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  • Writer's pictureGayle Albertini

"We would not be here enjoying our freedoms if it weren't for Veterans who gave their all."

Updated: Apr 28, 2023

Honoring our Bravest – Veterans Appreciation Breakfast

On Saturday, April 22, The Pointe Restaurant hosted a distinctive buffet breakfast for all Fairfield Harbour Veterans. Bill Hewitt organized the event, which garnered approximately 100 men and women who served in the armed forces.

Hewitt opened the breakfast by explaining what a Veteran was – "A Veteran is someone that writes a blank check to the U.S. government. Vets are people with a strong sense of patriotism. Some Vets served during a time of war and some during a time of peace." Hewitt shared interesting statistics for how many Veterans in each age group served.

  • Only 7% of the U.S. population are Veterans

  • Age over 75 years – 42.14% male, .9% female

  • Age 65-74 years – 24.15% male, 1.37% female

  • Age 55-64 years – 12.57% male, 1.85% female

  • Age 35-54 – 7.89% male, 1.35% female

  • Age 18-34 – 2.95% male, .68% female

Bob Dumon played the anthem on his trumpet for each service. The Vets from each of their branches stood during their anthem. The Veterans in attendance respectfully recited The Pledge of Allegiance and sang the Star Spangled Banner with gusto.

The special guest speaker was Jeff Futrell, Veterans Services Director from Craven County. Futrell shared that North Carolina has 688,000 veterans, and Craven County has 12,867. Futrell encouraged Vets to contact the Veteran Services Office for information on benefits. The federal department handles compensation, pensions, widows' benefits, burial benefits, education benefits, healthcare, personal needs, and many more.

Futrell said that recent changes in the PACT Act expand and extend eligibility for VA healthcare with toxic exposures from the Vietnam and Gulf War and post-911. The PACT Act adds 20+ conditions for burn pits, Agent Orange, and radiation. PACT now requires the VA to provide exposure screening to every Vet enrolled in the program.

Futrell advised all Veterans to locate their DD-214 and ensure their family members know it. Veterans' ID cards are now available. Futrell encouraged all Veterans to contact the Craven County Veterans Service Office if they have any questions or need help. The office is located at 2402 Dr. MKL Blvd in New Bern. For more information about Veterans Services: Call 252-636-6611.

After Futrell spoke, Hewitt retook the floor to thank Gary Blanchard and The Pointe staff for accommodating such a large crowd. Although reservations were for 51, the Pointe graciously rose to the occasion and served all who attended. Hewitt reminded everyone to make reservations for future Veteran Events.

The Pointe Food and Beverage Manager, Gary Blanchard, thanked all the Veterans who attended and acknowledged, "We would not be here enjoying our freedoms if it weren't for Veterans who gave their all."

Thank you, all Veterans, for your service to this country. Your bravery, sacrifice, and strength do not go unnoticed, and we will always be indebted to you and your family for all you have given to the country.

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1 Comment

Phil Yandel (PhilCYA)
Phil Yandel (PhilCYA)
May 02, 2023

Thanks to the FFH vets and especially for Bill Hewitt for giving these men and women a community with our community!

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