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Volunteering at the 2014 Event, Awarded Volunteers of the Year
Pictured L to R: Kris McMenamin, John Bensend, Thuy Smith, Dan Mataczynski, Luke Bensend,
Tyler Fregine, and Ryan Leckel. (Not pictured Steve Macheksy).
The next generation of veterans giving back to those who came before them. What a powerful coming together! These veterans were with us for the very first official Vietnam Day Celebration for Wisconsin (2010). They have been with us ever since. I am so proud to introduce to you these Veterans from UW Stout. Having them be a part of us meant so much. You have honored both the veterans and their families. I as a proud daughter of a Vietnam Veteran also thank you. You are now a part of us. We are are proud of you as well.
One of the things their group organized is a national roll call event. They read all the names of the more than 6,300 service members who died as a result of the current war effort. The Remembrance Roll Call was at Clock Tower Plaza, pausing at 1 p.m. for a national moment of silence. They invited Veterans, students, and community members to help them read the names.
I urge everyone to support them and all the great things they are doing!
Learn more about them and other clubs across the United States (here)
Volunteers from previous Years
Pictured from L to R: Jesse Richard, John Bensend, Clint Vincent, Dusty Kimber, Kristina Hodge,
Front Row – Shauna Vojtasek, Thuy Smith, Ryan Peroutky
Last Pic- was from the fist event since the bill passed, Other pics were from events the following years.
Please see letter I received from Veteran's Club President
Thank you for letting us come and help you with Wisconsin Vietnam Veterans Day this pas year. It was a great opportunity to give back to Veterans who have given and done so much. I am particularly thankful for what they have done for my generation of Veterans. When I took my first step off the plane state-side, there was a Vietnam veteran to shake my hand; that meant a great deal to me.
Thank you for all you do and please let us know if we can help with any upcoming or future events.
Thuy Smith International presented the 2011 Volunteer of the Year Award to Greg and Behni Johnson and family.
The Johnson Family has been volunteering with our organization since 2008. They have been a part of serving our Vietnam Veterans and their families at our Annual Vietnam Veteran Appreciation banquets. They were also a big part of the planning for our very first Official Vietnam Veteran’s Day Celebration for Wisconsin in 2010. Greg was responsible for getting many businesses to come on board as a sponsor and also coordinated with the Eau Claire Fire Department Honor Guard to be a part of our Aisle of Honor procession.
They involved their son Tre (14) and daughter Mercedes (16) with their community work. It is very evident that Greg and Behni are loving and caring parents, as well as genuine community minded individuals. Every time I called them, they were ready and willing to be of assistance. We thank them for their commitment and service to Thuy Smith International and to all Vietnam Era veterans and their families. You have honored all of us and continue to set a great example for your children and others in the community.
Thuy Smith International Outreach (TSIO) has awarded Phuong and Thanh Thach and family the Volunteers of the Year Award for 2010.
Phuong has been our coordinator for the Vietnamese Community participation in our Annual Vietnam Veterans gatherings, and of this year’s First Official Vietnam Veteran’ Day Celebration. Her family and the Vietnamese Community Volunteers have put in countless hours to make it happen. Phuong and her family, along with the rest of the Vietnamese Community, stepped up without hesitation to be a part of helping honor all of our Vietnam and Vietnam Era Veterans.
Phuong and Thanh are originally from Vietnam. Phuong is from Kiena Giang and her husband Thanh is from Tra Dinh (both south of Ho Chi Minh City). Phuong came to the United States in 1980 and met her husband in the U.S. Phuong and her family moved to Chippewa Falls in 1999. Phuong and Thanh have three children ages seven, ten, and twenty. Phuong works at Model Nails (who has also been a sponsor for our Veterans gathering) and is also a volunteer and Youth Mentor at the Chippewa Falls School District.
Phuong and her family said they got involved because they wanted to give back to their community and they wanted to pay tribute and acknowledge all the Vietnam Veterans for their service. Phuong also says they had a lot of fun.
Thuy Smith International Outreach (TSIO) presented the 2009 Volunteer of the Year Award to Terry and Deb Carr in recognition for all their hard work as volunteers for TSIO.
Terry and Deb were volunteers for the 2009 Annual Vietnam Veteran gathering. They helped organize the meal and t-shirts that were made available to the vets. They arranged for a DJ and worked hard serving the meal to all the Veterans and their wives. Deb also volunteered at the 2008 event. Deb and Terry moved to Altoona and became members of the Altoona VFW and Auxiliary in 2009. It is very clear they truly support their Veterans and their families. Terry is also a Vietnam Veteran.
TSIO appreciates Terry and Deb for volunteering with us and all their hard work on behalf of Veterans and their families.
People Making a Difference
Too many times there are people who do great things (big or small), but never get recognized. Sometimes its because people don't give proper credit to where credit is due and so other people's ideas, accomplishments, or other acts of Greatness never become known.
I admire those who do things without any thought except to do the right thing and to help someone in need. However, I feel it's important to acknowledge "Greatness" when we see it.