VFW Announces 2008 National Health Care Winners

WASHINGTON — The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the U.S. has selected its 2008 National Health Care Award winners. The annual awards program recognizes individuals for their outstanding service to military personnel and veterans at national, state and local health care or nursing facilities. 

The three category winners this year come from Germany, Maine and Arizona. They are:

Outstanding Community Health Care Employee of the Year

Capt. Detra T. Jackson, an Army public health nurse at the U.S. military clinic at Baumholder, Germany. Captain Jackson’s primary duties include disease awareness, health promotion, consulting and protection. A graduate of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, she is highly involved with military families, youth and special needs children. She is also the Public Health Emergency Officer, and provides predeployment medical briefings to deploying troops. Captain Jackson was nominated by the VFW Department of Europe.

Outstanding VA Health Care Employee of the Year

Lorna J. Hatch, a 30-year employee at the Togus VA Medical Center in Augusta, Maine. Mrs. Hatch is a voluntary service specialist who creates positions in which civic-minded volunteers donated thousands of hours of service every year. She is also an advocate for financial or in-kind donations to support numerous veterans programs, to include those that benefit the homeless, the National Golden Age Games, and the visiting families of hospice patients. Mrs. Hatch was nominated by the VFW Department of Maine.

Outstanding Volunteer of the Year

Carmine Iosue, a disabled combat veteran from Sun Lakes, Ariz. He has assisted veterans in three states and has received local and national awards for his volunteerism. Since moving to Arizona in 1994, he has volunteered almost 8,000 hours to provide transportation and to help collect and distribute reading material and sundry items to fellow veterans at the Carl T. Hayden VA Medical Center in Phoenix. He also assists with toy and food drives at the nearby St. Peter’s Indian Mission School. Mr. Iosue was nominated by the VFW Department of Arizona.

The VFW’s National Veterans Care Committee selected the three award winners after screening nomination packages submitted by VFW Posts and Departments from across the country and overseas. Eligibility is for those healthcare professionals and volunteers who work for government or private hospitals, clinics and nursing home facilities, and selection is based on job performance and the care given to military personnel, veterans and/or their families. 

"I am extremely proud of this year's selections," said VFW National Commander George Lisicki, a Vietnam veteran from Carteret, N.J., "because they are representative of a health care team that is vital to the wellbeing of our military, veterans and their families. I congratulate them all for their outstanding service to others."

The above awards will be presented at their respective VFW department conventions next month. An exact date and time can be obtained by e-mailing the:
VFW Department of Europe: pokerp@yahoo.com
VFW Department of Maine: thedumas@gwi.net 
VFW Department of Arizona: vfwhdqtrs@aol.com