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 […]

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 […]

February is Black History Month, a time to highlight the contributions and achievements made by African Americans throughout history. But it’s an easy leap to say that for Lisa Daniels of Sacramento, every month is Black History Month and to go one step beyond: Every day is Black History Day. Daniels turned what began as […]

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 […]

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 […]

On Wednesday, February 19, the United States Coast Guard Reserve will celebrate 79 years of service, from deploying nationally for law enforcement, hurricanes, and oil spills, while internationally providing port security in the Middle East. Like active duty, reservists’ missions vary by season and location. Established by the Coast Guard Auxiliary and Reserve Act of […]

We love stories from our veterans. Most of these stories focus on military life – during peacetime or war. The best stories tug on our heartstrings, evoke strong emotions, and leave us wanting more. Deployments, temporary duty assignments, and training all provide opportunities for such stories, especially stories on “how I met your mother (or […]

As Black History Month continues throughout February, CalVet salutes the African American women who played and continue to play vital roles in the United States space program. Among them were the so-called “human computers” of the early aerospace days. Their calculations made manned space travel possible. These women incorporated elements including vehicle weight, the rocket’s […]

In celebrating Black History Month throughout February, CalVet will share several stories about African American service members and veterans. To begin the month-long recognition, we first pay tribute to the Montford Point Marines. A small number of African Americans served in the Marines from 1776 until they were banned from the Corps in 1792. That […]

At the California Department of Veterans Affairs’ headquarters in downtown Sacramento, the Medal of Honor Hall pays tribute to all of the Californians who received the nation’s most revered military honor. Each recipient’s story provides a compelling description of bravery and valor. Among those decorated, Army Specialist Fourth Class Donald Ward Evans, Jr., was killed […]