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VA Hosts July 4th Ceremonies for Veterans

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A smiling girl holds a US flag

 

by Hans Petersen, VA Staff Writer
Thursday, July 3, 2014

It’s time to honor the birthday of the United States of America and the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776.

A day of picnics and patriotic parades, a night of concerts and fireworks, and a reason to fly the American flag. It’s a special time to remember those men and women whose sacrifices helped to keep America the land of the free and the home of the brave — our Veterans.

Across America, VA Medical Centers are celebrating with special events for Veterans and their families.

Marion, Illinois

The staff at the Marion, Illinois, VA Medical Center will be at their local baseball game handing out “VA FANS” and talking about VA health care services. They will also have a special Veteran guest, a ball player for the Negro League, Melvin Duncan, who will be throwing out the first pitch. All followed by fireworks for the entire city of Marion.

(Thanks Peggy Willoughby, PAO, Marion VAMC)

Man at a party smiling from behind a grill

VA Police Sgt. Marvin Seifer being “grilled” at White City, Oregon, BBQ

Southern Oregon

Every year, the VA Southern Oregon Rehabilitation Center & Clinics in White City, Oregon celebrate the 4th of July with a barbecue and carnival for the 500-plus residents. The day’s events include entertainment, “carnival” booths with prizes and music by “T.J. & The Spurs.” VA staff and volunteers prepare and serve hamburgers, chili dogs, salads, chips, pie, watermelon, ice cream and refreshments.

(Thanks Rhonda Haney, PAS, VA Southern Oregon)

 Saluting the men and women who help keep America the land of the free and the home of the brave — our Veterans. 

New York

The VA New York Campus of the New York Harbor Health Care System will be hosting a group from the New York Mets coming to visit with Veteran patients on Monday, July 7. NY Mets General Manager and Vietnam Veteran Sandy Alderson and former player Rusty Staub will meet with patients for a barbecue on the patio at VA St. Albans Community Center. Many of the Veterans at the long term care facility are big fans of the former Mets players.

(Thanks Claudie Benjamin, PAO, VA New York Harbor)

Woman on a motorcycle with a Veteran in the sidecar

Community Living Center Veteran residents enjoy motorcycle rides around Denver

Denver

Veteran residents at Denver’s VA Community Living Center will enjoy a special treat on July 6 with the 7th Annual Harley’s Heroes Run to the Community Living Center. Local motorcycle enthusiasts come in force to the Denver center with side-car equipped Harley Davidson Motorcycles and give Veterans rides around the Denver Metro Area. About 50 motorcyclists are expected and almost all of the 30 residents take up the offer for the ride. The event is supported by Buckley Air Force Base active duty participants along with Marine Reservists from the base.

(Thanks Dan Warvi, PAO, Eastern Colorado Health Care System)

Color guard marches across a baseball diamond as players watch and clap

Portland VA Medical Center hosts Welcome Home Celebration ceremonies on July 4th in Bend, Oregon

Portland, Oregon

Portland VA Medical Center hosts Welcome Home Celebration ceremonies on July 4th in Bend, Oregon

On July 4, the Portland, Oregon, VA Medical Center will honor and show its appreciation for service members by hosting a Welcome Home Celebration for Veterans and their families in the Pacific Northwest. The event takes place at a baseball game in Bend, Oregon, featuring the Bend Bucks vs. Tacoma. Veterans and their families were invited to enjoy free tickets and food and an opportunity to learn about VA benefits and services.

(Thanks Dan Herrigstad, PAO, Portland VA Medical Center)