Category History

U.S. Marines celebrate 244th birthday here, there, and everywhere Marines serve

Sunday marks the United States Marine Corps’ 244th birthday, and virtually every Marine anywhere in the world will celebrate in some form. The Corps’ heritage and history are drilled into every recruit from the day he or she arrives in boot camp or officer candidate school, said Anthony A. Lopez, Deputy, Communication Strategy and Ops, […]

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 […]

Remembering the Coast Guard, Marines crews who died in mid-air collision a decade ago

SACRAMENTO – On October 29, 2009, a Coast Guard HC-130 transport plane and a Marine AH-1 Cobra helicopter collided off the coast of Southern California. All seven crewmembers of the Hercules CG 1705 plane, based out of the U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Sacramento, perished along with two helicopter crewmen from Camp Pendleton. The collision […]

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

NOTE: This is the second in a periodical series of stories about CalVet, its history, and its programs. In a secluded hallway inside the California Department of Veterans Affairs building in Sacramento, rows of photographs reflect the succession of CalVet’s leadership, from its inception in 1946 to present. One portrait stands out, but not because […]

California Vietnam Veterans Memorial gets 20 additional names

Twenty new names will join the nearly 6,000 already inscribed on the California Vietnam Veterans Memorial during a ceremony this Sunday in Capitol Park. The event will begin at noon. More than 200 relatives and friends of those being remembered are expected to attend. It will include welcoming remarks by Master of Ceremonies Martin J. […]

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 […]

CalVet Women Veterans award winner Captain Elizabeth L. Hillman truly a trailblazer

In 2013, the U.S. House Armed Services Committee appointed former Air Force Captain Elizabeth L. Hillman, an expert on sexual harassment, assault, and discrimination in the military, to serve on a panel probing sexual assault in the military. The panel exposed how little progress had been made since the so-called “Tailhook” scandal of 1991, when […]

From sea to shining sea: United States Navy celebrating 244th birthday

Here’s a trivia question: Which is older – the United States Navy or the United States of America? If you guessed the Navy, you’d be correct. You might wonder, how did the creation of the Navy precede the formation of the nation? Why not? The Navy even preceded itself. In the summer of 1775, General […]

Yountville Home vet recalls World War II POW days, now exercises his freedoms daily

YOUNTVILLE – Most mornings, Albert Freitas climbs aboard his “buggy” and motors down to the bus stop in front of the Veterans Home of California-Yountville. The 98-year-old World War II veteran loads the electric chariot onto a bus and heads to a busy shopping center a few miles away in Napa. There, he sips a […]