The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

July 12, 2013

Our Town: VVA chapter gathering donations for veteran fire victim

Palestine Herald-Press

PALESTINE — A handful of veterans organizations, including two in Palestine, are working together to help a Teague veteran and his family who lost their home in a fire last week.

“We at the VVA chapter 991 and others have taken on the task and indeed we view it as our duty, to help this family who basically has nothing left but the clothes on their back,” VVA Chapter 991 President Allan Ayo said. “We have already secured through one of our VVA members, a like-new mobility scooter for their totally disabled 31-year-old daughter that resides with them.

“Other VVA members have provided bedroom furniture, kitchen table and chairs, some clothing and other basic necessities.”

Veteran Steve Pingleton’s home was lost in a fire on July 1.

“We are in the process of looking for contractors and materials to help rebuild their very modest housing needs to replace their lost home,” Ayo said. “They did have insurance on the dwelling but were under-insured as is the case with a lot of us.”

The VVA Chapter 991 in Palestine, along with the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 63 in Palestine are helping the family, along with the American Legion Post in Teague and the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post in Teague.

“We at this time would like to ask for monetary help for the family and any other help we can get from our East Texas citizenry and communities — all of this to help put this family’s life back together,” Ayo said.

Monetary donations can be made to the Joseph S. Pingleton Fire Fund, Freestone Credit Union, P.O. Box 210, Teague, TX, 75860.

For other monetary and or household goods to donate to the Pingleton’s family, call Ayo at 903-322-4850 for pickup and delivery to the family.

Korean War veterans to be honored

To spotlight Korean War veterans in the Palestine area, Dogwood Trails Assisted Living will host a special event in their honor on Friday, July 26.

This year’s event, which will include an honoring ceremony led by military organizations, fish fry, special singing with Sandra Partin and a five-minute film tribute with Kip Sutherland from Veterans Long Time Care Solutions, will start at 11 a.m. at Dogwood Trails Assisted Living, located at 1625 W. Spring St. in Palestine.

“This is your day, Korean War veterans! Spouses are invited, too,” Dogwood Trails Assisted Living Activity Director Debbie Wesson said, inviting Korean War veterans to participate. “You were there for your country, and we are here for you now. We hope to see you here.”

Several organizations are co-hosting this year’s event including the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 63, Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter No. 991, Sons of Confederate Veterans John H. Reagan Camp 2156, Dogwood Trails Assisted Living & Memory Care, Encompass Home Health, Crown Home Health, Grace Visiting Nurses & DME and Jordan Home Health.

“All of these sponsors support and honor all American veterans of all wars,” Wesson said.

For information about the event, call Wesson at 903-373-8639, DAV contact Mike Hodgson at 903-948-0821, VVA Chapter 991 President Allan Ayo at 903-322-4850 or Sons of Confederate Veterans representative Vernon Holliman at 903-391-1372.