DAV of Minnesota Mayo Southeast Chapter 28 members are well known across eight SE MN counties for taking care of veterans and their family members, explained Rich Daly, Chapter Commander. He went on to say. “Over the course of the year, we contribute to organizations such as; SE MN Nursing Homes, SE MN Beyond the Yellow Ribbon, POW/MIA Riders, Korean War Veterans Club, SE MN Blue Star Moms, Salvation Army Vets Programs, Operation Hometown Gratitude, MN Civil War Task Force.”
In 2010 Rochester John Marshall (JM) High School’s principal wanted to have a Veteran’s Day Program honoring our country’s military veterans, explained Janet Suter, JM teacher retired. She went on to say. “He challenged several staff members and students to do this and in the fall of 2011 students, with help from JM staff researched, organized and presented a John Marshall High School’s “Salute to Veterans” program to 1600 students and staff. Over the past four years the program has grown to be one of the most anticipated annual event.”
In 2014, the chapter formed a partnership to support JM’s Salute to Veterans programs, explained Commander Daly. He went on the say. “Chapter 28 not only contributed to the effort but also did a joint clothing drive with the JM Students. With the help of Chapter 28, and that of several other Veterans organizations, the JM students were able to raise $50,000 for the raising and training of two service dogs for Warrior Canine Connection. In the tradition of Warrior Canine Connection, the dogs, see pictures below, carry a name of a soldier who was wounded or gave their life as a member of the US military.”
Pictures Courtesy of Warrior Canine Connection
At their May 2015 chapter meeting, the JM student committee representing the Salute to Veterans program asked the chapter to support their 2015 program. This coming November 2015, JM’s Salute to Veterans will focus on Women in the Military, explained Brook Santjer, JM teacher coordinating the program. She went on to say. “In the summer, students on the program committee will research and write the script while others will create the slides making the program very visual. A 2008 JM female graduate, now a US Army Lieutenant, will be guest speaker at the event. Another JM graduate, an Army Reserve Staff Sergeant will share her deployment experience. In the spirit of JMs long tradition of supporting our country’s military, the chapter unanimously agreed to support the cost of air fare expenses for the two military women guest speakers and husbands.
If you are interested in learning more about the DAV and enjoy the camaraderie with fellow veterans, please attend a chapter meeting held 5:30pm in Rochester the 2nd Monday of each Month. Call phone: 507-923-5562 or email [email protected] for information.