Legion post holds VA town hall meeting

On July 12, 2014, Post 71 in Lake Wales hosted a Veteran's Town Hall Meeting. VA Clinic and CBOC representatives including Amelia Guilford from James A. Haley and Haywood Pittman (director of CBOCs) and a panel of others on their team provided overviews of VA benefits, claims and other veteran programs, National Cemetery information, homeless outreach and grants, and vet ready centers.

There were more than 50 veterans in attendance who had their questions answered by the VA reps. Following this meeting, 52 veterans were assisted with 32 VA benefit enrollments and 23 claims.

In addition to the speakers, American Legion representatives present were Central Area Commander Eunice Butts, Department VA Assessment Team Chairman Michael J. Gallucci (who also addressed the assembly regarding the ongoing review of the VA programs), 7th District Commander Chuck Giffen, 15th District Commander Jose Romeu, 7th District Vice Commander and Post 71 Commander Andy Anderson, several officers/members of Post 71, and Department Historian Shelli Romeu.


  1. For far too long voices of each veteran have not been heard or requested by the VA. It is great that the American Legion is helping to organize public meetings on VA issues. Please organize one in Memphis, TN. The Memphis VA Hospital has been added to the list of VA hospitals to have folow-up inspections, and no one seems to know why. The National VA Office has directed all local VA hospital to meet monthly with local veterans, but these meetings have not been scheduled.

  2. I think it is way over due for the VA hospitals to have town hall meetings. Maybe now, we can actually address real problems. I am a disabled Vet and have worked for several VA hospitals and for them to do some good PR is a necessity. I hope things will change from this idea.