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February 15, 2019


Reserve Component Mobilizations
Reserve Component News

Military Family
ROA Taps
Law Reviews


ROA life member Col. Alfred M. Diaz USA (Ret.)

Col. Alfred M. Diaz, U.S. Army (Retired), an ROA lifetime member, died on February 13, 2019, in California. Throughout his life of service with ROA, he served on various committees; but he was best known for his role as chairman of the resolution committee and as Army Vice President. Al could always be counted on for two things: his commitment to ROA, demonstrated by faithful attendance at conventions and conferences, and by keeping everyone straight on Robert’s Rules of Order, of which he was a master. When it came to briefing the resolution committee results during ROA general assemblies he did not believe in taking any more time than necessary. This approach became a popular feature of the last day of the conference.

In a letter to Colonel Diaz’s beloved wife, Martha, ROA’s national chaplain, retired Army Reserve Col. Sherman Reed, wrote, that Al’s “compassion and caring actions as well as his attention to detail, made him a valuable asset to ROA and its affiliate. . . . He was a genuine American hero.”

We will miss Colonel Al Diaz’s unwavering support of ROA, his sense of humor, his sharp wit, and his dedication to fellow members of the Reserve Components!

Tonic for a divisive congress: look to the ‘spirit of 96'

ROA had the latest op-ed published in The Hill on February 3, 2019. ROA recognize the potential for unified and constructive leadership in Congress from those 96 members of the House and Senate who have military experience or are still serving. The article pointed out, “
It is not unreasonable to expect of this commonality an increased capacity to seek understanding. We should expect that our veterans and our serving reservists in Congress seek ways to work together — on matters of national defense and matters far afield from the military. We should expect these patriots to lead in a triumph over the present divisiveness in our constitutionally divided government.” READ HERE
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Department and Chapter Grassroots Efforts

Representatives and Senators will be in their district/state February 16-24 for recess. Here are proposed grassroots actions you could take:

  • Schedule a meeting with your Senators and Representatives.
  • If you cannot get an appointment, ask if your member of Congress is planning on holding a public meeting or event that you could attend. Wear your ROA red cap so you and your fellow ROA members can stand out in the crowd.
  • If you have not met with your Congress delegation or staff before, explain that ROA is a military service organization chartered by Congress. MORE HERE
  • Ask what the Representative’s or Senator’s priorities are for the coming year. See if there are any bills they have introduced that is supported by an ROA resolution.
  • Ask for an appointment in Washington D.C. for the March on the Hill event on March 18, 2019, when you attend the ROA 2019 National Council and Leaders Conference.
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ROA gives input to Arlington National Cemetery interment policies

Meeting Thursday with Army senior staff and Secretary of the Army Mark Esper, ROA’s executive director, Jeff Phillips joined other military and veterans group leaders in discussions on the Army budget, operational commitments, recruitment, and Arlington National Cemetery interment policy.

The budget is unlikely to change much from last year; the Army is in fact envisioning a scenario similar to a continuing resolution, whereby their funding replicates the prior year’s, and they start no new projects. This situation of course wreaks havoc on modernization efforts. The Army, as are the other services, is hamstrung.

Currently, 180,000 of the Army’s active and reserve components are in more than 140 countries; 110,000 soldiers are forward deployed in ten “named operations” (such as Operation Inherent Resolve, in Iraq). This represents an undiminished operational tempo for our Army. At the same time, the Army has missed its 2018 76,500 active duty recruiting goal, although it did attract some 70,000 recruits. The director of the Army’s accessions directorate told us that the Army became complacent in the previous war years (18 so far and counting), and now is reversing that situation, very actively using social media to market directly to young people. Among innovations is a soldier e-sports “gaming team” that competes in national gaming competitions, which are widely viewed by potential recruits (not unlike pro football or NASCAR were once upon a time).

It's no secret: Arlington National Cemetery is nearly full; if nothing changes insofar as admissions and land size, it’s be at capacity in 2041; an expansion to nearby adjoining land will extend that to 2055. Congress directed Secretary of the Army Esper and his team review ways to extend the “life” of Arlington National Cemetery, putting off the day when it is full and closed to interments.  They recently discussed an advisory committee study’s recommendations, which included closing interments (below and above ground) to retirees and other “traditional veterans” who had not been POWs, received valor decorations, such as the Silver Star, Medal of Honor, or been killed or wounded in action, or had been awarded the Distinguished Service Medal (which is not a valor award).  ROA’s Jeff Phillips said he could understand the recommendations, including those to disallow retiree interments, so that the “life” of the cemetery could be extended some 150 years (as Congress has delineated); further, he cited the Distinguished Service Medal is a decoration most frequently awarded retiring senior officers and not NCOs (regrettably), and that it need not be a qualifying decoration for interment at ANC. He suggested that acquisition of other grounds as annexes to ANC might accommodate these interments and others that might be disallowed.

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CALL TO ACTION! -- H.R. 905 “Servicemember Retirement
Improvement Act”

H.R. 905 (Rep. Peter King, R-NY-02), will amend the IRS Tax code for National Guard and Reserve members to make elective deferrals on the basis of their service to the Ready Reserve and on the basis of their other employment.

Check HERE for co-sponsors to H.R. 905.


I am calling to ask Representative ________________ to co-sponsor H.R. 905.

The Department of Defense implemented a new retirement program that put National Guard and Reserve in a position where they will not be able to earn a retirement annuity in the same manner as active duty. The tax code requires them to either reduce their civilian retirement or their reserve retirement because of contribution limits. The tax code needs to be updated to reflect the new military retirement provisions. This would not set a precedent as there are other civilian groups that currently benefit from the same type of legislation.

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Resolutions – Only 2 weeks left!

Resolutions can be considered at the ROA 2019 National Council and Leaders Conference in March. Resolutions are due to ROA National Office in Washington, D.C. by MARCH 1, 2019. Resolutions must be submitted from the chapter to the department. Once approved by the department, they will submit the resolution to national.

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Reserve Component Mobilizations

By the Numbers (as of February 12, 2019 )
The Department of Defense publishes contingency activations of the Reserve Components on a weekly basis.

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Membership Update

Grow membership – Recognize members

Grow membership

ROA Executive Director, Jeff Phillips, informed ROA senior leaders, “Our overall membership losses are fewer this time than last year at this point; and again, for the 22nd straight month, we’re up in term and associate.” ROA continue to see monthly net gains with Associate and term members.

The most growth comes from Departments that have established communication with their local Reserve units/installations.

Membership Recognition

Here is an opportunity for Departments and Chapters to recognize their members through an award program offered by Military Times.

2019 Service Members of the Year Online Nomination Form

If you know someone who is committed to their service and community 24/7, here is your chance to nominate that person as one of our Service Members of the Year. This year, the winner from each branch of the military will get a VIP trip to Washington, D.C., among many other honors. Nominees must remain in the armed forces through August 2019 to be eligible. For more information, please CLICK HERE >.
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Provide quality products and services – Scholarship

ROA Eileen M. Bonner Scholarship Award for Medical Excellence

There is a new Legacy Award and Scholarship offered to Medical Reservists by ROA (d/b/a Reserve Organization of America). Applications are now being accepted until March 15th for the ROA Eileen M. Bonner Scholarship Award for Medical Excellence.

This new annual award recognizes an outstanding Reservist in the Medical Branch of one of the 7 Uniformed Services (including the National Guard) who has contributed above and beyond the call of duty to the military and/or civilian community and is furthering their medical education.

This award consists of a $1,000 scholarship for the furtherance of the candidate’s medical education. It will also include a reimbursement of up to $1,000 in travel expenses to receive the award at the annual ROA National Convention. This award is sponsored by ROA's Department of New York.

Application period: January 15th - March 15th
Learn more about Colonel Bonner at:

Point of Contact: MG Peggy Wilmoth, USA (Ret.), Email:

Reserve Component News

ROA members can stay current on news about the Reserve Component by signing up to receive ROA’s SmartBrief. This is a twice a week snapshot of news relevant to the reserve community with articles from Military Times, Stars and Stripes, The Hill's DEFCON Hill blog and other leading sources.

Summaries of what matters to you is written by expert editors to save you time and keep you informed and prepared. By combining technology and editorial expertise, SmartBrief filters thousands of sources daily to deliver the most relevant industry news in partnership with more than 180 trade associations, professional societies nonprofits and corporate entities.


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Military Family

Veterans History Project

The Veterans History Project of the American Folklife Center collects, preserves, and makes accessible the personal accounts of American war veterans so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand the realities of war. ROA encourages members to participate in this important opportunity to preserve history!

More is available on the project, READ HERE >.
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ROA TAPS for January 2019

(Photo: Arlington National Cemetery)

During January 2019, 217 of our ROA comrades passed from our ranks. On behalf of our membership, we thank these brave men and women for their many years of service and wish their families peace. READ MORE>

Law Reviews:
Legal analysis on the issues impacting your life in and out of uniform

Former Service Member’s Law Center director, retired USNR Capt. Sam Wright, provides periodic law review updates. Please see ROA’s Law Center webpage for more information on service members’ law.

No. 19013 The Court Must Grant a 90-day Continuance to the Absent Service Member Who Applies for a Stay and Meets the Statutory Conditions
No. 19014 Small Sacrifices from all Will Make the All-Volunteer Military Work
No. 19015 Applying USERRA to the National Guard Technician
No. 19016 Don’t Try To Work at your Civilian Job while you Are on Active Duty—Part 3
No. 19017 Service Member Hearing Loss May Be Caused by Defective Earplugs
No. 19018 Returning to a Federal Civilian Job while on Terminal Leave
No. 19019 New SCRA Amendment Changes the Treatment of Military Spouses for State Income Tax Purposes
No. 19020 SCRA Amended regarding Voting Rights of Military Spouses

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To publish your reunion notice in Reserve Voice, email or send by mail to
ROA Reunion Notice
1 Constitution Ave NE
Washington, DC 20002

97th Signal Battalion Annual Reunion
April 28-May 2, 2019
Lake Charles, Louisiana
Info: and see the link for Communicator on line.
POC: LTC Don Mattingly • ph. 812-319-5552

USS Lawrence Association DDG-4 & DD-250
May 1 -5, 2019
El Tropicano Riverwalk Hotel • Ph: 413-372-9086
110 Lexington Ave., San Antonio, TX
POC: Craig Bernat Ph: 814-322-4140 • Email:

Swift Boat Sailor Association 2019 Reunion
May 1-6, 2019 • Holiday Inn Riverwalk
217 N St Mary’s Street San Antonio, TX 78205
Info & Sign up: SBSA website

USS Ticonderoga Vets Association (CV/CVA/CVS14/CG-47) Annual Reunion
May 16-20, 2019
Sheraton Hotel, Albuquerque, NM,
Contact: David Graf

USS Carpenter DD825 Reunion
Date: 16-20 May, 2019
Location: San Antonio, TX
Contact: Jimmie Kennedy • Phone: 714-776-4019

USS Hornet CVS-12 & Apollo 50, 71st Reunion
All Ship's Company, Officers, Air Groups, Crew, Marines and Families Welcomed.
July 18-22, 2019. Oakland, CA

POC: Sandy Burket, PO Box 108, Roaring Spring, PA 16673
Or email:

4th Infantry (IVY) Division 2019 National Reunion
19-25 August, University Plaza Hotel & Convention Center, Springfield, Missouri
For more information, visit the association website at

The Distinguished Flying Cross Society, 2019 Reunion,
“Celebrating 100 Years of American Air Power,”
September 15 thru 19, 2019.
Dayton/Fairborn, OH, •
Host hotel: Holiday Inn/Fairborn
POC: Warren Eastman,, Ph: 760-985-2810
Check website for updates as planning progresses.

USS ABNAKI ATF96 Reunion 2019
Date: 23-27 September 2019
Location: Comfort Inn – Traverse City, Michigan
Richard Beaver • Phone: 231-384-5757

US Army, 31stEngineer Battalion Association Reunion
Date: October 3-6, 2019
Location: Danvers, MA, 01832
POC: Wilson L. Brown • Phone: (508) 294-5869

RED HORSE and Prime BEEF Association 2019 Convention
All Red Horse (RH) & Prime Beef (PB) Members past & present:
Date: 8-12 October, 2019
Location: Silverton Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.
Info: Dick Aldinger • Phone: (407) 859-7436
E-mail: • Website:

USS Stickell DD-888 Reunion
October 28-30, 2019
Newport Harbor Hotel & Marina, Newport, RI
POC: Don O’Brien, Ph: 401-847-1706 • Email:

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