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August Gov Walker Appoints John Scocos as New

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					                             August 26, 2011


1. Gov. Walker Appoints John Scocos as New Secretary of the Wisconsin
   Department.
2. Veteran's Affairs officials to visit Carroll in October.
3. Lead contamination broader than Grafton Ridge.
4. Warsaw Man Named to Military and Veterans Commission.
5. Muskegon Heights VFW Post 9338 to host recruiting banquet.
6. CT Stand Down Scheduled For 9/9.
7. Returning Philadelphia Veterans Face Hardship In Motherhood.
8. Widow: Ranger Killed Self To Avoid Another Tour.
9. Lung Problems Found In Iraq, Afghanistan Veterans.
10. Army Veteran Who Lost Legs In Afghanistan Rolls Forward On New Wheels In
   North Bethesda.
11. Veterans Affairs Medical Centers Now Releasing Outcome Data On Patient
   Care.
12. VA Social Media Policy Outlines Interaction, Patient Privacy Protection
   Practices.
13. Hearing On VA Homeless Plan Attracts Crowd.
14. UPS Worker Pleads Guilty To Larceny, Drug Charges In Lowell.
15. VA Officials Launch Disabled Veterans Paralympic Website.
16. Mortgage Applications Fall.
17. For Anguished Vets, Yoga Brings Peace.
18. Women Are Heroes, Too.
19. VA Database Could Benefit Every Consumer.
20. Veteran Paralyzed In Fall Competes In Art And Athletics Again.
21. Band Spruces Up Grounds At Homeless Vets Assistance Organization.
22. Duluth's Veterans StandDown Helping Troops.
23. Event Planned To Honor Veterans.
24. DAV Helps Vets Get What's Coming To Them.
25. Linda Barbera Strives To Keep Veterans And Others Out Of Prison.
26. VA / VSO-MSO Hearings as August 26, 2011:
27. Today in History:
                           August 26, 2011

1. Gov. Walker Appoints John Scocos as New Secretary of the Wisconsin
   Department. WMTV ... next Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Veterans
   Affairs. As Deputy Secretary, the Governor has chosen Jason Johns. “I consulted
   with many veteran organizations throughout the state in choosing the next WDVA
   Secretary,” said Governor Walker. ...



2. Veteran's Affairs officials to visit Carroll in October. 1380 KCIM For the past
   three years the state has allocated $10000 to all 99 counties to be used for
   administrative purposes and not for direct assistance to veterans. State law
   requires that each county have a veteran's affairs office in a county owned
   building ...



3. Lead contamination broader than Grafton Ridge. Baltimore Sun (blog) The
   couple who was purchasing it, Davis said Monday, had a loan through the US
   Department of Veteran Affairs, which required a lead test before purchase.
   "Thank God that discovered the problem," she said. When she discovered the
   lead, Davis said, ...



4. Warsaw Man Named to Military and Veterans Commission. Times-Union
   Newspaper
   Senator David C. Long, President Pro Tempore of the Indiana Senate, appointed
   Jerry Hogan of Warsaw to the Commission on Military and Veterans Affairs.
   Hogan is a Marine Corps veteran and member of American Legion Post 49,
   Veterans of Foreign Wars Post ...



5. Muskegon Heights VFW Post 9338 to host recruiting banquet. Muskegon
   Chronicle - MLive.com One of the most immediate is information about benefits
   and programs available to veterans. Steven C. Pruitt, a field service officer from
   the US Department of Veterans Affairs Outpatient Clinic in Grand Rapids, will be
   the guest speaker at Saturday ...



6. CT Stand Down Scheduled For 9/9. Hartford Courant The Connecticut
   Department of Veterans Affairs "expects 1,000 homeless and needy veterans to
   come to Stand Down 2011, a one-stop social services annual event now in its
   16th year, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, Sept. 9, at the department at 287 West
   Street in Rocky Hill." At Stand Down 2010, "1,300 veterans showed up for free
   medical care, hair cuts, and license renewals, among other services."
                           August 26, 2011

7. Returning Philadelphia Veterans Face Hardship In Motherhood. WHYY-FM
   Disabled Gulf War veteran Louise Hawthorne is "part of a growing class action
   lawsuit filed in Virginia Federal court on behalf or active duty and veteran victims
   of sexual trauma." Hawthorne receives treatment at the Veterans Affairs hospital
   in Philadelphia, which "doesn't have childcare." Marsha Four, the executive
   director of the Philadelphia Veterans Multi-Service and Education Center, "says
   the VA is working hard to provide better services for women, and things have
   improved."



8. Widow: Ranger Killed Self To Avoid Another Tour. AP "Army Ranger Jared
   Hagemann had served at least six combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, with
   another deployment to Afghanistan looming. But the 25-year-old staff sergeant,"
   who suffered from PTSD, "dreaded the prospect" of another tour. After noting
   that Hagemann was found dead earlier this summer with a gunshot wound to his
   head, Hagemann's wife, Ashley Joppa-Hagemann, said he found the "pressures
   of another deployment so overwhelming" and threatened repeatedly "to take his
   own life." Joppa-Hagemann, who is "convinced it was suicide," is quoted as
   stating, "He wanted out, they should have let him out."



9. Lung Problems Found In Iraq, Afghanistan Veterans. Reuters A study in the
   New England Journal of Medicine suggests that shortness of breath and reduced
   fitness in some Iraq and Afghanistan veterans may be due to lung damage from
   breathing in airborne toxins, combat smoke, or dust storms during deployment.
   One of the study's authors, Dr. Robert Miller of the Vanderbilt University Medical
   Center, said soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan are "exposed to burning solid
   waste, burning human waste (particularly in Iraq), and consistently exposed to
   fine particulate matter that's easily inhaled deep into the lungs at a level that's
   above what's desirable."



10. Army Veteran Who Lost Legs In Afghanistan Rolls Forward On New Wheels
    In North Bethesda. Gaithersburg (MD) Gazette US Army Sgt. 1st Class Mark
    Holbert "lost both his legs when an improvised explosive device detonated while
    he was investigating an explosion outside his base in Afghanistan in August
    2010." Operation One Voice Wounded Warrior Bike Program gave Holbert the
    "opportunity to ride alongside his daughter, who received her first bike for her
    birthday Aug. 15. The program, which provides road, tandem and hand-crank
    bikes to Special Operations Service members to aid in the operator's rehab and
    quality of life, arranged for officers from the Rockville City Police Department to
    award Mark Holbert with a customized bike Monday outside his apartment
    complex" in Bethesda.
                           August 26, 2011

11. Veterans Affairs Medical Centers Now Releasing Outcome Data On Patient
    Care. Willoughby (OH) News-Leader Veterans Affairs hospitals are "now
    included in the Centers for Medicaid and hospital quality based on what matters
    most to patients -- the outcomes of care." The agency's secretary, Eric Shinseki,
    commented on the matter, stating, "VA is committed to providing veterans and
    their family members with a transparent accounting of the quality and safety of its
    health care system. In collaborating with CMS, we show our determination to be
    open and accountable to veterans and their families."



12. VA Social Media Policy Outlines Interaction, Patient Privacy Protection
    Practices. FierceHealthIT The US Department of Veterans Affairs has
    "formalized its burgeoning social media empire by announcing a policy on how
    VA employees should use these online platforms." The "new policy explains how
    employees may apply to create a social media site, describes the proper modes
    of interaction with veterans, and provides guidance on how to protect the privacy
    of patient data." In a press release, VA Secretary Eric Shinseki said, "Veterans
    should have consistent and convenient access to reliable VA information real
    time using social media--whether on a smartphone or a computer. They also
    should be able to communicate directly with appropriate VA employees
    electronically."



13. Hearing On VA Homeless Plan Attracts Crowd. Fort Wayne (IN) News-
    Sentinel On Wednesday, approximately "40 people, including government
    officials and potential developers, attended a public hearing...to explain the
    Department of Veterans Affairs' plan to build housing for homeless and
    potentially homeless veterans and their families on 4.4 acres near Fort Wayne's
    VA Medical Center." According to the News-Sentinel, VA's "Enhanced Use Lease
    (EUL) program has already awarded 60 projects designed to improve
    underutilized land and facilities, with 65 under development. The VA will now
    seek proposals from interested developers and hopes to select a project and sign
    a lease by the end of the year."
                           August 26, 2011

14. UPS Worker Pleads Guilty To Larceny, Drug Charges In Lowell. Lowell (MA)
    Sun "A 28-year-old former United Parcel Service worker admitted to stealing
    prescription drugs sent in packages from Veterans Administration hospital
    pharmacies to area veterans to feed his opiate addiction. In Lowell District Court"
    this week, "Robert T. French, of 84 Andover St., Wilmington, pleaded guilty to a
    charge of larceny from a building and admitted to sufficient facts to possession of
    a Class B drug as part of a plea deal." Because French is in a drug-treatment
    program, Judge Lynn Rooney "agreed to sentence French to two years of
    probation for the larceny charge and had the drug-possession charge continued
    without a finding for two years, after which the charge will be dismissed."



15. VA Officials Launch Disabled Veterans Paralympic Website. San Antonio
    Express-News "Department of Veterans Affairs officials have launched a
    Paralympic Program website as part of the VA's ongoing commitment to support
    the rehabilitation and recovery of disabled veterans through participation in
    adaptive sports. One of the highlights of the new website is the 'Success Stories'
    page, which features disabled veterans and their stories of how participating in
    adaptive sports has positively impacted their lives." The Express-News adds,
    "Visit the website at www.va.gov/adaptivesports or send an email to
    vacoadaptiveSP@va.gov."



16. Mortgage Applications Fall. Washington (DC) Business Journal "Applications
    for mortgages to buy a house or to refinance an existing loan fell last week, even
    though mortgage rates are at all-time lows." The Washington, DC-based
    "Mortgage Bankers Association said overall applications fell 2.4 percent last
    week, and purchase applications decreased 5.7 percent, the lowest level since
    December 1996." The Business Journal adds, "Applications for government
    housing programs -including those from the Federal Housing Administration,
    Department of Veterans Affairs and Agriculture Department - fell 8.2 percent."



17. For Anguished Vets, Yoga Brings Peace. WTVT-TV Some veterans at the
    James Haley Veterans Hospital are "dealing with amputations, head injuries and"
    post-traumatic stress-disorder. But "they've finally found something to help them
    deal with the pain: yoga. They are taking part in a program called 'Exalted
    Warrior.'"
                           August 26, 2011

18. Women Are Heroes, Too. Time "Battleland" blog, veteran Darlene Iskra writes
    about what US Army Specialist Monica Lin Brown did to earn the "Silver Star for
    combat in Afghanistan." Iskra add, "Over 140 military women have given their
    lives for their country in the last 10 years." One "of the most famous wounded
    warriors" is disabled Iraq veteran Tammy Duckworth, "who went on to serve as
    an assistant secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs."



19. VA Database Could Benefit Every Consumer. South Bend (IN) Tribune
    Veterans Affairs is "now offering an online tool for comparing hospitals that could
    be a major help for all consumers if it were to be extended throughout the
    American healthcare industry." Last November, the Department began "posting
    hospital-specific information on patient outcomes at the nation's 152 VA medical
    facilities. The program allows veterans to compare such things as hospitals'
    surgical death rates, rates of infection from intravenous lines and re-admission
    due to medical complications." In addition, the VA has "committed to ordering
    improvements in medical protocol or dismissing doctors at hospitals that fall into
    the bottom 10 percent on national ratings." The Tribune suggests that the
    Department of Health and Human Services "keep an eye on the VA data system
    as a possible model for the country as a whole."



20. Veteran Paralyzed In Fall Competes In Art And Athletics Again. WDTV-TV
    Willie Mardos, who was paralyzed while serving in the US Air Force in 1984, is
    "participating in art competitions and athletic events." Last year, he won an art
    competition at the Louis A. Johnson Veterans Affairs Medical Center. This year,
    he took part in the National veterans Wheelchair Games, something he plans to
    do again next year. He "liked the feeling of being able to compete again." WDTV
    added, "The VA will be honoring Mardos at the Louis A. Johnson VA Medical
    Center on Friday."



21. Band Spruces Up Grounds At Homeless Vets Assistance
    Organization. KTBC-TV        Members of the band 3 Doors Down "picked up a
    paint brush to help homeless vets." The band members "helped brighten the
    grounds" of New Directions, a "non-profit that re-unites homeless vets with their
    families." The "organization runs a program" at the West Los Angeles Veterans
    Affairs "center that helps homeless vets get back on track."
                              August 26, 2011

   22. Duluth's Veterans StandDown Helping Troops. KJBR-TV "Northland veterans
       received special treatment" on Wednesday during the "17th annual Duluth
       Veterans' StandDown. The Minnesota Assistance Council for Veterans headed
       up the event giving onsite assistance for Veterans in need." Veterans who
       attended the event said they "are grateful" for efforts like StandDown. "What you
       give up for your country, it's nice that it's being recognized by the community,"
       said Gary Parker, an "Army Vietnam Veteran."



   23. Event Planned To Honor Veterans. San Angelo (TX) Standard-Times
       "Beginning at 6 p.m. Saturday, West Texas VA Health Care System and the Tom
       Green County Veterans Service Office will hold a Welcome Home event at Fort
       Concho National Historic Landmark for military veterans of the wars in Iraq and
       Afghanistan and their families." The event will include a "barbecue dinner and
       information about veterans programs. 'There's going to be information on how to
       enroll in VA healthcare services,' said Jill Johansen, a program manager for West
       Texas VA Health Care System, based in Big Spring."



   24. DAV Helps Vets Get What's Coming To Them. Maryville (MO) Daily Forum



   25. Linda Barbera Strives To Keep Veterans And Others Out Of Prison. Ridley
       Town Talk



   26. VA / VSO-MSO Hearings as August 26, 2011:

       August 30, 2011. SAC-MILCON/VA will hold a field hearing on VA’s
collaboration with Indian Health Service (IHS) titled: Improving Access to Care for
Native American Veterans by Maximizing the Use of Federal Funds and Services.
(10:00 A.M.; Rapid City, South Dakota)

        September 8, 2011. HVAC will hold a full Committee mark-up on pending
legislation. (10:00 A.M; 334 Cannon)
       September 21, 2011. SVAC and HVAC will hold a full committee joint hearing on
the legislative agenda of the American Legion. (8:00 A.M.; G-50 Dirksen)
                                 August 26, 2011

      September (Date TBD). The Committee on Oversight and Government
Reform will conduct a hearing on “Is This Any Way to Treat Our Troops? Part IV:
Lack of Progress and Accountability.”



    27. Today in History:

       1071 – Battle of Manzikert: The Seljuk Turks defeat the Byzantine Army at Manzikert.
       1278 – Ladislaus IV of Hungary and Rudolph I of Germany defeat Premysl Ottokar II of
    Bohemia in the Battle of Marchfield near Dürnkrut in (then) Moravia.
       1303 – Ala ud din Khilji captures Chittorgarh.
       1346 – Hundred Years' War: the military supremacy of the English longbow over the
    French combination of crossbow and armoured knights is established at the Battle of Crécy.
       1768 – Captain James Cook sets sail from England on board HMS Endeavour.
       1858 – First news dispatch by telegraph.
       1862 – American Civil War: the Second Battle of Bull Run begins.
       1914 – World War I: the British Expeditionary Force fights a rear-guard action at the
    Battle of Le Cateau that briefly checks the German advance.
       1914 – World War I: the German colony of Togoland is invaded by French and British
    forces, who take it after 5 days.
       1920 – The 19th amendment to United States Constitution takes effect, giving women the
    right to vote.
       1939 – The first Major League Baseball game is telecast, a doubleheader between the
    Cincinnati Reds and the Brooklyn Dodgers at Ebbets Field, in Brooklyn, New York.
       1940 – Chad becomes the first French colony to join the Allies under the administration
    of Félix Éboué, France's first black colonial governor.
       1942 – Holocaust in Chortkiav, western Ukraine: At 2.30 am the German Schutzpolizei
    starts driving Jews out of their houses, divides them into groups of 120, packs them in freight
    cars and deports 2000 to Belzec death camp. 500 of the sick and children are murdered on
    the spot.
       1944 – World War II: Charles de Gaulle enters Paris.
       1957 – The USSR announces the successful test of an ICBM – a "super long distance
    intercontinental multistage ballistic rocket ... a few days ago," according to the Soviet news
    agency, ITAR-TASS.
       1966 – The Namibian War of Independence starts with the battle at Omugulugwombashe.
       1970 – The then new feminist movement, led by Betty Friedan, leads a nation-wide
    Women's Strike for Equality.
       1971 – The United States Congress declares August 26th as an annual Women's Equality
    Day.
       1977 – The Charter of the French Language is adopted by the National Assembly of
    Quebec
       1980 – John Birges plants a bomb at Harvey's Resort Hotel in Stateline, Nevada.
       1987 – President Ronald Reagan proclaims September 11, 1987 as 9-1-1 Emergency
    Number Day.
       1992 – In Brno Václav Klaus and Vladimír Mečiar sign an agreement to divide
    Czechoslovakia.
                                August 26, 2011

      1997 – Beni-Ali massacre in Algeria; 60-100 people killed.
      2003 – The Columbia Accident Investigation Board releases its final reports on Space
    Shuttle Columbia disaster.
      2008 – Russia unilaterally recognizes the independence of the former Georgian
    breakaway republics Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

				
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