For the first time in three years, the Carson City Chapter of Disabled American Veterans Auxiliary relaunched with an unofficial meeting Wednesday at Veterans Memorial Hall.
The local chapter, DAVA Auxiliary Unit No. 7, is in the process of assigning roles to further construct the organization to better support disabled veterans in the community, including charity drives, classes on how to help a disabled veteran in public, emergency calls, and caregiver techniques.
For its first monthly meeting, about 45 people attended, including DAVA members from other locations, relatives, and veterans. The organization is expected to receive its official charter under the national branch shortly.
It was revived by James Glaser, also a disabled veteran of the U.S. Air Force, after it was disbanded by its previous members in 2014.
Glenna Smith, regional representative at the office of Sen. Dean Heller, presented Glaser a senatorial recognition for relaunching the chapter.
“It’s important to have auxiliaries for our veterans’ groups,” she said. “We want the men and women who served for us to feel greater than they know.”
The organization is open to family members or relatives of any disabled veteran or honorably discharged from accidents during service, from any generation of current Active, Reserves, or Guard, of any war.
The chapter also will offer a Junior Program to educate children under 18 on the importance of helping disabled veterans and experience first-hand volunteerism in the community.
Glaser said there are around 1,500 homeless veterans between Washoe County and Carson City. Because of this, he hopes involvement for the chapter will go beyond Carson City.
“Everything we do is going to be focused on veterans and the chapter,” Glaser said. “Our goal is to get word out about this program to veterans. They need to know we’re here to reach out to.”
One of the members, Ron Gutzman, a disabled veteran, said its important for veterans like himself to get involved with groups to help each other out.
Gutzman also is active in Nevada’s United Veteran Legislative Council.
“We need to get them out and work on things,” he said. “We don’t know what they want but we’ve had a successful year in groups, and have done some good things.”
Membership is free for those 80 years or over, including children under 18.
Members between those ages can pay $20 toward life membership and $10 a month. Life membership seals commitment to the DAV chapter.
The next meeting is scheduled Oct. 17 at 6 p.m. in Veterans Memorial Hall, 198 W. 2nd St.