McKeon Receives VFW Congressional Award
Protecting VA budget and defeating DOD anti-people initiatives tops legislative agenda
March 06, 2012
WASHINGTON March 6, 2012 —
The Veterans of Foreign Wars
of the U.S. awarded House Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard P.
“Buck” McKeon (R-Calif.) with the 2012 VFW Congressional Award Tuesday afternoon for his
outstanding service to the nation’s military and to a strong and secure
chairman fights to strengthen our military and to invest in a force that can
meet and beat any threat,” said VFW National Commander Richard L. DeNoyer. “He also led efforts to keep terrorist detainees
off of U.S. soil, increased missile defense funding, restored the tradition of
keeping nondefense social issues out of the defense bill, and is a leading
voice to keep the military intact in this budget-cutting era. Our military and veterans’ communities of past and present
have no better friend in Congress than Chairman McKeon.”
The Tuesday afternoon award presentation was part of the VFW’s
annual legislative conference where almost 300 VFW members visiting
their elected officials discuss issues important to veterans, service
members and their families. Topmost this year is to protect the Department of
Veterans Affairs budget from mandatory cuts if sequestration occurs, and to
defeat the Defense Department’s negative quality of life proposals that would
restrict military pay, substantially increase Tricare costs on military
dependents and retirees, and overhaul a military retirement system into
something more suitable for civilian companies.
is no military personnel issue more sacrosanct than pay and benefits,” said
DeNoyer, a retired Marine and Vietnam combat veteran from Middleton, Mass.
secure America needs a strong military, which is one of many reasons why
Chairman McKeon was selected for this year’s award,” he said. “Messing with
military pay and benefits is a clear signal to the troops and their families
that the budget is more important than people. That money-first mindset is
going to seriously hurt recruiting and retention, and potentially end the
These and other important issues will be addressed in detail
tomorrow when the VFW national commander testifies before a joint hearing of
the Senate and House Veterans Affairs Committees. Other high-interest topics
range from military transition and employment assistance programs to education,
the proper care and treatment of wounded warriors, women veterans, the 1.7
million VA claims workload, and combating veteran suicides and homelessness,
Other events at the VFW Legislative Conference:
Warrior Dinner at the National Press Club for about 75 wounded troops and their
families from the Walter Reed National Medical Center at nearby Bethesda, Md.
scholarship was awarded Sunday evening to the winner of the annual VFW Voice of Democracy
program, a patriotic-themed contest that this year judged 50,000 high school
student entries. The winner was joined onstage by 8th grader Lydia
Macfarlan from Siloam Springs, Ark., who beat almost 125,000 other middle
school students to win a $10,000 U.S. Savings Bond in the VFW’s annual
Patriot’s Pen contest.
Gold Medal and Citation to the Marine Corps Wounded Warrior Regiment for the
tremendous work and assistance they provide to wounded, ill and injured Marines
and assigned sailors. Accepting tonight will be the regiment’s
commanding officer, Col. John Mayer.
The VFW will stream delayed video Wednesday afternoon of the VFW national commander’s congressional
testimony. View the testimony and past events all on the VFW homepage at www.vfw.org.
BACK TO NEWS >