Category Veterans

FORMER CALVET UNDERSECRETARY UMBERG HELPED MAKE HISTORY AS ARMY’S CULTURE INVOLVING WOMEN BEGAN TO CHANGE IN 1970’s

As we continue to celebrate Women’s History Month, the California Department of Veterans Affairs (CalVet) can look in its own storied history to find women who have made great contributions in the military, and to the agency itself. Retired Brigadier General Robin Umberg is one of them. She broke ground for other women in the […]

RETIRED ARMY NURSE, WOMEN VETERANS ADVOCATE HAS STORY TO TELL EVEN THOUGH VIETNAM WAR VETERANS DAY EVENT NIXED BY COVID-19

Kate O’Hare-Palmer planned to come to the California Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Sacramento on Sunday for what she and other Vietnam veterans has seen grow into an annual day of respect.  Instead, the former Army nurse, who chairs the Vietnam Veterans Association of America’s Women Veterans Committee, will stay home in Petaluma like other Californians […]

AWARD-WINNING VETERANS CEMETERY AT SEASIDE BREAKING GROUND ON EXPANSION THAT WILL OFFER IN-GROUND BURIALS

SEASIDE – Since the California Central Coast Veterans Cemetery opened in 2016, only the columbaria for cremains has been available at the 79-acre property that once was part of the Fort Ord Army base. That will change in 2021, when Phase II is completed and in-ground burials can begin at the cemetery operated by the […]

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 […]

HOW VIRTUAL REALITY BENEFITS CALVET HOMES RESIDENTS

Virtual reality (VR) can give memory care patients in CalVet homes a look back into their lives or help them see the world. Robert, a 90-year-old Navy veteran, peered into a pair of goggles and saw the Great Wall of China in all of its VR glory. “I’ve been there,” he said. “The Great Wall […]

COLONEL IRMA COOPER DEFIED THE ODDS

A leader throughout her long and distinguished military career, CalVet turns to Irma Hagans Cooper Colonel (retired) to take us across the bridge from Black History Month to Women’s History Month. The Los Angeles resident spent 30 years in the Army, much of it running medical facilities and commanding companies that went on to serve […]

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 […]

BUFFALO SOLDIERS ONCE PROTECTED YOSEMITE AND SEQUOIA NATIONAL PARKS

As Black History Month continues, CalVet recognizes the African American “Buffalo Soldiers” who once protected Yosemite and Sequoia national parks in the central Sierra in the years before the national parks systems was established in 1916. One day many summers ago, Yosemite Park Ranger and Historian Shelton Johnson had just finished his portrayal of a […]

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 […]

King’s impacts on the civil rights movement still alive nearly 52 years after his death

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. would have turned 91 years old this past week. A man who preached peace and equality through non-violent protest, who received the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize, and who spoke out forthrightly against the Vietnam War, died in a most violent way when he was shot by an assassin at the […]