WELCOME TO OLE' BILL'S MONTHLY NEWSLETTER

May 2011


THIS WEEK IN QUARTERHORSE HISTORY

1June67: Operation Bluefield begins. entire 1/4th Cav involved.
1June68: Operation Toan Thang II begins. RVN
2June66: Operation El Peso II begins. RVN
6June44: D-Day. Operation Overlord, Omaha Beach, Normandy, France. Entire 1ID cited.
8June66: Battle of Ap Tau O,aka. Benchmark 69, A Troop.
9June67: Operation Bluefield Ends. entire 1/4th Cav involved.
11June66: Battle of Loc Ninh Plantation/Hill 150-Hill 177.
12June67: Operation Lam Son begins.
14June1775: US Army founded.
23June1965: Division advance party (2nd Bde) lands at Qui Nhon, RVN.
30June1966: Battle of Srok Dong. 1/4th Cav cited.

For the past several years we have told of the battle of Ap Tau O, A Trp, 1/4th Cav, 9 Jun 66. There was another battle on 30 June 66 involving Troop B and C and 1st Platoon, of C Company, 2/18th Infantry. This battle was known as the Battle of Srok Dong. It was heavily fought and resulted in the only Medal of Honor awarded to a Trooper of the 1/4th Cav in Vietnam - SGT Donald Long of C Troop.

THE BATTLE OF SROK DONG, 30 June 1966

As related in The American Traveler by CPT George E. Creighton


On 30 June 1966, during Operation El Paso II, the 271st Viet Cong Regiment suffered a defeat when it attempted to ambush elements of the 1st Infantry Division near the villiage of Srok Dong. Elements of the Division involved in the ambush were B and C Troops, 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry and the 1st Platoon of C Company, 2nd Battalion, 18th Infantry.

These units were to cross check point Golden Gate (at which point an armored vehicle launch bridge (AVLB) was to be put across a stream to replace a damaged bridge) and proceed north along National Highway 13, conducting a reconnaissance in force. The purpose of the troop movement was to deceive the enemy as to the actual area in which the division was planning to operate in the future on the Minh Thanh Road. B and C Trps, 1st Sqdn, 4th Cav were expected to return to Hon Quan by 1930 hours on 30 June.

On 30 June, B Trp with the 1st Plt. of C Co., 2d Bn, 18th Inf, attached and an AVLB departed Hon Quan and established a bridge crossing at 0859 hours. A Co, 2/18 Inf, remained at Hon Quan as a reaction force. C Trp was to depart Hon Quan at 0730 hrs with C Co(-); however, this column was delayed until B Trp could reorganize. At 0910 hours the column finally crossed the Golden Gate with B Trp leading and proceeding north on Highway 13 to the operational area. Upon arrival at Check Point 1, the 3d platoon, B Trp, with the platoon of infantry turned east and conducted a reconnaissance to the ford at Check Point 2. Due to the depth of the ford, the platoon retraced the route to Check Point 1, turned north on Highway 13, passed through the 1st Platoon and continued north. The order of march was 3d Plt with attached Infantry, Troop Command Group, 2d Plt and 1st Plt.

Meanwhile, C Trp with C Co(-) arrived at Check Point 1, where it turned west and proceeded to the first stream. Three mortar carriers, 10 infantrymen and the 3d plt remained at Check Point 1 and established a perimeter. The mortars were laid to the west to support the Trp(-) which, having crossed the stream now, dismounted the Infantry and deployed. At about 0938 hours when the lead personnel carrier of B Trp, moving north on Highway 13 towards Loc Ninh, reached a point midway across a rice paddy, it began to receive mortar, small arms and recoiless rifle fire and appeared to be the only one engaged.

1LT James P. Flores, B Trp Commander, could see the mortar rounds bursting from his position in the column about 800 meters to the rear of the lead vehicle. He immediately called the Squadron Commander, LTC Leonard Lewane, who was over the area in a light observation helicopter (LOH). The 3d Plt, B Trp, reported receiving heavy fire from the northeast and northwest. A pre-planned airstrike, which was currently in progress, was dirverted to the action by LTC Lewane at LT Flores' request. The Lieutenant then called the 2nd plt forward and deployed them around the 3d Plt. The 2d Plt brought it's two tanks and one from the 1st Plt forward. By this time all but one tank and an APC of the 3d plt had returned to Check Point 1 with wounded and to replenish ammunition. All platoons were now in contact on both sides of the road, with the heaviest volumn of fire coming from the west. The VC had set up the ambush in the shape of an "L" with a heavy security element crossing the road along the trail north of the rice paddy. The logs, piled at random to the west of Check Point 3, afforded good protection and some of the recoiless rifles were probably located there.

Mortars were reported by the forward air controller (FAC) in the woods north of the villiage of Stok Dong.

The ambush extended for about 2,000 meters and, except for the security element to the northwest of Check Point 3, the eastern side of the road was lightly defended. The VC appeared to be lined up all along the west side of the road with the heaviest vegetation. They were wearing a variety of Khaki, Black and Green uniforms. The VC recoiless rifles caused most of the trouble and were also the most difficult to locate. During the first 30 minutes of contact, the enemy concentrated on knocking out the tanks. All four B Trp tanks were disabled from hits.

An intermediate aid station and strongpoint had been established at Check Point 1. Due to the intensity of fire there, "Dust Off" aircraft could not land; consequently, the Squadron Operations Officer set up the landing zone (LZ) at the Golden Gate. The evacuation of wounded was supervised by medical aidman PFC Charles F. Anderson, Chicago, who accompanied the first of the injured to the rear. For more than two hours, PFC Anderson, as the only medic available, tended the wounded and prepared them for evacuation by "Dust Off" helicopters. He kept the evacuation point in operation during a mortar attack and under small arms fire. Though nearly exhausted when medical help finally arrived, Anderson continued to work until the last wounded man had been evacuated. He was later awarded the Silver Star Medal.

B Trp concentrated on laying down a heavy base of fire to the west. Airstrikes, which had been continuous since the initial contact, were being placed to the north and west. Artillery was attacking enemy targets to the east of Highway 13, while armed UH1Bs (Hueys) and CH 47s (Chinooks), nicknamed "Guns-A-Go-Go" were making firing passes north and south on the areas immediately adjacent to the road.

It appeared to Lieutenant Flores that the VC were attempting to cut him off from Check Point 1 when the 1st Plt reported receiving fire. An airstrike was immediately called in and the fire slackened at this location. The remainder of the elements at the head of the column were still receiving heavy fire from all types of weapons when Lieutenant Flores called LTC Lewane, requesting C Trp to reinforce his unit.

When the first contact was reported, CPT Stephen Slattery, C Trp Commander, ordered the infantry to mount up and prepare to move back to Check Point 1, establish a strong point and be prepared to assist B Trp. The 3d Plt had been receiving some light fire at Check Point 1 but when the other platoons arrived, the fire became more intense. Several infantrymen riding atop the APCs were hit as mortar rounds started falling into the area. CPT Slattery ordered the platoons to deploy and push out the perimeter to the north. The 3d Plt was operating northwest of the crossroads, the 1st Plt to the east and the 2d Plt to the west and southwest. The mortars had been relaid to the north. Check Point 1 was jammed with C Trp's maneuvering and vehicles returning with B Trp wounded. It continued to receive heavy small army fire, mostly from the west of the road. Mortar and recoilless rifle fire was being answered with a heavy volumn of .50 caliber fire from APCs at the road junction.

LTC Lewane ordered C Trp to push north and relieve the pressure on B Trp. The 3d Plt was finally able to push north with a tank from the 2d Plt. About 200 meters from Check Point 1, the tank was hit in the turrent, seriously injuring the Commander and loader. They were pulled from the tank and evacuated. The damage tank continued to move north and remained in the fight.

The C Trp column consisted of the 2d Plt, 1st Plt and the Troop Command. The 3d Plt, C Co(-) and the mortars remained at the crossroads. Intense fire was maintained by the APC's and the tank. The brush was so thick and close on both side of the road that grenades were just tossed over the sides of the vehicles.

About 600 meters from the location of it's first hit, the 2d Plt tank was again hit but the driver kept on going, even though the gunner was wounded and evacuated. When the C Trp column arrived at the B Trp position, Lt Flores told the troopers to go furthere north and fire to the west. The 1st and 2d Platoons moved up and deployed as best they could, since they were confined to the area immediately left and right of the road. Fire was directed east and west with the heaviest volumn to the west. LTC Lewane ordered C Trp to hold at this point until B Trp could be extracted and moved south. Artillery was firing north and east and airstrikes were being concentrated on the west, but appeared to be to far west. CPT Slattery asked LTC Lewane to move them closer and the next airstrike came in south to north with anti-personnel bombs, which landed very close to the road. With the arival of C Trp, Lt Flores pulled all the remaining B Trp elements back to Check Point 1. A Co. 2/28 Inf, had been alerted for airmobile employment in the vicinity of the landing zone south of Srok Dong at the same time that C Trp was ordered to reinforce. As the first lifts of A Co. were approaching the LZ from Hon Quan, Lt Flores pulled back. B Trp remained at Check Point 1 for about 40 minutes to rearm and get the wounded and dead back to the Golden Gate. The next 30 minutes were taken to move the 1st and 2d platoons back up the road to block; the 3d Plt handled the evacuation of the wounded. Earlier Lt. Charles D. Cole with the 3d Plt, C Trp, had been directing the movement of casualties between the forward elements and the Golden Gate. When ordered north, he loaded C Co. riflemen onto APC's and moved to the head of the column. After the infantrymen arrived, the 3d Plt deployed west of the road and the 2d Plt moved to the east. Lt. Cole's Plt ran into a VC Strongpoint. He was wounded in the chest together with several others before they could pull back.

 

LONG, DONALD RUSSELL

Rank and Organization

Sergeant, U.S. Army, Troop C, First Squadron, Fourth Cavalry, 1st Infantry Division

Place and Date

Republic of Vietnam, 30 June 1966

Entered Service at

Ashland, Kentucky

Born

27 August 1939, Blackford, Ohio

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LONG, DONALD RUSSELL

Rank and Organization

Sergeant, U.S. Army, Troop C, First Squadron, Fourth Cavalry, 1st Infantry Division

Place and Date

Republic of Vietnam, 30 June 1966

Entered Service at

Ashland, Kentucky

Born

27 August 1939, Blackford, Ohio


Citation

For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. Troops B and C, while conducting a Reconnaissance mission along a road were suddenly attacked by a Viet Cong regiment, supported by mortars, recoilless rifles and machine guns, from concealed positions astride the road. Sgt. Long abandoned the relative safety of his armored personnel carrier and braved a withering hail of enemy fire to carry wounded men to evacuation helicopters. As the platoon fought its way forward to resupply advanced elements, Sgt. Long repeatedly exposed himself to enemy fire at point blank range to provide the needed supplies. While assaulting the Viet Cong position, Sgt. Long inspired his comrades by fearlessly standing unprotected to repel the enemy with rifle fire and grenades as they attempted to mount his carrier. When the enemy threatened to overrun a disabled carrier nearby, Sgt. Long again disregarded his own safety to help the severely wounded crew to safety. As he was handing arms to the less seriously wounded and reorganizing them to press the attack, an enemy grenade was hurled onto the carrier deck. Immediately recognizing the imminent danger, he instinctively shouted a warning to the crew and pushed to safety 1 man who had not heard his warning over the roar of battle. Realizing that these actions would not fully protect the exposed crewmen from the deadly explosion, he threw himself over the grenade to absorb the blast and thereby saved the lives of 8 of his comrades at the expense of his life. Throughout the battle, Sgt. Long's extraordinary heroism, courage and supreme devotion to his men were in the finest tradition of the military service, and reflect great credit upon himself and the U.S. Army.

Donald R. Long's actions took place during the summer campaigns of 1966. This was some of the heaviest fighting Quarterhorse was to see in Vietnam. In addition, one of the gymnasiums on Fort Riley, Kansas, was dedicated to Sergeant Long.

Don Long's Brother's and Sister's Accepting his posthumus Medal Of Honor

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IT'S TIME TO START THINKING "REUNION" AGAIN!!


1ST INFANTRY DIVISION ANNUAL REUNION - 2011

2011 ANNUAL REUNION

BUFFALO, NEW YORK

AUGUST 17 TO AUGUST 21

The Big Red One is shuffling off to Buffalo ...
Buffalo, New York, the Queen City of the Great Lakes, is the destination for our 93rd annual reunion. The home of the famous Buffalo Wings is waiting to surprise you with what it has to offer.

The Adam’s Mark is a great hotel for our reunion, with plenty of rooms and space for our ever-important CPs. The hotel is across the street from the Waterfront Park and only twenty-five minutes from Casino Niagara and Niagara Falls.

As usual, we have arranged for a variety of tours and activities for you to enjoy. The surprising architecture of the city is something you can experience for yourself if you choose to take the city tour. Of course, no visit to this part of the country is complete without taking a trip to see the magnificent Niagara Falls. If you have a passport you can view it from both sides of the majestic site, but do not worry if you don't have a passport, since you can also choose to see the falls from the U.S. side only. There is a beautiful show of lights and fireworks over the falls on Friday evenings in the summer that you will not want to miss.

We are also planning a trip to East Aurora where you can shop in a one-of-a-kind Made in America Store where you will find over 2,000 items produced in America. You may want to experience the historic Erie Canal and the chance to board the Lockport Locks for an adventure of “locking through” and being raised 49 ft to pass through the only double set of locks on the canal. For those of you who love to see the sights on the water, you won’t want to miss the Miss Buffalo Cruise. We hope we have found a tour for everyone.

Our Welcome Party will offer you a chance to mix and mingle and enjoy some unique local entertainment. Please don’t miss it on Thursday night. It is free and everyone, of course, is WELCOME!

Your new Executive Director CSM (Ret) Darrell “Buddy” Wallace will be in each of the CPs for a chance to meet you, to say hello and get to know our members. The times will be in the program, so please come by and introduce yourself and get to know your new director.

There is something for everyone. This year we will be experiencing some changes so please check all the information carefully to see what appeals to you and join us in Buffalo. We have also selected the reunion locations for the following two years, which will give you plenty of time to make your plans so you won’t miss one: Memphis, TN Aug 1-5, 2012 and Jacksonville, FL July 31 - Aug 4, 2013.

We all look forward to seeing our old friends in Buffalo, and hope to meet many new ones. See you there!

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2011 TENTATIVE REUNION PROGRAM

August 17 – August 21 Buffalo, NY Wednesday, August 17 9:00 am - 8:00 pm Registration 9:00 am - noon; 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Supply Sarge open 9:00 am - noon; 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Cantigny First Division Museum open 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Tour: Buffalo City Architecture 1:30 pm Unit Representatives Meeting with Society staff Thursday, August 18 7:00 am - 6:00 pm Registration 6:45 am Golf Outing: Arrowhead Golf Club 8:00 am - 4:00 pm Tour: US / Canadian Niagara Falls (*passport required) 9:00 am - noon; 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Supply Sarge open 9:00 am - noon; 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Cantigny First Division Museum open 9:00 am - 5:00 pm Tour: All American Niagara Falls 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Tour: East Aurora 2:30 pm - 5:30 pm Tour: Miss Buffalo Cruise 8:00 pm - 11:00 pm Welcome Party (everyone is welcome) Friday, August 19 7:00 am - 6:00 pm Registration 7:30 am - 8:30 am Conflict Breakfast 9:00 am Unit Meetings in CPs 9:00 am - noon; 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Supply Sarge open 9:00 am - noon; 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Cantigny First Division Museum open 10:30 am Society Board of Directors Meeting 11:00 am - 5:00 pm Tour: Lockport Locks & Erie Canal 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm Tour: Buffalo City Architecture 7:30 pm - 11:30 pm Tour: US Niagara Falls Illumination Saturday, August 20 8:00 am - 5:00 pm Registration 8:00 am Memorial Service 9:00 am Business Meeting 9:00 am - noon; 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm Supply Sarge and Cantigny First Division Museum are open 11:00 am - 3:00 pm Tour: East Aurora noon - 3:00 pm Tour: Miss Buffalo Cruise 6:00 pm Cocktails / Reception 7:00 pm 93rd Annual Reunion Banquet Sunday, August 21 Farewell 'til next year! Hope to see you in Memphis, TN, August 1-5, 2012!

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REUNION 2011 - BUFFALO
DETAILS TO HELP YOU PLAN YOUR REUNION

Our Hotel
The Adam's Mark Buffalo-Niagara is the setting for our 93rd annual reunion. Check-in will be at 3:00 pm and checkout at 12:00 pm. As usual, you can stay 3 days before and after the reunion at our rate. The hotel is located at 120 Church St. The phone number is 716-845-5100. We have taken over the entire hotel so we should all be under one roof. Included is a coupon to enter into a raffle to have your room upgraded to a suite for the same price as a regular room. Fill out the coupon and include the $5.00 donation to be entered in the raffle for the suite upgrade. The suites in this hotel are bi-level suites. Our Director will draw the winner on Monday, August 15th in Buffalo.

Transportation from Buffalo-Niagara International Airport
Buffalo Niagara International Airport is located close to our hotel. The hotel supplies a free shuttle service from the airport to the hotel on Wednesday and Sunday only. It will run every hour during the day. Buffalo Airport Shuttle is offering a per-person rate of $13 one way for Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Call 716-685-2550 to schedule your pickup and use code words "BIG RED ONE" to receive the special rate.

Ground Transportation
The hotel is located at 120 Church Street off I-190. Exit 7 at Church and Lower Terrace Street is closest to the hotel.

Parking
For those who drive to the reunion, self-parking is complimentary to all guests staying overnight. Other guests will be charged $5.00 per day to park.

Hotel Reunion Meal Specials
The hotel is offering our attendees a 15% discount in hotel restaurants with your official reunion badge.

Schedule
If your wallet or schedule makes it impossible for you to arrive at the reunion on Wednesday, don’t worry. The core of reunion events takes place on Friday and Saturday. We can accommodate you either way. If you can’t make the entire event please feel free to join us whenever you can. You won’t be sorry!

Spread The Word!
You can help to spread the word about our reunion by sending our News Release to the editor or pressroom of your local media. Please make copies and mail or fax it to all of the newspapers, magazines, TV and radio stations that you can. TIP: If you hand-deliver it, they may ask to interview you.

Unit Command Posts
As is our custom the 2nd, 16th, 18th, 26th and 28th Infantries, Artillery, Cavalry/Armor/Recon, Headquarters and Support Units will operate Command Posts (Hospitality Rooms) for their units. Veterans from units not listed are welcome in any CP. The size of your CP room will be based on the number of members from your unit attending.
Handicapped Rooms
Please do not request a handicapped room unless you absolutely need one. If you have problems with walking or anything else, please indicate them on your reservation form and we will do everything in our power to assist you. Please be considerate of your fellow 1st Division veterans.

Cutoff Date
The cutoff date for hotel room reservations is July 15, 2011. Please try to get your registration form to us well before that date. After July 15, 2011 hotel rooms will only be based on space and rate availability. After this date, you will have to contact the reservation desk at the hotel directly at 1-716-845-5100.

Hotel Cancellations / Refunds
If you make reservations and then have to cancel them, we will refund your full amount minus the registration fee, as long as it is 24 hours before your arrival. Cancellations made less than 24 hours from the arrival date will be charged for one night’s hotel stay including tax and the registration fee. Please check with us if you have any questions. Any cancellations to be made before noon EST on August 11, 2011 should be directed to the Society office 1-215-661-1969. After that time all cancellations must be made through the hotel as the Society staff will be in transit. Please call the hotel at 1-716-845-5100 to notify them of your cancellation and to leave your message for Jen Sanford as well.

Tour Cancellations / Refunds
If you cancel by June 24, 2011 you will receive a full refund. After June 24, 1011 there are no refunds.

Weather and Local Information Online
The Buffalo, NY climate is mild at this time of year, with average temperatures in the high 70s during the day. Evenings can be chilly with temperatures in the low 60s, so include a lightweight jacket or sweater just to be sure. Please wear comfortable clothes for all tours as well as good walking shoes. Casual clothing is appropriate for most restaurants.

Passports
A valid passport is required if you plan to cross the U.S.- Canadian border during your stay. For those who are not U.S. citizens, a valid visa is required in addition to a valid passport.

Confirmation
As usual, we will send you a written confirmation of all registration information. Please check it over carefully and make sure you are signed up for all of the activities and functions you are interested in as there is limited seating on some activities. The banquet is a very popular function, so please sign up early as we can only sell tickets to registered attendees of our reunion.

If any extra activities are not listed on your confirmation letter, then you have not paid for them and must call headquarters immediately to make corrections or additions to your registration.

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2011 REUNION
Tours and Activities
We have arranged a variety of optional tours to enhance your visit to Buffalo, New York. Don’t forget your cameras and your passports. We hope we have found something interesting for everyone. The tours are integrated into the program so they won’t conflict with other reunion activities. These are optional events and require pre-registration. Some of the tours have limited seating, so to avoid disappointment it is best to sign up for your tours when you register rather than waiting until you arrive at the reunion. All buses for tours will load outside in the front circle. There are often a few spaces open so please check in Supply Sarge if you decide you would like to take one of our tours.

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Buffalo Architectural City Tour - 4 hrs, $40 per person

Motorcoach will pick up our group at the Adam’s Mark Hotel for a guided driving architectural tour to include: Buffalo City Hall, Millionaire Row, Buffalo Saving Bank, Ellicott Square Building, parks designed by Frederick Law Olmstead, the waterfront, and much more. You will also enjoy a guided tour of the Buffalo & Erie County Naval & Military Base - home of the USS The Sullivans, the USS Croaker, and the USS Little Rock. There will be time prior to departing to walk the Veterans Park, view the memorials and remember the fallen from various wars.

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US / Canadian Niagara Falls Tour - 8 hrs, $80 per person

Motorcoach will pick up our group at the Adam’s Mark hotel and travel to Niagara Falls, NY, where we will meet a licensed guide and travel over the Border to Ontario. Our All Canadian Adventure tour features the beautiful Floral Clock, the Whirlpool overlook, Queen Victoria Park, and a visit to Table Rock for Superman’s view of the Falls. You will experience the Journey Behind the Falls for a “behind the scenes” look at the Horseshoe Falls. You’ll also cross the border to enjoy the world-famous Maid of the Mist boat ride and NYS Observation Tower, as well as a driving tour of Goat Island. Meals at your own cost.

*** NOTE: All passengers are required to have proof of citizenship when entering or exiting the US and/or Canada. US Citizens must have valid passports; non-US Citizens must have valid passports and valid visas.***

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All American Niagara Falls Tour – 8 hrs, $70 per person

Motorcoach will pick up our group at the Adam’s Mark Hotel and travel to Niagara Falls, NY. You’ll travel to Old Ft. Niagara with a licensed guide to hear about the French and Indian War, the War of 1812 and much more (walking is involved). Then you will depart for Niagara Falls and see the Falls from a historic perspective, from the Nation’s Oldest State Park. Visit Goat Island and Luna Island for spectacular views of the American and Bridal Veil Falls, Terrapin Point, Three Sisters Islands, the world-famous Maid of the Mist boat ride and the NYS Observation Tower. There will be time to shop at the Three Sisters Trading Post. Meals at your own cost. Passports are not required for this tour. East Aurora - 4 hrs, $40 per person

Motorcoach will pick up our group at the Adam’s Mark Hotel and depart for East Aurora. Take a guided tour of the Roycroft Campus. Elbert Hubbard began to develop the Roycroft Campus in 1897. It was one of several utopian societies formed during the Arts and Crafts movement in response to the shoddy, mass-produced goods of the Industrial Age. The campus would become a Mecca for master craftsmen and a gathering place for notable artists, authors, philosophers, social reformers, and power brokers. You will also visit the nationally known one-of-a kind Made in America Store, where you will find over 2,000 items that are produced in America. Complete your day with a visit to Vidler’s 5 & 10 store - this will take you back in time to the old-fashioned five and dime stores with many antiques.

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Miss Buffalo Cruise - 3 hrs, $35 per person

Motorcoach will pick up our group at the Adam’s Mark Hotel and shuttle us to the waterfront. Sit back and relax on a 2-hour narrated boat cruise along the Buffalo River, the Outer Harbor, Lake Erie, the Niagara River, the Black Rock Lock and Canal.

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Lockport Locks and Erie Canal - 6 hrs, $60 per person

Enjoy a 2-hour cruise along the Erie Canal aboard the Lockport Locks, where you will be "locking through" and be raised the 49-ft. elevation of the Niagara Escarpment in the only double set of locks on the Erie Canal. You will pass under bridges that raise straight up, see water cascade over Lockport's famous "Flight of Five" 1840's locks, and travel through the solid walls of the "rock cut" as your Coast Guard licensed captain describes the architecture, sights, and folklore along the way. There will be time to explore Market Street and see works from local artists. The Erie Canal Discovery Center is a new state-of-the-art interpretive center for the Erie Canal, and particularly the role that Lockport, NY played in the history of the Erie Canal.

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US Niagara Falls Illumination - 4 hrs, $30 per person

Motorcoach will pick up our group at the Adam’s Mark Hotel and travel to Niagara Falls, NY. We will meet our licensed guide and travel to the Nation’s Oldest State Park, where we will enjoy a short guided tour of the area from 8:30 – 9:30 pm. At 9:30 pm see the Falls Illuminated, and from 10:00 - 10:20 pm watch amazing fireworks over the Falls. Following the fireworks, walk back to the coaches and return to Buffalo.

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Golf Outing, Arrowhead Golf Club - $55 per person

Arrowhead Golf Club in Akron, NY opened in 2003. As one of the premier courses in western New York State, it was host to the USGA Senior Open Qualifier in 2005. The USGA commented after the event “Scott Witter’s design and your facility are certainly among the best to be found anywhere.” Discussion about this Scottish Links style course brings out terms like “playability,” “strategy,” and “shot value.” The course is located 20 miles east of Buffalo and presents an excellent challenge for all golfers.

After a fun round of golf, have lunch at the clubhouse at your own cost. Transportation will be provided by volunteer drivers.

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Registration Form

Please print forms, fill them out and sent them to the BRO, Address is on the form, along with your fees. As an alternative, you may go on the BRO Society and they have a fillable form if you want to pay by Credit card.

I will post any additional information as it becomes avaliable. BB


TROOPER INFO CHANGES

Bill,

Last month you submitted the request I sent for info about anyone remembering Richard Akita in our unit. The link to me e mail was defective. Would you please post it again in the next newsletter. Note; my e mail address is
esteban49@webkraft.net
Steve Lindsay
C trp


TROOPER HELP REQUESTED

The Following was received from the daughter of Sergeant Willford Dyer. She would like to talk to anyone who knew her father or anything about him. Her name is Sharon and her e-mail address is scashion@charter.net BB


Dear Sir, 
As you know I had requested for my Fathers orders and they sent me them last week and this is what I 
learned about the battle that took my Fathers life April 19, 1968.    

Award of the Bronze Star Medal, ( First Oak Leaf Cluster) 
1. GO 320. The following AWARD is announced posthumously. 
DYER, WILLFORD L RA XXXXXXXX SSAN9XXXXXX 
STAFF SERGEANT E6 United States Army, Troop B, 1st Squdron, 4th Cavalry 
                                                                                               
Bronze Star Medal ( First Oak Leaf Cluster) with " V" device 19 April 1968, Republic of Vietnam 
                                                                                                         
For heroism not involving participation in aerial flight in connection with military operationals against 
a hostile force in the Republic of Vietnam: On this date Sergeant Dyer was serving as a tank commander 
with his troop, He was on a mission to attack a suspected North Vietnamese base camp when their column of 
vehicles was subjected to intense fire from a series of well concealed enemy bunkers. Sergeant Dyer, who 
was in charge of the lead tank,immediately directed his crew to place heavy retaliatory fire on the North 
Vietnamese insurgents, With complete disregard for his personal safety, he remained in an open position on 
top of his vehicle in order to accurately identify hostile positions and put forth rapid machine gun fire 
upon them. Sergeant Dyer was personally responsible for eliminating three hostile positions. He directed his 
driver to proceed forward through the concentrated hostile fire so that the vehicle could be used to 
overrun numerous hostile bunkers, thus destroying them and killing the occupants. In this manner, Sergeant 
Dyer and his crew moved directly into the enemy bass camp. Here Sergeant Dyer was mortally wounded by the 
extremely heavy fire. His courageous initiative and dymanic leadership during the hazardous situation 
significantly contributed toward the success of the mission. Staff Sergeant Dyer's outstanding display of 
aggressiveness, devotion to duty and personal bravery is in keeping  with the finest traditions of the 
military service and reflects great credit upon himself, the 1st infantry Division and the United States Army. 
By direction of the President under the provisions of Executive orders 11046 24 th August 1968.
I am hopeing that this battle might jog someone memorie and they will remember my Hero , and maybe share some stories with me. I am still waiting on the rest of his Medal's Im hopeing to get them soon. God bless you. Sergeant Dyer's Daughter Sharon.


ACTIVE DUTY NEWS

‘Big Red One’ welcomes new commanding general to post

Story by: Stephanie Hoff
1st Inf. Div. Public Affairs

As the Kansas weather transitions from spring to summer, Fort Riley and the 1st Infantry Division also is experiencing a "season of change" as departing commanders are given well wishes and arriving commanders are welcomed to the Central Flint Hills Region.

The historic division and post bid farewell May 25 to Maj. Gen. Vincent Brooks, who has commanded the "Big Red One" and Fort Riley since April 2009. Brooks relinquished command to Maj. Gen. William Mayville, who became the 75th commanding general of the Big Red One.

"This division is very, very good at what it does. It is that way because of the exceptional skills and professionalism of the Soldiers and leaders who serve the division, as well as the extraordinary support from those who enable it," Mayville said. "The leadership within this division and the Fort Riley community will continue to ensure that expert care and integration support is provided for our returning Soldiers and their Families."

Gen. James Thurman, U.S. Army Forces Command commanding general, participated in the change of command ceremony.

"This is a very special day for Fort Riley and the local community as we bid farewell to one great command team and welcome another," Thurman said. "Command is a special time in a military career; there is truly no greater honor and there is no greater privilege than to lead American Soldiers, and command(ing) one of the premier and, indeed, longest-serving divisions, is a rare and extraordinary opportunity that comes with its own set of distinctive challenges and awards."

Thurman recognized several of Brooks' accomplishments during his time as commander of the 1st Inf. Div. and Fort Riley, highlighting how he was able to successfully train and then deploy five brigade-sized units to combat theaters in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Brooks returned in January following a yearlong deployment with the division's headquarters, where the unit commanded the U.S. Division – South, an area that encompasses nine provinces, or about the size of the state of Washington.

"(Brooks) has performed superbly with skill, imagination, resourcefulness and determination," Thurman said. "With the challenges, the successes, the sorrows and the achievements; he has been a guiding force. He cares for the Soldiers and their Families. He has truly been a Soldier's general."

Following his upcoming promotion to lieutenant general June 3, Brooks will become the new commanding general for U.S. Army Central Command, 3rd U.S. Army at Fort McPherson, Ga.

"Thanks for making this assignment the most comfortable, memorable, remarkable and enjoyable assignment of my 31 years of commissioned service," Brooks said to the Soldiers and guests in attendance at the ceremony. "I've been proud to wear the Big Red One on both shoulders."

The division and post will soon welcome three new faces to the division's "Victory Five'" command team. Brig. Gen. Donald MacWillie and Brig. Gen. Paul Funk will serve as the division's deputy commanding generals, replacing Brig. Gen. Ricky Gibbs and Brig. Gen. Randall Dragon. In July, Col. Robert Risberg will replace Col. Richard Piscal as the chief of staff for the Big Red One and Fort Riley.

The new commanders of the division and Fort Riley will, without a doubt, continue to move the celebrated division and post forward for a bright future, Thurman said.

"I have every confidence that this command team will do the important work that our nation has called upon them to do today," Thurman added.


TROOPERS CORNER - SOUND OFF!!

Heres one I found that says "IT" better than I ever could.BB

From a senior citizen around 80 yrs of age. We aren't useless yet.

The Fix
There recently was an article in the St. Petersburg , Fl. Times. The Business Section asked readers for ideas on:
"How Would You Fix the Economy?" I think this guy nailed it!

Dear Mr. President,

Please find below my suggestion for fixing America 's economy. Instead of giving billions of dollars to companies
that will squander the money on lavish parties and unearned bonuses, use the following plan.

You can call it the "Patriotic Retirement Plan":

There are about 40 million people over 50 in the work force. Pay them $1 million apiece severance for early
retirement with the following stipulations:

1) They MUST retire. Forty million job openings - Unemployment fixed.
2) They MUST buy a new AMERICAN Car. Forty million cars ordered - Auto Industry fixed.
3) They MUST either buy a house or pay off their mortgage - Housing Crisis fixed.

It can't get any easier than that!!

PS- If more money is needed, have all members in Congress pay their taxes..

Mr. President, while you're at it, make Congress retire on Social Security and Medicare. I'll bet both programs
would be fixed pronto!

*************************************************************************

Here's Gary Chenett with some good advice. BB.

Here is something you might find worth writing about to our Troopers.
Think about this !
How many times have any of us went to the VA with our pocket knife??
This may sound crazy but remember it's against Federal Law to carry a weapon on Federal Property.

One in particular told me this story...he was sitting waiting for almost 4 hours for a appt at the VA,
he was pissed off and got in the woman's chit sitting at the registration desk.
He said she was a typical VA nasty bitch, they argued and exchanged words.
He went back and sat down....

Then took out his keys and using the blade on his little Swiss Army knife attached to his key ring started cleaning his nails.
This is what the woman was waiting for, she called the VA Cops and told them that he had a "knife" and threatened her.

Well they came down kicked his ass , handcuffed him and hauled his ass away.
Now this "knife" had about a 2 inch blade tops but it took him almost 6 months with no payment
for comp and many hours of hassling to prove this woman was a bone head...
So I make a point of always taking my knife out of my pocket, it has about a 3 or 4 in blade and
is a fold up and I leave it home.
I make sure I don't leave it in the car because that's still Fed property...

Now to make a better point check this example out that happened to a Vet friend.
I have a concealed weapons permit.
I can't tell you how many times I drove to the VA and left the weapon in my truck as I went in
for my appointment.

I had a buddy not long ago who was early for a appt.
He was sitting in his truck having a smoke and 2 VA Cops asked him what da fuck he was doing.
He told them to fuck off and go play their games elsewhere if they were going to be that rude..
He said it turned into a huge pissing match...
He won and got them written up.

The point ,
They tore his truck apart looking for something illegal.
If he would have had a pocket knife or his gun or any weapon in his truck he would have been SOL.

So remind the guys, When you go to the VA leave all of your toys at home.
What we consider a work knife can get someone in big trouble or ruin their day or more.
My handgun goes into the gun cabinet when I head towards Ann Arbor even though I hate not having
it with me.
What da fuck over!!!!
da bald guy

*********************************************************************

Hm-m-m-m - Everyone seems to be in the advising mood this month. Here Danny Horn's take.BB

HANDBOOK For Living in 2011

Health:

1.       Drink plenty of water.
2.       Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper.
3.       Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.
4.       Live with the 3 E's -- Energy, Enthusiasm, and Empathy
5.       Make time to pray.
6.       Play more games.
7.       Read more books than you did in 2010.
8.       Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day.
9.       Sleep for 7 hours.
10.     Take a 10-30 minute walk daily.  And while you walk, smile.

Personality:
11.    Don't compare your life to others.  You have no idea what their journey is all about.
12.    Don't have negative thoughts or things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in 
the positive present moment.
13.    Don't overdo it. Keep your limits.
14.    Don't take yourself so seriously.  No one else does.
15.    Don't waste your precious energy on gossip.
16.    Dream more while you are awake.
17.    Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need. 
18.    Forget issues of the past.  Don't remind your partner with his/her mistakes of the past.  
That will ruin your present happiness.
19.    Life is too sh! ort to waste time hating anyone.  Don't hate others.
20.    Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present.
21.    No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
22.    Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn.  Problems are simply part of 
the curriculum that appear and fade away like algebra class but the lessons you learn will last 
a lifetime.
23.    Smile and laugh more.
24.    You don't have to win every argument.  Agree to disagree.

 Society:
25.    Call your family often.
26.    Each day give something good to others.
27.    Forgive everyone for everything.
28.    Spend time w/ people over the age of 70 & under the age of  6.
29.    Try to make at least three people smile each day.
30.    What other people think of you is none of your business.
31.    Your job won't take care of you when you are sick.  Your friends will. Stay in touch.

Life:
32.    Do the right thing!
33.    Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful, or joyful.
34.    GOD heals everything.
35.    However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
36.    No matter how you feel, get up, dress up, and show up.
37.    The best is yet to come.
38.    When you awake in the morning, thank GOD. 
39.    Be happy.

*********************************************************************

This was sent in by Joe West. Very Interesting .BB

Look at what happened from 1998 until 2010. In just twelve years it has grown and grown.
Watch the pieces come together as they are sent up from Earth. This is the International
Space Station (ISS) Assembly diagram, piece by piece. I had no idea the Space Station had
grown to this size. This is really cool......

Click Here

*********************************************************************

Thanks to Tom Witter for this one.BB

From one of my VN buddies, John Stovall.
This is well done. Enough said.
Prepared and Loyal
Tom Witter

Click Here


WARNING!! TROOPERS JOKES - Some of these may not be pleasant for the young or weak of heart.

Alan Benoit sneaka another one in for "MANkind".BB

A man walks out to the street and catches a taxi just going by. He gets into the taxi, and the cabbie says, 'Perfect timing. You're just like Frank.'

Passenger: 'Who?'

Cabbie: 'Frank Feldman ; He's a guy who did everything right all the time. Like my coming along when you needed a cab, things happened like that to Frank Feldman every single time.'

Passenger: 'There are always a few clouds over everybody.'

Cabbie: 'Not Frank Feldman. He was a terrific athlete. He could have won the Grand-Slam at tennis. He could golf with the pros. He sang like an opera baritone and danced like a Broadway star and you should have heard him play the piano. He was an amazing guy.'

Passenger: 'Sounds like he was something really special.'

Cabbie: 'There's more. He had a memory like a computer. He remembered everybody's birthday. He knew all about wine, which foods to order and which fork to eat them with. He could fix anything. Not like me. I change a fuse, and the whole street blacks out. But Frank Feldman could do everything right.'

Passenger: 'Wow, some guy then.'

Cabbie: 'He always knew the quickest way to go in traffic and avoid traffic jams. Not like me, I always seem to get stuck in them. But Frank, he never made a mistake, and he really knew how to treat a woman and make her feel good. He would never answer her back even if she was in the wrong; and his clothing was always immaculate, shoes highly polished too - He was the perfect man! He never made a mistake. No one could ever measure up to Frank Feldman.'

Passenger: 'An amazing fellow. How did you meet him?'

Cabbie: 'Well, I never actually met Frank, he died and I married his f**kin' wife.'

**************************************************************

A real good message from Bill Bowker. BB

FOX HUNT – you have to look closely at this one....

WHEN YOU ARE IN DEEP S _ _ _ , LOOK STRAIGHT AHEAD,
KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT, AND SAY NOTHING!

**************************************************************

Here's one from Bob Corbin. BB

Those of us who spend much time in a doctor's office should appreciate this! Doesn't it seem
more and more that physicians are running their practices like an assembly line?
Here's what happened to Bubba:

Bubba walked into a doctor's office and the receptionist asked him what he had. Bubba said:
'Shingles.' So she wrote down his name, address, medical insurance number and told him to
have a seat.

Fifteen minutes later a nurse's aide came out and asked Bubba what he had...
Bubba said, 'Shingles.' So she wrote down his height, weight, a complete medical history and
told Bubba to wait in the examining room.

A half hour later a nurse came in and asked Bubba what he had. Bubba said, 'Shingles..' So
the nurse gave Bubba a blood test, a blood pressure test, an electrocardiogram, and told
Bubba to take off all his clothes and wait for the doctor.

An hour later the doctor came in and found Bubba sitting patiently in the nude and asked
Bubba what he had.>br> Bubba said, 'Shingles.' The doctor asked, 'Where?'
Bubba said, 'Outside on the truck. Where do you want me to unload 'em??'

**************************************************************

Think about this one from Wayne Paddack. BB

How I learned to mind my own business
I was walking past the mental hospital the other day,
And all the patients were shouting, '13....13....13.'

The fence was too high to see over, but I saw a
little gap in the planks, so I looked through to see
what was going on......

Some idiot poked me in the eye with a stick!!!

Then they all started shouting '14....14....14'...

**************************************************************

Ouch! Howard Greenfield sent this one in.BB

Whether or not you are a country music fan, these are truly the words of a deep thinker,
and a highly intelligent person. So simple, yet so profound! Read the words of wisdom from
that famous philosopher Willie Nelson, iconic country and western singer, on his 75th
birthday below his esteemed portrait. Only a man with such wisdom and maturity could be
so concise and succinct in phrasing his feelings at this turning point in his life.

The Penis Poem:
My nookie days are over,
My pilot light is out.
What used to be my sex appeal,
Is now my water spout.
Time was when, on its own accord,
From my trousers it would spring.
But now I've got a full time job,
Just to find the f***in' thing.
It used to be embarrassing,
The way it would behave.
For every single morning,
It would stand and watch me shave.
Now as old age approaches,
It sure gives me the blues.
To see it hang its little head,
And watch me tie my shoes!!

**************************************************************

All hail John Vanerio, he stands up for the men! BB

Top Ten Reasons Why Men Prefer Guns Over Women

And here we go...
#10 - You can trade an old 44 for a new 22.
#9 - You can keep one gun at home and have another for when you're on the road.
#8 - If you admire a friend's gun and tell him so, he will probably let you try it out a few times.
#7 - Your primary gun doesn't mind if you keep another gun for a backup.
#6 - Your gun will stay with you even if you run out of ammo.
#5 - A gun doesn't take up a lot of closet space.
#4 - Guns function normally every day of the month.
#3 - A gun doesn't ask , "Do these new grips make me look fat?"
#2 - A gun doesn't mind if you go to sleep after you use it.

And the Number One reason
Why Men Prefer Guns over women.....

#1 - You can buy a silencer for a gun!

AGENT ORANGE NEWS

New Agent Orange rule to allow retro claims by 86,000
By Tom Philpott

Wed, 04/07/2010 - 7:35 pm: About 86,000 Vietnam War veterans, their surviving spouses or estates will be eligible for retroactive disability compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs -- an average of 11.4 years for veterans and 9.6 years for survivors -- under a draft VA rule to expand by three the number of diseases presumed caused by herbicide exposure in the war. The 86,000 are beneficiaries who can reopen previously denied claims for these conditions: ischemic heart disease, Parkinson's disease and chronic B-cell blood cancers, including hairy cell leukemia. But another 29,000 claims are expected to be approved this year for Vietnam veterans suffering from these diseases but applying for benefits for the first time. The projected cost of this dramatic expansion of claims linked to Agent Orange and other defoliants deployed four decades ago is $13.6 billion this fiscal year and $42.2 billion over 10 years. VA plans to hire 1,772 new claims processors, starting this October, to be able to handle these claims "without significantly degrading the processing of the non-presumptive workload." In the proposed rule published March 25 in the Federal Register, VA officials explained that Secretary Eric Shinseki has cut the usual 60-day public comment period by half "to promote rapid action" on these claims. When a final rule is published, soon after April 26, VA claim offices across the country can begin making payments. Veterans with these diseases will need to show they set foot in Vietnam during the war. Those who served aboard ship just off the coast remain ineligible. John Maki, assistant national service director for Disabled American Veterans, said DAV was glad to see the comment period cut to 30 days. Otherwise, the draft regulation contains no surprises. "It basically is going to take those three conditions and just add them to disabilities already listed as presumptive diseases for Agent Orange," Maki said. One surprise still might be the thoroughness of the draft rule's analysis of the beneficiary populations and the costs facing the department from this wave of claims for both retroactive payments and new benefits. Adding ischemic heart disease to the list of presumptive Agent Orange illnesses is by far the most significant part of the new rule, accounting for 82 percent of additional expected payments to beneficiaries. The rule defines ischemic health disease as a condition causing inadequate supply of blood and oxygen to the myocardium, the middle and thickest layer of the heart wall. "IHD" can include, but is not limited to, acute, subacute and old myocardial infarction; atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease including coronary artery disease (or spasm) and coronary bypass surgery, and stable, unstable and Prinzmetal's angina. Because IHD is a heart disease it "does not include hypertension or peripheral manifestations of arteriosclerosis such as peripheral vascular disease or stroke," the draft regulation explains. Of 86,000 beneficiaries eligible for retroactive claims, VA estimates that nearly 70,000 of them are living Vietnam veterans, their average age now 63. Of those, 62,200 previously were denied compensation for IHD, 5,400 were denied for B-cell leukemia and 2,300 for Parkinson's disease. About 53,000 who previously filed claims for these diseases already are receiving VA compensation for other service-related diseases. Of those, roughly 8350 are rated 100 percent disabled and therefore might not be eligible for retroactive pay. VA assumes that veterans with Parkinson's disease or for B-cell leukemia will be awarded a 100-percent disability ratings. The average rating for ischemic heart diseases is expected to be 60 percent. In calculating VA costs from this change, VA assumes that 80 percent of the eligible population will apply for benefits and 100 percent of those who do will be approved. But eligible vets and suvivors must file claims to get paid; nothing will happen automatically. To file claims online visit: http://vabenefits.vba.va.gov/vonapp/main.asp. Veterans without a computer can call a toll-free helpline at (800) 749-8387. VA maintains a directory of veterans' service organizations with trained staff to help in filing claims. The Web site: www1.va.gov/vso. Many state, county and local governments also have personnel to help. Find information on these agencies at: www.va.gov/statedva.htm. VA also expects many inelgible veterans to file claims. They will be found ineligible because they can't show they ever set foot in Vietnam though they suffer from one of the qualifying diseases. Many claims will be filed by veterans with hyptertension but those will be rejected because that condition is not a "heart disease" under the VA draft regulation. In total, VA expects claims volume from presumptive Agent Orange diseases to hit 159,000 this year and to exceed 270,000 by fiscal 2019. Maki noted that entitlement to benefits only occurs with final publication of the regulation. Retroactive payments usually will be made back to the date a claim was filed for a presumptive disease. "It is possible, since this is a librealized law, that somebody may be able to get the retroactive date (moved back) to one year prior to the effective date in the regulation, if they can show they had the claimed condition prior to that year," Maki said. The growing list of Agent Orange diseases stems from a court case, Nehmer v. Department of Veterans Affairs, filed in 1986. The class action lawsuit won by veterans, and reinforced by legislation, requires VA to direct the National Academy of Sciences to report every two years on any positive association between new diseases and exposure to herbicides in Vietnam. In 2007, the Bush administration went to court to challenge the legal need for NAS studies on presumptive AO diseases to continue. It lost. The NAS reports are to continue through Oct. 1, 2014, with the possility that more diseases will be found to have an association with herbicide exposure.


COMPUTER ADVICE

Turn Off System Beeps (All Windows Versions)

If those loud beeps that sound off when you boot your computer
annoy you, there is an easy way to turn them off.

1. Start Regedit by clicking the bottom left Start or Windows
button, then typing in "regedit" and hitting Enter.
2. Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Sound
3. Once there, locate Beep on the list on the right
4. Right click on it and select Modify
5. Change the data value to "no"
6. Reboot your computer and the beeps will be gone!

If you want to turn the beeps back on, just repeat the above steps,
except than you'll change the value back to yes.


HERES TO YOUR HEALTH

by: Edmund Hayes, MD

Stroke Medication Out Of Reach For Some Survivors
Young, uninsured stroke survivors or those covered by the Medicare Part D drug benefit often can't afford medications - increasing the risk for future strokes or other cardiovascular disease-related events, according to research presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2011.
Researchers evaluated whether cost-related non-adherence to medication was a problem for stroke survivors even after the 2006 implementation of Medicare Part D, a federal government drug benefit that offers prescription drug coverage to all Medicare participants.
"Federal programs to reduce cost-related non-adherence to medication may not be working as intended, and a resulting large number of stroke survivors are at risk for subsequent stroke events," said Deborah A. Levine, M.D., M.P.H., the study's lead author and an assistant professor in general medicine and neurology at the University of Michigan Health System.

**************************************************************

New Hybrid Drug Derived from Common Spice, May Protect, Rebuild Brain Cells After Stroke
Whether or not you're fond of Indian, Southeast Asian and Middle Eastern food, stroke researchers at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center think you may become a fan of one of their key spices.
The scientists created a new molecule from curcumin, a chemical component of the golden-colored spice turmeric, and found in laboratory experiments that it affects mechanisms that protect and help regenerate brain cells after stroke. Research scientist Paul A. Lapchak, Ph.D., director of Translational Research in the Department of Neurology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, will present these findings at the American Heart Association International Stroke Conference in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Feb. 9, at 6:15 p.m. PST.
Only one drug is now approved for ischemic stroke, which occurs when a clot blocks blood flow to the brain. Commonly called a "clot-busting drug," tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) is injected intravenously to dissolve clots and reinstate blood flow. If blood and oxygen are restored in time, consequences of the stroke, such as speech, memory, movement and other impairments, may be reduced.

**************************************************************

Purdue Develops Statewide Network To Enhance Medication Safety
The Purdue College of Pharmacy's Center for Medication Safety Advancement is inviting Indiana pharmacies to join the Medication Safety Research Network of Indiana, or Rx-SafeNet, the first practice-based research network in Indiana focusing on medication-related problems and patient care at community pharmacies, said Margie Snyder, director of the network and assistant professor of pharmacy practice.
"This network provides community pharmacists with the opportunity to direct the focus of research conducted in Rx-SafeNet to solve problems they face every day and allow them to provide the best possible care to patients," said Snyder, who also is co-director of the Center for Medication Safety Advancement. "By partnering Purdue's researchers with clinicians who know what is feasible in the workflow of a busy pharmacy, we have the ideal group to design methods to reduce adverse drug events by avoiding medication errors, misuse and other medication-related problems experienced by patients."

**************************************************************

Offspring Of Female Rats Given Folic Acid Supplements Develop More Breast Cancer
The daughters of rats who took folic acid supplements before conception, during pregnancy and while breast-feeding have breast cancer rates twice as high as other rats, according to a new study.
They also had more tumours and developed them at a faster rate, according to the study led by Dr. Young-in Kim, a gastroenterologist at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto.
Kim stressed more research needs to be done to determine whether the findings also apply to humans. While there are similarities in breast cancer in rats and humans, there are differences in how rats and human metabolize folic acid. "We don't want pregnant women to panic," he said.

**************************************************************

Team Hopes to Cut Years Off Development Time of New Antibiotics
Eliminating tens of thousands of manual lab experiments, two University of Houston (UH) professors are working toward a method to cut the development time of new antibiotics. While current practices typically last for more than a decade, a computerized modeling system being developed at UH will speed up this process.
Vincent Tam, associate professor of clinical sciences, and Michael Nikolaou, professor of chemical and biomolecular engineering, are focusing on dosing regimens to reveal which ones are most likely to be effective in combating infection and which are not worth pursuing. It is hoped that pharmaceutical companies can then focus their tests on the most promising regimens.
Their findings recently were the subject of a cover story titled "A Novel Approach to Pharmacodynamic Assessment of Antimicrobial Agents: New Insights to Dosing Regimen Design," appearing in the Public Library of Science's PLoS Computational Biology. The journal aims to further the understanding of living systems - from molecules to humans - through the application of computational methods. This article chronicles the results of a three-year endeavor that was initially funded by a $400,000 grant from the National Science Foundation.

**************************************************************

Drug Therapy Shows Significant Benefit In Treating A Leading Cause Of Childhood Blindness
A readily available, inexpensive drug therapy showed a significant benefit in treating premature infants with the worst and historically most difficult-to-treat cases of retinopathy of prematurity.
The results of a multicenter clinical trial led by researchers at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) are published in the Feb. 17 issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.
Retinopathy of prematurity is a leading cause of childhood blindness worldwide. In the immature retina of babies born before 30 weeks' gestational age, the disease results in disorganized growth of retinal blood vessels, which can lead to scarring and retinal detachment.
In this study, Helen A. Mintz-Hittner, M.D., the Alfred W. Lasher, III, Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science at the UTHealth Medical School, and colleagues compared the use of intravitreal bevacizumab, an anti-vascular endothelial growth factor, to conventional laser treatment.

**************************************************************

Mayo Clinic Researchers Confirm Value of Therapeutic Hypothermia After Cardiac Arrest
Mayo Clinic researchers confirmed that patients who receive therapeutic hypothermia after resuscitation from cardiac arrest have favorable chances of surviving the event and recovering good functional status. In therapeutic hypothermia, a patient's body temperature is cooled to 33 degrees Celsius following resuscitation from cardiac arrest, in order to slow the brain's metabolism and protect the brain against the damage initiated by the lack of blood flow and oxygenation. This study was published in the December 2010 issue of Annals of Neurology.
"Therapeutic hypothermia is a neuroprotective strategy. Brain recovery is the main determinant of outcome for patients who survive cardiac resuscitation," says Alejandro Rabinstein, M.D., a Mayo Clinic neurologist. "For a number of years, we have collected information about what determines whether or not a patient is going to wake up after resuscitated cardiac arrest. However, most of this information comes from the time when patients were not treated with therapeutic hypothermia, which now has become the standard of care for many cases of cardiac arrest. We wanted to know whether hypothermia therapy changed what we knew before about how to estimate neurological prognosis in these patients."
In this study, Dr. Rabinstein and his team identified 192 patients, more than 100 of whom were treated with therapeutic hypothermia. Detailed neurologic exams were performed, including electroencephalograms, brain CT scans, and measurement of neuron-specific enolase (NSE). NSE is a substance detected in the blood that provides information about the extent of brain damage. "The results of the study mainly validated what we knew about prognosis following cardiac arrest from non-hypothermia cases. The findings on physical examination on the days following cardiac arrest remain most valuable in estimating the prognosis," says Dr. Rabinstein.

**************************************************************

New Model For Probing Antidepressant Actions
The most widely prescribed antidepressants - medicines such as Prozac, Lexapro and Paxil - work by blocking the serotonin transporter, a brain protein that normally clears away the mood-regulating chemical serotonin. Or so the current thinking goes. That theory about how selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) work can now be put to the test with a new mouse model developed by neuroscientists at Vanderbilt University.
These mice, described in the online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), express a serotonin transporter that has been genetically altered so that it does not respond to many SSRIs or cocaine.

**************************************************************

Stroke Medication Out Of Reach For Some Survivors
Young, uninsured stroke survivors or those covered by the Medicare Part D drug benefit often can't afford medications - increasing the risk for future strokes or other cardiovascular disease-related events, according to research presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2011.
Researchers evaluated whether cost-related non-adherence to medication was a problem for stroke survivors even after the 2006 implementation of Medicare Part D, a federal government drug benefit that offers prescription drug coverage to all Medicare participants. "Federal programs to reduce cost-related non-adherence to medication may not be working as intended, and a resulting large number of stroke survivors are at risk for subsequent stroke events," said Deborah A. Levine, M.D., M.P.H., the study's lead author and an assistant professor in general medicine and neurology at the University of Michigan Health System.

**************************************************************

Vaccine Made With Synthetic Gene Protects Against Deadly Pneumonia
Researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University have developed an experimental vaccine that appears to protect against an increasingly common and particularly deadly form of pneumococcal pneumonia. Details of the new vaccine, which was tested in an animal model, are reported in a paper published today in the Journal of Infectious Diseases.
Pneumococcal pneumonia can occur when the lungs are infected with the bacterial species Streptococcus pneumoniae (also known as pneumococcus). "Like many microbes that cause pneumonia, pneumococcus is spread from person to person through coughing or sneezing," said principal investigator Liise-anne Pirofski, M.D., professor of medicine and of microbiology & immunology and chief of the division of infectious diseases at Einstein and Montefiore Medical Center. Symptoms include cough, fever, shortness of breath, and chest pain.
The National Foundation for Infectious Diseases estimates that 175,000 people are hospitalized with pneumococcal pneumonia in the United States each year. In addition to pneumonia, pneumococcus causes 34,500 bloodstream infections and 2,200 cases of meningitis annually. It is responsible for more deaths in the United States - 4,800 a year - than any other vaccine-preventable disease. It poses a particular problem in the developing world, where it is estimated to cause more than one million deaths in children each year, according to the World Health Organization.

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Higher Vitamin D Intake Needed To Reduce Cancer Risk
Researchers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha have reported that markedly higher intake of vitamin D is needed to reach blood levels that can prevent or markedly cut the incidence of breast cancer and several other major diseases than had been originally thought. The findings are published February 21 in the journal Anticancer Research. While these levels are higher than traditional intakes, they are largely in a range deemed safe for daily use in a December 2010 report from the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine.
"We found that daily intakes of vitamin D by adults in the range of 4000-8000 IU are needed to maintain blood levels of vitamin D metabolites in the range needed to reduce by about half the risk of several diseases - breast cancer, colon cancer, multiple sclerosis, and type 1 diabetes," said Cedric Garland, DrPH, professor of family and preventive medicine at UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center. "I was surprised to find that the intakes required to maintain vitamin D status for disease prevention were so high - much higher than the minimal intake of vitamin D of 400 IU/day that was needed to defeat rickets in the 20th century.

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Study Links Long-Term Use Of Osteoporosis Drugs To Unusual Fractures
However, the drugs do prevent hip fractures. And, since the overall risk of thigh bone fractures caused by the drugs is low, women at high risk for hip and other osteoporosis-related fractures should not stop taking bisphosphonates, according to researchers at St. Michael's Hospital and the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences.
The study was published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
Typical hip fractures caused by osteoporosis occur in the upper part of the femur close to the hip joint and are an important cause of disability, need for long-term care and even death in the elderly. The risk of these kinds of fractures is reduced by bisphosphonate treatment, which was confirmed by this study.

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New Long-Acting Local Anesthetic Derived From Algae Effectively Blocks Pain In Surgical Patients
A U.S.-Chile collaboration is bringing surgical patients closer to having a long-acting local anesthetic. In a randomized, double-blind trial, patients given neosaxitoxin, a new local anesthetic derived from algae, had significantly less postoperative pain and recovered about two days sooner than those given the commonly used local anesthetic bupivacaine. Based on this finding, Children's Hospital Boston, a co-investigator on the study, has signed a collaboration agreement with biotech start-up company Proteus SA (Santiago, Chile) to move the new anesthetic toward clinical adoption.
Tens of millions of patients have operations requiring local anesthesia each year. Current local anesthetics act for less than 8 hours; when they wear off, patients generally need opioid analgesics, which cause substantial side effects, including nausea, sedation, shallow breathing, sleepiness, constipation and itching. These side effects often delay recovery and can result in prolonged hospitalization.
Neosaxitoxin (neoSTX) provides local anesthesia for more than 24 hours. It is a site 1 sodium-channel blocker, part of a larger class of emerging anesthetics based on molecules derived from aquatic organisms.

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Adverse Drug Events Costly To Health Care System
Patients who suffer an adverse medical event arising from the use or misuse of medications are more costly to the health care system than other emergency department (ED) patients, say physicians and research scientists at Vancouver General Hospital and the University of British Columbia.
Their research, the first to examine the health outcomes and cost of patient care for patients presenting to the ED with adverse drug events, is published today in the Annals of Emergency Medicine.
The research team, led by Dr. Corinne Hohl, emergency physician at Vancouver General Hospital and research scientist with the Centre for Clinical Epidemiology and Evaluation at Vancouver Coastal Health and the University of British Columbia, studied the health outcomes of patients who had presented to the emergency department with an adverse drug event and compared them to patients who presented for other reasons.


DA.VA, and Veteran News

2011 COLA Watch

The Federal Government announced that the 2011 Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for
military retirees, disabled veterans, and social security recipients will be zero for
the second year in a row.

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The organization P2V in Arlington, VA pairs companion animals with returning veterans.
P2V has received many calls from veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
(PTSD), traumatic brain injury (TBI) and other psychological stresses who are in need of
a companion animal from a shelter. P2V will be expanding its services to the New York
City, San Antonio and San Diego areas within the next two months. For more information,
call P2V at (877) 311-4P2V (4728), extension 2.

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WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is reaching out to Veterans in crisis
and their families in a new public service announcement to raise awareness about suicide
prevention resources, such as the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

“As more Veterans return from Iraq and Afghanistan, the critical need for mental health
care is rising,” said Sonja V. Batten, assistant deputy chief patient care services
officer for mental health. “VA is increasing its efforts to reach out to Veterans in
need and their families, to inform them about available services and programs.”

The new television spot encourages Veterans in crisis to call the crisis hotline number
at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) and then push 1 on their telephone keypad to reach a trained VA
mental health professional who can assist the Veteran 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

“Suicide is preventable,” said Batten. “Every Veteran suicide is tragic and regardless
of the numbers or rates, one Veteran suicide is too many. We feel the responsibility to
continue to spread the word throughout the nation that suicide prevention is everyone’s
business.”

So far, more than 379,000 people have called the hotline, and more than 200,000 of these
callers have identified themselves as Veterans, family members or friends of Veterans. The
hotline has led to more than 13,000 rescues of actively suicidal Veterans.

The hotline also operates an online Veterans Chat program, which provides Veterans, their
families and friends with the ability to communicate anonymously online in real-time with
a trained VA mental health professional. Veterans Chat can be accessed through the
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline’s web page.

Through the hotline and Veterans Chat, VA can connect Veterans and their families with
important services, including suicide prevention coordinators, as well as general
inpatient and outpatient psychiatric services at VA medical centers and community-based
outpatient clinics.

The hotline, which is part of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, was started in
2007 as a partnership between VA and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services
Administration (SAMHSA).


WEEKLY INSPIRATION

Thanks to Tom Heckman for this forward. BB

2 TOUGH QUESTIONS Question 1: If you knew a woman who was pregnant, who had 8 kids already, three who were deaf, two who were blind, one mentally retarded, and she had syphilis, would you recommend that she have an abortion? Read the next question before looking at the response for this one. Question 2: It is time to elect a new world leader, and only your vote counts. Here are the facts about the three candidates. Candidate A: Associates with crooked politicians, and consults with astrologists. He's had two mistresses. He also chain smokes and drinks 8 to 10 martinis a day. Candidate B: He was kicked out of office twice, sleeps until noon, used opium in college and drinks a quart of whiskey every evening. Candidate C: He is a decorated war hero. He's a vegetarian, doesn't smoke, drinks an occasional beer and never committed adultery. Which of these candidates would be our choice? Decide first ... No peeking, and then scroll down for the response. Candidate A is Franklin D. Roosevelt. Candidate B is Winston Churchill.. Candidate C is Adolph Hitler. And, by the way, on your answer to the abortion question: If you said YES, you just killed Beethoven. Pretty interesting isn't it? Makes a person think before judging someone. Remember: Amateurs ... Built the ark. Professionals ... Built the Titanic

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Thanks to Ron Brauer for this week's prayer. BB Dear Lord, I thank you for this day. I thank You for my being able to see and to hear this morning. I'm blessed because You are a forgiving God and an understanding God. You have done so much for me and You keep on blessing me. Forgive me this day for everything I have done, said or thought that was not pleasing to you. I ask now for Your forgiveness Please keep me safe from all danger and harm. Help me to start this day with a new attitude and plenty of gratitude. Let me make the best of each day to clear my mind so that I can hear from You. Let me not whine and whimper over things I have no control over. Let me continue to see sin through God's eyes and acknowledge it as evil. And when I sin, let me repent, and confess with my mouth my wrongdoing, and receive the forgiveness of God. And when this world closes in on me, let me remember Jesus' example -- to slip away and find a quiet place to pray. It's the best response when I'm pushed beyond my limits. I know that when I can't pray, You listen to my heart. Continue to use me to do Your will. Continue to bless me that I may be a blessing to others. Keep me strong that I may help the weak.. Keep me uplifted that I may have words of encouragement for others. I pray for those who are lost and can't find their way. I pray for those who are misjudged and misunderstood. I pray for those who don't know You intimately. I pray for those who will delete this without sharing it with others. I pray for those who don't believe. But I thank you that I believe. I believe that God changes people and God changes things. I pray for all my sisters and brothers. For every family member in their households. I pray for peace, love and joy in their homes that they are out of debt and all their needs are met. I pray that every eye that reads this knows there is no problem, circumstance, or situation greater than God. Every battle is in Your hands for You to fight. I pray that these words be received into the hearts of every eye that sees them and every mouth that confesses them willingly.. This is my prayer. In Jesus' Name, Amen.


Thats all the news for this week. Check back next Saturday. Thanks, Ole' Bill


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