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Loebsack Statement on the 13th Anniversary of the 9/11 Attacks PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Vonnie Hampel   
Friday, 12 September 2014 14:53

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Dave Loebsack released the following statement commemorating the 13th anniversary of the September 11th attacks.

“Even thirteen years later the scars from that fateful day remain. That morning I was teaching a class on International relations and remember trying to explain to my students what was going on and why this was happening. But I also remember in the immediate aftermath and in the years since how our nation came together in ways never imagined. We honor this day by dedicating ourselves to service and improving our communities. We must also take time to pay tribute to those we lost; to the firefighters, police officers and emergency medical personnel who risked their own lives to save others; and to the men and women of our Armed Forces who have fought overseas for the last decade so that we may live in peace here at home.

“Let us come together again on this solemn anniversary to redouble our commitment to honoring the legacy of those we lost by making our great nation event stronger and more steadfast.”

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Governor Quinn Honors Fallen Servicemembers on Patriot Day PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Dave Blanchette   
Friday, 12 September 2014 14:52

“Portrait of a Soldier” Memorial on Display at the University of Illinois-Chicago

CHICAGO – Governor Pat Quinn today commemorated Patriot Day and opened the “Portrait of a Soldier” memorial exhibit at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The exhibit features a series of hand-drawn portraits of nearly all of the 326 Illinois men and women who have died while serving our country in Iraq and Afghanistan since Sept. 11, 2001.

“September 11 will forever be a solemn day across America,” Governor Quinn said. “Each of us owes a debt of gratitude to those whose lives were lost that fateful day, and in the days and years following the tragedy that forever changed our nation.

“‘Portrait of a Soldier’ commemorates some of our state’s greatest patriots and it is fitting that we honor them and their sacrifices on Patriot Day. This exhibit puts faces to the names of the brave men and women we lost while serving our country, and allows the people of Illinois to pay their respects.

“We will never forget September 11 and we will never forget all those who sacrificed their lives to protect our freedoms.”

The exhibit is on display starting today until Friday, September 19, on the second floor of the Student Center East, 750 S. Halsted, at the University of Illinois-Chicago.

“It is fitting we honor these heroes on the anniversary of 9/11,” Illinois Department of Veterans’ Affairs Acting Director Rodrigo Garcia said. “Keeping the memory of those we lost and the cost of the freedoms we enjoy is an important part of Patriot Day. We owe a debt, not only to these fallen, but their brother and sister veterans, almost 800,000 across Illinois.”

Governor Quinn established the “Portrait of a Soldier” memorial exhibit in 2004 to honor fallen Illinois servicemembers. The series of portraits began when artist Cameron Schilling of Mattoon drew the first portrait of Army Spc. Charles Neeley, also of Mattoon, after Neeley was killed in Iraq. Schilling, a student at Eastern Illinois University at the time, committed to drawing a portrait of every Illinois servicemember who has fallen during the Global War on Terror.

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Braley Statement on 13th Anniversary of September 11, 2001 PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Kirsten Hartman   
Friday, 12 September 2014 14:34

Washington, D.C. – Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) today released the following statement in honor of the 13th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States.

“It is clear that the breadth and scope of the unconscionable acts of terror visited upon the United States thirteen years ago remain impossible to measure. The effect is most profound on those who lost loved ones that day—or those who subsequently lost a loved ones during our military missions to combat terrorist threats across the globe—and my thoughts and prayers are with all of them today. While these attacks occurred over a decade ago, the underlying question of how America should respond to terrorist threats throughout the world remains one of our toughest challenges. I will continue to take a thoughtful and measured approach to combating these threats and ensure that the safety of Americans and our interests remain my top priority.”

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Loebsack Statement on the President’s Speech on the Islamic State PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Joe Hand   
Friday, 12 September 2014 14:29

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Dave Loebsack released the following statement this evening following the President’s speech on the Islamic State. As a member of the House Armed Services Committee, Loebsack has received briefings regarding the ongoing situation.

“Without question, the security situation in Iraq and Syria and the escalating threat from ISIS is a national security concern for the United States. The challenge with assessing ISIS is not whether these are evil people, because they have clearly proven they are. We have known that for a long time. I agree with the President that we must not put troops back in Iraq, but targeted air strikes may be necessary to degrade and defeat ISIS. We must do everything we can to protect the American people and our interests at home and abroad. Those who pose a real threat to Americans must know, there is no hiding from America's strength.

“The challenge that remains is whether or not certain military actions will create long-term, unintended consequences. Our foreign policy cannot be bomb first, ask questions later – that is what got us into this situation in the first place. Our allies around the world, and specifically in the region, must share this burden and work together to bolster political and economic conditions in Iraq and Syria. We cannot overcome centuries of sectarian strife with bombs alone. Ultimately the governments in Iraq and Syria must take responsibility for their own security.”

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Pheasants Forever Employees in Iowa Transition to New Roles for Organization PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Bob St. Pierre   
Friday, 12 September 2014 14:05

Sytsma and Wiklund bring new ideas to their changing positions

St. Paul, Minn. – September 10, 2014 -Pheasants Forever(PF) and Quail Forever (QF) recently named Eric Sytsma of Oskaloosa, Iowa, as the organization’s new regional representative for southern Iowa. Sytsma will be replacing former regional representative, Jared Wiklund, who will transition into his new role as public relations specialist at team headquarters in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Sytsma, a former Pheasants Forever Farm Bill biologist in Iowa, looks to continue the growth of Pheasants Forever’s presence in the state, which is currently home to 102 Pheasants Forever chapters, three Quail Forever chapters and more than 19,000 PF/QF members. His main role in Iowa will be supporting the extensive network of local chapters which fuel conservation initiatives across the state, and represent chapters as a liaison to local, state and federal natural resource agencies.

Working for Pheasants Forever since 2010 as a Farm Bill Wildlife Biologist, Sytsma has been instrumental in providing wildlife habitat conservation measures to farmers and landowners in southern Iowa. He is a lifelong Iowa resident and earned a bachelor of science degree in animal ecology from Iowa State University. Sytsma resides in Oskaloosa, Iowa with his wife, Jenna, one daughter and two dogs.

Starting in his new role as public relations specialist, Wiklund’s primary responsibilities include writing press releases, articles for the Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever websites, and fostering relationships with outdoor media outlets and journalists. He will also serve as a spokesperson and assist in the promotion of the organization's National Pheasant Fest & Quail Classic, which will be held in Des Moines on February 20, 21 and 22, 2015.

Transferring from his position of Iowa regional representative since 2010, Wiklund brings four years of valuable field experience to team headquarters in St. Paul, Minnesota. He currently resides in Hugo, Minnesota with his wife, Kari, one daughter and black Lab.

“Eric Sytsma and Jared Wiklund have both added passion and professionalism to the organization, and I am certain they will continue to provide outstanding customer service to chapters, agencies and media in their new roles,” commented Tom Fuller, Pheasants Forever’s north region director.

For information about Pheasants Forever or Quail Forever in Iowa or to learn about a local chapter, Eric Sytsma can be contacted at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or (515) 423-4747. For all other inquiries, please contact Jared Wiklund, Pheasants Forever/Quail Forever public relations specialist at (651) 209-4953 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

About Pheasants Forever & Quail Forever

Pheasants Forever, including its quail conservation division, Quail Forever, is the nation's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to upland habitat conservation. Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever have more than 140,000 members and 745 local chapters across the United States and Canada. Chapters are empowered to determine how 100 percent of their locally raised conservation funds are spent; the only national conservation organization that operates through this truly grassroots structure.  Since creation in 1982, Pheasants Forever has spent $508 million on 475,000 habitat projects benefiting 10 million acres nationwide.

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For additional information please visit www.PheasantsForever.org and www.QuailForever.org

 
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