Military & Veterans News
Braley Fights for Iowa Veterans Home in Marshalltown PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Military & Veterans News
Written by Alexandra Krasov   
Monday, 01 August 2011 09:38

Bill benefitting home passes unanimously

Washington, DC – Congressman Bruce Braley (IA-01) co-sponsored and championed a bill to help the Iowa Veterans Home in Marshalltown. With Rep.Braley’s help, the bill passed unanimously out of the House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee on Health. The bill will help the Iowa Veterans Home and similar veterans’ homes across the country provide care to millions of elderly and disabled veterans.

“This bill will help us ensure that our veterans are getting the care they deserve – not just in Iowa, but all over the country,” said Rep. Braley. “The men and women who served this nation deserve the best care we can possibly provide. That’s why I’m proud to co-sponsor this bill which supports the veterans home in Marshalltown that cares for so many of our national heroes.”

David Worley, who serves as Commandant of the Iowa Veterans Home and oversees operations, said the bill is an important step for Iowa veterans.

“This bill will be a big boost for the Iowa Veterans Home,” said Commandant Worley. “It’ll give us the resources we need to care for our elderly veterans, and as we see many more young men and women coming back from battle, this bill will help us provide our returning veterans with the services they need.”

Rep. Braley will continue fighting to pass the bill through the full Veterans’ Affairs Committee.

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Braley Statement on Injured Iowa Solider PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Military & Veterans News
Written by Alexandra Krasov   
Thursday, 28 July 2011 12:29

Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Bruce Braley (IA-01) released the following statement after the U.S. Army Reserve reported that Staff Sgt. Richard Billmeyer of Epworth was seriously injured in Afghanistan:

“My thoughts and prayers are with Richard and his family. As he begins his recovery, I hope he knows we’re all pulling for him. My heart goes out to all the brave young men and women who have sacrificed so much for our country.”

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More Than $200,000 to Iowa from U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Military & Veterans News
Written by Grassley Press   
Wednesday, 27 July 2011 12:42

WASHINGTON - Senator Chuck Grassley today announced that Humility of Mary Shelter, Inc. has received a $242,655 Homeless Prevention Grant from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. 

The funds are distributed through the Supportive Services for Veteran Families Program.  They are not earmarks determined by Congress.  Humility of Mary Shelter, Inc. can use the funds to provide services to approximately 125 households in Scott County, Iowa and Rock Island County, Illinois.  Services include case management, assistance in obtaining VA and/or public benefits, and temporary critical financial assistance.

“We owe a great deal to the men and women that serve our country.  These funds can help veterans who find themselves in a tough situation get back on their feet,” Grassley said.

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Braley Announces $242,655 for Davenport Veterans PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Military & Veterans News
Written by Alexandra Krasov   
Tuesday, 26 July 2011 14:00

Washington, DC – Today, Congressman Bruce Braley (IA-01) announced a $242,655 grant award for Davenport, Iowa through the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) Program. The grant will go to the Humility of Mary Shelter to serve over 100 homeless and at-risk veteran families in Scott County.

“This grant is an important step towards making sure our veterans get the care and services they need,” said Rep. Braley. “No veteran or their family should be out on the street – but right now, it’s a tragic reality and one we must work to fix as quickly as possible. That’s why I’m proud to announce this grant for the Humility of Mary Shelter – and that’s why I’ll keep fighting to make sure our veterans, and their families, get the care and services they need.”

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Former 1644th Soldier Takes Command of Unit for Kuwait Deployment PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Military & Veterans News
Written by readMedia   
Tuesday, 26 July 2011 13:57

ROCK FALLS, IL (07/26/2011)(readMedia)-- Capt. Michael Barton with the Illinois National Guard's 1644th Transportation Company has deployed and returned a decorated Soldier and now as the opportunity to deploy as the commander for the same unit.

Barton, a Greenview native, deployed as an enlisted Soldier with the 1644th in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2004–2005, receiving a Purple Heart. Now as the commander of the Rock Falls unit, Barton believes he can do even more.

"With my other deployments, everything was being directed towards me," Barton said. "Now, I'm the one providing direction for the unit."

Barton deployed with the 1144th Transportation Battalion in 2007-2008 and received a Bronze Star for his service.

With two deployments under his belt, Barton took command of the 1644th in 2009. Barton admits to being a little nervous upon taking command, as he would be leading some of his former comrades. However, the Soldiers accepted him immediately and the relationship has only improved.

"When I found out he was coming back I was really excited," said Sgt. 1st Class Kyle Hacker of Rock Falls, a truckmaster with the unit who deployed with Barton in 2004. "He was a standout guy as an enlisted Soldier, and now he's a standout guy as an officer."

Now the 1644th will tackle line haul operations in Kuwait. They will move equipment throughout Kuwait and Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn.

"I'm excited for this deployment and what lies ahead for the 1644th," Barton said. "The team we have assembled is extremely professional, tactically and technically proficient. I have no doubt they will accomplish any mission that is given to them."

Lt. Col. Tracey Collins of Naperville, battalion commander for the 1644th, served with Barton when he was a young specialist and she was a youthful lieutenant with the Rock Falls unit. She said Barton is a great fit for the 1644th.

"Cpt. Barton is an awesome leader," Collins said. "You give him a mission and he runs with it. Having been in that unit for so long, he has established himself and earned the respect of his troops. I am 100% behind his leadership style."

While Barton is serving in an atypical role, he is commanding a unique unit. The 1644th has four husband and wife duos, two father and son tandems, and three groups of siblings in its ranks. Despite the familiar relations, Barton says this is the most professional team he has ever worked with.

"Being the commander of the 1644th has been the highlight of my 15 and a half year career to this point," Barton said.

The 1644th was mobilized in early July and will spend the next two months training at Fort Bliss, Texas prior to deploying to Kuwait. They will replace the 1244th Transportation Company from North Riverside, which was mobilized in September 2010.

Photo 1: Capt. Michael Barton of Greenview

Photo 2: Photo submitted/ Capt. Michael Barton of Greenview, then a staff sergeant with the 1644th Transportation Company in Rock Falls, sits atop a five-ton truck as his convoy travels through Iraq. Barton received a Purple Heart while deployed with the 1644th in 2004-2005. He is currently training in Fort Bliss, Texas preparing to deploy to the Iraq/Kuwait theater this summer, this time as the commander of the 1644th.

Photo 3: Photo submitted/ Capt. Michael Barton of Greenview, then a staff sergeant with the 1644th Transportation Company in Rock Falls, poses next to six Iraqi children. Barton was deployed with the 1644th in 2004-2005, receiving a Purple Heart. He is now preparing to deploy to Kuwait with the Rock Falls-based unit, this time as the commander.

Story by Spc. Brian Vorce, 139th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

For high resolution photos, please contact the Illinois National Guard Public Affairs Office at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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