Tracy Talks: Local help for local disabled veterans
by Anne Marie Fuller
Mar 28, 2014 | 4205 views | 0 0 comments | 165 165 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Growing up as a child in a military family, I came to respect, early on, those who have sacrificed for our country. There’s an understanding that comes with the military life, and with it also comes a deep compassion for others, a sense of pride in country and respect for our soldiers. I am not offended by being called a military brat or seeing our country’s flag on display — no matter what day of the year.

Given all the above, I also think it’s important to help those who have helped us through their service. Locally, there are some programs that offer services for our veterans.

Disabled American Veterans Charities of San Joaquin County is a nonprofit organization that exists to help veterans when they are in need, and although the name denotes disabled veterans, the group helps both able and disabled. This group has helped local veterans with Pacific Gas & Electric Co. bills, automobile repairs, rent, gift cards for food, bus passes and also scholarships for veterans and their children. Help is available to veterans who live within San Joaquin County.

“A lot of veterans are having a difficult time because of the economy,” said Pam Picchi, with DAV Charities of San Joaquin County. “This organization depends on fundraising efforts from the public and contributors.”

Another local group helping veterans is the Northern California F100 Elite, San Joaquin Chapter. This group not only donates directly to the Wounded Warrior Project but also offers financial assistance to help with rehabilitation and artificial limbs for our veterans.

“About every two weeks, I get a thank-you card from someone telling me how they are doing with the support given,” Earl Pecka, treasurer of the local chapter, said. “I was in the service, Army, and I think this is a good thing to help those that served our country. The military doesn’t have enough funds, and that’s where we come in, to help provide the needed money for this.”

For more information on the Northern California F100 Elite, San Joaquin Chapter, call 836-0267. For more information on DAV Charities of San Joaquin County, call 955-1423.

To all who have served or are currently serving, I personally thank you.

• Anne Marie Fuller, National Mrs. Beauties of the Nation and Mrs. California BOTN, is the host of “Helpful Hints with Anne Marie” on Channel 26. Contact her at

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