Author Archives: Jeff Jardine

General John Pershing pins the Distinguished Service Cross medal on 1LT George Abramson in 1922. Image courtesy of the Library of Congress.

SEVEN ON CALVET’S MEDAL OF HONOR WALL ALSO EARNED DISTINGUISHED SERVICE CROSS

Seven Californians received both the Medal of Honor and the Distinguished Service Cross. Their names grace the Medal of Honor Hall in California’s Department of Veterans Affairs headquarters in downtown Sacramento.

George Washington delivers the first State of the Union address to Congress

TODAY MARKS 231st ANNIVERSARY OF THE FIRST STATE OF THE UNION, BY GEORGE

Ratified in 1788, the Constitution of the United States of America contained a specific requirement for the nation’s first president, George Washington, and all others who followed. Article II, Section 3, Clause 1 mandated then, as it does to this day, that the president “shall, from time to time give to the Congress Information on […]

HAPPY NEW YEAR, WITH A LOOK BACK AT HISTORIC EVENTS HAPPENING ON THAT DAY

We tend to think of New Year’s Day as one of parades, college football games, replacing last year’s wall calendar, and for those who reveled too much the night before a day of aspirin and ice packs. However, some very significant events happened on New Year’s day throughout American history. Here is a sampling to […]

IN THEIR HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS: ANOTHER CALVET SUCCESS STORY

A few weeks ago, U.S. Army veteran Eric Ornelas and his September bride, Marie, went shopping for lights and other Christmas decorations. For some homeowners, that means picking up more LED strings as they strive to make their homes visible from the International Space Station. Others might scour the clearance racks after the holidays to […]

JUST DAYS AFTER PEARL HARBOR ATTACK, FALL OF WAKE ISLAND MADE POWS OUT OF CIVILIANS

Just a few hours after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, they also attacked Wake Island, a strategic atoll 2,300 miles west of Honolulu. Aided by civilian contractors there building docks and fortifications, U.S. Marines held Wake for 15 more days before Japanese soldiers overran the island on December 22, 79 years […]

SINGER ‘RAT PACK RICKY’ HOPES TO MAKE THE SEASON BRIGHT FOR VETERANS WITH VIRTUAL CONCERT TODAY

Ricky Medlin, Jr. wanted to keep a family tradition alive by enlisting in the U.S. Marine Corps. Five generations served in various branches, including his dad in the Marines. It gave Ricky a deep respect and reverence for veterans.  A health issue ended that dream, but not his admiration for those who served.  Today, Medlin – whose Sinatra stylings earned him the […]

SHINING LIGHT ON CALIFORNIA’S TWO JEWISH MEDAL OF HONOR RECIPIENTS AS HANUKKAH BEGINS

With eight days of Hanukkah – the Jewish Festival of Lights – beginning tonight, CalVet would like to salute the memories of the 18 known Jewish Medal of Honor recipients, two of whom were from California.  Their names grace the Medal of Honor Wall at CalVet Headquarters in downtown Sacramento, and their stories are worth […]

JAPAN’S ATTACK ON PEARL HARBOR AWAKENED A “SLEEPING GIANT”

As time takes its toll, only about 2,000 or so remain among the estimated 60,000 American military personnel who survived Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor 79 years ago.  Over the next few years, their remembrances of that horrific and defining moment in history – December 7, 1941 –  will fall to books, newspaper accounts, videos, and movies for the retelling.  The focus will always remain on the attack […]

WITH RATIFICATION OF THE 13th AMENDMENT, SLAVERY IN U.S. OFFICIALLY ENDED 155 YEARS AGO

One of the great misconceptions in United States history is that President Lincoln ended slavery in this country when he issued the Emancipation Proclamation, effective January 1, 1863. It did not happen then, and would not for over two more years.  So, when did slavery actually end in the U.S.? December 6, 1865, 155 years ago, when Georgia became the 27th state needed to ratify the […]

A photo of Empire penguins.

1959 ANTARCTIC TREATY KEPT CHILL ON IN A GOOD WAY DURING COLD WAR

Long before the terms “global warming” and “climate change” became commonplace, a dozen nations agreed to protect Antarctica from the ultimate meltdown. On December 1, 1959 – 61 years ago today – they signed the Antarctic Treaty that banned military activity and weapons testing on the continent where the South Pole is located. This agreement […]