Veterans Week: Unite America with our Veterans

Veterans Week: Unite America with our Veterans

CONTACT: Carlisle Williams (212) 982-9699 or press@iava.org

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

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Veterans Week: Unite America with our Veterans

Post 9/11 Vets Will Participate in Events Across the Country, Including the Annual NYC Veterans Day Parade and The White House Breakfast

IAVA Will Host 7th Annual Heroes Gala in New York City next Tuesday

NEW YORK (November 5, 2013) – This Veterans Week, the last with American troops in Afghanistan, post-9/11 veterans and supporters will participate in events across the country, bringing people together and highlighting important issues facing their community. Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) will participate in New York City’s annual Veterans Day parade, The White House breakfast, and will be on the ground in about 100 cities and towns across the country, including:

The Dallas/Fort Worth Veterans Day Parade

The Veterans Day Remembrance Ceremony in Chicago

A Habitat for Humanity service projects in Los Angeles and San Francisco

The Mission Continues service project and Veterans Day Parade in San Diego

A Boston Celtics game, as part of IAVA’s Rucksack rewards program for veterans

Additional events can be found at iava.org/vetsday2013. Veterans and supporters who can’t make an event in person, can show support by joining the march online by using the hashtag #UniteWithVets on Twitter, Tumblr, Instagram and Facebook.

“Veterans Day is the most important time for our community, and this year’s theme of Unite America with our Veterans is especially important,” said IAVA CEO and Founder, Paul Rieckhoff. “Our country is at a particularly divided time, as we saw with the most recent government shutdown.  As we recognize the last Veterans Day before the end of the war in Afghanistan, as a nation we must recommit to supporting the veterans’ community and those returning home after 12 years of war. We have a message to all Americans: Don’t just thank us, join us!” 

Veterans Day will feature members of the New Greatest Generation who continue to serve in their communities.  IAVA’s Leadership Fellows are helping to bring together veterans and supporters locally throughout the country. 

Reese May, an IAVA Leadership Fellow, will be marching with IAVA at the Veterans Day parade in New York City. During his six years in the Marine Corps Reserves, Reese deployed to Iraq for two tours with Company C, 4th Anti-Terrorism Battalion. He now lives in New York, where he is directing Hurricane Sandy Response and Recovery for the St. Bernard Project. Reese felt firmly rooted in his military family, and his hope is that other veterans realize that they are not alone and that help exists to cope with feelings of isolation. He believes that successful transition can only occur if there is awareness of the needs of returning veterans.

Tegan Griffith, also an IAVA Leadership Fellow, will lead post-9/11 veterans and supporters marching during the 50th Annual Milwaukee Veterans Day Parade. Griffith was in the Marine Corps from 2005 to 2009 and deployed to Iraq in 2008.  Griffith was part of IAVA’s Storm the Hill in March, fighting to end the VA disability claims backlog. Griffith recently joined the outreach team at the Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs. 

The night after Veterans Day, Tuesday, November 12th, IAVA will host its 7th Annual Heroes Gala, a night to honor those who have made a unique and lasting contribution to IAVA’s mission to improve the lives of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans and their families. IAVA will present the 2013 IAVA Veterans Leadership Award to Sal Giunta, Medal of Honor recipient, and the 2013 IAVA Civilian Service Award to Jon Stewart, host of “The Daily Show.” The Heroes Gala will be hosted for the fifth consecutive year by Brian Williams, anchor and managing editor of NBC Nightly News. Marc Roberge of the band O.A.R., a historically strong supporter of vets, will perform live.

Note to media: Please contact press@IAVA.org if you would like to cover a Veterans Day event or IAVA’s Hereos Gala. We can also connect you with a veteran. 

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (www.IAVA.org) is the nation’s first and largest nonpartisan, nonprofit organization representing veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan and has more than 270,000 Member Veterans and civilian supporters nationwide. IAVA recently received the highest rating – four-stars – from Charity Navigator, America’s largest charity evaluator. 

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