On June 27, Larence Kirby, Executive Director, Delaware Commission of Veterans Affairs, and Dave Skocik, President, Friends of Delaware Veterans received a check for $1,750 from the Delaware Chapter, AUSA from the Chapter President, COL (Retired) Gary Dawson. The donation was the proceeds of a May 17 golf tournament at Salt Pond Golf Club, Bethany Beach, and was the second event in two years by AUSA for the Trust Fund. Since 1950, the Association of the United States Army has worked to support all aspects of national security while advancing the interests of America’s Army and the men and women who serve.
The Delaware Chapter conducted its Eighth Annual ‘Our Community Salutes’ Enlistee Recognition Dinner on May 29th to recognize high school seniors joining one of the military services after graduation.
The ceremony was held at the Cavalier Country Club. A welcome reception featured light refreshments, sponsor tables and representatives from the VA, Red Cross, the USO and Military OneSource. After dinner, the program founder, Dr Ken Hartman, provided an overview of the program, followed by congratulatory remarks by BG Dave Fleming of the Delaware Army National Guard, and Larence Kirby of the Delaware Commission for Veterans’ Affairs.
Each year we select one high school counselor, nominated by recruiters, for the GEN Colin L. Powell Award; recognizing that individual’s efforts to connect service recruiters with high school seniors interested in beginning their career in the military. This year, we selected Stephanie Johnson of William Penn High School.
Each enlistee received letters of appreciation from the State House and Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committees, and a letter signed by Senator Carper, Senator Coons, and Representative Lisa Blunt-Rochester. Thank you to all of our sponsors, and those that made personal donations!!
Update from Gary Dawson
The Association of the U.S. Army (AUSA) has joined six other organizations to get congressional support for the Reserve Component, including expanded health care coverage, eliminating equipment shortfalls, and an increase in full-time personnel support.
Along with the Adjutants General Association of the U.S., Air Force Association, Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the U.S., National Governors Association, National Guard Association of the United States and Reserve Officers Association, AUSA wrote to leaders of the House and Senate Armed Services committees seeking support for legislative priorities that “directly correspond with the National Defense Strategy to restore readiness and build a more lethal force” and “will enhance Reserve Component operational readiness while continuing to promote the goals of the Total Force.”
The Associations are asking Congress to consider expanding the Tricare program to federal employees, who are now excluded and study the feasibility of eliminating premiums.
Additionally, the associations ask for an increase in authorized full-time National Guard and Reserve personnel that keeps pace with increases in the size and optempo of the Reserve Component. They also ask for continued congressional support for “robust funding” of equipment and platforms to ensure the reserve component keeps pace with active forces and funding to address equipment shortfalls and compatibility issues.
BG(Ret) Kennard Higgins will be presenting a talk entitled “America’s Anchor: A Naval History of the Delaware River and Bay” at the Delaware Military Museum located at First Regiment Road, Wilmington, Delaware, on Saturday, April 13, 2019, at 1:00 PM. The talk is free and open to the public and the museum will be open at 12:00 noon.
The Army must regain its expertise in maintenance and sustainment as it prepares to fight on a fast-paced, austere and deadly battlefield, a panel of senior Army leaders said during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Global Force Symposium and Exposition.
Soldiers have seen their skills atrophy after more than 17 years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan, where they could rely on contractors and the safety of large, sprawling bases.
“We have raised midgrade officers and NCOs who didn’t know what a LOGPAC was,” said Maj. Gen. Glenn Curtis, the adjutant general of the Louisiana National Guard, referring to a logistics package. “So, we forced our units back into the field, and we throttled back on the high-speed training, as we perceived it, and we had sergeants major and colonels teaching what a LOGPAC is and what’s the field craft you have to go through.”
A unit that’s unable to sustain itself will quickly get bogged down on the battlefield, and that’s evident at the Army’s combat training centers, said Lt. Gen. Laura Richardson, deputy commanding general of the U.S. Army Forces Command.
“If a unit doesn’t come in with the basic foundation of knowing their business and knowing sustainment, it will eat their lunch in terms of the operational tempo of their rotation,” she said, adding that Gen. Robert Abrams, who relinquished command of FORSCOM in October to lead U.S. Forces Korea, believes that “sustainment is training.”
We sincerely hope you will renew your AUSA membership and your membership with our Delaware chapter. Because we don’t have an active duty army base in our state, our chapter’s focus is on our National Guard and Reserve Soldiers and their families, retirees in the state of Delaware, and our veterans. We also annually support “Our Community Salutes” (OCS) which acknowledges those young women and men who have volunteered to serve in our nation’s Armed Forces.
We appreciate your past support and we are always looking for people to help and new ideas for our chapter events. AUSA is the only organization focused on all Soldiers and their families regardless of their status or rank. We hope you will join us in supporting Delaware’s Soldiers, their families, our retirees, and our veterans. Check out all the member benefits available to you.
[From AUSA National: Wednesday, December 26, 2018]
A 2.6 percent across-the-board pay raise in basic pay and drill pay is set to appear in mid-January payroll deposits for Regular Army, Army National Guard, and Army Reserve soldiers, along with an average 2.55 percent increase in basic allowance for housing for those who receive this payment.
There is no increase in 2019 in basic allowance for subsistence payments.
The basic pay hike is the biggest increase in nine years. It matches last year’s average private-sector pay increase.
Military retirement, Social Security and veterans’ disability and survivor benefits increased 2.8 percent, effective Dec. 1. Those increases, based on the increase in consumer prices, will first be paid in January.
Negotiations over the 2019 federal civilian pay raise have not been resolved.