By Josh Troy
A Coahoma County Veterans Informational Fair will feature a variety of speakers and educate the community on a wide range of topics from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on October 14th at the Clarksdale Civic Auditorium.
Donald Savery, Veterans Service Officer for Coahoma County, and James Walker, Veterans Service Office for Quitman and Tunica counties, are organizing the event. Savery served in Iraq by escorting foreign dignitaries around the base, and Walker was a supply clerk in Germany before the Vietnam War.
Renee Brown, President of the Veterans Administration in Memphis, Tenn., and Yasheka Somlar with the VA are also organizing the event. Military Humana is the sponsor.
Regina Tutor will educate veterans going into a nursing home. Coahoma County Tax Assessor will give a presentation on benefits for veterans. Other speakers include Donnie Jones, along with Sherita Wilson from the Coahoma County Chancery Clerk’s Office.
Savery and Walker talked about some of the benefits war veterans are able to receive.
“They get a tax exemption on a house, one property,” Savery said.
He also said veterans who are 70% or more disabled receive an exemption on two car tags.
Walker said veterans with Agent Orange exposure receive monetary compensation.
Agent Orange presumptive conditions are disabilities that VA assumes to be caused by herbicide exposure during service.
“We’re going to cover one factor that’s in this area that affects the veterans and everybody in this community,” Savery said. “We have a homeless problem, so we’re trying to address that problem.”
Savery said a representative from the VA will talk about options for the homeless. Brenda Fields will also talk about issues regarding the homeless.
Savery said the program will also go over the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System, a computerized database for veterans, along with the Defense Finance Accounting Service, which strengthens and reduces costs of financial management and operations within the Department of Defense.
Caregiver programs will be another topic.
Walker said the transportation problem for veterans will also be addressed.
“A lot of them don’t have transportation to Helena (Ark.), to the clinic over in Helena, or to the hospital,” he said. “We’re going to try to get them there some kind of way.”
The public is welcome, and door prizes will be given away.
Anyone needing more information may contact Brown at (901) 523-8990, ext. 5313.