Sepulveda VA troops work hard, deserve support

first_imgThe automatic lift welded to the back of Harvey Rose’s van tells a story that often gets overlooked these days. Despite the medical cutbacks in veterans services at Sepulveda VA, the staff and volunteers there are doing a heck of a job holding the place together for our local vets. You can hate the war, Harvey says, but still support the troops. The Sepulveda VA’s own war is to end the cutbacks in services and keep the North Hills facility open and vital. The troops trying to do just that are the dedicated doctors, physical therapists, support staff and volunteers working there. I’ve heard the same sentiments from hundreds of veterans and their widows over the years. They all hate the war – the cutbacks at Sepulveda, and having to drive over the hill to the West L.A. VA for their medical appointments now. But to a man and woman, they support the troops doing the heavy lifting at Sepulveda VA. People such as Pam Murphy, widow of Medal of Honor recipient Audie Murphy, who has dedicated her life to cutting through VA red tape and making sure all vets get the services they deserve. People such as Becky James and the dozens of retired residents in the volunteer department who show up every day to do anything that’s needed – from picking up vets at their homes and bringing them to the VA or just sitting at a bedside holding a vet’s hand or reading to him. Last year, when the VA brass thanked the volunteers for the great job they were doing by cutting out the free $4.50 lunch they were given after working more than four hours a day, these people didn’t blink an eye. The volunteers kept on showing up free of charge, bringing their own lunch. They weren’t there for the free lunch. They were there for the vets. If the VA was going to be that cheap, it wasn’t their problem. People such as recreation therapist Patty Jones and physical therapist Patrick Gregario, who work so hard with so little to make sure the vets get every opportunity to succeed. Every year, Patty and Patrick field a team of local veterans 55 and older for the National Golden Age Games. And every year, our Sepulveda team brings home the lion’s share of medals in sports competitions with other VAs throughout the country. Even the VA itself bills the Golden Age Games as one of its most important programs in promoting rehabilitation, wellness and camaraderie among veterans. So it got a lot of people scratching their heads a few years ago when the brass at Sepulveda decided it didn’t have the money in the budget to help local vets without resources make the trip to participate in the games. I wrote about it, and a lot of readers were kind enough to send along a donation to help our local team out. We wound up sending a team of 22. No big surprise. The local VA says it still can’t find the money this year for a program it thinks is so important, so the guys could use our help again to get them to the games in Houston this year. Donation checks should be made out to GPF No. 2071, with Sepulveda Golden Age Game Athletes written on the memo line. Mail to Patty Jones, CTRS, (Rec. Therapy 117F), VA Medical Center, 16111 Plummer St., Sepulveda, CA 91343. Like Harvey says, you can hate the war being fought over at Sepulveda, but still support the troops. Dennis McCarthy’s column appears Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday. dennis.mccarthy@dailynews.com (818) 713-3749 They’re the heart and soul of the VA, says Harvey, a World War II vet who fought at Guadalcanal. He stopped by Sepulveda last week to see about getting a ramp to wheel his scooter up and into the van when he has to drive somewhere. At 82, Harvey’s legs are pretty shot, and he gets around these days mostly in that scooter the VA issued him. “When I asked for the ramp, they said I didn’t need one. Instead, I was told to pull my van around back. A couple of guys came out and welded on an automatic lift for me. “It’s been incredible, more than I ever expected. I’m free to go any place I want now. You know, in all the years I’ve been coming to the VA, I’ve never met a bad person,” Harvey says. “They’ve all been very gracious, going out of their way to help us veterans.” last_img read more

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HOAX – BOMB DISPOSAL EXPERTS SAY OBJECT WAS A FAKE

first_imgPICTURE EXCLUSIVE: A device which caused massive disruption in Buncrana has been declared an elaborate hoax.Gardai remove the hoax deviceThe suspicious object, which looked like a pipe bomb, was left on a wall outside the Tullyarvan Mill.An army bomb disposal team arrived by helicopter a short time ago to examine the object. However after examining the object, it was removed a short time later in a paper evidence bag by Gardai (pictured right).The planting of the device caused huge disruption to everyday life in the Inishowen town today.A number of people who called to stay in the hostel, including overseas visitors, had to be turned away.Buncrana Town Cllr Ciaran MacLochlainn said such incidents do nothing to help the image of the town. Army bomb disposal experts arrive by helicopter“Whoever put this device ehere would need to take a good look at themselves.“We are very dependent on tourists and something like this does for our reputation,” he said.He said he hopes whoever planted the device has been caught on CCTV.“I do hope that Gardai examine all the CCTV footage of the area around the mill and whoever is responsible for this is brought to justice,” he said.   HOAX – BOMB DISPOSAL EXPERTS SAY OBJECT WAS A FAKE was last modified: August 15th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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