Connecting Borders at the American Veterans Ball
Connecting Borders at the American Veterans Ball

Military members in dress blues and ladies wearing ball gowns networked over piano music, the 1st Annual American Veterans Ball (AVB) in New York took place this past Saturday at the Greentree Country Club.

This was not a common military ball, however, because it’s mission is different. The American Veterans Ball was created in 2014 on Veterans Day. Like many other movements, the event started over the sharing of memories and discussing Veterans Day while having a meal at a Virginia Applebees.

Generally there are multiple military balls for active members of every branch. While these are successful at forming and maintaining connections with active duty members, regardless of rank, there has been a major lack of a similar event for Veterans. The American Veterans Ball allows for Veterans from all branches, locations, and age to have a yearly event that serves the same purpose as those for active military members. The American Veterans Ball website describes the importance of having an event that connects all Veterans in an annual tradition,

The most common denominator that the AVB Founders discovered was that once service members’ transitioned out of their respective branches of service, they experienced a disconnection to these types of traditional comradeship events. We believe that an event such as the AVB, not only fosters a way to contribute towards youth development and communities, but also creates that pathway to reignite, connect with, and maintain our patriotism with our fellow brothers and sisters through this unique event for years to come.

By including JROTC Youth Educational Programs, Veterans, Veteran outreach programs, and civilians in a room, the American Veterans Ball connects the present and the future, Additionally, it establishes outreach of resources for Veterans whether they need help, need to help others, or want to stay active in the community.

15085676_10209877376465621_1571483741859108896_nDr. Bob Lee, WBLS-107.5 F.M. and BronxNet Open host, was the master of ceremonies at this year’s ball. The night’s Keynote Speaker was Sam Cachola, a United States Marine Corps Veteran. Mr. Cachola enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1990 where he became a Gunnery Sergeant of the Marines. During his military career he was certified as a Counter Intelligence Agent, Polygraph Examiner, and a Technical Operations Officer. Currently, he is head of the Heroes Alliance Network, a network whose purpose is to unite heroes of all backgrounds in order to honor their service.

15095098_10209877673993059_428868131305134321_nAlso there was Vincent Forres, a World Trade Center Firefighter survivor and founder of the Gear Up Foundation, an organization that donates old fire equipment from the U.S. and repurposes it for countries where they are lacking equipment. All Veterans received handmade cards and letters from the students at Good Counsel Academy Elementary.

Special guest of the evening was World War II Veteran, William Francis Moye. Mr. Moye served four campaigns in World War II. After the war, he has been involved as a commander for the VFW Post 2882, the county commander in Westchester, and a district Chaplain. At 101 years old, Mr. Moye continues as a Chaplain Emeritus for American Legion Post 8 and the United Veterans Memorial and Patriotic Association of New Rochelle.

Devil Dog USA, Inc. was proud to be a sponsor for The American Veterans Ball in New York and we look forward to helping their mission of branching out in every state.

For more information on The American Veterans Ball, please check out their website here or contact Sgt. Gonzalo Duran, the AVB East Coast Liaison, at (516) 515-0240 or at gduran@americanveteransball.org

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