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August 1, 2019

Talk to ROA is a way for the ROA legislative team to ask a question(s) on issues being worked either through legislation or policy.

ROA member responses will help inform ROA’s actions going forward. Each Reserve Voice newsletter will include a Talk to ROA question.

Survey results will be shared with ROA members.

You are encouraged to share the link with other Reserve and National Guard servicemembers who may not be ROA members. This can be a recruiting tool you can use to increase ROA Chapter membership!

August Question
Earlier this year the Department of Veterans Affairs implemented the Mission Act which was intended to be an improvement on the Choice Act. The purpose of both Acts was to provide community care to veterans to relieve the long waiting periods for appointments with VA. ROA would like to know how many members have used either of these community care programs to receive medical care.

Take the survey at:

Access to Veterans Affairs

Are you a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disabled veteran with a service-connected disability?

  1. Yes
  2. No

Have you ever used the VA community health care program under the Choice Act or Mission Act?

  1. Yes
  2. No

July Question Results

Thank you to everyone who responded to ROA’s July 2019 “Talk to ROA.” The results are in and most of the respondents believe the current pay system should stay in effect. The next closest result was that a single pay system should be based on a national standard, most likely with geographic location pay consideration.

Should military pay and allowances be converted to a single pay system?

  1. Yes, national standard pay system. (17 out of 313)
  2. Yes, national standard and/or geographic location pay system. (69 out of 313)
  3. Yes, geographic location pay system. (34 out of 313)
  4. No, stay with the current military and allowances pay system. (193 out of 313)

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On behalf of the Department of Indiana, the Nathan Hale award was presented to Rep. Jim Baird (In-4th) from Col. Jim Sweeney, USMC (Ret.) on July 24, 2019.

Congressman Baird is a decorated Vietnam War veteran, as his distinguished service to our country was recognized with a Bronze Star with V device and two Purple Hearts.

He cosponsored H.R. 2433 to change federal hiring preferences which is a legislative priority of ROAs.

Colonel Sweeney took advantage of his time in D.C. to visit other congressmen and senators from Indiana

National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020

The House (H.R. 2500) and Senate (S. 1790) each passed their version of the NDAA. When Congress returns from summer recess in September they will, hopefully, quickly move to conference to resolve their differences. Here are some of the sections that need to be resolved: READ MORE (pdf) >

ROA was invited to participate in a roundtable discussion regarding the Task Force’s oversight
and legislative agenda.

The Task Force was established to increase the visibility of the two million women who have served.

Representatives in attendance:

  1. Ranking Member Julia Brownley (D-26-CA)
  2. Conor Lamb (D-17-PA)
  3. Jack Bergman (R-1-MI)
  4. Elaine Luria (D-2nd-VA)
  5. Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen (R-At Large-AS)

House Veterans’ Affairs Committee
Women Veterans Task Force
July 25, 2019

ROA’s representative, Susan Lukas, discussed several priorities.

  1. The need for dedicated funds for women veterans. Currently funds are dispersed throughout various account codes making it hard to determine the funding requirements for women veterans.

  2. The need to start outreach while military members are currently serving. Often negative experiences in the military, such as sexual harassment, will keep a women veteran from enrolling with VA because they want to avoid what they perceive to be another military environment.

  3. The need for more fertility procedures to be offered. It can be difficult to pinpoint service connection with this condition but based on the amount of toxic exposures that occur in the military it is possible to have a service connection fertility issue.

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Department and Chapter Grassroots Efforts

During the month of August, the House and Senate will be in summer recess.

While many members will go back to their state and district, this is also when they are on Congressional delegation trips around the country and overseas to gather facts about pending legislative issues.

Both chambers in session / Senate only in session

Reserve Component Mobilizations

By the Numbers (as of July 23, 2019 )
The Department of Defense publishes contingency activations of the Reserve Components on a weekly basis.

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“Global Security Forum 2019: Power & Leadership”
Sep 28, 2019 • 8:30 am – 3:30 pm
Goodwin College • East Hartford CT

The forum will examine the shifting ways in which global power is exerted, extended and withdrawn and how this will define the future security landscape of our world. In two words: Projection vs. Protection.

This is the 4th year that the CT ROA Department has co-sponsored this event with the Connecticut World Affairs Council, MOAA, The McCain Institute and the CT National Guard.

Last year’s successful event attracted 125 attendees, including serving members of Reserve and National Guard, retired military, University of Connecticut ROTC cadets, and U.S. Coast Guard Academy cadets.

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Col. Michael Peck, ROA Life member and past Army National Vice President, was recognized on June 27 at Wrigley Field, by the Chicago Cubs. Colonel Peck, of Wauconda, Illinois, retired from the Army Reserve in 1996 and is currently serving as vice chair for the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs advisory council.

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The Warrior Games - Special Operations Command

Lt. Col. Meredith Seeley, the Department of Florida Vice President, Air Force, assisted athletes for the SOCOM Warrior Games in Tampa, FL, that were held June 21-30, 2019.

The Warrior Games were established in 2010 to enhance the recovery and rehabilitation of wounded warriors and to expose them to adaptive sports.

This is the first year the games were sponsored by Special Operations Command where more than 300 wounded, ill or injured active-duty and veteran military athletes competed.

Lt Col Meredith, comedian Jon Stewart and Kristy Tozer (Left to right)

Military Family

Smart Savings on Back-to-School Fashion

Military families around the world can save on back-to-school fashion with their MILITARY STAR® cards from Aug. 1 to 8.

Shoppers will receive 10% off all children’s, women’s and men’s apparel purchases of $100 or more when they use their MILITARY STAR card. The offer is valid at the Army & Air Force Exchange Service, Navy Exchange and Coast Guard Exchange, as well as, and

“The Exchange, NEXCOM and CGX are joining forces to make back-to-school shopping easier for the military community,” said Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Luis Reyes, the Exchange’s senior enlisted advisor. “This limited-time offer is one of many promotions MILITARY STAR cardholders earn throughout the year.”

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Communicate Securely with your Health Care Team

TRICARE® Online Patient Portal Secure Messaging provides Military Health System patients who receive care at a military treatment facility or clinic access to a robust messaging capability, allowing authorized patients the ability to securely communicate with their health care team. Download and read the Factsheet>

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. This past month 10 new Law Reviews have been posted. The latest 5 are linked below. Please visit ROA’s Law Center webpage to access all of the more than 1200 ROA Law Reviews available online.

No. 19064 Supreme Court Case on VA Benefits
No. 19065 The Bladensburg Memorial Is Safe because the Supreme Court Reversed the Fourth Circuit.
No. 19066 You Must Meet USERRA’s Five Conditions for Reemployment to have the Right to an Accommodation for a Service-Connected Disability or The Right to the Special Protection against Discharge
No. 19067 You Don’t Need Prior Approval of your Federal Agency Employer To Join a Reserve Component of the Armed Forces
No. 19068 Fast Approaching Deadline To Apply for Refund


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

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 Yellowstone AD 27 Reunion
Dates: September 22 – 26, 2019
Location: Holiday Inn, Virginia Beach, VA
POC: Paul W. Bowen, Secretarty/Treasurer
Home Ph: 603-948-2821

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

455/91 SMW/MW/SW Operations Reunion
Dates: 24 - 29 September 2019
Location: Holiday Inn on the Riverwalk, San Antonio, TX.
POC: Richard Sarfin, 210-818-9402 (C), 210-684-9758 (H),

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. Bring your spouse
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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(Photo: Arlington National Cemetery)

During June 2019, 115 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>

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