Vietnam Veterans of America – South Metro Denver – Chapter 1106
“Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another”
“That’s our motto, and as an organization, we strive to provide access to services and assistance, to as many Vietnam Era veterans as we can.” said Lee White, President of the local Chapter #1106 of Vietnam Veterans of America. “Our stated mission is to help foster, encourage and promote the improvement in the condition of the Vietnam Era Veteran.”
Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter # 1106 serves south metro Denver communities and meets the first Saturday of every month at the headquarters of the South Metro Fire and Rescue, 9195 E. Mineral Ave. in Centennial. The Vietnam Veterans of America is the only Congressionally chartered national military service organization exclusively dedicated to Vietnam Era veterans and their families. It was formed in the late 1970’s in response to the less-than-full welcome that was extended to servicemen returning from deployment during the Vietnam War. At the time, the existing service clubs were, for the most part, not necessarily interested in offering membership to these new veterans.
Chapters affiliated with the National Vietnam Veterans of America are designated sequentially and are active in communities all across the country, serving primarily veterans of the Vietnam Era and their families, as well as the towns from which they draw their membership.
“Locally, Chapter 1106 is one of three in the state of Colorado and relatively new to the national organization, in that it’s been active for only about two and-a-half years. To date we have approximately 100 active members and are welcoming all interested Vietnam veterans to join us,” said President White. “We focus primarily on Arapahoe, Douglas and Elbert counties in Colorado for our membership base and for our service areas.”
The Chapter has developed a local scholarship program for high school seniors, awarding four $1,000 academic scholarships annually. They also promote awareness of the effects of PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) on the individual Veteran and those around him or her. The immediate and long-term effects of Agent Orange (dioxin), that was used extensively as a defoliant in Vietnam, is also a primary educational topic.
They have donated several powered wheelchairs to deserving veterans, as well as supporting on-going participation in informational outreach programs during Veterans Day and Memorial Day observances. The Chapter has developed a “Speakers Bureau” with a program to take a Vietnam Educational Experience to high school classrooms as well as other venues and interested parties.
The Chapter regularly partners with other Veterans and civic groups for local programs and projects, and in support of national efforts by all of these organizations. They are participants in the internment programs and remembrances at Ft. Logan National Cemetery, as well as the Wreaths Across America program, and the Honor Bell at Ft. Logan.
As the Vietnam Veteran population ages, the health and assistance issues that these servicemen and their families face become increasingly important to address. The VVA does this in conjunction with the US Veterans Administration and their own internal resources. “We have a dynamic and active group here in our Chapter with a wide range of capabilities to help our veterans. We also have the resources to seek out the needed services to meet those needs,” said White.
“We, as a chapter, continue to strive to promote the support and care of the Vietnam Era Veteran. We also want to continue to educate the public about the war and its effects on the veteran and on our country,” adds White.
“To all of the Vietnam Era Vets reading this, come join us in a great organization – and a great cause.”