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AARP Maryland Veterans Corner: October 2020


FRAUD ALERT! VA Data Breach Compromises Personal Data of 46,000 Veterans

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Veterans Administration officials report that a Sept. 14 data breach compromised nearly 46,000 veterans' personal information -- one of the worst data breaches for VA in the last decade.

Hackers broke into an online application for the VA Financial Services Center, intending to steal payments to VA-contracted community healthcare providers, the department said in a news release Monday. VA officials said the system won't go back online until it's a comprehensive security review by the department's IT office is complete. Learn more at

Honor Veterans Service
Join the AARP Virtual Volunteer Veteran Brigade and work with AARP staff to identify emerging issues and resources for veterans, the military, and their families to share them through social media.  

Know someone who could use a friendly chat?  
Across the country, there are countless people who are feeling socially isolated and might benefit from a friendly call from one of AARP's volunteers. Please let local nonprofits, neighbors and family know about the opportunity to request a Friendly Call in English or Spanish. Requests can be made through an online form or by calling toll-free 888-281-0145 (English) or 888-497-4108 (Spanish).

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Gregg Boersma

Veterans’ Pet Project:
Looking for some virtual time with other pet owners? For veterans and civilians alike, this is a monthly virtual gathering where pet owners meet and catch up and virtually mingle. Interested? To join this engagement via Zoom, RSVP to

Upcoming Dates:

  • Oct. 22, 2020 at 12 p.m.
  • Nov. 26 2020 at 12 p.m.

Free Resources to Aid Veterans, Military, Their Families Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

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Getty Images/iStockphoto

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and other aid organizations have mobilized resources specifically for veterans to stay safe during the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Veterans Health Administration recently received $17.2 billion from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. With this money, the VA increased access to telehealth and has said it will serve even those veterans not enrolled in the VA system.

Click here for a list of resources that veterans, active-duty military and their families can receive if they need assistance during the pandemic. If you know of other programs available for veterans, let us know in the comments section below.


The VA Center for Minority Veterans is sharing recent news stories that may be of interest to minority veterans, service members, and their supporters on a weekly basis.

America's Oldest World War II Veteran Celebrates His 111th Birthday
09/15/2020 11:59 AM EDT
Looking on from his front porch in New Orleans, Lawrence Brooks probably never imagined he'd see this day. Today, the oldest known US veteran of World War II turned 111, and the National WWII Museum held a socially distant celebration for him. [From CNN]

#VeteranOfTheDay Army Veteran Miguel Olivera
09/15/2020 11:30 AM EDT
During National Hispanic Heritage Month, today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Army Veteran Miguel Olivera, who served during Vietnam. Miguel Olivera was born in 1942 in Puerto Rico. [From VAntage Point]

Dr. Janna Manglona Retires from Public Health
09/15/2020 08:06 AM EDT
Department of Public Health and Social Services Medical Director Dr. Janna Manglona has retired. In a letter to the governor, Manglona said she started her retirement process a year ago to spend more time with her husband Martin. [From Pacific Daily News]

World War II Veteran Recalls Being at Recruiters Office Day Before Attack on Pearl Harbor
09/15/2020 08:06 AM EDT
While Eddie Wilson spoke to the Army recruiter on December 6, 1941 he had no idea Japanese military planes were just hours away from launching an attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. While the attack delayed his enlistment the Hamilton native was pulled into the Army 25 days later on January 1, 1942. [From WCPO 9]

Save the Date - VA Central Office's (VACO) Hispanic Heritage Month Event is October 14, 2020
09/11/2020 09:43 AM EDT
Please join the Department of Veterans Affairs Hispanic Heritage Month Committee as VACO Observes Virtual Event Hispanic Heritage Month on Wednesday, Oct. 14 via Microsoft Teams Live, from noon to 1:00 p.m. ET.

Vernon Baker: Recognition Through Adversity
09/10/2020 02:01 PM EDT
Vernon Baker was the first living African American World War II Veteran to receive a Medal of Honor when he was awarded 50 years after the war. African Americans fighting in World War II dealt with combat at their front and Jim Crow at their rear. But many fought anyway, and put their lives on the line for their country, including Vernon Baker. [From VAntage Point]

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