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Fri, Jun 26, 2009

DAV Charitable Service Trust Makes Contribution To Veterans Airlift Command

Army Sgt. Jessie Slotte was severely wounded in 2007 when he was ambushed while on patrol in Iraq. C hasing an insurgent, he was led to an improvised explosive device which was detonated beneath him. In addition to the blast, grenades he was carrying exploded. Initially, he was not expected to survive, but Slotte made amazing progress.

When he recovered, he was to be presented with a special award from the Army, but did not have a way to return to his unit. It was the Veterans Airlift Command (VAC) that stepped up and provided transportation without charge to receive his special award and to reunite with his fellow soldiers and the staff at the Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas where he had undergone 49 surgical procedures.

Among those making this service possible for America’s wounded is the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) Charitable Service Trust, which recently awarded a $35,000 grant to VAC. It was the second grant awarded to the organization by the Charitable Service Trust.

“We appreciate the support of the DAV, and feel fortunate to have a mission that closely aligns with and supports the mission of the DAV to build better lives for disabled veterans and their families,” said Veterans Airlift Command AirBoss Walter L. Fricke. “We are continuing to grow as funding allows. As a result, we are able to do more to reach out to our hospitalized veterans and get them to places they need to go.”

“The Charitable Service Trust recognizes the vital services provided by the Veterans Airlift Command,” said Chairman Richard E. Marbes. “Each year, the Trust awards grants to programs that provide direct services and care to our nation’s disabled veterans.”

Sgt. Slotte’s experience is just one of the heartwarming dreams made possible by the Veterans Airlift Command and its supporters. Since the VAC was established in November 2006, it has flown 1,350 wounded veterans more than 750,000 miles. In 2008, more than 550 passengers were flown 325,000 miles.

The Veterans Airlift Command uses a national network volunteer aircraft owners and pilots to provide air transportation for medical and other compassionate purposes to wounded service members and their families.

FMI: www.veteransairlift.org

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