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MOAA enlisting to aid veterans

The Piedmont Virginia Chapter of the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) is looking for a few good men and women to increase its ranks and better serve the needs of area veterans. MOAA is inviting all active, retired and former military officers to the Farmville Train Station Friday from 5-7 p.m. to learn more about the organization.

While MOAA is an organization for military officers, its scope extends to all veterans.

“All the veterans’ organizations have a common goal to maintain and improve veterans’ affairs,” MOAA member Mike Montgomery said.

In order to assist veterans more effectively, MOAA’s Piedmont Chapter would like to increase its membership.

“MOAA is open to all active, retired or former officers of the uniformed services of the United States,” Montgomery said. “That includes Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard and also the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Public Health Service.”

Last year retired Navy Adm. Walter F. Doran, national MOAA Board of Directors member, visited Farmville and spoke to the Piedmont Chapter about MOAA’s Family Charitable Foundation that supports currently serving service members and veterans of all ranks and their families.

MOAA’s support for active-duty servicemen and veterans, Doran noted, is extensive.

“We are taking care of everybody we can get our arms around,” Doran said.

“We support state and national lobbying efforts for veterans,” Montgomery said of the Piedmont Chapter. “We write letters to congressmen and invite our elected officials to speak.”

Elected representatives, both state and local, have been invited to Friday’s event at the train station.

“We want to get folks out to meet the elected representatives in our area and also invite anyone who is eligible to join us,” Montgomery said.

The Piedmont Chapter covers a large geographic area.

“We have a huge area,” Montgomery said. “We reach from Lynchburg all the way to the North Carolina line, including the Piedmont counties of Amelia, Buckingham, Charlotte, Cumberland, Lunenburg, Nottoway, and Prince Edward.”

Friday’s event will be catered by The Fishin’ Pig. The menu includes pulled pork barbecue, cole slaw, green beans mac & cheese and beverage. Patriots Colony of Williamsburg and USAA are sponsors for the event.

“Patriots Colony, a military retirement community in Williamsburg, will also pay the dues for new MOAA members for the first year,” Montgomery said. “They work hand-in-hand with MOAA in these types of events and are a major sponsor of our event. One of our door prizes is overnight lodging and meals at Patriots Colony.”

A drawing for a number of other door prizes will held at 6:45 p.m.

“We lobby for veterans and their families to make sure there’s no erosion in the benefits veterans get for offering up their lives for their country. We think that’s important,” Montgomery said.