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Gig Line: Got a pen and paper handy?

There are a lot of positive things going on in Dare County to recognize and honor our veterans and if you’re interested in participating in activities with your “brothers and sisters,” our local veteran organizations would welcome you with open arms!

The Outer Banks V.F.W. Post 10950 meets on the first Monday of each month at 7 p.m. The meetings are held at the Colington Volunteer Fire Department, 108 Old School House Rd. in Colington (to the left just after the second bridge). The meetings take place upstairs and there’s an elevator for easy access as well as ample parking. If you’re a veteran of a foreign war and you’re interested in joining this outstanding group of men and women, please get in touch with Jim Norrell/Quarter Master 252-489-9421.

V.F.W. Post 10950 has grown exponentially over the past few years for good reason. They’re well connected, organized and successful in their promotions for veterans and for veteran help. And they don’t just “talk the talk,” they “walk the walk.” If you’re a veteran who hasn’t served overseas, Post 10950 Auxiliary members are doing incredible work for our veterans, too! If you’d like to know the requirements to join the Auxiliary membership, please note the following:

You must be a citizen of the United States or a U.S. national, 16 years or older, husband or wife, widower or widow, father or mother, grandfather or grandmother, son or daughter, grandson or granddaughter, brother or sister of persons who were or are eligible for membership in Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States.

Those eligible for membership in the V.F.W. are those that have received a campaign medal for overseas service; have served 30 consecutive or 60 non-consecutive days in Korea; or have ever received hostile fire or imminent danger pay.

Proof of service is required for eligibility and must be obtained by the applicant.

If a veteran is eligible for V.F.W. membership, having their DD-214 would be important in processing the application as well as in the case of an Auxiliary membership application as the family member of an eligible veteran. If a veteran cannot locate his/her DD-214, they can go online to VA.gov and search DD-214 or Forms and request a duplicate online, or you can contact our Dare County veteran service officer Patty O’Sullivan at 252-475-5604 and schedule a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday appointment and she’ll meet with you and assist you in acquiring one.

Also, once you have the DD-214 in hand, I recommend that you have it registered at the Dare County Register of Deeds office in Manteo so that you know its safe and sound for future reference. Their office is in the Dare County Courthouse, 962 Marshall C. Collins Drive, Room 165A in Manteo. If you wish to call in advance, their number is 252-475-5970 and their hours are Mon.-Fri. 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Also, there is no charge to register your DD-214 and no one else can access/copy it other than an individual you would designate.

My husband Billy was an active member of Post 10950 and I can assure you his involvement with them was a blessing. He loved his fellow members and their special comradery was obvious. Billy eagerly anticipated each meeting; he was a part of them and likewise, they were a part of him too. I can’t thank the good Lord enough for what their members have meant to Billy and our family. When it was discovered that Billy was gravely ill beyond diabetes type II (Agent Orange Vietnam we already knew about), these V.F.W. members surrounded him with love, prayers and the kind of support that only veterans truly understand between each other. They not only called, visited and emailed him, but they took time out of their busy schedules to sit at his bedside, read to him and lift his spirits – always reminding him they were there for him throughout those four months of glioblastoma multiform 4 brain cancer.

They were with us every step of the way from the time he was diagnosed February ’16 until his passing July ’16. They comforted our family and let us know and feel their support and we’ll never ever forget what they meant to my sweet husband and our family. They sought ways in which to help us and their kindness was heartfelt. I wish every single military service member who is V.F.W. eligible would take the time to join their Post. If you have relocated to the Outer Banks and have been a member of a V.F.W. post elsewhere, you might want to consider transferring your membership here locally.

Each year this V.F.W. Post 10950 hosts an exceptional fundraising event with the combined efforts of the Auxiliary members and the generosity of business owners – a huge variety of items are contributed for the fundraiser raffle.  It’s a super fun night with the best kind of fellowship and you certainly don’t have to be a V.F.W. or Auxiliary member to participate! Remember the elevator, it’s easy to access the event that is held upstairs in a spacious meeting room.

The V.F.W. and Auxiliary members (men and women) are exceptional in their projects, effort and support of the veterans who have served our country. They work together and enthusiastically to promote the V.F.W. Annual Fundraising Dinner/Auction and Raffle. Please save the date!

The fun will begin with a silent auction starting at 5 p.m.; a live auction starting at 6 p.m. and barbecue dinners for $10 per plate (which is always delicious)! This year’s event will be held on Saturday, May 4 from 5-8 p.m. Again, this a very special, fun family event held at the Colington Volunteer Fire Dept. If you’re a vet, love a vet or just love to support our vets, please try to come! If you cannot attend but wish to help, you can donate a good, a service or make a monetary donation to help raise money for our veterans. In that case, please contact Fred Lamm at 304-702-0768 or by emailing me giglineheroes@aol.com and I’ll make sure Fred gets your information to contact you prior to the event.

In the coming weeks, I’ll also write about our local American Legion Fort Raleigh Post 26, PO Box 1683, Kill Devil Hills, NC 27948, located at 302 W. Lake Drive, Kill Devil Hills (west of the bypass, across from Ladles). They also work diligently to help our veterans in many ways and I look forward to sharing their accomplishments as well as the Marine Corps League Outer Banks Detachment #1264, PO Box 2332, Kitty Hawk, NC 27949 – meetings located at Kern P. Pitts Center, 5375 North Virginia Dare Trail in Southern Shores.

What can I say except that we are blessed to live amongst many wonderful veterans from all military branches. Fortunately for us, they (you) are our family, friends, neighbors and work associates. Thank you for everything you have done for our country and God bless you!

Until next time, be happy, be safe and be proud. Love one another and pray for our troops far away. If you’d like to, write to me at giglineheroes@aol.com or call 252-202-2058. Take care and stay tuned . . .

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