization. I will pledge to work for VVA, veterans, and the area community. The VVA motto “In Service To America” sums up my feelings as well as being my life’s goal. JERRY GOODWIN DIRECTOR AND STATE DELEGATE First, I would like to thank everyone for supporting me as Chapters 299’s State Delegate over the last two years. I would again like to ask you for your support in the upcoming electing for this position as well as Chapter Director. I have been a member of Chapter 299 for thirteen years and have been an active member of the Honor Guard for the past ten. In the past I have served as a Director and I have chaired the committees for the Chapter Picnics and Christmas Parties. I have also co-chaired Saturday night Bingo with my wife Freda, for three years. Currently I volunteer to work Bing once a month to ensure revenue for the Chapter. Hope to see you at the meeting in April. God Bless!! DENNIS LAIRD DIRECTOR I am Dennis Laird, I am running for Director of Chapter 299. I have held that position for the about 10 years. I am a Vietnam Veteran serving in the Americal Division from November 1970 to November 1971. I have served VVA 299 for 17 years as President, Trustee, and Director. I am honored to Captain the Honor Guard for funerals and parades. I have worked VVA 299’s Bingo for 9 years. I have attended VVA Leadership conferences and VVA National Conventions where I have learned much about VVA and its operation and organization. VVA 299 is priority one in my mind and I wish to see it progress and grow. I would appreciate your vote. JIM LOVELESS Computer skills: I have more than just basic computer skills. I have worked with computers for more than 20 years. I have been a computer operator, programmer, and desktop technician. Each of those positions requires knowledge of a different function of a computer. I am pretty well versed in the Microsoft Office programs including WORD, EXCEL, and OUTLOOK(email), as well as others. Background: Military: I served in the U.S. Army from 07/19/67 through 03/20/70 as an Air Traffic Controller. I spent 23 months in Vietnam (April, 1968 through March, 1970) with the 125th Air Traffic Company of the First Aviation Brigade at Tan Son Nhut Airbase. Education: I have a Master of Business Administration(MBA) Degree from St. Ambrose University. My reason for running is that I figure it is time for me to either “put up or shut up” as far as getting involved with helping fellow veterans. This is to include all veterans, not just “in-country Vietnam veterans”. Vision for Chapter’s future;

Shoulder to Shoulder
I see this chapter becoming a real force in helping other veterans. I don’t like the idea of the “last man standing” attitude that some chapters have adopted. Therefore, I see this chapter leaving a legacy of accomplishments that each of us as well as our families will be proud of. TOM MARXEN CANDIDATE FOR SECRETARY I served in the Army from 1966 to 1968, which included a tour in Viet Nam. I am now retired after serving 30 years with the Moline Police Department. My experiences that I feel qualify me for the position of Secretary for our Chapter include working in all divisions of the Moline Police Department and numerous investigative and management schools that required my understanding of complicated and sometimes volatile situations. I excel in conveying my thoughts in writing to others and I have been using a computer for over 20 years. I have held the positions of Secretary and President of the Moline Fraternal Order of Police. I have also been involved in several social organizations and am currently the Grand Knight of the Moline Knights of Columbus. I will faithfully and accurately record our Chapter’s minutes and publish same in the Newsletter. If you miss a meeting, you need only to read the minutes to know and understand what transpired and what we will be doing next. JOE MURPHY DIRECTOR After serving 2 terms as Chapter Vice President, I am stepping aside and making room for new blood at the top of the organization. I am seeking election to the Board of Directors to continue contributing to the development of this great organization for the following reasons: I strongly believe in term limits for all of the executive positions. I have had a significant hand in the

Volume 22 Issue 4
accomplishments of the chapter over the last 2 years. I am very computer literate. I want to continue contributing to our growth and success. I am not taking credit for all of these successes of 299. The vision and drive and leadership were provided by our very capable out going President. My job as VP was to back him up. I have done so to the best of my ability. I want to continue backing the organization in a visible way. I am, however, very proud for being part of a team that has promoted such participation by VETERANS! We are veterans and we are proud. I would be most honored to be selected by the chapter members to continue carrying the fight forward. Therefore, I am asking for your vote. ANDY ORTIZ DIRECTOR AND STATE DELEGATE I have been a member of Chapter 299 since 1987. During this time I have been an active member working as a Bingo volunteer since it’s inception in the mid ‘90’s. I am also pro active in the Chapter’s annual Christmas Basket Program for needy area vets & non vets alike. I have been a Chapter Director for the past four years, a Chapter State Delegate for the past two years, and I am currently the Chairman of the IL State Council Minority Affairs committee. I pride myself on provoking thought and alternatives to the way that the Chapter conducts day to day business. At Board meetings, I try to ask the questions that I feel the membership would ask, but above all, I am a team player and request that you vote for me so that I may continue to work for the team, our Chapter. BOB SEGURA CANDIDATE FOR DIRECTOR As we stand shoulder to shoulder representing our chapter veterans of the Vietnam era, I am again asking for your support in voting for me as one of the VVA Chapter 299 Directors. In the last year I have served on the board as a Director and attended the VVA National Convention representing the Chapter’s stance on several issues. I have had the honor of participating in the Honor Guard and in numerous fundraising events. I also assisted in delivery of Christmas baskets and participated in the Iowa City VA hospital patient visits. I would appreciate your vote of support as we continue to aspire to address the needs of our fellow veterans. I look forward to continuing as one of your directors for Chapter 299. RON STAES DIRECTOR AND STATE DELEGATE I am running for Director and State Delegate for our Chapter. I served four years in the Air Force including my tour in Viet Nam as a door gunner. I retired from the Moline Police Department after 30 years of service and I am currently serving as Chapter Trustee and member of the Charity/Donation Committee. I am highly proficient in all aspects of computers including Microsoft Publisher, Word, Excel, & Power Point and have used these skills in the past year on behalf of our Chapter. I have participated in delivering Christmas baskets, dinner fundraisers, and VVA poppy sales. I also go on the quarterly VET 2 VET pilgrimage to Iowa City VA Hospital to visit the sick and dying veterans. If elected, I will put forth my best effort to support the goals and ideals of our Chapter. I believe in our Chapter’s volunteer spirit and I have the experience and abilities to contribute to our Chapter and our community. I am willing & eager to devote the time and energy that this organization deserves in fulfilling my duties in a Director’s leadership role for this Chapter. I have found it personally rewarding to serve in the past and I am looking forward to serving our Chapter in the future.

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I’m honored to be included in this list of great candidates. I would appreciate your vote. LARRY TSCHAPPAT DIRECTOR AND STATE DELEGATE I am one of the original charter members who formed this Chapter in the fall of 1986. I have served as President four times and as a Director four times. Plus I have been a State Delegate numerous occasions over the past 21 years. I am currently the Membership Committee Chairperson for both our Chapter and the Illinois State Council. I am once again asking for your trust and your vote. I firmly believe my years of experience and loyalty to our Chapter qualifies me to assume the duties of the two positions I seek on your behalf. I promise I will never knowingly shirk my responsibilities and will attend, participate, and represent our Chapter as is required to fulfill the duties of these positions. Simply put, I will give this Chapter’s membership the absolute best I have to offer.

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