New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
DMAVA Highlights 01 May 2008

Volume 8, Number 18

NJ Dept of Military and Veterans Affairs

Maj. Gen. Glenn K. Rieth
The Adjutant General

Brig. Gen. Maria Falca-Dodson
Deputy Adjutant General

Col. (Ret) Stephen G. Abel
Deputy Commissioner for Veterans Affairs

Contacting us is easy!

Public Affairs Office

Phone: (609) 530-7088
Fax: (609) 530-6963



Veterans' Organizations Contact Information

State Veterans Service Council
Mr. Richard Clark
RJClark21@msn.com

NJ Advisory Committee for Women Veterans
Mrs. Anna Hoffman
hoffmanannem@aol.com

BG Willam C. Doyle Cemetery Advisory Council
Mr. William Rakestraw
warjrnj@msn.com



Veterans Hotlines


Benefits & Entitlements
1-888-8NJ-VETS
(1-888-865-8387)

Mental Health
1-866-VETS-NJ4
(1-866-838-7654)

Wounded Soldier and Family Hotline

1-800-984-8523

DMAVA Highlights Archive

DMAVA Highlights Archive Page



NJ World War II Memorial


For information or to make a donation, call 609-530-7049

WWII Memorial on the web

ESGR office

JFHQ 3650 Saylors Pond Road Fort Dix, NJ 08641

Hank Pierre, 609-562-0156, hank.pierre@njdmava.state.nj.us Tammy Cartagena, 609-562-0157, tammy.l.cartagena@us.army.mil Fax 609-562-0158

 

Please submit any articles and all information for DMAVA Highlights to:

PAO Office DMAVA Highlights
ATTN: Staff Sgt. Barb Harbison

Deadline is noon Wednesday

Staff Sgt. Barbara Harbison barbara.harbison@njdmava.state.nj.us Or Call 609-530-7088

 



Phone numbers and Web sites to remember

Directory Assistance:

1-602-293-4907

Verizon Super Pages: http://www.superpages.com

AT&T: http://www.anywho.com/

SBC Yellow Pages: http://www.yellowpages.com/

Telephone and contact information on state employees can be found at http://njdirect.state.nj.us/

 

DMAVA Emergency Hotline:

1-866-232-5798


Quotes for the Week   

 

If you can’t convince them, confuse them.  

- Harry S. Truman

Distrust and caution are the parents of security.  

- Benjamin Franklin

Laughter is the shortest distance between two people.

- Victor Borge

A silly remark can be made in Latin as well as in Spanish.

- Miguel de Cervantes

Each man makes his own shipwreck..  

- Latin proverb

 


Download PDF Version of this week's highlights

News For Your Views

Jersey Airman chosen as top Air National Guard First Sergeant

By Tech. Sgt. Mark Olsen, 177FW/PA

Security Forces First Sergeant, Master Sgt. Daniel T. Mitchell Jr., 177th Fighter Wing, New Jersey Air National Guard, was chosen as the top Air National Guard First Sergeant in the United States by the National Guard Bureau in Washington, D.C., last week.

“The award is an honor – not for me, but for the Airmen I work with at the 177th Fighter Wing and the active-duty Airmen I served with in Afghanistan,” said Mitchell.  “The professional Airmen in today’s Air Force made my job easy.”

After competing against his Air National Guard counterparts from the 54 states and territories, Mitchell will now go on to contend against the active-duty Air Force first sergeants in the United States Air Force 12 Outstanding Airmen of the Year competition.  The Air Force will announce its decision this summer.

This is on top of his recent award in the 2007 Overall Annual Awards – 1st Air Force (Air Forces Northern/Continental United States NORAD [North American Aerospace Defense] Command Region) First Sergeant Category, as well as receiving the Meritorious Service Medal, first oak leaf cluster, from Governor Jon S. Corzine and Maj. Gen. Glenn K. Rieth, the Adjutant General of New Jersey.

While his awards package lists his accomplishments with adjectives such as “Tireless efforts,” “Selfless attitude,” “Visionary,” “Best of the best,” and “#1 of all previous First Sergeants by two squadron commanders,” these words do not begin to describe the journey Mitchell has endured to reach this level.

During his four-month tour in support of Operation Enduring Freedom as First Sergeant for the 755th Expeditionary Support Squadron, Defense Reform Directorate, Combined Security Transition Command – Afghanistan, Mitchell provided leadership, management, and expertise to the more than 450 Airmen assigned to 29 Forward Operating Bases (FOBs) that were either mentoring the fledgling Afghanistan National Army’s Logistics, Communications, and Medical Commands, or assigned to the United States Army as brigade support team personnel.  He aided in the development of a professional military education program used by U.S. to mentor Afghan National Army officers and enlisted personnel.

While deployed, Mitchell traveled more than 1,300 miles on roads laden with improvised explosive devices to visit the FOBs to ensure the safe utilization of Airmen in the combat zone.  He developed a security augmentee program, which mitigated the hazards faced by 48 Airmen tasked with base perimeter defense duty.  He worked successfully on significantly improving the morale and mission accomplishments in all the FOBs.  Mitchell worked with the base commander’s support staff in creating a database for tracking leave, passes, and officer and enlisted performance reports, resulting in an on-time report rate rising from 80 percent to 95 percent.

“This is a team effort,” said Mitchell.  “The professional Airmen in today’s Air Force made my job easy.”

Even on his off-duty time Mitchell was hard at work.  He served on the Camp Phoenix Morale, Welfare and Recreation Committee, which oversaw the activities of more than 3,000 Airmen, Soldiers, Sailors and coalition force members.  Mitchell also completed six college credit hours while in Afghanistan.

Upon his return to the 177th, he was the first choice by wing and state headquarters military leadership to attend the Senior Non-Commissioned Officer Academy earlier this year.  Mitchell was also selected to lead a New Jersey team to improve the processes aiding Airmen in reintegration and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder recognition and treatment.

Lawrenceville FAC schedules events for members

From the desk of Jane Hackbarth, Family Assistance Specialist

The Lawrenceville Family Assistance Center and the Family Readiness Support Assistant have scheduled the activities open to all Family Readiness Group members:

July 26, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. – Parenting During Deployment, presented by Army Community Services, Fort Dix

September 20, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. – Bullying presentation, presented by ACS, Fort Dix

People attending who will be bringing children are asked to RSVP to their own FAC or to Jane Hackbarth at 609-671-6681 no later than one week prior to the event.

See the band America at Patriots Theater May 16

America will be at Patriots Theater at the War Memorial in Trenton on Friday, May 16 at 8 p.m.  Hear classic hit like “Horse With No Name,” Sister Golden Hair,” “Ventura Highway,” and more.  The special guest for the evening will be The Ernie White Band.

There will be a 20 percent military discount at the box office only, with ID; discount does not apply to prior sales.

For more information call the box office at 609-984-8400 or

visit www.thewarmemorial.com.

May 17 is Museum gala; reduced price for military – tickets available

The Foundation for the National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey invites everyone to support the First Annual Gala which will benefit the museum and its mission.

The Lawrenceville Armory is the setting for the gala on May 17.  Tickets cost $75 per person.  Military personnel and spouse/date will pay $50 for their tickets. Tables of 10 cost $500 and include special recognition at the event.  RSVP for the event has been extended to May 7, 2008.

Other ways to support the gala include –

ý Become an advertiser or booster sponsor in the gala’s souvenir commemorative ad journal

ý Donate a gift or service that can be auctioned off during their Silent Auction or Live Auction during the event.

If you would like to purchase tickets, place an ad in the journal or have an item for the auctions, contact Bob Dennin at denninr@verizon.net or retired Col. Donald Kale at the Lawrenceville museum, 609-530-6802.

All proceeds from the event will directly benefit the museum. Your support of the event will help the museum to continue to tell the story of the military history in New Jersey, and the New Jersey Army and Air National Guard.

Fourth annual SGT Nutter Run scheduled for June 14

The fourth annual SGT Nutter Run will be held on June 14.  Sergeant Sam Nutter (Jan. 28, 1966 – Jan. 2, 2005) was a member of the New Jersey Army National Guard and served in the U. S. Navy from 1989-1997.  Each year the NJARNG Officer Candidate School holds a benefit 5k run in his memory and the proceeds raised are donated to a NJARNG family in need.  This year’s beneficiary is Dina; daughter of New Jersey Army National Command Sgt. Maj. Timothy D. Marvian, of the 102nd Cavalry (RSTA) who will be deploying to Iraq later this year.  Dina has endured a life-long battle with Neurofibromatosis Type I.  Come join us as we band together to give a helping hand to a member of our National Guard family.

Fun family events and a BBQ to celebrate the Army’s birthday will follow the race.

Visit http://www.NutterRun.com for registration forms, donation forms, and more information.

VA calling all recent combat vets; nearly 570,000 to be reached

WASHINGTON – On May 1, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will begin contacting nearly 570,000 recent combat veterans to ensure they know about VA’s medical services and other benefits.

“We will reach out and touch every veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom to let them know we are here for them,” said Dr. James B. Peake, Secretary of Veterans Affairs. “VA is committed to getting these veterans the help they need and deserve.”

A contractor-operated “Combat Veteran Call Center” will telephone two distinct populations of veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan. 

In the first phase, calls will go to an estimated 17,000 veterans who were sick or injured while serving in Iraq or Afghanistan.  VA will offer to appoint a care manager to work with them if they don’t have one already.  Care managers ensure veterans receive appropriate care and know about their VA benefits.

For five years after their discharge from the military, these combat veterans have special access to VA health care.  The Department screens combat veterans for signs of post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury.  VA personnel have been deployed to the military’s major medical centers to assist wounded service members and their families during the transition to civilian lives.

For the new call center, the second phase will target 550,000 OIF-OEF veterans who have been discharged from active duty but have not contacted VA for services. 

Once contacted, veterans will be informed about VA’s benefits and services.  The initial calls will be made by a private contractor, EDS, which specializes in technology services to improve business.  If needed, VA employees will make follow-up calls.

“We will leave no stone unturned to reach these veterans,” said Dr. Edward Huycke, chief of the Veterans Affairs - Department of Defense coordination office.

N.J. Militia Museum conducting Retiree Oral History Program

The National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey has put together a National Guard Veteran Retiree Oral History Program.  In the past, the NJNG has not conducted oral exit interviews of commanders, full-time personnel, and retirees to preserve history.  The museum is going to institute a volunteer program to try to catch up. If you wish to participate, contact the museum at 732-974-5966

 

Memorial Day Events

Hopewell Valley Vets ceremony recognizing N.J. veterans

The Hopewell Valley Veterans Association is holding a Memorial Day ceremony on May 24, at 10 a.m. The event is located at the memorial site at the Alliger Tract, on Washington Crossing- Pennington Road, adjoining the Hopewell Township municipal complex. The public is welcome to attend this free event and view the memorial site. The celebration will recognize New Jersey veterans and will include military displays, a rifle salute, benediction, and an unveiling of engraved bricks donated in honor of veterans. The association is raising funds for constructing and maintaining a permanent Veteran's Memorial in Hopewell Township. For more information, visit www.hopewellvalleyveterans.org or call 609-737-6681.

 

For Your Calendar

Purple Heart Memorial of Union County to be dedicated

The Military Order of the Purple Heart, Chapter 28 of Union County is presenting a Purple Heart Memorial to be dedicated in the Township of Springfield on Saturday, May 3 at 1 p.m.  The Township will be hosting the dedication ceremony at Veterans Park located at the intersection of Mountain Avenue and Shunpike Road.  Refreshments will be served at the firehouse afterwards.  In case of rain, the ceremony will be in the municipal building courtroom.  All members of the public, especially present and former military personnel and recipients of the Purple Heart are welcome.  For additional information regarding the dedication ceremony, contact Springfield Committeeman Ziad Andrew Shehady at 862-206-2309.

New Jersey Loves Beer Festival benefits FRGs

Sample some of the finest micro and craft brew beers available in the world while benefitting the Family Readiness Groups of the 112th Battalion, Morristown and B Company, 50th Support Battalion, Dover at the New Jersey Loves Beer Festival on May 10 at the Morristown Armory, 430 Western Avenue, Morristown.  Sponsored by WDHA, 105.5FM, WMTR 1250 AM and The Ale Street News, admission is $40 to one of the two sessions.  Session I is noon to 4 p.m. and Session II is 6-10 p.m.

 

Asian Pacific American Heritage luau, May 10

May is designated APAH month—a celebration of Asians and Pacific Islanders in the US.  The celebration was first designated via congressional bill on June of 1977, and on 5 October 1979, President Jimmy Carter signed a Joint Resolution designating the first 10 days of May to commemorate the celebration. To honor this month the Asian Pacific American Heritage committee of McGuire Air Force Base will be holding their annual Luau at the McGuire All Ranks Club on May 10, 5-9 p.m.  The buffet dinner and show will be $22 for adults, children 6-10 will be $10.50. (5 and under are free) Please call Master Sgt. Ferdinand Bautista 108th Air Refueling Wing, 609-754-2044 for reservations/tickets or email felicitas.shuler@mcguire.af.mil.

Great Adventure’s Military Appreciation Day is May 17

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance Specialist

Great Adventure Military Appreciation Day will be on Armed Forces Day, Saturday, May 17.  There will be meal vouchers for $9.50 each which can be used at six of the food vendors in the park.  Tickets will be available for Great Adventure on April 15 in the State Family Programs Office.  Tickets are good for the Theme Park and the Safari.  The price of each ticket is $20.

Ride your motorcycle and support the troops

Join fellow motorcycle riders for a 100 mile police-escorted ride on Sunday, May 18. The ride will start at 11 a.m. at Legends Harley, 1895 U.S. Highway 46, Ledgewood, NJ.  It will return to Legends and riders will find food and entertainment to enjoy. Proceeds of this event benefit the Family Readiness Group of Company B 50th Brigade Support Battalion.

Pre-registration must be postmarked by May 16; make checks payable and mail to B Co. Readiness Group, PO Box 511, Augusta NJ 07822, or drop it off at Legends Harley Davidson by May 16.

Cost is $20 for riders and $15 for passengers.

Visit www.legendsharley.com for more information.

 ‘Cycles riding to support service members

Okay all you motorcycle riders out there – here’s a way to support of the men and women who defend our freedom everyday and those who have given the ultimate sacrifice. The Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation, Burlington County Military Affairs Committee and Barb's Harley-Davidson (barbshd.com) have organized the second annual Armed Forces Freedom Ride - Sunday, May 18. 

Participants of the ride will meet at Barb's Harley-Davidson, West Collingswood Heights, at 8:30 a.m. Departing at 10 a.m., the procession lead by police escort and Army Hummers will ride through historic, downtown Mt. Holly, and proceed to McGuire Air Force Base where all riders will have the opportunity to ride down the flight line of one of the runways.  Don't miss this opportunity to virtually ride under the wings of Boeing C-17 transport planes.  Due to security restrictions pictures will not be permitted.  The ride will conclude at Fort Dix Military Base in Burlington County.  Arriving at the base, participants will receive a complimentary BBQ chicken lunch and enjoy a variety of activities including live music, motorcycle vendors, The Crescent Shrine Motorcycle Patrol Drill Team Show and much, more....

All participants MUST pre-register by May 16, in order to take part in the ride.  The first 200 riders will receive a free t-shirt and all riders will receive an event pin.  Registration is open to anyone wishing to show their support, $30.00/per person (passengers additional) and must be paid at the time of registration.  Proceeds benefit the Marine Corps Law Enforcement Foundation and Burlington County Military Affairs Committee.  Active military personnel ride free and must present valid ID.  Participants can register in-person at Barb's Harley-Davidson or print a registration form and submit it by mail.  Go to www.barbshd.com for registration slip and more information.

HRD presents seminars for training

From the desk of Paul Serdiuk, DMAVA Human Resources Division

The Human Resources Division is offering a number of free seminars presented by the Human Recourse Training Section.  Reservations are needed for each seminar; contact Paul Serdiuk at 609-530-6878 or at paul.serdiuk@njdmava.state.nj.us. All seminars will be held in Conference Room A at DMAVA Central Office. All are welcomed.

May 7: State Deferred Compensation – Mike McConnell from Prudential Financial will meet with State employees to discuss their participation and contributions to their deferred compensation account. A 30 minute consultation will be scheduled per each employee.

May 15: Preventing Identity Theft – A representative from the Department of Banking and Insurance will present a one hour overview on what you can do to prevent identity theft and what to do if you should become a victim of identity theft.

June 12: Automobile Insurance – We all have it, are required to have it, but do we really know what it is about? A representative from the Department of Banking and Insurance will present a one hour overview on what you need to know about automobile insurance in New Jersey, decipher many of the terms and jargon of your policies and give an overview of what a policy should include in it to protect you.

Sep. 17: State Deferred Compensation – Mike McConnell from Prudential Financial will meet with State employees to discuss their participation and contributions to their deferred compensation account. A 30 minute consultation will be scheduled per each employee.

Retirement Happenings

Enjoy an evening with a “retiring” Colonel

Col. Barry Johnson, formerly of the 117th Fighter Wing, 108th Air Refueling Wing, Headquarters New Jersey Air National Guard and National Guard Bureau is having a retirement dinner following a round of golf at the Blue Heron Pines Golf Club, Cologne, on June 20.

Cocktails begin at 5:30 p.m. and the buffet dinner starts at 6 p.m. There will be a cash bar.  Cost is $40 per person. Attire is sport casual.

RSVP no later than June 13 to Maj. Yvonne Mays, 609-645-6206, Yvonne.mays@ njatla.ang.af.mil or Connie Cisek, 609-562-0901, connie.cisek@njmcgu.ang.af.mil

Play a round of golf with Col. Barry Johnson before he retires

Come play a round of golf with Col. Barry Johnson and check up on his plans for retirement.  Golfing will take place at the Blue Heron Pines Golf Club, 550 West Country Club Drive, Cologne on June 20.  Tee time is 10 a.m. and the cost is $80 per person and includes cart and golf fees.

RSVP no later than June 13 to Maj. Yvonne Mays, 609-645-6206, Yvonne.mays@ njatla.ang.af.mil or Connie Cisek, 609-562-0901, connie.cisek@njmcgu.ang.af.mil.

 

Military Training, Schools, Opportunities

254th Regiment announces upcoming courses

Here are the 254th Regiment courses that are on the calendar.  When using ATRRS, the school code is 1004.

Active Duty Training (ADT) Courses:

11B10 MOS-T Infantryman

May 3-17, 2008 - 34 openings

11B40 Infantryman ANCOC

June 7-21, 2008 - 31 openings

If you have any questions, contact Master Sgt. Gary Davidson, 732-974-5912 or gary.davidson@nj.ngb.army.mil.  

 

Honorable Mention

Honor Guard program wants YOU!

Looking for a way to serve and get some satisfaction at the same time?  The Honor Guard program is looking for members of the Army and Air Guard to join the team to perform honor guard duties at the funerals of veterans.  There is an initial eight hours of training for all new enrollees, with on-going sustainment training.  As an honor guard member, you will receive a day of pay for each day’s mission, minimum of $50, and traditional drilling Guard members receive a retirement point for each day’s duties.

If you are interested in applying for the Honor Guard program, call Retired Sgt. Maj. Ed Goetschius at 609-530-7090.

Use your mouse to find all sorts of things on DMAVA Web site

Have you taken the time to visit www.nj.gov./military lately?

You can find job announcements, publications, forms, information for families, information for veterans and information on both the New Jersey Army and Air Guard.

With a simple click of a mouse button, you can check out the most recent issues of DMAVA Highlights, Guardlife and Veterans Journal.  Past issues are also archived on the Web site.

With another click, you can find blank DMAVA forms, TAG memorandums and policy letters and a variety of publications.

Another click gets you to the area where you can discover information on our three Veterans homes, the Doyle cemetery, the three war memorials we oversee, Veterans Haven, the medals we present to New Jersey combat veterans and more.

Two more clicks let you see all the benefits of joining the New Jersey Army and Air National Guard.

Click! Click! Click! You can find the pages on Family Support; Youth ChalleNGe; job announcements for state, federal, active Guard and Reserve; apply for a N.J. National Guard fishing license; look up the location of your local Veterans Service Office and so much more.

Take the time to visit the Web site that takes you around the New Jersey National Guard and Department of Military and Veterans Affairs; you will discover an abundance of information and assistance.

N.J. licenses, registration extended for deployed troops

New Jerseyans who are active duty military, including the National Guard and military reserves, serving in the war on terrorism, are eligible for automatic extensions of a valid driver license, registration or inspection expiration dates. Go to www.nj.gov/mvc/ for more information.

Discounts offered for State employees

Are you a state employee looking to save a few $$$?

Visit www.state.nj.us/personnel/discounts/index.htm and you can find a number of businesses who offer discounts to New Jersey state employees.  From amusement parks to fitness to computer to phones and lots of other discounts between, you will find many ways to save money. For more information, please contact Cindy Leese at cindy.leese@njdmava.state.nj.us or call 609-530-7056.

For the Families

Camp Noble Cause serving children, spouses of deployed Guard members

From the desk of Amanda Balas, State Youth Coordinator

Camp Noble Cause is a three day camping experience that will serve the children and spouses of the New Jersey National Guardsmen and women being deployed this summer. Our mission is to provide a no-cost summer camp experience, for a weekend of fun and camaraderie.

It will be held on August 22-24 at Camp Winnebago, 102 Timberbrook Road, Rockaway, N.J., approximately 12 miles from Wayne.  It is being hosted by the Scouts of the Patriot’s Path Council, Boy Scouts of America and Operation Noble Cause.

All children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.  Overnight camping capacity is limited to 300 and the day camp can accommodate an additional 200.   Children must be old enough to tent camp comfortably to attend.

Planned activities include: mountain biking and nature walks, crafts, astronomy, shooting sports (archery, rifle, shot gun), rockwall climbing, waterfront activities (boating, swimming, fishing), Geocaching (GPS “hide and seek”), sports (softball, volleyball, basketball, soccer and more) and campfire activities.

A Web site is being created for registration and more information. 

Morris County offers program for military families

From the desk of Amanda Balas, State Youth Coordinator

Family Service of Morris County in partnership with the Family Programs Office, New Jersey, would like to announce its Military Families Outreach Program.  Based on a community effort, the Military Families Outreach Program strives to support Morris County military personnel and their families, including extended families, pre-deployment, during deployment and post-deployment.

We realize the pressures and problems that may occur when a family member is called to duty, and we want to assist with any services that you may need to ensure quality of life. Social services, support services and mental health services are some of the resources that will be available to Morris County residents. All services offered in this program are free of charge to you and your family and are bound by the highest consideration for complete confidentiality.

For more information about he Military Services Outreach Program, contact Wendy Parrinello, Military Families Outreach Case Manager at wparrinello@fsmc.org or call 973-538-5260, extension 326.  You can also contact Tammy Rosenthal, Director of child and Adolescent Services at trosenthal@fsmc.org or 973-538-5260.  We are privileged to work with you who have given so much for your country!

Order a complimentary Blue Star Flag to show your family’s service

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance Specialist

The Blue Star Flag first appeared in 1917, when Capt. Robert L. Queissner, who had two sons serving on the front line, designed it as a tribute to their dedication and service.  He proudly displayed this flag in the front window of his home and the flag quickly became the unofficial symbol of a child in the service.  Also known as a Service Flag, the blue star stands for hope and pride.  Order a complimentary Blue Star Flag to honor your loved ones in the service by visiting: www.grantham.edu/promo/freebluestar.php.

 

Support for military children of deployed and injured Guard members

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance specialist

Our Military Kids (OMK) provides tangible support to the children of deployed and severely injured National Guard and Military Reserve personnel through grants for enrichment activities and tutoring that nurture and sustain the children during the time a parent is away in service to our country. OMK grants are made to honor the sacrifices military parents make and to ensure that the children have access to activities and support that help the children better cope with challenges arising during a parent's deployment or injury recovery. For additional information go to www.ourmilitarykids.org

 

 Program offers grant funds to spouses of deployed military

The Deployed Military Spouses Assistance Program provides direct assistance and referrals to existing programs for spouses of deployed military personnel (active duty, reserve and National Guard) who face unusual financial and emotional stress as a result of the deployments. 

Applicants should contact Fawn Mutschler at 609-543-6200 ext. 325 or wocmilitarygrant@ymca-bc.org to obtain an application.  In addition to the completed application form, applicants will also need to submit the following documentation: LES/paystub for applicant and spouse; statement of Financial Need (i.e. reason for applying and how the grant will help); bill or pricing of expenditure as well as any other supporting information the applicant feels may be helpful. Additional information can be found at: www.state.nj.us/dca/dow/depmilspouseasst.shtml

 

Family Deployment Briefing schedule updated

The following is the updated Family Deployment Briefing Schedule presented by the Family Programs Office at various armories throughout New Jersey.  Any family member that is interested in learning more about important information, who to contact and ways to cope through this upcoming deployment are welcomed to attend ANY of the briefs, no matter where the Soldier's home station is located, as all the information will be the same at every brief.

Children, ages three and up, are welcome to attend too!  For more information, please contact your local Family Assistance Center by calling 1-888-859-0352.

Date                            Armory                      Time

Saturday, May 3          Somerset                    2 p.m.

Sunday, May 4             Woodbury                  9:30 a.m. and 2 p.m.

 

                            two briefs in one day to cover all 1/114th families

 

Sunday, June 8           Bordentown                     2 p.m. (Tentative)

**Any family that will be experiencing a deployment may attend ANY of the above briefs as all the information will be the same no matter where the Soldier's home station is located in the state.  All youth are welcomed to attend.  We will have established youth programs, in a separate area, for youth ages three and older.

4-H conference open to middle school students

From the desk of Amanda Balas, State Youth Coordinator

The 2008 New Jersey 4-H Middle School Conference invites youths in grades 6-8 to a one-day leadership conference, “From Today to Tomorrow: Creating Great Leaders.”

Held on May 10, 9 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. at the Burlington County 4-H office, it gives participants a chance to make new friends and build leadership, goal setting, communication and public speaking skills. Portions of the program include possibilities to learn about community service, science and state and national opportunities.

For a registration form, call your county 4-H office or e-mail bovitz@njaes.rutgers.edu.

The Burlington County 4-H Office is located at 2 Academy Drive, Westhampton, N.J.

For the kids – tour JT2DC and have lunch on June 7

From the desk of Amanda Balas, State Youth Coordinator

Kids – come tour the Battle Lab – learn about flags, military jobs, weapon marksmanship, walk through the urban, desert and woodland fighting lanes and drive the virtual combat convoy trainer.  On June 7, from 9:15 a.m. to noon, 20 slots are open for youths 10 and older to tour the Joint Training and Training Development Center (JT2DC) on Fort Dix.  Parents may drop children off or walk through with the group.  Hot dogs, chips and drinks fill the lunch time menu after the tour.  Contact Amanda Balas to register for the tour at Amanda.balas@us.army.mil or 609-562-0742.

 

Packages of thanks for military kids

From the desk of Amanda Balas, State Youth Coordinator

Celebrate Month of the Military Child in April.  Children of New Jersey Guard members can receive a Certificate of Appreciation along with some giveaways as a way of thanking them for being a military child.  Parents or guardians must send the request to Amanda Balas at Amanda.balas@us.army.mil or call 609-562-0742.  Include the following information: Parent or guardian’s name, military member’s unit, family e-mail address, children’s names and dates of birth and the children’s home address.  Packages will be mailed directly to the child.

 

Strong Bonds program helps strengthen relationships

From the desk of Marie Durling, Family Programs Specialist

Soldiers or Airmen (Army and Air Guard) and their significant others are encouraged to attend one of the upcoming Strong Bonds.  Soldiers will attend in a paid SUTA status and all expenses are paid.  These seminars have been extremely successful and are designed to strengthen relationships. The cost of the hotel and meals and literature are paid for by NGB.

The seminars are not therapy sessions or encounter groups nor are they for sharing your personal concerns. The seminars are conducted by the state chaplains' office and begin with teaching effective communication skills, address problem resolution strategies that work and teach how to discover the hidden issues in every relationship.  The program then moves into friendship, forgiveness, fun and sensuality. 

If you are interested in attending or need additional information, please call Marie Durling at 609-562-0739 or e-mail marie.durling@nj.ngb.army.mil.

These seminars usually fill up fast, so if interested, please call as soon as possible. The next seminar will be May 2-4 at the Flanders Hotel in Ocean City, N.J. (This weekend is currently full.) I am also planning another Strong Bonds weekend May 30-June 1. This is for Soldiers and Airmen who have not attended a Marriage Enrichment Seminar in the past.

Time is here to apply for Youth Camp

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance Specialist

This year's youth camp will be held from July 13-19 at the National Guard Training Center in Sea Girt, N.J. This year will mark our 14th year for the camp!! Some activities are archery, sports, beach and arts-n-crafts. For more information or to download an application, please visit http://www.state.nj.us/military/familysupport/programs.html. Read carefully as some of the applications have changed.

 

Happenings from the Teaneck FRG

From the desk of Janis M. Shaw, Family Assistance Specialist

Teaneck Family Readiness Group meeting dates are:

May 15                            7 p.m.

 

Post Office offers boxes, discount rate to FPO/APO addresses

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance Specialist

Now the U.S. Postal Service is making it easier for families to send care packages with a larger flat rate box and a special discount to FPO/ APO addresses. The new boxes can be used beginning March 3. They are 50 percent larger than the current flat rate box and can be sent to any domestic address for $12.95. A special military version of the box will carry the "America Supports You" logo and can be shipped to any FPO/ APO address for $10.95. The new Priority Mail Large Flat-Rate Box is "12 x 12" x 5½". For complete guidelines on mail services to military members overseas visit the USPS website at: http://www.usps.com/supportingourtroops/welcome.htm?from=household &page=troopsupport.

 

Federal grant for spouses of deployed military

Grants from a funding of $200,000 from the Department of Community Affairs are available for spouses of deployed or recently deployed military (all branches across the state). Typical awards are $2,500 each and are available for financial difficulties (such as past due rent and childcare) as well as for recreational and stress relieving activities for kids. For more information contact Fawn I. Mutschler, Military Grant Liaison, Women's Opportunity Center, YMCA of Burlington County by calling 609-543-6200 Ext. 325 or by email at wocmilitarygrant@ymca-bc.org.

 

N.J. State Family Readiness Council offers Family Grants Program

The New Jersey National Guard State Family Readiness Council has expanded its Family Grants Program to include an additional grant.  There are now two levels of Family Grants; TIER I is the $2,500 grant that has been in place for the past couple of years.  The TIER II opens family grants to New Jersey Army and Air National Guard non-deployed service members who were on State Active Duty or State Missions (e.g., hurricanes, floods, border missions) for more than 20 consecutive days.  Service members meeting these criteria are eligible to apply for a financial hardship grant up to $1,500.  Applications are available at all New Jersey Army and Air National Guard Family Assistance Centers.

Sports

Trenton Thunder offers reduced tickets to military personnel, vets

The Trenton Thunder baseball team and its community partner, the Trenton Vet Center, have collaborated to sponsor reduced ticket prices for veterans and their families during the 2008 Trenton Thunder baseball season.

A regular $10 ticket has been reduced to $7 for veterans and their family members.

Active Duty, Reserve, and National Guard, separated, and retired veterans are eligible for this program.  Interested veterans must have a picture I.D. and provide proof of their veteran status by showing one of the following documents:

  • &  Military I.D. card.
  • &  Federal Department of Veteran Affairs medical I.D. card
  • &  DD Form 214

Jewish War Vets taking Guard members, family to baseball game

From the desk of Marie Durling, Family Programs Specialist

The Jewish War Veterans of New Jersey would like to sponsor Soldiers/Airmen and their family members (total of 50 – first come, first served) for a baseball game at Newark's Riverfront Stadium on Sunday, May 25 at 1:35 p.m.

Included in the “price” is a hot dog, drink and chips.  If you would like to attend, please send the following information:  Soldier/Airmen's name, your address, phone number and number of tickets you need (please limit this to your significant other and children only).  The Jewish War Veterans have been extremely generous to N.J. National Guardsmen and their families by sponsoring these events so if you request tickets, please make every effort to attend.

Send requested information to:

JWV

NJ Dept Commander Sidney Lichter

96 Franklin St

Verona NJ 07044-1923.

 

114th Regimental Association golf outing May 12

From the desk of Michele Daisey, Woodbury Family Assistance Center

The Regimental Assoc. would like to invite all to join them for an awards luncheon and golf outing to benefit the Woodbury Family Readiness Group.

The 1st Annual 114th Regimental Association Golf Outing will be held May 12, at the Pitman Golf Course, 501 Pitman Road, Sewell, NJ. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m., shotgun start at 9 a.m. with an 18-hole scramble format.  The entry fee is $95, cocktails and lunch is only $45.  There are also sponsorship opportunities available.  For more information on the golf outing and sponsorship opportunities, contact: Horace MacAdams, Regimental Association Rep., 856-779-0610, exarmy@earth link.com; Robert Nordaby, Regimental Assoc. Rep., 856-981-8338, RNordaby@ verizon.net; or Karen Russell, FRG Fundraiser Rep., 856-430-0852, KGabby@ hotmail.com.

Brochures and flyers are also available through the Woodbury FAC, 856-251-6893. For more info on the course visit: www.co.gloucester.nj.us/golf.

 

Travel Help, Ideas

Armed Forces Vacation Club offers affordable lodging

The Armed Forces Vacation Club is a "space available" program offering Department of Defense affiliated personnel affordable condominium vacations at over 3,500 resorts around the world. Visit www.afvclub.com/ for more information.

Shades of Green offers Disney for military

Now that the summer is just around the corner, thoughts of how to spend next summer or your next vacation week, can start to pop into your mind.  “Can we go someplace better or different, nearer or farther from home, all without breaking the bank?”

One place to consider if Florida is one of your next vacation places is Shades of Green in Orlando.  Minutes from the Disney attractions, this resort is also close to golf, dining and other Florida attractions.

Their web site, www.shadesofgreen.org can give you tours of their rooms and family suites, the local attractions and other amenities that are offered by the resort.  The rates are reasonable and will be an opportunity to visit Orlando with your family.

Scholarship, Education News

Scholarships available for OIF/OEF veterans

Here is an opportunity for veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan to get scholarship money for college.  The Fund for Veterans’ Education will award up to $3.5 million in scholarship money this year.

You can read more about the scholarship program and how to apply at www.veteransfund.org. The application postmark deadline is June 15, 2008, so send in your application as soon as possible.

Enlisted Association announces scholarships

The Enlisted Association of the National Guard of New Jersey announces it is sponsoring five scholarships of $1,000 each for children of members of the Association and drilling members of the New Jersey National Guard (Army or Air) who are also members of the Association.  Additionally, a $500 USAA scholarship will be given for any Army or Air Drilling Guardsman.  Applications for scholarships may be found on the Association’s Web site at www.eang-nj.org. Applications must be postmarked by May 15, 2008 and mailed to:

           Enlisted Association of the National Guard of New Jersey

              ATTN:  Scholarship Committee

              3650 Saylors Pond Road

              Fort Dix, NJ 08640-7600

Prior recipients are not eligible to apply.

Education news for NJARNG

Education Services Brochure Booklet (ESB2)

Access the New Jersey Army National Guard's ESB2 at www.nj.gov/military/education.  The ESB2 is a comprehensive guide with links and shortcuts to civilian education benefits available to New Jersey Army National Guard Soldiers. 

G.I. Bill Notice of Basic Eligibility

New Jersey Army National Guard Soldiers can print their Eligibility of Mobilized Soldier notification letter for CH 1607 as well as Notice Of Basic Eligibility for CH 1606 at https://www.nationalguardbenefits.com; click on G.I. Bill Home Page.

 

American Legion offers scholarships, booklet on their Web site

The American Legion has scholarship information on their Web site – www.legion.org – including the 152-page booklet, Need a Lift, which is a complete financial aid reference guide for veterans, family members and the American Legion family.  When you get on the site, click on “Scholarship Information” in the “Useful Links” block.

 

Association News

Enlisted Association wants YOU!

By retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, EANG-NJ

The Enlisted Association National Guard-New Jersey is off to a good start for 2008 as we have realigned all the committees and filled both the Executive Council and Committees with a cross section of Army and Air, uniformed and retirees, and several junior NCOs.  Everyone appears to be enthused and pledges to support the Association in all its efforts.  All we need now is for you to get on board as a member and bring your fellow soldiers and airmen with you.

We have many challenges facing us over the next few years whether it is another round of base closures via the Base Realignment Commission (BRAC), reduction in TRICARE benefits, reduction in troop strength, attempts to maintain the retirement age at 60, etc.  We need a powerful voice to put our message across to the State and Federal Legislators and this can only be accomplished through a strong membership in our State Association (EANG-NJ) and the National Association (EANGUS).

The new membership year starts on 1 January 2008 and we need your help in making our Association grow.  We encourage all enlisted soldiers and airmen to join the Association as Active Members and also welcome all officers, warrant officers, federal, and state employees to join as Associate Members.  Applications for membership can be obtained from our website www.eang-nj.org.

 

NGANJ group life insurance available to members

Are you covered by the NGANJ Group Life Insurance Program?  As a member of either the Officers or the Enlisted Association, you are entitled to enroll in your Association Life Insurance Program.  This special program provides from $5,000 to $50,000 of Life Insurance for you, “round the clock”.  Premiums range from as little as $2 per month and may be payroll-deducted from your drill check.  Family coverage is also available at low rates designed for you as a member of the New Jersey Army and Air National Guard.  Think of it!!  No aviation exclusions...No hazardous duty restrictions...No war clauses…No checks to write.  Dependent coverage includes spouses and all children.  Information can be obtained by contacting retired CWO Jack Petrosilli at 609-530-6843, or retired Brig. Gen. Robert S. Dutko Sr. at 609-273-1004.  Enrollment forms can be obtained by calling retired Col. Frank L. Carlone, Program Coordinator at 732-249-8335.

 

Veterans Information

Web site provides support to separating military members

TurboTAP (Transition Assistance Program) is an easy to use, interactive Web portal that provides life-long support to separating military service members (Active Duty, Guard and Reserve) and their families. It is a single source starting point for accessing key resources available for servicemembers transitioning out of the military at any point in their military career.  Resources include Department of Defense, Department of Labor, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Education, Small Business Administration, the National Veterans Corporation and the National Guard Bureau.  For more information go to www.TurboTAP.org or email TAPHelp@military-inc.com.

 

DMAVA Veterans Outreach Campaign continues

The DMVA Veterans Outreach Campaign continues with kiosk displays at selected malls throughout New Jersey.  The schedule is as follows:

May 6*, 7, 8

Ocean County Mall

July 8, 9, 10

Cherry Hill Mall

July 18*

Traveling Wall, Wildwood

August 5*, 6, 7

Willowbrook Mall

*Medal ceremonies begin at 10:30 a.m. on these dates.  The kiosk will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The kiosk will also be in place at the Wildwood Convention Center for three state conventions.

v June 5-6, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. – Elks State Convention

v June 11-13, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. – American Legion State Convention

v June 18-20, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. – VFW State Convention

 

N.J. Vietnam Veterans Memorial

N.J. Vietnam Veterans' Memorial and Vietnam Era Educational Center's upcoming events:

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Free guided tours of the Memorial are offered on the first Saturday of each month at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

May 7, 11 a.m. – New Jersey Vietnam Veterans' Remembrance Day Ceremony at the Memorial.  There will be a state medal ceremony.

May 17, 1 p.m. – On the Road to Recovery, an oral-history discussion by NJ Vietnam-Era veteran Bishop Fred Rubin about his service tending wounded G.I.s in the Army hospital in Hawaii during the Vietnam War.

May 26, 11 a.m. – Memorial Day Ceremony at the N.J. Vietnam Veterans' Memorial.

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For further information call 1-800-648-VETS or visit www.njvvmf.org.

 

 

 

   
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