Veterans

NEWS
10:36 am
Mon May 25, 2015

At Dover Air Force Base, Bringing Home The Fallen With Grief And Joy

A carry team at Dover Air Force Base trains on the proper protocol for a dignified transfer.
Ariel Zambelich NPR

Originally published on Sun May 24, 2015 11:44 am

There is a grim kind of math that comes with war.

Most of the troops who died during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were flown to Dover Air Force base in Delaware. And for most of the wars, those dignified transfers were off limits to the press. That changed in 2009, when President Obama lifted the media ban and paid a visit to Dover himself.

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ARTS
5:17 am
Mon May 25, 2015

It's Not Rude: These Portraits Of Wounded Vets Are Meant To Be Stared At

Army Spc. Jerral Hancock sits for a portrait with his son Julius. It is believed that Hancock was trapped under the wreckage of his Army tank in Iraq for half an hour before he was rescued.
Courtesy of David Jay/Unknown Soldier

Originally published on Tue May 26, 2015 10:50 am

It's impolite to stare. But when it comes to severely injured soldiers, maybe we don't look enough; or maybe we'd rather not see wounded veterans at all.

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NEWS
11:13 am
Wed March 25, 2015

Program Trains Soldiers For Careers In Solar

LCpl. Aponte, front, and Sgt. McConnell move a solar module.
Credit Solar Energy International

The U.S. Department of Energy is piloting a program that trains military personnel for careers in the solar industry. The Reach for the Sun course is designed for people exiting the service and returning to civilian life. Paonia-based Solar Energy International is leading two of the three pilot programs including one at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano speaks to Kathy Swartz, the executive director of SEI, an educational nonprofit, about the project.

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NEWS
7:00 pm
Sun March 8, 2015

Water Sports Park Opens In Montrose

Marine veteran Jared Bolhuis tests the waves in a kayak before the park opened.
Credit Welcome Home Montrose

There’s still snow on the ground, but that’s not stopping people from enjoying a new water park on the Western Slope. 

The city of Montrose has finished construction two months ahead of schedule on its Water Sports Park. The recreation area is now open to the public. 

The park utilizes a section of the Uncompahgre River. Montrose created ‘wave stimulators’ so people can kayak, paddle board, raft and swim in the waves.

City Engineer Scott Murphy explains how it works.

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AGRICULTURE
11:18 am
Tue March 3, 2015

From War To Plow: Why USDA Wants Veterans To Take Up Farming

Three years ago, Air Force veteran Sara Creech quit her job as a nurse and bought a 43-acre farm in North Salem, Ind. She named her farm Blue Yonder Organic.
John Wendle for Harvest Public Media

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 2:26 pm

Sara Creech has grown dependent on farming. She started out planting an orchard of fruit trees: apples, peaches, cherries and pears. She added berry bushes and rows of vegetables.

And then she bought her first chickens.

"A lot of people call chickens the gateway animal," says Creech, who lives in rural North Salem, Ind. "Like once you have a chicken on the farm, then you end up getting sheep on the farm, and then you end up getting horses, and cows. And then it just explodes from there."

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NEWS
5:22 pm
Tue February 24, 2015

With Gratitude Veterans Craft Canes For Fellow Vets

Vietnam veteran Gary Gratton carves an eagle head.
Laura Palmisano

Throughout history, the eagle has symbolized strength and courage.

It’s been called “the king of the skies” and in mythology it was often a messenger for the gods.

And now the eagle is also becoming a symbol of gratitude.

Military veterans on the Western Slope are handcrafting canes decorated with the head of an eagle for fellow veterans. 

Gary Gratton leans over a lathe. He’s sanding a piece of basswood shaped like an eagle’s head.

Gratton retired from the Marines as an officer. He spent some of his career fighting in Vietnam.

"I’ve spent 27 years serving my country," he says. "Now I want to serve my community." 

Gratton volunteers at the Warrior Resource Center in Montrose.

There he helps coordinate the Eagle Head Cane Program.  

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HEALTH
1:30 am
Wed January 28, 2015

VA Steps Up Programs As More Veterans Enter Hospice Care

A hospital bed is draped with a flag after a veteran died in the hospice ward at St. Albans VA in Queens, N.Y.
Quil Lawrence NPR

Originally published on Wed January 28, 2015 2:32 pm

Ask Americans if someone in their family served in the military, and the answer is probably no. After all, fewer than 1 percent of Americans serve these days.

But ask if one of their grandfathers served, and you'll likely get a different answer. Between World War II and the wars in Korea and Vietnam, millions of men were drafted into service — and both men and women volunteered.

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Back At Base
1:18 am
Wed January 14, 2015

Without Help, Navigating Benefits Can Be Overwhelming For Veterans

Grant County VSO Bob Kelley makes calls in his office at the Grant County Government Building in Marion, Ind.
Aaron P. Bernstein for NPR

Originally published on Thu January 15, 2015 12:11 pm

NPR — along with seven public radio stations around the country — is chronicling the lives of America's troops where they live.

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NEWS
1:35 am
Tue January 13, 2015

VA Data Show Disparities In Veteran Benefits Spending

George Murray, who served in Vietnam, was able to access his medical benefits from the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs relatively easily while living in Boston. But veterans living in other parts of Massachusetts, like Cape Cod, have more difficulty. Across the U.S., VA data show the unevenness in its benefit spending.
Jesse Costa WBUR

Originally published on Thu January 15, 2015 9:30 am

NPR — along with seven public radio stations around the country — is chronicling the lives of America's troops where they live. We're calling the project "Back at Base." This is the first of a three-part series about veteran benefits (Part 2 / Part 3).

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HEALTH
4:01 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

The Prosthetics Industry Gets A Human Touch

The Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab created an electronic prosthetic hand and arm that has the same dexterity as a human arm. Electronic prosthetics are the biggest area of growth in this industry.
Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab

Originally published on Wed November 12, 2014 1:57 pm

NPR — along with seven public radio stations around the country — is chronicling the lives of America's troops where they live. We're calling the project "Back at Base." This is the latest in the ongoing series.

"There's been more advancement in the field of prosthetics since 1945 than there has been in the entire automobile industry," says Mark Vukov, a clinical education manager at College Park Industries, a manufacturer of prosthetic feet.

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NEWS
3:27 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

What Veterans Day Means To Vets

Retired Army Staff Sgt. Jeffrey Emmert and his service dog Bo are at the Warrior Resource Center in Montrose.
Credit Laura Palmisano

Veterans Day honors the men and women who serve or have served in the military. It's also called Armistice Day in Europe and commemorates the end of World War I.

Jeffery Emmert is a retired Army staff sergeant. His father served in WWI and Korea.

Emmert remembers his dad on Veterans Day.

"He’s been gone now for four and half years," he says. "I learned a lot from my Dad." 

Emmert is proud that he was in the military too.

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COMMUNITY
10:37 am
Tue November 11, 2014

Montrose Nonprofit Serves Western Colorado Veterans And Families

The Warrior Resource Center in Montrose helps veterans and their families.
Laura Palmisano

On Thursday mornings about 50 veterans meet at the Warrior Resource Center in Montrose. 

They come here to have a cup coffee and maybe a donut. But mostly they're here to mingle with others who served in the military.

The veterans here span many generation and many wars. Some served during World War II and Korea. Others fought in Vietnam and the Middle East. And they represent every branch of the military.

David Adams did three tours in Iraq. He retired from the Army in 2007 due to a back injury. 

Adams says he tries to come here every week.

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Shots - Health News
1:21 am
Mon October 13, 2014

A Benefit For Rural Vets: Getting Health Care Close To Home

For some rural vets who live far from a VA hospital, getting medical care has meant driving a day or two from home, and missing work.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu October 16, 2014 5:12 pm

Army veteran Randy Michaud had to make a 200-mile trip to the Veterans Affairs hospital in Aroostook County, Maine, near the Canadian border, every time he had a medical appointment.

Michaud, who was medically retired after a jeep accident in Germany 25 years ago, moved home to Maine in 1991. He was eligible for VA medical care, but the long drive was a problem.

He's one of millions of veterans living in rural America who must travel hundreds of miles round-trip for care.

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NEWS
8:38 am
Tue September 16, 2014

Homeless Vets: They're Not Just Single Men Anymore

Alexander Morales, who served in the Army in the 1970s, with his family: wife Roberta; Elvia, 7, Elena, 8, and Elvira, 7 (in front), and Ruben Verdugo, 13, and Aaron D. Huerta, 17 (in back). Morales' family has been going for years to the Stand Down event in San Diego, where veterans receive assistance.
David Gilkey NPR

Originally published on Thu September 25, 2014 2:49 pm

Every summer for 27 years, a small tent city has popped up in San Diego. "Stand Down" is a three-day oasis for homeless veterans, with showers, new clothes, hot meals, medical help, legal aid and a booth set up for every housing program in the city.

Increasingly, the event needs ways to keep children entertained.

"They've got the kids zone and everything. My kids live out here very happy. They're looking forward to it from last year," says Alex Morales, who served in the Army in the 1970s.

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COMMUNITY
5:28 pm
Tue May 27, 2014

Veterans Host Memorial Day Service In Crawford

A flag left at the grave of a veteran laid to rest in Crawford, CO.
Credit Laura Palmisano

Over 60 people attended a Memorial Day service at the Crawford Cemetery on Sunday. 

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NEWS
8:30 am
Thu August 15, 2013

KVNF Local Newscast Thursday, August 15, 2013

  • Smooth Transition Reported as Naturita Clinic Goes Independent
  • Test Results Reveal Many Colorado Students Struggling in Core Subjects
  • Agreement Reached in Dispute Over Power Lines Near Delta Airport
  • Colorado Judges Decide to Not Change Majority of Reviewed Prison Sentences
  • Mesa County Residential Real Estate On the Rise
  • Veterans, Military Officials Discuss Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Denver
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