Jessica Adams, a Marine Corps veteran, is junior vice commander of VFW Post 8430 in East McKeesport. (Submitted photo by Michael P. Mauer, public affairs officer for VFW District 29.)
Veterans of any branch of the armed services are encouraged to learn about benefits for which they may be eligible, including housing, healthcare and home loans.
A veterans resource fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. March 30 at the East McKeesport Community Center, 539 Chicora Ave. The event is being sponsored by VFW "Hilltoppers" Post 8430 in East McKeesport and the Veterans Leadership Program of Western Pennsylvania, and is open to any veterans from the Pittsburgh area.
According to VFW Post 8430 Junior Vice Commander Jessica Adams, the event is designed to be a one-stop shop for those who’ve served in uniform.
“We wanted to get knowledgeable and experienced staff together all in one location to better serve local veterans,” said Adams, who served with the Marines during the Iraq war. “We also scheduled the fair for a Saturday to make it easier for working families.”
Topics will include Veterans Administration health care benefits, pensions, burial and memorial benefits and housing, and the Department of Veterans Affairs Home Loan Guaranty Program. Trained social workers from the Veterans Leadership Program of Western Pennsylvania will be on hand to answer questions, as well as veterans’ service organization representatives.
Others expected to participate include local elected officials or their representatives, the VA Vet Center, the Marine Corps League, a Marine Corps transition readiness counselor, and Duquesne University.
Also present will be the U.S. Postal Service, an official from state Sen. Jim Brewster’s office, and representatives from Wounded Warriors.
Veterans are encouraged to bring their DD Form 214 discharge papers.
Adams said her own experiences after returning from deployment more than 15 years ago helped motivate her to solicit as many groups as possible for the resource fair.
“Since joining the VFW and becoming active at my post, I’ve learned of a number of services and benefits that are available to veterans,” she said. “When I got back, I found that being together with fellow veterans who’ve shared my experiences helped tremendously. They were able to connect me with agencies and groups that specialize in helping veterans readjust back to civilian life.”
For more information about VFW Post 8430 and to register, contact Adams at (412) 823-9687 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Originally published February 28, 2019.