A publication of Vietnam Veterans of America, Inc. ®
An organization chartered by the U.S. Congress

October 2000/November 2000

Region 8 Report

Full Speed Ahead

By Rocky Gothard

VVA's Regional Directors have come together as a team to represent members, chapters, and state councils in their respective regions. But we cannot do this vital job without your input. So, please let us know your views and ideas. We want to hear from you. If you do not like what is going on, please attack the ideas, not the people involved. It also would be helpful if you suggested a way to solve the problem you're concerned about.

In Region 8 I have made trips to Alaska, Washington, Montana, Wyoming, and--of course--throughout my home state of Oregon. Each state is up and going full speed ahead.

During the Washington State Convention three of the state's nine members of Congress attended. They held an event similar to a town meeting. VVA members asked them questions, and we got some solid feedback. It sounded as if they will take the issues of hepatitis C, Agent Orange, and the VA and move them forward. They told us that we all need to contact our members of Congress and let them know how we stand on veterans' issues. If they don't hear from us, they assume we are happy with the way things are.

In October Washington hosted a successful basic training course of service officers in Yakima. State President Jim Grissom did a good job putting the event together.

Montana has just opened a state office in Billings. The state president, Bev Stewart, was the driving force behind getting this office open to serve VVA and AVVA members in the state.

This also represents the first step in putting together a state service organization. At the Montana State Council meeting in October I met several members of the Black Foot Warrior Society. 

They will be forming a Native American chapter in Northern Montana on a reservation. They also have a new chapter forming in Plains.

I have just signed up 32 VVA members and six AVVA members in the new Chapter 850 in Grants Pass. The chapter has formed primarily to operate the county's Veterans Service Office.

Tyrone Montgomery is the county service officer. Portland Chapter 392 has put together a plan to rename I-205 between Washington and Oregon the "Veterans Memorial Highway.'' State Council President Bob Palasch helped organize another successful stand down in White City.

I have been working on membership in Wyoming. We have a new chapter--849--in Cheyenne. In November I will be meeting with veterans in Casper. This is the last step before forming a new Wyoming State Council.

Please remember to contact your regional director with your ideas--especially those regarding which way you would like to see the organization go.


E-mail us at TheVeteran@vva.org


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