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Borne the Battle

Borne the Battle recognizes each battle, challenge, and sacrifice our Veterans endure during and after their service, as well as spotlighting important resources, offices, and benefits VA offers our Veterans.
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Now displaying: January, 2017
Jan 27, 2017

This week's podcast is going to get emotional. Our feature interview is with Army Veteran Gordon Wallace.

We first met Gordon at the VA Pacific Islands Health System in Honolulu. He was playing music in the lobby with a fellow Vietnam Veteran. They strummed on their guitars singing familiar songs providing hospital guests with entertainment. Between songs, Gordon began speaking about his recovery. He talked about returning from Vietnam and being shunned by his family. He wept as he recalled being labeled as "baby killer."

We invited Gordon to share more of his story on our podcast and he humbly accepted. Gordon is a native Hawaiian and very proud of his service.

Covered in Episode 15:

  • Commentary on service from four Battle of the Bulge Veterans
  • Interview with Army Veteran Gordon Wallace
     
    • Being drafted.
    • Using VA for benefits and counseling
    • His battle to receive his benefits
    • Being shunned by family when he returned from Vietnam
    • Launching the PTSDJournal
  • Benefits of group therapy at VAMCs or VetCenters.
  • #VeteranOfTheDay Navy Veteran Eugene Cernan
Jan 25, 2017

On December 16, 1944, the Germans launched what is considered their last major offensive of World War II. Just shortly after the Allied force's successfully invaded Normandy, France, the surprise attack from Hitler's forces caught the Allies off guard. The battle lasted until January 25, 1945. The United States suffered 19,000 fatalities and more than 89,000 casualties.

In commemoration of the 72nd anniversary of this historic battle of courage and fortitude, we invite you to meet Army Veteran Harry Miller.

During the Battle of the Bulge, the 1st Army Headquarters instructed the tank crews to go down to an ordnance depot and take whatever they needed for the tanks. “We had to take good parts off of one tank and put it on another. We finally got three tanks and a tank destroyer that would operate and run, and had a gun,” he said in an interview with VA. They took the three working tanks and sent them to their C Company. Those three tanks ended up taking out three German tanks, which ended up being members of the 1st SS Panzer Division Leibstandarte SS Adolf Hitlerbeing, Hitler’s old body guards.

Jan 19, 2017

Episode 14 of the #VApodcast features Marine Veteran Christian Benedetto.

Christian Benedetto was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in November 2013. In the nearly 25 years that have passed since his military service with the United States Marine Corps in the First Gulf War and the early 1990s, he felt something was terribly wrong with him, yet he believed he was hiding it well. After being diagnosed, Christian founded and launched the PTSDJournal.

PTSDJournal is dedicated to improving the quality of life for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder sufferers and their loved ones. Each issue delivers in-depth research articles, personal narratives and alternate solutions that highlight the causes of PTSD and the keys to recovery. PTSDJournal advocates for the PTSD community, focusing on early intervention, diagnosis, treatment, and awareness initiatives. Each issue provides physicians, scientists, doctors, patients and families an outlet for PTSD awareness and educate the PTSD community and the general population about how to live with PTSD and where to get help.

Covered in Episode 14:

 *   An ExploreVA Facebook chat occurring on January 25 at IVMF's Facebook<https://www.facebook.com/IVMFSyracuseU/> page
 *   Interview with Marine Veteran Christian Benedetto

    *   Christian''s decision to join the military.
    *   How service introduced him to diversity
    *   Leaving the military
    *   Being diagnosed with PTSD
    *   Launching the PTSDJournal
    *   Using the East Orange VAMC
 *   Research and apply for health care benefits with VA
 *   #VeteranOfTheDay Air Force Veteran George Watson<http://www.blogs.va.gov/VAntage/34471/air-force-veteran-george-watson/>

Jan 13, 2017

Episode 13 features Army Veteran John Lee Dumas.

John Lee Dumas is the host of EOFire, an award winning Podcast where he interviews today's most successful Entrepreneurs 7-days a week. JLD has interviewed over 1400 Entrepreneurs and EOFire has over 1 million monthly listens.

Covered in Episode 13:

 *   The value of VAntage Point
 *   Interview with Army Veteran John Lee Dumas

    *   John's decision to join the military.
    *   Powerful story from his deployment
    *   Leaving the military
    *   Entrepreneurship
    *   Using Puerto Rico VAMC
 *   Locating a VA facility using our directory
 *   #VeteranOfTheDay Marine Corps Veteran Betty Moseley Brown

Jan 10, 2017

Special midweek episode for you with the State of VA.

As part of a two day MyVA Advisory Committee meeting, VA Secretary Bob McDonald and Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson spoke about the significant progress made in the five strategies of the MyVA transformation in 2016. This includes improving the Veteran experience, improving the employee experience, improving internal support services, continuous improvement and enhancing strategic partnerships.

A few highlights of the MyVA progress made in 2016:

  • 17 million Veterans recieved appointments in their communities in FY15
  • Average wait times in September 2016 were less than five days for primary care, less than six days for specialty care and less than three days for mental health care
  • 60 percent of Veterans surveyed in June trust VA
  • It takes just 24 minutes to enroll in VA health care over the phone
  • 100 percent increase in the capacity for the Veterans Crisis Line facility
  • 83 percent reduction in pending claims (those greater than 125 days) since the height in March 2013
  • 47 percent decrease in Veteran homelessness since 2010
  • $226 million in cost avoidance by transforming how we order medical and surgical equipment
  • 116 days: the average time to complete a claim
  • VA has the 5th OIT ranking out of 24 agencies in the Office of Management and Budget Benchmarks for customer satisfaction
  • 106 community Veterans Engagement Boards to meet Veterans’ needs locally
  • VA now per-determines a Veteran’s eligibility for burial benefits at our 135 national cemeteries

McDonald and Gibson recognized the progress that has been made over the past two years, but emphasized that there is still more work to be done and that the VA must continue to serve Veterans by putting their needs first.

Jan 6, 2017

I hope everyone had a fun and safe new year.  Our first episode of 2017 is with James "Jim" Davis. Jim is an Air Force Veteran and currently does Veteran Outreach for Pathways to Housing DC.

Jim has lived an interesting life. For more than a decade, Jim led a nomadic life of homelessness. He wandered around the country, taking odd jobs in the wilderness to barely get by. When he wasn't set somewhere through work, he wandered off to other states looking for adventure. When he finally emerged from the woods and began his journey back into civilization, he used VA to overcome some adversities in his life. Now, he uses these experiences to reach out to Veterans at Pathways to Housing DC. The mission of Pathways to Housing DC is to transform individual lives by ending homelessness and supporting recovery for people with disabilities. They do good work, and Jim is committed to serving his fellow Veterans by connecting with them through mutual experiences.

Covered in Episode Twelve:

  • Cities ending homelessness
  • Interview with Air Force Veteran James Davis
     
    • Jim's decision to join the military.
    • His first years out of the Air Force
    • Leaving his marriage
    • Becoming homeless
    • Recovering from homelessness
    • His work at Pathways to Housing
  • Using VA's homeless call line to get assistance
  • #VeteranOfTheDay Air Force Veteran Christopher Ford
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