Serving Those Who Served Us

Kudos to the volunteers for the job they did at Stand Down 2017, where veterans got free dental, medical, foot and eye exams, free haircuts, acupuncture, and more. This year, the three-day event was squeezed into one day, thanks to the liberal elites in Bucks County, PA, who did not let Stand Down return to the site behind the Levittown library, with no explanation. http://levittownnow.com/2016/09/10/program-helps-veterans-need-kicks-off-last-year-current-site/

The Bucks elites, who voted for Shrillery-Killery Clinton, don’t believe they need to explain themselves. I think they banned Stand Down because they don’t like veterans, especially needy ones, homeless people, or anyone who doesn’t live in their Snob Hill neighborhood.  To quote Mr. Rogers, they’d “like to have a neighbor, just like you.” Not!

Stand Down, as defined by freedictionary.com: “the action of ending military activities or active duty temporarily, or a period or condition of being temporarily relieved from active duty and organized cessation of work, or the state of being stopped from working for a period of time.” The idea is to replenish, refresh, in this case, veterans.

Registration at this year’s event, held at the Philadelphia VA Medical Center, took more than two hours for the batch I was in, as the three day event was jammed into one day. When I got in line, a handicapped guy with two metal crutch-like supports started dancing his own dance to the Motown and other music from the baby boom era that was playing. He didn’t let his handicap get him down; he just got down! At one point he hung his supports on a beam, hung on and danced. The volunteers offered the vets pudding, cookies, peanut butter crackers, and bottled water. Later, coffee was available.  I shared some of my experiences with the Bucks County homeless with some of the other guys who were waiting.

There were some minor conflicts, but were funny. One guy sitting on a chair, as we played a sort of musical chairs, waiting to go into the building to register, called a guy wearing camouflage, sporting a somewhat scruffy beard, a “gorilla” something. I don’t remember the conversation, but it struck me as funny. UpdateI think the guy called the other guy, who had a bushy beard “Gorilla Guard,” and said something about keeping him back.

On one occasion, when we had to walk to another location, some itchy pants guy rushed a guy who had trouble walking fast. I told Itchy pants “I best you’re one of those drivers who race up to red lights.”

“Yes, sir,” he responded, laughing.

There were a few vets in wheelchairs, and they were well taken care of. The two crutches dancer couldn’t stand very long so a volunteer got him a seat before we got to the chairs.

When I got out of line to get coffee, a volunteer told me about his experience shooting howitzers. When I got back in line, some other vets vouched for me that I wasn’t butting in line. I said that butting in line was a serious offense in Mel Brooks’ Blazing Saddles. You get shot. But then, we realized that in the movie you got shot for chewing gum while standing in line.

Once I got registered, we were assigned a guide, who took three people around. My guide said to call him “Moon”, which I think is a shortening of his name.  After lunch I lost my guide, and the volunteers had a laugh when I told them I was looking for Moon. I later found him. I also ran into Dan from the Bristol VA office.

The volunteers genuinely appreciated us vets, both verbally and by their actions.

Because of the long registration and the early closing time for most stations, I couldn’t squeeze in every service I wanted to get. I got the most important ones – dental (had necessary oral surgery done), eye exam and new glasses, and acupuncture. In the busyness, I unintentionally left a flyer from the acupuncture station about a free new acupuncture clinic for vets in Bristol, and I couldn’t find the information on the Internet. I also had my mind on getting back to the nursing home where someone I’m very close to is staying.

I also forgot the extra gauze the dentist gave me along with the take home instructions. I didn’t need the extra gauze and I remembered the instructions, which were simple enough even for me.

On my way back in, after using the porta potty inside the garage, I thought I saw The Bimbo of Bucks County, aka State Representative Tina Davis heading the other way. I didn’t hear her speak this year. This is one positive thing for this year’s Stand Down venue. It’s possible, however, that she gave her phony spiel about helping the homeless when the vets were given clothing and other items.  Because of the generosity of the churches at community meals, I passed on this. If the Bimbo did speak then, she probably would have, just like a liberal, taken credit for the stuff other people donated.

Saturday was a day to honor and serve those who served us, helping them out in their need.

But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.”

-1st John 3:17-18