Bridgewater State Military & Veteran Student Services

Military and Veteran Student Services is committed to assisting the military and veteran students an

01/30/2022

engdr.co

BSU will be running & walking the 2022 Run to Home Base this summer with our brothers and sisters from BCC, Massasoit, UMASS Dartmouth, and other area student veteran organizations. We would love your support!

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12/08/2021

"Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee leaders introduce the Post-9/11 Veterans’ Mental Health Care Improvement Act of 2021 to strengthen workforce, expand care, and support mental health research at VA."

Full press release here 👇 https://www.veterans.senate.gov/newsroom/majority-news/tester-moran-take-bipartisan-action-to-bolster-post-9/11-veterans-access-to-mental-health-care

12/07/2021

Remembering those that continue to inspire us. Eighty years but not forgotten.

11/11/2021
Timeline photos 11/11/2021

Timeline photos

November is National Native American Heritage Month. Throughout November, we celebrate those of indigenous heritage, embrace the cultures they embody and educate the public about tribal communities. To read more about Native Americans Veterans, visit https://bit.ly/2ZFzoxn

11/11/2021

Happy Veterans Day! Honoring All Who served.

Timeline photos 11/11/2021

Timeline photos

Today, we pay tribute to more than 19 million of our citizens who at one time wore the uniform of the United States military to serve and protect our way of life and principles for which we stand. In peace and in war, every Veteran made a difference both on the home front and in distant corners around the globe defending our vital interests in partnership with our allies. Happy Veterans Day.

(Art courtesy Matt Tavares)

11/10/2021

Join Us At University Park from 12-2 PM Today
For our Veterans Day Cookout To Honor All Who Served Our Great Nation.

11/10/2021
Timeline photos 11/01/2021

Timeline photos

November is National Native American Heritage Month. Throughout November, we celebrate those of indigenous heritage, embrace the cultures they embody and educate the public about tribal communities. To read more about Native Americans Veterans, visit https://bit.ly/2ZFzoxn

11/01/2021
10/26/2021

We just joined the
Program to donate
excess Halloween candy to Military & First
Responders. Grateful Americans across the
country are collecting their excess Halloween
candy to share with recipients! Learn more & sign
up as a donor here: https://bit.ly/3rDjQnf

Donations will be accepted at the MVSS office in Tillinghast Hall from Monday, 11/1 to Wednesday, 11/3. If you have any questions feel free to message us here or email [email protected].

10/10/2021

Looking for a fun weekend event? Look no further, Operation Delta Dog has you covered! 🐕‍🦺🎶 🍲

10/10/2021

The National Conference for Undergraduate Research (NCUR) welcomes students from all disciplines across the country to present their research and creative work through oral presentations, poster sessions, and artistic performances and exhibitions!

We encourage submitting early for NCUR 2022:

*Early bird deadline: 10/20/21
Early bird students can opt-in for competition aspect allowing for additional exposure & opportunity to highlight presentation skills

*Regular abstract submission deadline: 11/19/21

If you’d like to learn more about NCUR, visit our website: https://tinyurl.com/BSU-NCUR2022

10/05/2021

Meet Freddie Stowers.

Of the more than 14,000 U.S. servicemen buried in the Meuse-Argonne Cemetery near Romagne-Sous-Montfaucon in France, only 9 have the words "MEDAL OF HONOR" on their gravestone.

For one of them in particular, it took 73 years to receive that honor.

When the U.S. 371st Infantry Regiment landed in France in April of 1918, the French Army was in dire straits.

With the German Army's spring offensive barely a month old, French forces were being hammered on the Western Front, and France had virtually no one left to send into the fight.

So the U.S. Army offered them the all-black 371st and 372nd Infantry Regiments, whom the French accepted gladly.

But for the Americans this was more than just a gesture to help out an ally - far too many of the white American commanders did not think the African-American soldiers could fight, and they wanted to get rid of them.

One of these soldiers was Freddie Stowers from South Carolina, a Corporal in C Company, 1st Battalion of the 371st.

At the start of the Meuse-Argonne Offensive in September of 1918, the 371st was ordered to attack a reinforced German position near Ardeuil-et-Montfauxelles in the Ardennes region.

During a furious assault on the German lines, a group of German soldiers drew in Stowers's company by pretending to surrender. When the Americans got within range, German machine guns opened up and ripped them to pieces.

With nearly every officer and senior non-commissioned officer down and the German guns dropping more and more of his company every passing second, Stowers took command of his platoon.

Leading his men forward on their bellies, Stowers managed to crawl forward and take out a machine gun position, but was severely wounded charging another machine gun.

Ordering his men to keep going, Stowers kept up with them as they cleared the next machine gun nest, but more German bullets struck him, knocking him down.

As Stowers fell, he watched his men surge forward, screaming like banshees, driving the startled German troops off the hill.

With the sight of his comrades swarming over the hill to victory, he closed his eyes for the last time.

Freddie Stowers died on Hill 188, Ardeuil-et-Montfauxelles, Champagne-Marne Sector, Départment des Ardennes, France, on September 28th, 1918.

He was only 22 years old, and left a wife and young daughter behind.

Stowers was recommended for the Medal of Honor, but, as was the case with so many other black soldiers, his recommendation paperwork was "lost".

Then in 1990, an investigation confirmed that the actions Stowers took met all the criteria for the Medal, and that he had, indeed, been recommended for it by his chain of command.

In 1991, President George H.W. Bush presented Freddie Stowers's Medal of Honor to his sisters, who, after 73 years, finally got to hear how their brother's actions on that hill in France displayed "conspicuous gallantry, extraordinary heroism, and supreme devotion to his men [that] were well above and beyond the call of duty, follow[ed] the finest traditions of military service, and reflect[ed] the utmost credit on him and the United States Army."

10/05/2021

Meet Sgt. William Henry Johnson.

Timeline photos 10/05/2021

Meet Milton Holland, Congressional Medal of Honor awardee.🇺🇸

On this day in 1864, Milton Holland, a Unionist soldier in the Fifth United States Colored Troops, earned the Medal of Honor. Holland was one of sixteen Black Americans who were awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor during the Civil War, and he was the first Black Texan to earn the medal. He was born into slavery in either Carthage or Austin, Texas, in 1844. After enlisting in the United States Army in 1863, he rose to the rank of regimental sergeant major and led his regiment after all its white officers were wounded or killed.

Following his bravery on the field, Holland was promoted to captain, but the War Department refused the commission on grounds of his race. In 1865, Holland patrolled the lowlands of North Carolina, captured Confederate guerrilla fighters, freed enslaved people in accordance with the Emancipation Proclamation.

To learn more, please visit: https://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/entries/holland-milton-m

09/28/2021

A tale of bravery and an example of systemic racism. 🇺🇸

On this day in 1918, two United States soldiers are mortally wounded during the Meuse Argonne Offensive. Both soldiers were recommended for a Medal of Honor, but each of those recommendations took an unusual path.

Indeed, a century later, the issue is not completely resolved. Corporal Freddie Stowers finally received his Medal in 1991, but Private Burton Holmes never received one. Efforts to upgrade his Distinguished Service Cross are ongoing.

Stowers and Holmes were both soldiers in the 371st Infantry Regiment, a segregated regiment that served during World War I. “It remained in line for over three months,” historian Emmett J. Scott relates, “holding first the Avocourt and later the Verrières. . . . [The regiment] was then taken out of line and thrown into the great September offensive in the Champagne.”

That great offensive was the known as the Meuse Argonne Offensive, and it was part of the final Allied push to end the war.

On September 28, the 371st attacked Côte 188, a heavily fortified hill in the Champagne Marne Sector of France. Barbed wire ran all around the enemy fortifications, but our soldiers got past the barbed wire and began to close in on the Germans.

Just then, the Germans came out of trenches with their hands in the air. It appeared that they were going to surrender—except then they didn’t. It was a trick! As the Americans came out into the open, the enemy soldiers sprang back into position and opened fire.

The move proved devastating. More than half of the American company was lost within a matter of minutes.

Stowers began crawling forward through enemy fire, leading his squad toward the first enemy trench. “After fierce fighting,” Stowers’s citation describes, “the machine-gun position was destroyed and the enemy soldiers were killed.”

Stowers turned towards the second trench line and encouraged his men to come with him. By this point, he was mortally wounded, but he kept going and kept encouraging his men until he had no more to give. Stowers died before the squad reached the second trench, but his bravery had been enough. His company continued its attack, and Americans would ultimately take the hill.

But what about Holmes? He, too, was present at the attack on Hill 188. He was soon wounded, and his rifle was put out of commission. Nevertheless, he “returned to the company’s headquarters of his own volition,” one of his officers described, “got a reserve automatic rifle, went back and fired with it on the enemy until he was killed. This happened under heavy machine gun and shell fire.”

Remember, Holmes was already wounded. He could have stayed in relative safety, but he chose to return.

Both men were recommended for the Medal of Honor, but Holmes received a Distinguished Service Cross instead. Stowers’s paperwork was lost for decades, but he finally received a Medal in 1991.

There are some who worry that Holmes was awarded a Cross, rather than a Medal, because of the color of his skin. They continue to advocate for Holmes’s Cross to be upgraded to a Medal.

On the other hand, he “was given the Distinguished Service Cross, which they don’t hand out freely then or today,” as noted by Michael Knapp of the American Battle Monuments Commission.

“These guys were victimized, but they were not victims in their minds,” said ABMC’s Gerald Torrence. “That’s why they would step up for something bigger than themselves and put their lives on the line and their blood on the line. They were not victims in their minds.”

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If you enjoy these history posts, please see my note below. :)

Gentle reminder: History posts are copyright © 2013-2021 by Tara Ross. I appreciate it when you use the shar e feature instead of cutting/pasting.

09/28/2021

Meet Douglas Munro. Semper Paratus!🇺🇸

*** Medal of Honor Monday! 🇺🇸🇺🇸 ***

On this day in 1942, a United States Coast Guardsman gives his life for a detachment of Marines. Signalman First Class Douglas Munro’s sacrifice would save the lives of hundreds of Marines, including then-Lieutenant Colonel Lewis B. “Chesty” Puller.

Munro would be posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his action. He is the only member of the Coast Guard to receive the Medal to date.

We hear much about the risks that our Marines, soldiers, pilots, and sailors took during World War II, but we hear much less about another branch of the armed forces: The Coast Guard was critical to the war effort, too. It carried troops and supplies overseas. It performed antisubmarine patrols. It engaged in search and rescue operations. It transported Marines and soldiers to and from various insertion points in the Pacific.

Which is exactly what Munro was doing on September 27, 1942, during the Battle of Guadalcanal.

Munro was then in charge of several Coast Guard Landing Craft vessels, tasked with dropping off three companies of Marines at Point Cruz, by the Matanikau River. The Marines intended to establish an inland patrol base there.

Except conditions at Point Cruz were much worse than previously believed. The Marines were in trouble, and they needed to be extracted. Munro wasn’t about to leave those men behind. He volunteered to go back.

“Volunteers were called for,” Lt. Commander D.H. Dexter would later tell Munro’s parents, “and, true to the highest traditions of the Coast Guard and also to traditions with which you imbued your son, he was among the first to volunteer and was put in charge of the detail.”

The Coast Guard came under attack almost immediately. Munro promptly directed five landing craft toward shore so they could pick up the Marines who were already there. But the Marines in the rear guard were still struggling to get to the boats. Munro responded swiftly, moving his own boat between the landing craft and the beachhead.

In essence, he was turning himself into a shield, taking incoming fire, so that the Marines would have time to finish their evacuation.

It was a brave thing to do. Munro would have known that his boat wasn’t especially well protected. “Munro’s Higgin’s boat had a plywood hull, it was slow, vulnerable to small arms fire, and was armed only with two air-cooled .30 caliber Lewis machine guns,” the United States Coast Guard Historian’s Office reports. Nevertheless, Munro took his small boat and turned it into a shield for the 500 Marines who were trying to flee.

Unfortunately, Munro was fatally hit just as the final Marines were escaping to safety. Reportedly, he had time to ask one last question before he died. He wanted to know: “Did they get off?”

Even as he lay dying, Munro was thinking about the Marines.

Selfless. Heroic. Brave. How blessed America is to have had heroes such as these.

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If you enjoy these history posts, please see my note below. :)

Gentle reminder: History posts are copyright © 2013-2021 by Tara Ross. I appreciate it when you use the shar e feature instead of cutting/pasting.

09/26/2021

America’s other Mothers Day. We honor the sacrifices endured by these Moms and their families. 🇺🇸

Today, we honor the immeasurable sacrifices of our Gold Star family members who have lost a son, daughter, or loved one in service to our nation. We recognize their unyielding strength and courage on Gold Star Mother's and Family's Day.

Read some Gold Star Mothers stories on our blog at https://vvmf.wordpress.com/tag/gold-star-mothers/.

09/24/2021

Gold Star Mothers. 🇺🇸

During this weekend of , we continue saluting all Gold Star Families and especially Gold Star Mothers.

In 1936, the last Sunday in September was designated to honor the women whose sons and daughters gave their lives defending the United States of America.

Here, we honor American Gold Star Mothers, those from wars of the past and more recent conflicts. We particularly honor our grandmothers — the women whose sons who grew to be our fathers and America’s fallen heroes in the Vietnam War.

Over the next three day, we look forward to sharing this tribute to those who built — our nation’s Gold Star heritage and tradition — Gold Star Mothers!

09/23/2021

Are you a veteran in need of support in your life transitions? We are here to help, whatever your life goal is.
Sign up at http://thevabc.com/what-we-offer/the-launch-pad/ and we will contact you immediately!
It is a free service for our veterans of Bristol County, as always!

The three-headed monster we must now defeat: mental illness, stigma, and su***de 09/21/2021

The three-headed monster we must now defeat: mental illness, stigma, and su***de

The three-headed monster we must now defeat: mental illness, stigma, and su***de In looking back, I have often wondered, how was my bipolar missed for so many years by me, my family, and the Army?

10th anniversary of DADT repeal a good time to reflect on victory of facts over fear 09/21/2021

10th anniversary of DADT repeal a good time to reflect on victory of facts over fear

10th anniversary of DADT repeal a good time to reflect on victory of facts over fear It is easy to forget the weight of emotional, aggressive misinformation that had to be overcome.

LGBT vets with other than honorable discharges will get VA benefits under new plan 09/21/2021

LGBT vets with other than honorable discharges will get VA benefits under new plan

Spread the word. 🇺🇸

LGBT vets with other than honorable discharges will get VA benefits under new plan Department officials will announce the plan on Monday, which includes a review of service records to see if individuals' eligibility for benefits should be approved.

09/17/2021

Please take time today and every day to remember and honor our prisoners of war, as well as those who proudly served yet never returned home. They will never be forgotten

Capitol Police request National Guard support for Sept. 18 rally backing Jan. 6 rioters 09/16/2021

Capitol Police request National Guard support for Sept. 18 rally backing Jan. 6 rioters

BSU Mass. National Guard students, if you are deployed for this, or any other mission, be sure to notify Brian Duchaney in the BSU Veterans Center. 🇺🇸

Capitol Police request National Guard support for Sept. 18 rally backing Jan. 6 rioters The Pentagon could not say what kind of support the National Guard would be lending to the Capitol Police.

Opinion | The Afghan War Took an Awful Toll. I Would Still Serve Again. 09/15/2021

Opinion | The Afghan War Took an Awful Toll. I Would Still Serve Again.

Opinion | The Afghan War Took an Awful Toll. I Would Still Serve Again. It’s not a surprise that many American veterans are highly cynical about these wars. We are also conflicted about our own service.

Be Aware of This GI Bill Surprise That May Hurt Your Wallet 08/31/2021

Be Aware of This GI Bill Surprise That May Hurt Your Wallet

BSU Vets, if this applies to you be sure to check in with the Vet Center and with Financial Aid.

Be Aware of This GI Bill Surprise That May Hurt Your Wallet Be aware - you may have to pay the school before the VA pays you!

08/28/2021

Sgt. Rosario attended BSU before joining the Marines. The BSU community grieves with her family and fellow Marines. 🇺🇸

USMC Sgt. Johanny Rosario, a daughter of Lawrence, was killed in the su***de bombing in Kabul. Sending my love and prayers to her family and community. We are forever grateful for her service and sacrifice for our country.

Education Dept. to Cancel Student Loan Interest Retroactively For 47,000 Service Members 08/25/2021

Education Dept. to Cancel Student Loan Interest Retroactively For 47,000 Service Members

Not sure if any BSU vets are affected by this, but good to know.

Education Dept. to Cancel Student Loan Interest Retroactively For 47,000 Service Members FundingEducation Dept. to Cancel Student Loan Interest Retroactively For 47,000 Service MembersAug 20, 2021The U.S. Department of Education announced that it will retroactively waive student loan interest held by more than 47,000 current and former active-duty service members. Under federal law, mil...

US WWII veteran reunites with Italians he saved as children 08/25/2021

US WWII veteran reunites with Italians he saved as children

Martin Adler did not fire his weapon when most of us would have. Generations of this family owe their lives to that courageous decision.

US WWII veteran reunites with Italians he saved as children It was a happy ending to a story that could easily have been a tragedy.

Troop, family sacrifices in Afghanistan not in vain 08/25/2021

Troop, family sacrifices in Afghanistan not in vain

"Their spirit of voluntary, noble, and selfless service is the cornerstone of our freedom and the American experiment. Let’s go out of our way today to thank our veterans and their families. Let’s make a special effort to comfort those who may be in pain. And let’s forever honor those who keep us free."

Troop, family sacrifices in Afghanistan not in vain We must remind them gently and respectfully that the answer is no — that the value of their deeds over the last 20 years can never be diminished.

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