Happy Veterans Day - VA Northern California Health Care System
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Happy Veterans Day

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Happy Veterans Day from VA Northern California Health Care System

By David Stockwell, VANCHCS Director
Monday, November 9, 2020

At the VA Northern California Health Care System (VA NorCal) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities across the country, one of the most important holidays is Veterans Day. Every Nov. 11, our nation remembers military Veterans and expresses gratitude to the men and women who answered the call to serve our country. This past year, however, has been difficult for many of us. The COVID-19 pandemic has changed how we interact with one another and even celebrate important holidays. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, health organizations including VA, and many state and local governments are encouraging the public to practice physical distancing and help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. Many of this year’s Veterans Day events have either been canceled or moved to virtual platforms. But we can all still play a part in reaching out to the Veterans in our lives and remind them that they are not alone or forgotten.

Veterans are our mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, neighbors, friends and colleagues. At VA NorCal, we work with Veterans who come from many different backgrounds, states and countries, belief systems, ethnicities, and walks of life. We understand that every Veteran’s transition back into civilian life is unique. Some Veterans require little support when they leave the military, while others can struggle to reintegrate back into civilian life, which can seem chaotic at times in comparison to the structured military life. While every person who has served in our nation’s military is different, one thing is true about all Veterans—They served us and deserve our thanks. Veterans sacrificed for you and me. Now it’s our turn to be there for them.

A few simple ways to safely reach out to the Veterans in your lives this Nov. 11 and year-round include:

  • Making a phone or video call
  • Sending a text or social media message
  • Sending an email
  • Visiting, while practicing physical distancing.

If you want to do more for the Veterans in your life, encourage them to look into the VA benefits they earned. Veterans can apply for VA health care benefits by visiting their local VA medical center or outpatient clinic, calling 1-877-222-8387, or visiting www.va.gov. Veterans who are in crisis or loved ones who may be concerned about a Veteran can connect with the Veterans Crisis Line to reach caring, qualified responders—many who are also Veterans themselves. To reach the Veterans Crisis Line, call 1-800-273-8255 and press 1, send a text message to 838255 or chat online at www.veteranscrisisline.net.

This Veterans Day, I’m encouraging each of us to do what we can to help, connect with and express our thanks to the Veterans in our lives. It’s our honor and privilege at VA NorCal to care for those who have served. Every day is Veterans Day at all our sites of care. On behalf of VA NorCal and our many dedicated employees, thank you to our nation’s Veterans for your selfless service to this country we all love. Have a safe, happy Veterans Day!


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