Celebrating and commemorating our veterans. United States military veterans and their families.

Veterans Events in October – Gig Line #75


By Marsha M. Brown

Hi everybody! You know me; I love to write…a lot. And I enjoy writing about veterans and my sweetie pie Billy. But sometimes it’s important to get down to brass tacks and just take care of business. In this GIG LINE…it’s all about the business at hand. So, folks, if you’re a veteran, love a veteran or are a supporter of veterans overall, please grab your calendar, office Day Planner or IPhone out and make note of the following.

Between now and mid November there will be a lot of special events, activities, ceremonies, a fundraiser and even a workshop to honor and celebrate all Dare County veterans (visiting veterans too) with the special attention they deserve more than ever before.

Dare County Veteran I. D. Cards – have you gotten yours? If not…forgive me for asking but why not? They were created and made available in conjunction with participating Dare County businesses to show you (veterans) special honor and discounts to help you and your family. The ‘Card’ does a couple of things. It connects you with the Veterans Advisory Council which builds what I call our ‘veteran family’; we get the honor of meeting you face to face and thanking you personally; you in turn meet the team of Council members who are interested in your well being, your questions and your potential benefits and you’re made aware of pertinent contact numbers, info on health conditions subject to Agent Orange exposure; you’re encouraged to register your DD-214 with the Register of Deeds office for safe keeping and easy access when needed and truth be known you gain a renewed sense of pride within your community.

Once you receive your I. D. Card, you’ll have convenient access to contact info for Rhonda Creef, Veteran Service Officer who’s available by appointment to answer your questions about benefits, filing for potential entitlements, future spousal or burial benefits etc. each Tuesday – Thursday weekly from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM (excluding lunch time from 12:00-1:00 PM). If you don’t have or cannot locate your DD-214 (required along with local address to obtain an I. D. Card), Rhonda can help you apply for one and help expedite the process.

‘CARD’ issuance dates are scheduled for every Tuesday from now until December 17, 2013 in Rm. 168 at the Administrative Building from 12:00 Noon to 3:00 PM with the exception of Nov. 5th at which time we will meet with you in Rm. # 142 downstairs from 3:00 – 5:00 PM. that day only (voting day).  

A luncheon in celebration of Veterans Day will be held on Friday, November 8th at 1:00 PM at the Dare Center. This annual event is sponsored by the Dare County Center, Monarch Beach Club and The American Legion Fort Raleigh Post 26. Not only is the luncheon provided at no charge, but it is graciously served and hosted by the very dedicated staff of the Center. Believe me when I say that Sandy and everyone at the Center who takes part in planning and executing this event does it with pride. Billy and I attended last year and we were very glad we did. We met a lot of veterans, their spouses and devoted American Legion Auxiliary members; witnessed really beautiful performances by the Monarch Club and of course we enjoyed the good food too. It’s important to R.S.V.P. that you & your spouse or friends will attend but please do so by Thursday, Oct. 24th. And if you have a picture of yourself during your service, please send it to them by email or drop it off by their office at the Dare Center before the 24th   R.S.V.P. date too! Also, Billy and I plan to be there to issue the I. D. Card to anyone who might want to get one. Just make sure you bring your DD-214 and proof of local address with you. In addition, Jeff Pearson, Rural Health Integrator of the Hampton VA Medical Center will be there with his folks too if you’d like to apply for health care through the VA. Please make the effort to attend and embrace what the folks at the Dare Center put forth for you. It means a lot to them and it will to you too! We hope to see you there!

The following day, Saturday, Nov. 9th at 7:00 PM, we hope to see you again for a whopper of an event at Manteo First Assembly located at 812 Wingina St. Manteo (across the highway from Outer Banks Hotline Thrift Store). This will be our 3rd year hosting “A Salute to Veterans’ and I can hardly wait! Our Pastor Steve Smith welcomes   Rev. Ken Mann of Mount Carmel United Methodist Church (Manns Harbor) as Emcee for the evening’s event that will also perform along with a large array of local singers, performers and entertainers. Rev. Jerry Cribb of Mount Olivet United Methodist Church (Manteo) will also have a special part in the program. This very gathering of local talent  will encompass the eras from the 1940’s forward with music and even a skit and we will be reminded of what our veterans listened to, were comforted by while deployed during both memorable and difficult times. A variety of music, themes and character reference will be carried out transporting us to ‘back in the day’. Take a walk down memory lane and join us…please…bring your family, Mom & Dad and plan on an evening in YOUR honor. I will be looking for each one of you. Come for you, for ‘your’ heroes and fellow comrades and come for me…it would really mean a lot. Cindy Arendtz, Co-Creator, singer and major player in this event along with Billy, myself and everyone else who has a part in carrying this out would be blessed to see you there….I’m counting on you all. Let’s fill the seats to capacity…lets really, really show our veterans how much they mean to us. Cindy has worked hard on this…she like many in our community and in our churches care about our veterans…her husband John being one himself. Come and see what and how Cindy shows her respect and honor.

Then, the next day on Sunday, Nov. 10th starting at 1:00 PM, the Fraternal Order of Eagles (K.D.H.) will host a pig picking fundraiser to benefit Outer Banks/Currituck veterans who are in need of help in some way. Eagle member and organizer of the event Vince Puma summed it up recently by remembrance that sometimes wounded veteran’s wounds are obvious and sometimes they’re not. The fundraiser will create a fund to be set aside within their organization to help veterans…specifically. The ‘Eagles’ meet on every 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month and welcome new members to join. They’re a dedicated group who thrive on service to others and primarily focus on not only veterans but also law enforcement, fire and emergency services personnel too. Every one of the men and women in their organization and their Auxiliary that I’ve met personally has impressed me with their dedication to honor country and those who serve and protect us all. Vince said that on the 10th, they’ll serve BBQ and all the fixings with soft drinks for donations of $15 adult plates; $5 for kids age 6 – 12 and kids 5 and under eats free. Mark your calendar folks, the food will be good and the company even better. This OUTDOOR event will take place at their private club located on the corner of Baum St. & Beach Rd. in Kill Devil Hills (behind Capt. George’s Seafood Restaurant). Since that date will encompass the annual Marathon, Vince has invited runners and participants to join in the festivities as well. Come, visit, meet & greet, enjoy good food and great fellowship and expand your veteran contacts. Since it is a fundraising event, Vince and his group would graciously appreciate any help or donations anyone would like to offer. Please consider helping them to help our veterans. His contact number is: (252)207-5129. We hope to see you there too! 

The following weekend – beginning on Friday, November 15th – Sunday, November 17th the Dare County Arts Council will host a new and exciting event in Manteo. Barbara E. St. Amand, a key figure in the planning of the event ‘Carolina Veterans Weekend’ is especially excited about its launch. I met Barbara at one of our Veterans Advisory Council meetings months ago and I was extremely impressed with her dedication to veterans overall. Having served our nation herself as the devoted wife of a United States Marine, Barbara is all about good things for veterans everywhere. Dare Arts Council Director Chris Sawin, Barbara and others who are involved with the Carolina Veterans Weekend are a great group of people who commit daily to the success of this undertaking that will, as Barbara put it, “teach veterans to express their military experiences through literature”. Chris Sawin, Director, has also meant a lot to the Veterans Advisory Council in that he has already shown great devotion to veterans but he continues to promote veterans and their families within Dare County effectively. Their weekend event will ‘kick off’ Friday evening with live music and performances at Festival Park and continue through Sunday with the Veterans Writing Project. For an application for the free but limited space workshop, please look online for www.darearts.org (look for the American flag link) or call: (252) 473-5558. For additional info please email: info@darearts.org

It’s going to be a very busy month this November! Lots of patriotic folks are doing productive and enjoyable things for the good veterans among us…please get involved, attend the events, and offer to help. Come on folks! Our veterans have done more than their part for us…let’s get together…all of us…and turn out in huge numbers to show our support, our gratitude and our love for the men and women who deserve it. Mark your calendars…lets see each other a lot next month, O.K.?

Finally, remember the monthly meetings of the American Legion Post 26, the newly re-established V.F.W., and the Veterans Advisory Council which take place on the last Thursday of each month. Get involved. If you have questions about any of the forthcoming events, don’t hesitate to call me or you can contact Rhonda at (252) 475-5604. We honestly want to hear from you. And don’t forget, you can always reach me through editor@giglineheroes.com too.

As always, I love you and I thank you all who have served our beautiful nation. Until next time, be happy, be healthy, be safe and thank a veteran…look around you…they’re everywhere…seriously. Sometimes it’s hard to know who they are because they don’t brag on themselves…so make the effort to seek veterans out and when you find them… brag on them…it’ll make you both feel good! O.K…don’t forget to ‘SAVE THE DATE’(s)…and when you see me…let me see you so I can hug your neck! As usual…stay tuned.

As always, I love you and I thank you all who have served our beautiful nation. Until next time, be happy, be healthy, be safe and thank a veteran…look around you…they’re everywhere…seriously. Sometimes it’s hard to know who they are because they don’t brag on themselves…so make the effort to seek veterans out and when you find them… brag on them…it’ll make you both feel good! O.K…don’t forget to ‘SAVE THE DATE’(s)…and when you see me…let me see you so I can hug your neck! As usual…stay tuned.

Contact the Editor

Marsha M. Brown has been writing a weekly Gig Line since 2012.  Marsha is the widow of Vietnam War, U.S. Army, veteran Billy Brown of Manteo, NC.  She was instrumental in establishing the Dare County Veterans Advisory Council and maintains an active role in the veteran community. You can reach Marsha with questions or suggestions at editor@giglineheroes.com.  Have a story to tell or a veteran to feature? She would love to hear from you!

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