By Marsha M. Brown
It’s important to me to start this GIG LINE by emphasizing that people all over the Outer Banks are making a difference for our Dare County veterans.
Because of that, veterans themselves are talking more and connecting…to each other; seeking opportunities to acquire their Dare County Veteran I.D. Card; keeping abreast of the Hampton VA Rural Health Care outreach events; considering filing claims for benefits they may be due; investigating potential entitlements and they’re asking questions…of fellow veterans and of our Veterans Service Officer, Rhonda Creef. They are searching for their DD-214 (if its not readily available) and once they locate it, they’re doing the responsible thing and registering it with the Dare County Register of Deeds office in Manteo. For anyone who may not realize the value of a DD-214, it is a very, very important document which in essence proves the veterans status of discharge or separation from military service. It identifies which branch, their beginning and ending term of service and the condition under which they were discharged as well as a host of other information that would be required for filing claims, medical treatment etc. just for starters. Our veterans are also attending veteran related meetings more often…and they’re not only reading GIG LINE but suggesting that their friends read it too. That’s flattering to me as the writer, but what matters most is that our veterans are seeing and even feeling a difference…that’s what this is all about.
Together our private citizens and business owners alike who care about the men and women who have served our nation are rallying around them. Fortunately for us, we live among many veterans who work with us, raise their families as our neighbor and worship with us too in the greatest county (in my opinion) in North Carolina.
Almost every day we hear from veterans who may not have realized the significance of their DD-214 but who are now taking measures to protect it and record it. By doing so, they are decreasing the burden on their families at some point in the future when they (veterans) will be entitled and rewarded the final salute.
Sitting down with the veterans who have attended scheduled meetings to register for issuance of his/her I. D. CARD has blessed my heart. It makes me happy to meet them, look in their eyes and shake their hand…and I can’t say often enough…”Thank you for your service”. I realize more each and every day that they have embraced our campaign to honor them and to encourage a more deliberate public awareness of their service, sacrifice and experience. Without exception each and every one has touch my life and in my prayers I thank the good Lord daily for the part they have all played in our history, freedoms and American way of life.
To get your ‘CARD’, please present your DD-214 showing HONORABLE discharge and proof of local address. Upcoming scheduled opportunities for veterans interested in acquiring their ‘CARD’ is as follows:
Manteo Monday, July 1st 3:00pm – 5:00pm, Dare County Admin. Bldg. Rm. 168
K.D.H. Thursday, July 11th 9:30am – 12:00pm, The Baum Center
Manteo Thursday, July 25th 1:00pm – 3:00pm, Dare County Admin. Bldg. Rm. 168
Please note: future dates will be scheduled in Buxton at the Fessenden Center and noted in GIG LINE as well as flyer availability at the respective facility. As we add more businesses that will partner with the ‘CARD’ you’ll find updated lists right here weekly. Currently, you can use your ‘CARD’ at Ace Hardware (all locations), Darrell’s Restaurant (Manteo), Jolly Roger Restaurant (K.D.H.), Buxton Auto Marine (Buxton), Quarterdeck Restaurant (Frisco) and we have more verbal promises that will reflect in next weeks GIG LINE that I think you’ll also greatly appreciate. Just wait & see! When you transact business with the businesses that partner with the Veterans Advisory Council ‘CARD’, please take the time to thank them for thanking you! 🙂 We ask that you understand that some restrictions may apply as to sale items or to specific inventory etc.
To all veterans…PLEASE, PLEASE inform your private physician if you have served in Vietnam. Unless you are actively engaged in health care through the VA (Veteran’s Administration) already, your doctor may not know to look for, treat or administer care based on possible exposure to Agent Orange. It is very important that he or she has that information. Recently I’ve heard from several veterans who only realized not long ago that their symptoms or health conditions were relative. Help your doctor help you and make sure they know.
Newsflash!Honorablydischarged Dare County veterans, per Vince Puma, Veterans Affairs Chairman of ‘The Fraternal Order of Eagles’ located at 800 S. Virginia Dare Trail (corner of Beach Rd. & Baum St.), Kill Devil Hills, N.C. 27948, are invited to attend their July 4th celebration/party starting at 2:00pm, Thursday, July 4th. The patriotic group who eagerly and actively support veterans, wish to share delicious picnic style food, fun and great hospitality! Also representative of the Dare County Veterans Advisory Council (my sweetie pie and I) plan to be there from 2:00pm to 4:00pm to issue Dare County Veteran I. D. Card(s) to local veterans who bring their DD-214 showing HONORABLE discharge or separation from their military service. We’ll look for you!
Speaking of July 4th…its right around the corner! Please do your patriotic duty and display our beautiful U. S. flag at your home or business in good, un-tattered condition. It’s important to show public pride in our red, white and blue in the best light possible. Also, if you currently have a flag that is faded, ripped, frayed or in poor condition overall (that means you’ve been using it…good for you!) you can take it to The American Legion – Fort Raleigh Post 26 (Manteo) located at 302 W. Lake Dr., Kill Devil Hills,
N. C. 27948 and place it in the RED container outside. From that point forward, the Legion members will collect the used flags and dispose of them properly and respectfully.
My sweet heart veteran Billy initially inspired ‘GIG LINE’ and why it came to be over a year ago. Since that first true story and account of his return home from Vietnam, each one of you have warmed my heart and touched my life. Thank you all for inspiring me and for reading GIG LINE. I hope this column will in turn inspire you to look in the mirror and smile…because as fellow veteran men and women, you are heroes, you ARE appreciated and you are loved. Please call me if you have questions @ (252) 202-2058 or Billy @ (252) 202-0798.
Until next time be happy, be safe, be proud and thank a veteran every single day! Lots of veteran news is in the works…so stay tuned…and HAPPY JULY 4TH!