The Official Voice of Vietnam Veterans of America, Inc. ®
An organization chartered by the U.S. Congress

December 2003

Taking Care OF Each Other


The 11th National Convention in St. Louis is history. Another chapter has been added to the books, and what a chapter it will be. Over six hundred of our brothers and sisters gathered to set  the agenda of our organization for the next two years.

Region 4 was well represented with delegates from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Puerto Rico, and Mississippi. Alfred Murphy of Birmingham again repeated the familiar phrase from past conventions, "Mr. President . . . . "

Jorge Pedroza and the delegates from Puerto Rico persisted in getting their resolution for self-determination to the committees for rewrites. It was finally approved unanimously. It was their goal to get this resolution on the floor and passed, which they did with determination.

I want to thank the region for re-electing me as your representative for another two-year term. I will continue to serve the best interests of you, the members.

I will continue to attend state council meetings as often as I can and within my budget. I cannot tell you how much Joyce and I enjoy meeting with chapter delegates. It's always a pleasure to be a part of your gatherings.

I remind every one of you not to forget to support our troops who are still engaged in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere in the world. We may not agree with the policy of our leaders, but we must support the men and women who are doing their duty. Let's not forget our founding principle: "Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another."

Since returning from Convention two months ago, several of those who were with us in St. Louis are either no longer among our ranks or are patients in hospitals. We need to start doing a better job of taking care of each other. We need to help each other, no matter what our personal feelings are. Even if you only have a few minutes to give, give it freely.

Remember the next time you have a meeting that some people might not be standing or sitting next to you - not because they don't want to, but because they no longer are among us. So, enjoy each other while you have the time. Take care of each other. Be there when you are needed, and give a little of yourself to help one another, even if you are not asked.


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