Bataan death march survivors dwindling

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CMI staff photo: Tony Bullocks Alvin Fails , 95, of Clovis, a Battan death march survivor, watches television Tuesday in his home. Tonjia Rolan The horrific memories have faded but not disappeared for Clovis’ Alvin Fails, one of a dwindling number of area Bataan death march survivors. Telling his story from an easy chair, in […]

Area’s last Bataan Death March survivor remembered

Courtesy photo Irvin Butler died Christmas Day in Lubbock, one day short of his 92nd birthday. He was the only native Bataan Death March survivor still living in Roosevelt County. Kevin Wilson ered for his time in the military and surviving a 55-mile death match. But he would have been just fine if people knew […]

Death march survivor made new memories with family

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Courtesy photo Irvin “I.R.” Butler died Christmas Day in Lubbock, one day short of his 92nd birthday. Kevin Wilson Irvin “I.R.” Butler will be remembered for his time in the military and surviving a 55-mile death match. But he would have been just fine if people knew him as Grandpa. Butler died Christmas Day in […]

Education column: Accomplishment doesn’t have to be big to be meaningful

Cindy Kleyn-Kennedy I came across a quote by Viktor Frankl, Holocaust survivor and author of Man’s Search For Meaning, which read: “Life is never made unbearable by circumstances, but only by lack of meaning and purpose.” It made me think about purposeful living. How easy these days to fall victim to information overload in the […]

Survivor plan not being utilized

By Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist A typical officer retiring today who declines to enroll in the Survivor Benefit Plan lets the government off the hook for a subsidy worth $50,100 in “net present value,” say Department of Defense actuaries. The typical enlisted retiree who chooses not to enroll in SBP is turning down a subsidy […]

Abuse survivor lends voice to cause

Cannon Connections photo: Eric Butler Dawn Lade, right, hugs Family Advocacy Program Outreach Manager Tyleen Caffrey during a presentation on domestic violence Tuesday night. Lade spoke about her experience in an abusive relationship at the base theater. By Eric Butler: Cannon Connections The crowd wasn’t big for Dawn Lade on Tuesday night, but it’s a […]

Oil prices bury retiree allowance

By Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist It was higher oil prices last year that led to the largest annual cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) to federal entitlements since 1982. Good thing, too. Lowered oil prices since then are almost certain to block any COLA this year for military retirees, federal civilian retirees, Social Security recipients, survivor benefit annuitants […]

No money to pay survivor benefits

By Tom Philpott: Military update It can be a frustrating time of year for 54,000 military widows who see their Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) payments wiped out or reduced by the monthly amount they receive in Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) from the Department of Veterans Affairs. As it has done routinely in recent years, […]

Retired teacher named new Portales city councilor

By Clarence Plank: Freedom New Mexico Antonio Salguero, a cancer survivor and retired teacher, is the newest member of the Portales City Council. Salguero was sworn in Friday, replacing Jake Lopez, who resigned after winning a seat on the Roosevelt County Commission. “This is my chance, provided my health doesn’t go out or anything like […]

Survivor benefit often overlooked

By Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist The value of the military Survivor Benefit Plan has climbed sharply over the last three years as a steep drop in SBP annuities, which had hit surviving spouses at age 62, was phased down and then eliminated last April. SBP participation for newly minted retirees, however, has risen only modestly. […]

Survivor shares lighter side of the Great Depression

By Glenda Price People who grew up during the Great Depression have lessons for those of us born and raised in the years since. A few Depression survivors are still here, and they can teach us whippersnappers a great deal about self reliance, self control, neighborliness – and most important of all, survival skills. I’ve […]

Military update: Panel OKs multiple military measures

By Tom Philpott: Syndicated columnist Military people next January would get a 3.5 percent pay raise, under a compensation package voted Wednesday by the House Armed Services’ subcommittee on military personnel. In shaping the personnel section of the fiscal 2008 defense authorization bill, the subcommittee approved other initiatives to please health-care beneficiaries, surviving spouses and […]

Survivors, supporters relay cancer stories

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CNJ staff photo: Andy DeLisle Melissa Crowe, right, a Relay For Life Co-chair, helps Therese Musick inventory T-shirts Thursday for event sponsors at Ned Houk Park. By Jean Verlich: CNJ News Editor The 12th annual Clovis Relay for Life is taking place today and Saturday at Ned Houk Park. Here are some of the stories […]

Survivors to speak at two local churches

By Tonya Garner: CNJ staff writer Two survivors of separate harrowing experiences are scheduled to share their inspirational messages Sunday in Clovis. Gilbert Forrest will conduct multiple services at a revival being held at First Christian Church of Clovis where his son, Jon Forrest, currently serves as senior pastor. The longtime Oklahoma pastor is a […]

Plan’s changes don’t benefit spouses

By John Fondrick All the hoopla over the military’s Survivor Benefit Plan breaks down to political votes and whose pocket it will come out of. This is do-nothing, feel-good legislation so politicians can say “Look what I did for the veterans. Vote for me.” In reality, plans that call for increasing SBP benefits from 35 […]

Bike ride honors cancer survivors

By Clyde Davis I am looking forward to the Ride for the Roses, our long distance bicycling effort in mid-October. This is a cancer fundraising event, whereby the riders take pledges for the Lance Armstrong Foundation, an organization dedicated to cancer causes, survivor issues, and people living through and beyond cancer. Self-evident from the name, […]

DOD: Survivor Benefit Plan is costly

By Philpott: Military Update Defense officials, in a late-hour attempt to persuade senators not to join the House in voting to raise military survivor benefits, said the case for doing so has been built on a series of “mistaken assertions.” They also cautioned senators about the cost of enhancing the Survivor Benefit Plan’s $5 billion […]