Sons of AMVETS membership cardOver the last year or two there was talk of changes to the membership year, the online membership process and the dues. I want to update you on these issues as we start to process your membership for the 2015 year.

Bill and Candy Clemens receive Honor and Remember flag Sons of AMVETS Cmdr. Don Finnegan (L to R) and Honor and Remember CEO George Lutz present Bill and Candy Clemens with a personalized Honor & Remember Flag in honor of their son SSG Shawn Clemens who was killed-in-action on January, 29 2004 in Afghanistan.

Sons of AMVETS membership cardAt the AMVETS 2013 Annual Convention in Reno, Nevada, the AMVETS decide to change their membership year from "January 1 to December 31" to "September 1 to August 31". This year, AMVETS decided that the subordinate organization do NOT have to change their membership year to match their year. Once this decision was announced, the Son's decided to NOT change their membership year.

AMVETS 2014-2015 Commander Larry ViaThe Sons of AMVETS would like to congratulate the new 2014-2015 AMVETS Commander Larry Via, Ladies Auxiliary Madam President Sylvia Rowland, and and Son's Commander Dan Briggs. We wish you all the best in the upcoming year. And remember, if you need something done, ask a Son.

2014 SOA Convention Opening CeremonyWelcome to all from Memphis, Tennessee where the 30th Annual Sons of AMVETS convention is currently underway. The big news so far is that the Sons donated over $41,000 to St. Jude's Hospital. The second big news item is AMVETS have passed a resolution that the Sons nor the Ladies have to change their membership year to match the AMVETS membership year. And our new National Officers are:

James (Jim) Aubrey Houck, Jr..

Not only does Jim put tremendous effort and time in honoring our local Veterans, but he also is a vital asset to several local Veteran organizations. Jim has served as the Senior Vice President for the Emmitsburg VFW Men’s Auxiliary, the Commander of the Francis X. Elder Sons of American Legion (SAL), and as the 3rd Vice Commander at the AMVETS Post 7 in Thurmont. (Reprinted, with permission, from The Catoctin Banner ).

Proud military moms

There is no one prouder than a fine military mother
Her support is of the strongest caliber to be found
She knows what she has to do and lovingly does it
Great faith is something she so abundantly shows

Senate Bill 1982 dies by procedural vote. On February 27, 2014, the Senate declined, by a vote of 56-41, to waive a budget point of order raised against S. 1982, a comprehensive expansion of veterans programs, introduced by Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont. Sixty votes were needed to waive the budget point of order and continue work toward final passage of the bill. This vote effectively stopped the bill.

Tom McGriffWe were saddened to learn that AMVETS Past National Commander Tom McGriff, husband of National President Linda McGriff, passed away on Wednesday, February 12, 2014. Commander McGriff's spend nearly two decades of his Naval career in Polaris submarines. While AMVETS Commander, he was committed to improving the medical care of military servicemen and women with injuries incurred in the war on terror.

Veterans Discrimination!It time to go to “the Hill” again! This articles contains the 2014 Legislative Priorities Cards and a condensed form of these topics for the people going on the Hill to review and prepare. Also, please review how your state representatives are faring with respect to veteran issues by reviewing the Representative's scorecard.

New face lift coming

What a face lift already? Yes. The public facing site was ready to go, but it took me a while to find someone to make the site look pretty. A good friend of mine, Cielo Johnson has volunteered to help us. This is a very large project and we are all very grateful for her help. Thank you Cielo.

VAVS needs you!Due to attrition and the economy, our status in the NAC has fallen below the minimum 15 facilities to be an Associate member of the NAC. I have filed papers with Mr. Tony Burtley changing our status to Honorary members, so in the future when our volunteer numbers increase, we may rejoin the NAC in our former status.

Honor and RememberThis project's focus will be to increase awareness in states that do not have an organized Chapter, nor has their state adopted the flag for their fallen. It is my desire to present flags (or have presented) to Gold Star families that have requested a personalized Honor and Remember flag in these states, but with no funding source to jump start their program like I was able to do with Roberts Hammett’s project.

A Solider&s Christmas

Twas the night before Christmas, he lived all alone, in a one bedroom house made of plaster & stone. 
I had come down the chimney, with presents to give and to see just who in this home did live
As I looked all about, a strange sight I did see, no tinsel, no presents, not even a tree
No stocking by the fire, just boots filled with sand. On the wall hung pictures of a far distant land.
With medals and badges, awards of all kind, a sobering thought soon came to my mind.
For this house was different, unlike any I'd seen. This was the home of a U.S. Marine. 

USS New York sailors on Sept. 11, 2013.USS New York sailors on Sept. 11, 2013.USS New York sailors on Sept. 11, 2013.The sailors of the USS New York (LPD 21) and USS Arlington (LPD 24) remember September 11, 2001. Their ships were in New York City on September 11, 2013 to commemorate the events of that tragic day. Both the New York and Arlington were built in honor of the attacks on New York and Arlington. The New York has seven and a half tons of World Trade Center steel in her bow.

Gold Star Dads Legislation

National, State and Local AMVETS Members assembled at Congressman Tim Bishop’s office to help promote Gold Star Dads Legislation. The Gold Star Fathers Act of 2013 will allow for Fathers of certain disabled or deceased veterans to be granted “preference eligible” status when applying for civil service jobs in recognition of the sacrifices they and their loved ones have made.

Where are out desks?

On the first day of school in 2005, Martha Cothren, a History teacher at Robinson High School in Little Rock, did something not to be forgotten. With the permission of the school superintendent and the principal, she removed all of the desks in her classroom. When the first period kids entered the room they said 'Ms. Cothren, where are our desks?'

Where are out desks?

On May 3, 2013 AMVETS and Silo members gathered with local officers to celebrate the installation of an audible crosswalk for the visually impaired in West Islip, Ny.

Forms updates at 2012 National Convention.

Many Sons of AMVETS forms were updated at the 2012 National Convention. The main change to most of the forms was the addition of an email addresses field. Click here to go to the forms page and check out the new forms.

Jon Keith

Sons of AMVET's 2012 to 2013 Commander Jon Keith discusses his two main priorities:

  • Greatly increase our Representatives and Deputies at the VA Centers across the country.
  • Communicate the successful programs that the Squadrons and Departments are conducting with the membership.

It has been brought to National Headquarters attention that all Squadrons are now required to file a form 990 every year. Filing one of these forms is required to maintain your tax exempt status.

Welcome one and all! We have started our 10,000 mile trip. Our next stop is the replacement of the Sons of AMVETS (SOA) current manual paper work flow with a web based system. This huge project will affect every aspects of the current SOA workflow. The first phase, which is due in August of 2013, will replace the current Membership Management Process.


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