View from the Bridge Wing – We are entering into the busiest several weeks of the year for military/veteran-related ceremonies. This stretch includes Armed Forces Day, Memorial Day, the 4th of July, and all the related community events such as the big Armed Forces Day Luncheon, parades, and patriotic programs. They are a reminder that patriotism is alive and very evident in the land these days.
It was not always so. One of my friends, a very dedicated and active local veteran (who is not in the Chapter as he was not an officer) related something recently that is hard to imagine happening today. When he returned to the states in uniform from Vietnam, someone threw something at him as a form of protest against the war. One of my oldest friends, who was seriously injured by a grenade in Vietnam and spent nine months recovering in military hospitals, had the same experience upon returning. As a result of that experience, both decided they would just put their military connection in the background and forget about it, although fortunately one changed his mind.
In my opinion, two events brought support for the military and veterans back to the forefront. One was Desert Storm, which reminded the nation that we are again capable of total victory after the battlefield reversals experienced in Korea and Vietnam. The second was the 9/11 terrorist attacks. As terrible an event as that was, it opened peoples’ eyes to the sacrifices those in uniform are instantly prepared to make for the country. They could see that military service members as well as public safety responders including firemen and policemen are trained and willing to immediately risk their very lives for the rest of us.
Let’s appreciate this spirit of patriotism and keep it going!
Speaker Lineup – The speaker lineup currently scheduled for our monthly luncheons is:
- June 9: Central Ohio Chapter member Rear Admiral John Bossler (Ret), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
- July 14: Ashley Lester, senior project manager for the Columbus Downtown Development Corporation & Capitol South (CDDC) team who has updated renderings and concepts on the National Veterans Memorial & Museum’s exhibits, building and grounds
- August – TBD
- September (tentatively) – CDR Dustin Martin, USN (Ret), Senior Naval Science Instructor at Grove City High School who will talk about JROTC programs.
New Board Members – LTC Jeff Collins, USA (Ret) recently became Vice President Programs, a chapter role that had been vacant for 16 months, and in which he is supported by LTC Tom Roberson. CWO4 Craig Harris became an At-Large Member of the Chapter’s Board of Directors.
Columbus Zoo Military Family Free Days – From Saturday, July 2 to Friday, July 8, the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium are honoring active or retired military personnel and their immediate family with free admission for Military Family Free Days to thank them for the sacrifices the families have made for country. Military personnel and family will also receive a reduced admission of $22.99 per person for Zoombezi Bay Water Park.
Must show military ID and veterans must show proof of service for free entry to the Zoo. Immediate family is defined as active or non-active military personnel, their spouse and any kids living in the household. A $10 parking fee will still be applicable.
Council of Chapters Conference – The biennial Ohio Council of Chapters Convention will be held September 22–24, 2017 at the Youngstown Air Reserve Center, a small military base about 10 miles north of downtown Youngstown. Speakers are in the process of being invited and confirmed. All chapters are encouraged to have our members attend this convention. It’s a bit of a drive and involves overnight accommodations, so we should consider carpooling when the time nears.
What’s on Your Mind – Please let me know what’s on your mind. If you have any concerns about our Chapter or suggestions to improve what we do, get in touch and I’ll make certain we consider your suggestions and try to correct any problem. Call me at cell phone 614-783-2315 or email me at email@example.com.
Upcoming Events – All are Welcome
Board of Directors meeting at noon on Wednesday, June 7 at DSCC (Building 11, Section 9, Room TBD).
Monthly Luncheon and Business Meeting at noon on Friday, June 9 at the Berwick Manor Restaurant, 3250 Refugee Rd, Columbus, Ohio.