Category CalVet Team

BROTHERS IN ARMS, BROTHERS IN PARADISE: REBUILDING FROM THE CAMP FIRE DEVASTATION

On the morning of November 8, 2018, as Shane Murray drove from his new home in Paradise to work in Oroville, he looked into his rear-view mirror and saw a plume of smoke billowing against an otherwise azure sky. By the time he told his boss he needed to return home to evacuate – that […]

MEMORIAL DAY TOOK SOME INNOVATION, TECHNOLOGY TO COMMEMORATE HOLIDAY IN VETERANS HOMES DURING COVID-19 RESTRICTIONS

If necessity is, indeed, the mother of all invention, and desperate times require desperate measures, then add this new adage to the mix: COVID-19 demands innovation and imagination to maintain our traditions. Indeed, Zoom feeds replace crowded graduation ceremonies. Well-wishers now drive by to offer socially distanced birthday greetings to the recipient out on his […]

PIONEER, TRAILBLAZER: VIRGINIA MAE DAYS WAS ONE OF A KIND AS CALVET DIRECTOR

NOTE: As we honor women veterans during Women’s History Month, CalVet remembers one of its own. The late Virginia Mae Days served as CalVet’s director from 1975-81, retiring more than a decade before CalVet became a cabinet level department headed by a secretary. Her story, published on CalVet Connect last fall, bears repeating. In a […]

VETERAN HOMES ARCHITECT LARRY SILLMAN LEAVES LEGACY OF CREATIVITY AND COMFORT

Architect Larry Sillman might be easing into retirement, but he leaves his footprints and blueprints all over the California Department of Veterans Affairs (CalVet) Veterans Homes of California (VHC) system. The 75-year-old Vietnam veteran from Chula Vista designed four of the eight homes operated by CalVet. He also played a role in the creation of […]

CalVet Secretary Imbasciani reappointed by Governor Newsom, will continue to lead agency dedicated to helping veterans

CalVet is excited to announce that Secretary Vito Imbasciani MD has been reappointed to the position by Governor Gavin Newsom. “I thank Governor Newsom for the opportunity to continue to lead CalVet,” Imbasciani said. “It remains an honor for me to serve California’s nearly 1.6 million veterans. I am fueled by the sacred mission of […]

New CalVet deputy secretary for minority veterans affairs brings skills in triplicate

The California Department of Veterans Affairs hit a trifecta last month when Governor Gavin Newsom appointed Xóchitl Rodriguez Murillo to be the agency’s deputy secretary for minority veterans affairs. Murillo is a minority veteran and a U.S. Army reservist who is well-versed in the machinations of the military, having served in Operation Iraqi Freedom. She’s […]

The monumental task behind building the California Veterans Memorial at the Capitol

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. The dozens of images etched onto the California Veterans Memorial in downtown Sacramento’s Capitol Park say not only a thousand words, but might also leave visitors with a thousand questions. Who were the men and women depicted on the 28-foot-tall obelisk? Where and when did they […]

‘You’re out of uniform!’ And that’s a good thing at Operation Dress Code, where women veterans can dress for success

SAN DIEGO – Five years after leaving the U.S. Coast Guard, Franchesca Avila emerged from Central Arkansas University with a degree in family and consumer science. Then came time to get a job as a civilian. The tight budget of a new graduate didn’t leave much extra cash for the attire she needed to interview […]

Pioneer, Trailblazer: Virginia Mae Days was one of a kind as CalVet director

NOTE: As we honor women veterans during Women’s History Month, CalVet remembers one of its own. The late Virginia Mae Days was CalVet’s director from 1975-81, retiring more than a decade before CalVet became a cabinet level department headed by a secretary. Her story, published on CalVet Connect last fall, bears repeating. In a secluded […]

Twenty names, including first woman, etched into California Vietnam Veterans Memorial

SACRAMENTO – Like so many others who served in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War, U.S. Army Specialist 5 Adrienne Lee Schamp was exposed to Agent Orange, a powerful herbicide used to defoliate forests and crops that provided cover for North Vietnamese and Viet Cong troops. She worked in Army finance at Long Binh and […]