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Press Release – Vet Voice Foundation

April 20, 2012
Contact: Eric Schmeltzer, eric@votevets.org, 646-290-8586

VETERANS CHEER FORT ORD DESIGNATION AS NATIONAL MONUMENT

Group worked long and hard to get the designation

Monterey, CA – The national veterans group, the Vet Voice Foundation, today is applauding President Obama’s decision to designate Fort Ord in California as a National Monument.  The veterans thanked the President, and particularly Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer for their support and work on the issue, alongside Vet Voice.

“This is a great day for veterans and those who want to protect our public lands,” said Mark Starr, Program Director for the Vet Voice Foundation, and an Iraq War Veteran.  “Fort Ord has a proud and storied tradition with the United States Army, and is still enjoyed today by so many veterans who rely on the natural wonder of the site for healing from their time in war.  We thank President Obama and Senators Feinstein and Boxer for their support on this issue.”

The group has placed op-eds in favor of the designation for some time.  And, earlier in the year, the group turned in over 1200 petition signatures to Senators Feinstein and Boxer, calling for the designation, and released personal and touching videos from veterans, regarding their experiences at Ft. Ord.  One video, from Vitali Mostovoj, a 25 year Air Force Veteran, who lives in California, talks about the importance of Fort Ord to him as a veteran, and a Californian, and makes a personal appeal to the Senators.

The video can be found here:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ZjvANitu8w

Fort Ord has a long and storied tradition as a US Army installation. From World War I through the end of the Cold War, Fort Ord served as a major training ground for our nation’s soldiers. Throughout the Vietnam War, it was a leading training center and staging area for deployments to Southeast Asia. Towards the end of its tenure from 1975 to 1994, it was home to the Army’s premier light infantry fighting force, the 7th Infantry Division. In 1994, after almost a century of service it closed its gates and became a part of Army folklore.

Today, Ft. Ord is a centerpiece of the Monterey community. It boasts glorious trails that residents and visitors from all over the country use for horseback riding, biking and hiking.

A National Monument designation will serve as a reminder of the triumphs and sacrifices that have shaped the United States and honor the legacy of the soldiers who trained and served on these lands.

Founded in 2009, the mission of Vet Voice Foundation is to mobilize veterans to become leaders in our nation’s democracy through participation in the civic and democratic process. VVF seeks to harness the energy and drive of the dedicated men and women who have fought for their country, and put it to work at home and in their communities on the important issues they face, such as health care, jobs, the environment, and housing.


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