Honor Flight Maine (HFM) made the difficult decision to cancel flights to D.C. scheduled in September and October. HFM is part of Honor Flight Network (HFN), a network of over 145 “hubs” in almost every state in the country. While all Hubs operate under the umbrella of HFN, each are independent and operate to meet the mission of transporting America’s veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit the memorials, at no cost to the veteran, with safety of our veterans a first priority. Some Hubs make this trip in one day, leaving very early and returning very late. HFM departs the Jetport on Friday and returns on Sunday. With the surge in COVID cases around the country and the appropriate protocols put into place by HFN, HFM was unable to ensure the safety of our veterans over this three-day period. As a board member, I can tell you we agonized over this decision because we had 45 excited veterans queued up to make the trip this month. But, the health and safety of our veterans had to take priority. Let’s pray this pandemic is over so we can continue our flights in the spring.
For all Vietnam veterans, including those who served on ships within 12 miles of the Vietnam coast, and veterans who served in the Korean Demilitarized Zone, the VA is having a virtual seminar on Agent Orange that will cover exposure, related health conditions, benefits, and information for Blue Water Navy Veterans. The class is on Thursday, Sept. 30, from 1:30 to 3 p.m. To register and attend this seminar from your own computer, email email@example.com for a link. The Legion Hall will have the seminar streamed on the "big screens" for those who would like to attend that way. If interested in attending at the Hall, call 633-4487.
There are still many veterans in the community who are eligible for VA healthcare but haven't signed up. Typically, there are two reasons: (1) on Medicare, and/or other insurance, and like the doc they have and (2) don't want to take services away from other veterans who need it more. First, VA healthcare isn't a substitute for whatever healthcare system you are on, it is in addition to. If on Medicare, there are co-pays, with the VA there are significantly less co-pays or none at all. Hearing aids and glasses aren't covered by many insurances, but are free for those in the VA healthcare system. As for taking services from others, the VA gets its funding based on the number of veterans being served. By not signing up, even if you don't use it, you are not providing the numbers the VA needs to get the funding to provide services to all veterans. The numbers of veterans are declining so it is important that vets sign up for VA healthcare. Need help signing up, call the Hall at 633-4487.
The next breakfast is Sept. 26 and the next Legion meeting is Oct.11.