Reader submitted content: United Daughters dedicate grave marker

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Janelle Foster Ellen W. Jones chapter 1022 of United Daughters of the Confederacy held a grave marking and dedication for Confederate veteran William Beck in the Floyd Cemetery on Saturday. Beck was one of the first burials in the cemetery, having died in 1904. His burial location was found in May, and plans were made […]

Veterans can remain optimistic

Anthony Principi, former secretary of veterans affairs, warned last week that disabled veterans and their families will suffer if Americans “lose faith in the integrity” of VA disability compensation system. Thankfully, for hundreds of thousands of Vietnam veterans in line to be compensated for three additional diseases linked Agent Orange exposure, few senators seemed ready […]

Press release: Udall urges troops and veterans to claim stop loss compensation

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Tom Udall, D-N.M., is urging active duty service members, veterans, and beneficiaries of service members who were involuntarily extended between September 11, 2001 and September 30, 2009, to apply for Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay. Under the 2009 War Supplemental Appropriations Act, compensation is available to service members of every military […]

Military update: Retroactive payments awarded

The Department of Veterans Affairs published its final regulation Aug. 31 for compensating Vietnam veterans with ischemic heart disease, Parkinson’s disease or B-cell leukemia, or their surviving spouses. Veterans diagnosed with these diseases only will have to show they stepped foot in Vietnam sometime from Jan. 9, 1962 through May 7, 1975, to qualify for […]

‘Quality of life’ benefit falls short

By Tom Philpott: Military Update Disabled veterans were thrilled in 2007 when the Veterans Disability Benefits Commission asked Congress to enact an immediate “quality of life” increase to disability payments from the Department of Veterans Affairs. The special increase, said VDBC commissioners, should be across the board, benefiting all veterans with service-connected health conditions, and […]

Honors — Aug. 29

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Lam New Mexico’s Ladies Auxiliary President Lee Ann Lam of Clovis, a member of Ledbetter-Mc Reynolds Chapter 3015, led the state delegation of the Ladies Auxiliary to the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) of the U.S., at the 97th National Convention held Aug. 21-26 at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis, Ind. As leading representative […]

Military Update: Group hopes to ease GI Bill process

By Tom Philpott: Military Update Veterans and service members eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill already have an outstanding education benefit. But it soon could become even more valuable and easier to use. The Senate Veterans Affairs Committee on Tuesday released details of the GI Bill reform package it approved two weeks ago. It includes […]

Wayland joins Yellow Ribbon program

Kevin Wilson Wayland Baptist University is one of 1,100 schools that have joined with the Department of Veterans Affairs for the GI Bill’s “Yellow Ribbon” program. Wayland, based in Plainview, Texas, offers a campus in Clovis and a satellite office at Cannon Air Force Base. The Yellow Ribbon program, a key provision of the new […]

Final Agent Orange review ordered

An estimated 200,000 Vietnam veterans suffering from three diseases newly associated with exposure to Agent Orange are closer to receiving disability compensation following an appeals court order Aug. 2 directing VA to publish a final implementing regulation within 30 days. On a lawsuit brought by a coalition of veterans’ service organizations, the U.S. Court of […]

Portales past: Aug. 14, 1955

Aug. 14, 1955: The annual all-veterans picnic was slated for the Eastern New Mexico University campus. All veterans and their families were welcomed to the basket dinner. Free melons and snow cones were served.

New Agent Orange claims deadline near

By Tom Philpott: Military Update The Department of Veterans Affairs likely will begin in October to pay thousands of disability claims to Vietnam veterans with ischemic heart disease, Parkinson’s disease and B-cell leukemia — illnesses newly associated with exposure to defoliants, including Agent Orange, used in that war. A 60-day countdown to the day that […]

Obama administration’s support for GI Bill reform conditional

By Tom Philpott: Military Update Senior officials at the departments of Veterans Affairs and Defense have joined veterans’ groups and representatives of academia to endorse a comprehensive bill from Sen. Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii) to reform the Post-9/11 GI Bill. Still to be determined is how to pay for the many provisions in the Post-9/11 Veterans […]

Veterans share thoughts on Fourth of July

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Because it is the Fourth of July. The Portales News-Tribune asked several local veterans what Independence Day means to them. What follows are a variety of perspectives from five people who sacrificed and speak from heart-felt experience.

Portales Past: July 25, 1945

July 25, 1945: Portales prepared to host the Veterans of Foreign Wars rodeo, which featured bronc riding, calf roping, bulldogging and bull riding. Dances were scheduled in the Safeway parking lot after the rodeo performances.

VFW holds first Texas Hold ‘em Poker Run

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Clarence Plank Local veterans participated Saturday in the first Texas Hold ‘em Poker Run at the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 9515 in Portales. Thirty-one riders participated in the 130-mile trip taking riders to Muleshoe, Clovis and Melrose. Retired U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Charles Eaton, commander of Post No. 9515, said proceeds are […]

Agent Orange aid hits possible roadblock

By Tom Philpott Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.), chief architect of the pricey post-9/11 GI Bill education benefit for veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan war era, could become a new champion, for taxpayers, against what he perceives as excess spending on military pay and on a new wave of Agent Orange claims. Webb, a former […]

Local veterans recall Korean War

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By Clarence Plank: PNT staff writer The Korean War is commonly called the forgotten war, but not for the men who served in the three-year conflict. Local veterans George Martin, Dale Davis, and David Ash share their experiences.

Vietnam veterans owed an apology

By Baxter Black: PNT columnist This Memorial Day weekend, my thoughts will go back to a friend from college — Clovis May. He was a mild-mannered, hard working, good cowboy from a ranching family in Deming, New Mexico. I don’t recall exactly what his major was, but probably range management or ag business. He was […]

Primary caregivers stipend approved

By Tom Philpott: Military Update Primary in-home caregivers to severely wounded veterans of current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will be paid a stipend by the Department of Veterans Affairs, under a bill Congress has passed unanimously. The stipend, payable to a spouse, parent, child, friend or even a hired caregiver, will be based on […]

Military feature: Schools have veterans affairs certification officials

By Liliana Castillo: Freedom New Mexico Clovis Community College and Eastern New Mexico University have veterans affairs certification officials on staff. James Smith at CCC and Margaret Estrada at ENMU said they enjoy helping veterans navigate the extensive GI Bill. “I feel like each veteran has earned these benefits so it’s an honor for me […]