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Memorial Day program @ Veterans Memorial Plaza - 5/28 @ 11:00 AM
Community Luncheon - 5/28 @ 12:30

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

SAL Supports Memorial Day Activities

On Saturday, May 26, the Coweta Veterans' Club will conduct the annual flag placement on veterans' graves in local cemeteries. This year, the Sons of the American Legion (SAL) will host the placements. The SAL was organized to provide a way for non-veteran sons and grandsons of veterans to participate in programs and services in support of the American Legion. The SAL extends an invitation to the community to participate in helping to remember the service of deceased veterans. Caring citizens are asked to assemble at the Veterans Club on Hwy 29N (Across from A&W Nursery), at 8:30 AM or meet at the cemetery entrances. The Veterans' Club will make available a limited number of flags for local church and private cemeteries.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Veterans Employment Seminar - March 14

The first Veterans Employment Seminar of the year will be March 14 from 1-3 p.m.

This seminar is among several to be held for veterans in 2012. The session will be facilitated by Peter Ludlow, manager of the Newnan office of the Georgia Department of Labor.

Ludlow, along with Alan Hurd of the DOL office will be explaining the new Gold Card Veterans Preference Programs for Post-9/11 veterans that are currently available. A main concern is that post 9/11 veterans need to be aware of specific programs available to veterans through the Department of Labor.

The DOL and sponsoring veterans organizations are interested to hear the issues directly from the veterans who are facing obstacles in finding employment. Hank Berkowitz, local Veterans Service Officer for the sponsoring veterans organizations, is coordinating the seminar events.

"We are interested to hear from veterans whether the current DOL programs meet their needs," said Berkowitz.

"We recognize that Post 9/11 veterans will face the same difficulties all veterans have faced in transferring military skill sets to civilian employment and they need the guidance of trained DOL experts," Ludlow emphasized.

In addition, employers from the community will also be present to discuss their hiring procedures and what they are looking for in various skill categories. They will respond to difficulties that may be inhibiting successful employment.

"Young discharged veterans returning from the 'Sand Boxes' of Iraq and Afghanistan need to have proven programs in place and we hope this Seminar will start the process," said Berkowitz.

The seminar is hosted by Newnan's American Legion Post 57, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2667, Marine Corps League Detachment 1325 along with DAV Chapter 31 in LaGrange.

The March 14 seminar is scheduled from 1-3 p.m. at the Coweta Veterans Club, 130 Veterans Club Drive off U.S. Highway 29 north of the bypass and just across from A&W Nursery. (Click here for Directions to the Club)

The presentation includes opportunities for veterans to discuss job search concerns with actual local employers, current opportunities and efforts for assistance toward finding jobs in present economic conditions and Veterans Preference and Priority of Service.

Berkowitz may be reached at Hberkowitz.vso@gmail.com. For more information, calls may be made to 770-254-7220.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Coweta Participates in Wreaths Across America

Coweta veterans will participate in the national "Wreaths Across America" program with ceremonies Saturday.

Having its beginning in a small New England holiday wreath making company, "Wreaths Across America" has grown and now covers the entire nation, furnishing Christmas wreaths for placement on the graves of fallen warriors.

Arlington National Cemetery, for example, is provided with enough wreaths for every grave. Additionally, the program provides to other national cemeteries, communities and veterans' organizations, a symbolic number of wreaths to be appropriately used to commemorate their war dead.

Through the efforts of John O'Connor, a member of both the American Legion and VFW, the Coweta Veterans' Club receives seven wreaths each year, which are placed on the honor rolls at Veterans' Memorial Plaza at the Newnan city park at Temple Avenue and Jackson Street.

This year's ceremony will be held on Saturday, Dec. 10, at noon.

The wreath placement is a solemn ceremony, touched by the spirit of Christmas. Participants include members of veterans' and other patriotic organizations.

O'Connor, speaking for the sponsors, extended an invitation to the public to attend. "This ceremony, which remembers and honors, is also a time to reflect on all the Christmases missed by those names on the cold bronze plaques. Those departed souls, who made the supreme sacrifice, may just rest easier knowing that we wish the memory of them, a Merry Christmas."

The program will last only about thirty minutes. There will be a limited number of folding chairs available for attendees. Anyone needing more information is asked to call Dick Stender at 770-301-6076.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

70th Year Remembrance of Pearl Harbor

The Coweta Veterans Club, through VFW Post 2667 and American Legion Post 57 held a memorial ceremony on December 7 at McKoon Funeral Home at 11:00 AM. It was moved from Veterans’ Memorial Plaza due to inclimate weather. “It was described by FDR as a Day of Infamy,” said Ron Freese, Club Chairman. “It was also the day that brought America into the war and certainly put the nation in a fighting mood. We must not forget the two thousand plus who died in sinking ships, on airfields and in the skies. Their spirits still, and will forever, need to be remembered. We cannot let this day pass without pausing to remember what was a defeat, a defeat that drove us to eventual victory.”

The short program included a reading of President Roosevelt’s speech to Congress, declaring war on Japan. Freese made a special invitation to WWII veterans and senior citizens who have memories of Pearl Harbor Day they might wish to share. “Those who were young adults at that time can tell us more about the terror and anger experienced than any history book,” said Freese.

In keeping with a tradition born in WWII, the Veterans’ Club had coffee and donuts available at the Plaza, both before and after the ceremony.


Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans Day: Daviston Coweta's Veteran of the Year

Terry Daviston, the owner of McKoon Funeral Home in Newnan, will be honored as Coweta County's Veteran of the Year in ceremonies Friday.

American Legion Post 57 Post Commander Dick Dennis announced plans for the community Veterans Day ceremonies -- including the honoring of Daviston. For the seventh year, the American Legion-sponsored program in Newnan will feature a selected local veteran who represents a successful life and a spirit of service to community, state and nation.

Daviston, an Alabama native, served his country during the Cold War as an Intelligence Specialist in the U.S. Army. He served in Japan, monitoring clandestine radio traffic from North Korea, China and the Soviet Union.

Upon completion of his enlistment, he began working in the funeral business, eventually completing mortuary school in Kentucky. A career of funeral home management brought him to Georgia, and his purchase of the McKoon Funeral Home from the founding family brought him to Newnan.

Dennis lauded Daviston's unselfish giving of his time and spirit to causes and individuals throughout Coweta County and Georgia. "Terry gives so much to so many and it is always with anonymity. He is what I call a quiet hero," Dennis said.

"He has always been our right arm during parades, ceremonies and our participation in veterans' funerals. He has stepped up when financially distressed veterans pass away, making sure that their final rest is with dignity and honor," Dennis said.

Kiwanis, the Coweta County Development Authority and the Veterans Plaza Committee have all benefited from Daviston's involvement. He is an active member of First Baptist Church of Newnan.

Daviston shares his life with Martha Ann, his wife of 46 years, son John and daughter Tracy Piepho and three grandchildren.

"In all he does, he has not forgotten to be thankful for the service of his fellow veterans," Dennis said, describing Daviston as "the perfect combination of success and compassion for others."

The ceremonies will begin at 11 a.m. at Veterans Memorial Plaza in the city park at Jackson Street and Temple Avenue. A musical program will feature the eighth-grade chorus from Smokey Road Middle School, directed by Mrs. Denise Meacham.

As seating is usually limited, the public is advised to bring folding chairs. In the case of inclement weather, the program will be held in the chapel of McKoon Funeral Home next to the park.

Parking is also available for the ceremony at McKoon's.

The traditional Veterans Day Luncheon at the Coweta Veterans' Club, will follow the ceremony. Dennis extended an invitation to all of Daviston's friends to attend the ceremonies and share in his pride and join the post for a meal and fellowship.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Halloween Party for Kids

The American Legion Family will have its annual Halloween Party for children 12 and under on Oct. 29, the Saturday before Halloween, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
They promise lots of fun, games and prizes, with face painting and costume contests for different age groups.
The American Legion is located at the Coweta Veterans Club on U.S. Hwy. 29 North, across from A&W Nursery. For information, call 770-251-6949.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Clinic for Military Veterans with PTSD

Veterans who believe they may be suffering from post traumatic stress disorder were encouraged to get more information about the condition and its impact on veterans and their loved ones when the Coweta Veterans Club hosted its third clinic to benefit veterans Oct. 26 at 7 p.m.

The Coweta Veterans Club is at 130 Veterans Club Drive, off U.S. Highway 29, just north of the Hwy. 34 bypass across from A&W Nursery.

The Oct. 26 clinic concentrated on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, focusing upon the veterans who might be suffering from the emotional damage of war. This clinic included immediate family members who want to support their veteran.

PTSD is a scourge of every war in which the United States has fought but was first recognized medically for the veterans of the War to End All Wars -- World War One, noted Hank Berkowitz, local volunteer Veterans Service Officer, who is coordinating the evening events.

Today, PTSD is known to occur either immediately after a wartime traumatic situation, or even decades after military service. Either situation becomes a difficult medical issue for a veteran.

This is compounded for our current Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, who because of a small all-volunteer military force, are required to spend two, three, four or more tours in full combat situations and then cope with the resulting stress, Berkowitz said.

Michelle Lindsey-Bailey, a PTSD Trauma Specialist from the Decatur VA Medical Center, led the Oct. 26 clinic program.

According to Lindsey-Bailey, veterans are known to make every attempt to cope with this stress that can limit productivity whether in work or personal life.

Active military members have habitually covered up PTSD symptoms, rather than have any mention made in their military medical jackets that would prevent promotions or even cause their discharge, said Berkowitz. Now, there are resources available for assistance, no matter the life stage of the veteran, and greater acceptance of PTSD within active service members.

Mike Hudson, manager with Georgia State Veterans Services in LaGrange, was available to answer all VA compensation questions related to PTSD or other VA issues. Guests were urged to bring all VA related questions and or issues for discussion.

Dinner was served at 7 p.m. with the clinic beginning at 7:30 p.m.

This VA medical clinic was hosted by American Legion Post 57, Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2667 and Coweta-Fayette Marine Corps League Detachment 1325. Veterans from all military conflicts were encouraged to attend this event, Berkowitz said.