CLAREMORE, Okla.— “Making a difference for disabled veterans and their families,” is the mission of the DAV Auxiliary.
Founded in 1922 as the Women’s Auxiliary, Disabled American Veterans of the World War was composed of the wives and families of disabled veterans and the Gold Star families of servicemen killed while serving their nation. Originated with 20 active units, the DAV Auxiliary now consists of nearly one-quarter of a million members, in more than 1000 active units.
Like the DAV, the Auxiliary is a non-profit organization, relying on membership dues and contributions to fund all their activities. Among the services offered by the DAV Auxiliary are helping veterans and family members apply for benefits, advocating for legislation to improve benefits and services for veterans and their families and working with the DAV’s transportation system to help veterans get to medical facilities for appointments. The Auxiliary also donates more than 1 million hours every year for volunteer programs, offers scholarships up to $1500, for qualifying students, and can provide financial assistance for members in need.
The Auxiliary offers programs in Americanism, offering education about citizenship, display and respect for the flag and presentations of the Constitution, Bill of Rights and the Declaration of Independence.
“We’ve done some programs at the school, teaching kids what the different folds in the flag mean and we’ll probably continue doing some more programs teaching flag etiquette,” says Millie Moseley, Commander of the Claremore DAV Auxiliary. “We just purchased three flags for the cemetery at Talala, because they’re getting ready to put up three new flagpoles at veterans graves.”
Community service is a primary concern of the DAV Auxiliary. Family services like, grocery shopping providing transportation for someone in need or just visiting with someone who needs a friend. Professional and trade services includes providing services of trained professionals (doctors, dentists, plumbers and other professions) to help veterans and families, who otherwise couldn’t afford them.
“Our unit has a tremendous amount of volunteer hours that we do,” says Moseley. “We’re looking to win some awards at our state convention. We had a food drive, some of our members participated in.”
Some of Claremore’s members will spend Thanksgiving helping out in the Special Neds unit of the Claremore Veterans Center.
The Auxiliary also conducts special community projects. The Claremore Auxiliary participates in “Last Roll Call of Remembrance,”at the Jack C. Montgomery VA Medical Center, in Muskogee. The Last Roll Call is a ceremony conducted four time each year, to remember veterans who have passed during the previous three months. They also have a Christmas Card program each year, sending Christmas cards to the nearly 1500 veterans in Oklahoma’s seven veterans centers.
The Claremore DAV Auxiliary currently has approximately 70 members, but they’re always looking to increase their numbers to help expand their programs. Auxiliary membership is open to family and extended family members of veterans who were disabled or died in military service, the families and extended family members of active duty military and military veterans, the families and extended family members of Auxiliary members who are not otherwise eligible for membership and DAV members.
To find out more about the National DAV Auxiliary check out their website at https://auxiliary.dav.org.
The Claremore DAV Auxiliary meets the third Monday each month at the Claremore VFW post, 1717 W Dupont St. (across from the Claremore Expo Center). For more information, contact Commander, Millie Moseley at (918) 785-3594.