Monday, February 25, 2013

Therapy Companion Dogs Serving Veterans with Invisible Wounds

The Oregon House veterans affairs committee is looking into a House Bill 2159 that would establish a veteran's program addressing the need to pair service dogs with veterans suffering from PTSD, and to study the effectiveness of the dogs.This would be a 2-year pilot program; and would need $75,000 from the general fund. 

In addition, House Joint Memorial 1, attached to the House Bill 2159, would urge U.S. Congress to overturn a US Department of Veterans Affairs decision that actually prohibits covering costs of such pairing of service or therapy dogs for "veterans with emotional and mental disabilities."

Rep. Julie Parrish, a co-chairwoman of the House Veterans' Services and Emergency Preparedness Committee, was quoted in OregonLive, Feb 19, 2013, saying, veterans "rarely come to the Legislature to ask for our help. And even when they do, the money is tight because other interest groups squeak louder than our veterans." The committee held a hearing on Feb 20, 2013.

Representatives contact information to:
The House Committee on Veterans and Emergency Preparedness.  House Bill 2159
that handled the hearing on Feb 20, 2013 are:   

Chair:  Rep. Greg Matthews, ;  
2 Vice Chairs
Rep. Shemia Fagan, ;  
and Rep. Julie Parrish ;
5 Members
Rep Deborah Boone
Rep. Sal Esquivel
Rep. John Huffman ; and 
Rep. Brad Witt

Friday, December 30, 2011

Call-Out to Salute Oregon Marine Lance Corporal Artem Lazukins

Says his mother,
"My son is a hero.
I want my fellow citizens to know
what Artem has done for his country."

This incredible, witty, smiling, loving (and yes, humble) Marine, Artem Lazukins, is in Portland for the holidays. He returned home under the "radar", so to speak, without any of us welcoming fans knowing to get out and greet him at the Portland Airport. Thank goodness his brother Alex was there. Their mom was still in transit making her way up to Portland so their family of 3 could spend time together for Christmas and New Years.

What makes this story so compelling is that Artem had been deployed this year 2011 to Afghanistan with the Marines 1/5.

And while on dismounted "foot" patrol, he got blown up from a buried IED. He lost both of his legs above the knees - along with excruciating damage to the rest of his body.

He was kept alive through the sheer determination of his Marine brothers, Combat Medics/Corpsman, Combat Support Hospital, Landstuhl Army Medical Center, and at Bethesda Naval Hosital. Artem says he fought to survive 'cause he didn't want to disappoint his mom.

And while brother Alex has been here in Portland working and holding down their family home, Artem and his mom (Tatyana) have been spending these last months at Bethesda, and since September at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego.

Artem has 20 months more of rehabilitation in San Diego. See Oregonian interview from September 2011

This engaging family emigrated from the Ukraine in 2000. They have no other family members here. Because of the medical circumstances Artem didn't get to come home with his Marine unit; and didn't get the hero's welcome in Oregon.

They have no idea of our capacity to shower them with love, respect and support.

We have a great opportunity here to step forward and assure Artem that he is not forgotten; and to comfort his mom that the sacrifices her family has made for their new country will be remembered in our hearts.

Send your cards, letters and support to:
Artem Lazukins
c/o S. Crenshaw,
PO Box 242
Canby OR 97013

Any questions, concerns and/or ideas, please email Soldiers' Angels Oregon Network,

Permission has been given by S. Crenshaw, a member of Soldiers' Angels and PRG, to publish the above mailing address.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Bringing holiday cheer
to our National Guard.

3rd Annual Christmas Party
Soldiers' Angels and
Oregon National Guard 141st BSB

Sunday, December 4th, 2011. Starting at 11:30AM
Angels are invited to volunteer, again, to help with our 3rd annual Christmas Holiday Party. There will be over 650 soldiers and their families participating. Angels will be greeting everyone at the entrance, plus assisting our very own Angel Dixie -dressed in beautiful winter blue and snow white - as she hands out gifts to the 100+ expected children.

If you can attend, please contact:
SA Oregon Network at
cncor01 @
Angels are needed from 11:30AM to 1:30PM. You are more than welcome to stay for the entire event, until 4:00PM.

December 4th, 2011
Starting at 11:30AM
Portland Armory
Next to the Portland International Airport

Join in to help spread the joy of the season with our heroes and their families.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Veterans Day Events Around Oregon

There are so many happenings going on around the state--there is plenty of opportunity for all of us to get out and show our support. This list below is an attempt to get you started with some of the "known" Veterans Day Events. You can always check out your community newspaper, City Hall, various veterans groups, schools and churches for more information. Please update any events that you find.

These first 3 events have SA Angels you can contact to meet up with:

Portland Veteran Breakfast, Saturday, November 12 · 9:00am - 10:30am

City Bible Church, 9200 NE Fremont St. This is the 3rd year that Soldiers' Angels has been invited to attend. This year the honored guest speaker will be a former 101st Airborne soldier, WW2 soldier, John Topaun; and the current Special Forces Commander’s(Afghanistan) wife, Sarah Daniels.

Breakfast is Free for all attending this dedication.

Theme is: "THANK A VET; VET TO VET" ( two sides of the same coin, 1-Can't say "Thank U" enough; 2-"Vet to Vet" supporting and healing them all). If you are going to attend, please email Juel at
SA Oregon Network

Gresham Veterans Day Parade, Friday, November 11 · 10:30am - 1:30pm

Beginning at East Hill Church, and winding down through historic downtown. If you would like to be a part of the parade, please email Soldiers' Angels Laynie for details and staging time, at:

Roseburg Veterans Day Parade Friday, November 11 · 11:00am - 1:00pm

Douglas County Veterans Day Parade. "Honoring Those Who Have Born The Wounds of Battle." Soldiers' Angels Sandy and her VA Team will be staging at 7:00am. After the parade, the Team will go to the VA Hospital to visit and hand out cards. If you want to join up with Sandy, please contact her at

Here is the rest of the listing, alphabetical:

Albany (Oregon's biggest Veterans Day Event)

Nov. 11 - 8 a.m. – Memorial service at the Linn County Veterans Memorial located at Timber-Linn Park, 900 Price Road. 11 a.m. – Grande Parade, “Treasure Your Freedom – Honor Our Veterans.” Pacific Blvd., Lyons St., 2nd Ave., Ferry St., and ending on 5th Ave. 12:00 p.m. – Lunch for parade participants and veterans at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 584, and Albany / American Legion Post 10, at 129 1st Ave., and Albany Eagles #225. 2 p.m. – Awards Ceremony on Courthouse steps. 7:30 p.m. – The Willamette Master Chorus will perform a concert entitled: “The Call,” relating stories of American service men and women, honoring their victories and sacrifices, at the Assembly of God Church, 2817 Santiam Hwy. S.E. For more information, or to buy tickets, visit


Nov. 9 - 12 p.m. – A ceremony will recognize Veterans and families, to include campus and community officials, veterans and students, and family members, at Clatsop Community College, 1651 Lexington Ave. Nov. 10 - 12 p.m. – Veterans Honor Ceremony at Astoria High School, 1001 W. Marine Dr., with patriotic songs, guest speakers, and POW-MIA Remembrance. Nov. 11 - 8 a.m. – American Legion Post 12 will serve free breakfast, lunch, and dinner to veterans and their spouses (12 p.m. lunch, 5 p.m. ham dinner). Donations are welcome. 6p.m. – Veteran displays. Veterans are encouraged to wear uniforms and bring photos. Post 12 is located at 1132 Exchange St.


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – A veterans ceremony will be held at Bethel United Christian Church featuring speakers, a choir and a remembrance of the POW / MIA.


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – 12th Annual Veterans Day Parade. Theme: “Veterans Are Our Heroes for Life!” Parade Grand Marshals: Robert D. Maxwell, Medal of Honor recipient and VFW - Ponderosa Pine Post #1643 members. Civil Air Patrol will kick-off parade. Procession begins on N.W. Newport Ave. and will march over Veterans Memorial Bridge, south on N.W. Wall, N.W. Franklin, around Drake Park on N.W. Riverside, concluding on N.W. Galveston and Harmon St.


Nov. 11 - 6 p.m. – Veterans Day Dinner at the Elks Lodge #1680, 118 N. Broadway. Cost is free to veterans, $5 forothers. Speaker will be Guy McKay.


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – Veterans’ memorial in front of City Hall, 250 Main St. Guest speakers: Former State Rep. and former B-17 pilot, Bill Markham; County Commissioner Susan Morgan and Sue Shaffer, Cow Creek Band of the UmpquaIndians. F-15 Flyover was requested

Central Point

Nov. 11 - 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. – The Oregon Fallen Heroes Memorial off I-5, exit 33 on Hamrick Rd/Vilas Rd. In the Don Jones City Park. We will honor all Oregon veterans and military personnel. Guest Speakers: Rep. Greg Walden and Afghanistan veteran, Cody Smith.

Coos Bay

Nov. 11 - 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. – American Legion Post 34 will host a breakfast, 1421 Airport Way. 6 p.m. – Coos Bay Eagles Lodge, and American Legion Post 34 will sponsor a dinner at the Eagles Lodge, 568 S. 2nd St. Free for veterans and spouses. No-host social hour, 5-6 p.m.


Nov. 10 - 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Oregon State University Veterans Affairs and Veterans and Family-Student Association areco-hosting a social at the Memorial Union Veterans’ Lounge;


Nov. 10 - 1 p.m. – Elkton High School will honor veterans with a special Assembly in the school’s gymnasium. This year veterans who, because of their service in the military, were not able to complete high school (and who previously qualified) will be receiving official high school diplomas.


Nov. 11 - 7 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. – American Legion Auxiliary Post 74 will host a Veteran’s Day Breakfast for $5. Located at the Estacada Odd Fellows Hall, 267 S.W. 2nd St. 8:45 a.m. - Proud to Be an American Motorcycle Ride. Ride briefing at 8:45. Kick stands up by 9 a.m. All vehicles welcome to follow the bikes. 11 a.m. – The Veterans Day parade will begin at Estacada High School, 355 N.E. 6th Ave. Staging begins at 10:30 a.m. 11 a.m. - Veterans Day lunch of hot dogs, chili dogs and a soda will be offered following the parade. Veterans eat free. 12 p.m. - Veterans Day ceremony at the Estacada High School football field.


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – Service at the Florence Elks’ Club honoring all veterans. 1 p.m. – The 6th annual parade in Florence. Route stages on Quince Street north of Harbor, onto Second Street and Nopal, onto Bay Street in Old Town, and disperses in the area of the Veterans Memorial Park. Transportation will be provided by the Rhody Cruisers Car Club for those who are unable to walk the

full parade route. Lunch provided free for veterans

Forest Grove

Nov. 13 - 12 p.m. – American Legion Post 2 and Elks Lodge 2440 will co-host a ceremony, followed by speakers, entertainment and a free lunch for veterans, current active-duty military personnel, and their families. Lunch begins at 1 p.m. The lodge is located at 2810 Pacific Ave.

Hood River

Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. A “Celebration of Veterans” of all ages at Anderson’s Tribute Center, 1401 Belmont Rd. Guest speaker: Shaun Benson, Retired Special Forces, Afghanistan.

Klamath Falls

Nov. 11 - 10 a.m. – Parade in downtown will begin on Spring St. and conclude at Veterans Memorial Park at Main and Klamath Ave. 11 a.m. – A ceremony following the parade will include placing wreaths for each military era. A fly-over has been requested.

La Grande

Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – American Legion Post 43 Veterans Parade along Adams Ave. VFW Post 4060 will lead the parade. A spaghetti feed will be held afterwards at the Post 43 Legion Hall, 301 Fir St. Cost: Free to Legion members; $3.50 for nonmembers.

La Pine

Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – Ceremony at La Pine Community Cemetery. Afterwards, American Legion Post 45, 52532 Drafter Rd., will host an open house with hamburgers and hot dogs.


Nov. 10 - 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. – Annual Veteran of the Year Banquet at the American Legion Post 51. Cost is $14. Open to veterans and non veterans alike.


Nov. 11 - 7 p.m. – Second Winds Community Band is honoring America’s veterans at its annual Veterans Day Concert, “Honoring All Who Serve,” at the Community Center, 600 N.E. Evans St. There will be a color guard, guest speakers, and a return performance by the Grandhaven Elementary School choir. This concert is open and free to the public.


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – Veterans Day Parade, rain or shine.Parade runs along Main St. from Hawthorne to Oakdale. For more information go to


Nov. 11 - 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. – Open House at American Legion Post 180, 2146 S.E. Monroe St. Hot dogs and chili will be served. Live patriotic music provided by Portland American Legion Post 185 musicians. All veterans and their families are welcome.

North Bend

Nov. 11 - 7 a.m. to 12 p.m. – American Legion Bay Area Post 34, 1421 Airport Way, will host their annual breakfast. Cost: $5; children under 12, $2.50. An 11:11 a.m. remembrance ceremony will celebrate the history of Veterans Day.


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. (MST) – Post 67 will host a memorial ceremony at Evergreen Cemetery at the American Legion Memorial, 1155 S. Park Blvd.


Nov. 11 - 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. – Pendleton VFW Post 922. Programs for Veterans Day at Memorial Garden at Bishope Funeral Home 11 a.m. Avenue of Flags at Olnay Cemetery, 865 Tutawilla Rd.


Nov.10 - 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. - Portland State University is hosting a celebration at the Smith Memorial Student Union. Keynote speaker: Former U.S. Rep. Darlene Hooley. Representatives from DAV, VA Medical Center, WorkSource Oregon will assist veterans. The event is free, open to the public and all local military veterans are encouraged to attend. Food and refreshments will be provided. Nov. 11 - 9:45 a.m. – 37th Annual Hollywood District Veterans Day Parade will travel between N.E. 40th and 48th Ave. and Sandy Blvd. The parade concludes with a ceremony at the Veterans Memorial Flag Pole, N.E. 48th and Sandy Blvd. Covered seating will be available for seniors and those with disabilities. Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – The University of Portland’s AFROTC and AROTC will present a Veterans Day ceremony at the Praying Hands Memorial, located next to Christie Hall and Howard Hall on campus, 5000 N. Willamette Blvd. A reception will follow afterwards.


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – Veterans Day Parade will honor Grand Marshals – World War II Veterans, marking the 70th Anniversary of the start of that war. Chili Feed: Open to veterans and families at the VFW Deschutes Post #4108, 1836 S.W. Veterans Way, noon to 2 p.m., following the parade.


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – Douglas County Veterans Day Parade, downtown. A flyover has been requested.


Nov. 11 - 11:30 a.m. – “A Patriotic Tribute to Our Veterans.” Veterans eat free, cost is $4.50 for all others (includes lunch, program, and entertainment). Art exhibit showing planes and equipment used during war times. A military uniform display will be in the entry area. Center 50+, 2615 Portland Rd. N.E. Nov. 11 - 3 p.m. – A ceremony will be held at the Afghan-Iraqi Freedom Memorial on the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs grounds, 700 Summer St. N.E. Names of Oregonians recently killed while serving in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom will be unveiled. Nov. 13 - 3 p.m. – The Willamette Master Chorus will perform a Veterans Day weekend event entitled: “The Call,” relating stories of American service men and women, honoring their victories and sacrifices, at Willamette University‘s Smith Auditorium. All veterans will receive specially discounted ticket prices. For more information, or to buy tickets, visit


Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – Ceremonial tribute with Patriotic music hosted by VFW Post 4273 and Auxiliary at the Sandy Veterans Memorial Statue, intersection of Highways 26 and 211. 12 p.m. – Community potluck at VFW Post 4273, 38452 Proctor Blvd.


Nov. 11 - 10:30 to 11 a.m. – VFW Post 4362 will hold a Veterans Day Service to be held at the Veterans Memorial in Heritage Park. Flyover was requested. Gun salute by Oregon Army National Guard Det. 1, B. Co., 1-186.


Nov. 10 - 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. – Sisters High School Leadership team will honor veterans and their families at their annual breakfast. Students will perform a patriotic ceremony presentation; musical entertainment; includes guest speaker. Morning ceremony immediately following breakfast. Evening performance at 7 p.m. Free admission.

The Dalles

Nov. 11 - 11 a.m. – Mid-Columbia Veterans Day Parade begins at the National Guard Armory, 713 Webber St. It will proceed downtown and return to the Armory. Flyover has been requested. 1 p.m. – VFW Post 2471 Auxiliary will host a potluck dinner and patriotic program at the National Guard Armory. The public is invited to attend.


Nov. 11 - 12 p.m. – Annual Hobo Stew luncheon for American Legion Post 158 members and guests will be held at the Post, 8635 S.W. Scoffins St.


Nov. 9 - 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. – Reynolds High School will host an all-day program at, 1698 S.W. Cherry Park Rd., to recognize all veterans. American veterans of Hispanic/Latino descent will be featured. Speakers include: Mexican-American Veterans Assoc.; Tuskegee Airmen; American Indians Veterans Assoc. Commander, Don Loudner; Blackfoot Tribe Honor Guard; Harold Bray, USS Indianapolis survivor; Kennie Namba, 442nd Combat Regimental Combat Team; Philip Coon, Bataan Death March survivor. 1:15 p.m. - Assembly in gym to honor all veterans.


Nov. 11 - 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. – Tillamook Air Museum volunteers will serve a traditional S.O.S. Breakfast at the museum’s Air Base Cafe, located on Hwy. 101, south of Tillamook. 9:30 a. m. to 11 a.m. – The Museum and local VFW Posts, will host the 14th annual Veterans Appreciation Day and Open House to honor and thank veterans. Free admission for all veterans.

White City

Nov. 11 - 10 a.m. – Southern Oregon Rehabilitation Center and Clinics, 8495 Crater Lake Hwy., will host a ceremony in the theater. Guest Speakers: U.S. Rep. Greg Walden; Mike Green; bag pipes and the Rogue Valley Symphonic Band. The ceremony is scheduled to conclude on the traditional “Eleventh Hour”. Honor Guard: 1-186 Infantry. The event is open to the public.


Nov. 11 - 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. – Korean War Veterans Association Oregon Trail Chapter will be on site, at the Korean War Memorial, to answer questions and be of service during daylight hours. A flag ceremony and playing of Taps will be at 11 a.m. The Memorial is located off Interstate 5 at exit 283, about 10 miles south of Portland. Follow the signs to Town Center Park.