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November 11th, 2011
Rep. Grijalva Announces Members of Veterans Advisory Committee, Commends Ongoing Return of Iraq War Veterans to Their Families

Tucson, Ariz.– In recognition of Veterans Day, Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva today announced the members of his recently established Veterans Advisory Committee, thanking them for their service to the country and their valuable advice on veterans issues.

The members include:

Miguel F. Ronquillo, A retired veteran who served our country for many years and now works as a school monitor. His primary goal is making sure fellow veterans obtain proper medical treatment at Veterans Hospitals or medical facilities.

Organizations: Active member of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Nogales High School Band Boosters President, Fraternal Order of Police, Junior Chamber of Commerce, Nogales Volunteer Fire Department

William W Wiseman II, A sergeant major in the United States Marine Corps. His primary goals are ensuring that veterans receive quality mental health follow-up treatment, ensuring that the well-being of spouses is considered in policy decisions, and educating young service members to prepare them financially for civilian life.

Organizations: United States Marine Corps

William F. Chagnon, A state legislature officer for Veterans of Foreign Wars for the Department of Arizona. His primary goals are to get full funding for the VA and to reform the Survivors Benefit Plan.

Organizations: Veterans of Foreign Wars Department of Arizona, Tucson VA Service Officer, American Legion

Matthew W. Randle, The founder and former director of the University of Arizona Veterans Education and Transition Services (V.E.T.S.) office, and a recent University of Arizona graduate. His primary goals include changing the culture surrounding disability claims, helping to investigate false claims, and replicating the V.E.T.S program on campuses across the country.

Organizations: University of Arizona, several governmental advisory positions

Steve W. Aguirre, The commander of American Legion Post 59, where he has been involved for 20 years. His primary goals include helping veterans find job opportunities, helping those struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), providing transitional housing for returning servicemen servicewomen.

Organizations: Cocio Estrada American Legion Post 59, Adjutant for the American Legion Riders (ALR)

Victoria A Stypula, Vice President of the AZ-2 Saguaro Chapter of the Women Marines Association, where she has served for 3 years. Her primary goals include ensuring Medicare is focusing on veterans with PTSD, helping veterans with job difficulties due to PTSD, making Medicare more accessible, and using better public awareness campaigns to inform members of available services.

Organizations: Women Marines Association AZ-2 Saguaro Chapter, El Cortez Heights Neighborhood Association, Mansfield Park Neighbors Coalition, National Ovarian Cancer Coalition (Tucson Chapter), several city and county committees

Rep. Grijalva announced today that the committee will continue to expand as its work proceeds, and that interested individuals should contact his Tucson office at (520) 622-6788.

To pay tribute to the soldiers and military families still engaged in Afghanistan, Rep. Grijalva called, as he has consistently over the years, for an end to our military presence there. In the last decade, nearly 2 million children across America have had a parent deploy to Iraq or Afghanistan. According to a Pentagon survey of military families, 60 percent of military spouses report that their children suffer from increased levels of fear and anxiety when one or both parents are deployed.

“The greatest tribute we can pay our soldiers, our veterans, and their families has nothing to do with waving flags or supporting our wars overseas,” Grijalva said. “It’s making sure they get the full benefits they earn through their service, making good policy decisions on their behalf, and reuniting them with their loved ones as soon as possible. No child should grow up with absent parents who want to return home but can’t because they’re on their third or fourth continuous tour of duty, and that’s why I’m so happy our Iraq war veterans are starting to return to their families. As President Obama recently said, our veterans have done their jobs – now we need to do our jobs in Congress and make sure they have the job opportunities, health care and family support they deserve.”

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