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Black Forest AARP – Veterans Day Salute

Amidst snow and temperature hovering near zero, the Black Forest AARP Chapterís Annual Salute to Veterans took place Nov. 12. †The observance featured an update on veteranís benefits by Jim Tackett,†manager of the El Paso County Veteran Services, presented updates on veteransí benefits, and Jack Casey of the Colorado Patriot Guard Riders was also a feature speaker.Jim Tackett discussed the typical types of veteran services available, including medical treatment resulting from traditional service-connected disabilities as well as exposure to health hazards†such as Agent Orange, during Vietnam; or radiation exposure encountered during or after World War II. He emphasized that it is†never too late for a service member or surviving spouse to seek counseling and assistance. †The El Paso County Veteran†Services can be reached at 719-520-7750.The Patriot Guard Riders is a nationwide organization whose members attend the funerals of members of the†U.S. military, firefighters and police at the invitation of a decedentís family. Casey said the Patriot†Guard Riders form an honor guard at military burials to help protect mourners from harassment and to fill out the ranks at†burials of indigent and homeless veterans.†The group, some 300 strong in Southern Colorado, also greets troops returning†from overseas and volunteers for veteransí organizations such as Veterans Homes.†The organization is open to†any person who respects those who serve in the military. Call Casey at 719-238-3812 for more information.At the business meeting, Kay Zvonkovich and Edna Eaton were recognized planning the recent†successful bus tour of the Grand Canyon.†The chapter also finalized the slate of chapter officers for 2015. †The election†will be held at the Dec. 10 meeting. †For information on the meeting, call Chuck at 719-749-9227 or visit the†chapter web site at†† All are welcome.

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