Minutes – April 17, 2014


                              Sierra Nevada Chapter #989

                               Vietnam Veterans of America

                                                       P.O. Box 20921

                                                  Reno, NV. 89515-0921

Minutes, 17 April 2014


Call to Order was at 18:00, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance, invocation offered by Chapter Chaplain Jim Kelly, and a moment of silence for POWs and MIAs.


Roll Call.  All chapter officers were present.

President:John Sheets

Vice President:Ron Reinhardt

Secretary:Michial Nolan

Treasurer:Gary Fink

Sergeant at Arms:Norm Graham

Attendance: 33 members, 5 guests



Elizabeth Duncan, Executive Director of American Heroes Sleep Project.  This organization offers “dream pillows” free to veterans, especially those with PTSD because they seem to help people sleep without nightmares.  Ms. Duncan said the pillows, 5” by 7” pouches infused with a mix of herbs, have been around since the 16th century.  These pillows are offered at no cost to current military veterans, police, and fire fighters, but donations are accepted.  Interested parties can learn more at americanheroessleepproject.org.


Doctors Petoro and Freeman.  Dr. Petoro’s purpose in addressing the meeting was to call for healthy veterans to create a support network for those in need.  Dr. Petoro introduced himself as a veteran, drafted in 1974.  Dr. Petoro is trained as a cancer specialist and as a blood specialist.  He began his medical career in the VA system, initially treating WWII and Korean veterans.  After a career in private practice, he has returned to the VA and has been in the local system for the past 3 years.  Dr. Freeman did not speak at this meeting.
Dr. Petoro stated half the veterans he treats live alone, but statistically people live ~20% longer if married.  He stated cancer patients don’t do as well without a support system.  Due to the rigors of cancer treatment, Dr. Petoro’s patients are highly susceptible to infection.  The principal symptom of infection in older patients is confusion

Dr. Petoro called for veterans to support veterans in need by volunteering to create a support network, either by active participation, through a telephone tree, or by some other method.


New Members.  President John Sheets called for new or prospective members to be recognized, but none responded.


Minutes.  Hard copies of the minutes were at the meeting and were distributed electronically to all members prior to the meeting.  President John Sheets called for exceptions.

Motion.  Eric Hobson moved to accept the minutes as presented, seconded by Mike Miller (unanimous).


Treasurer’s Report.  Treasurer Gary Fink presented the treasurer’s report.
Motion.  Pat Moran moved to accept the Treasurer’s report, seconded by Norm Graham (unanimous).


Petty Cash.  President John Sheets presented the Petty Cash report.  Eric Hobson identified a typo and John stated he would submit an amended report.

President’s Report.  Not formally presented.


Board of Directors Bylaws Committee.  John Sheets announced the Bylaws Committee is making good progress in a careful proofreading and revision of the chapter bylaws and expects to have documents ready for chapter review in two to three months.


Outreach Committee.  It was announced the next outreach would be held at the Kietzke Walmart on 17 May.  The outreach originally scheduled for 19 April was cancelled because the Girl Scouts were given the date.

Horticulture Committee.  No report.

Vietnam Memorial.  No report


Northern Nevada Veterans’ Coalition.  William Drummond reported arrangements have been made for three fallen veterans: Brent Butler, Tom Tilton, and Shag Cooper.  The Patriot Guard Riders and 989 chapter members will escort Brent Butler’s friends and family to the Fernley Veterans’ Cemetery, departing the Alamo Truck Stop at 12:00 on Friday 25 April.  Tom Tilton’s services will be held 10:00 at the Fernley Masonic Lodge.  The Patriot Guard Riders will escort the procession to the cemetery’s entrance where they will meet a flag line.  Shag Cooper of Fallon will be interred on the morning of Friday, 18 April.

The Honor Flight will be coming home 27 April at 15:00, bringing out troops home.


Chapter 388 Report.  Chapter 388 incoming president Frank Reynolds and vice president Tom Spencer were introduced to the chapter.  Frank Reynolds stated the objective of his term will be “Veterans First, Veterans First, Veterans First.”  John Dickinson announced Frank Reynolds and Tom Spencer will swear in new officers elected at this meeting.

Nevada State Council Report.  No report.


Old Business.

DAV Program Ad.  A picture of the chapter Color Guard flanking Gov. Brian Sandoval was circulated and will be included in the Chapter 989 quarter-page ad in the Disabled American Veterans banquet program.

Adopt a Vet.  President John Sheets read letter from Linda J. Haigh, founder of Adopt a Vet Dental Program, now part of the Community Health Alliance.  Ms. Haigh thanked the chapter for donating $100/month for the next 12 months in support of dental care services for needy vets.


Motion.  John Dickinson moved to pay one year of AVVA membership dues ($20 each) for each of four scholarship winners, seconded by Bill Baines (unanimous).


New Business.
Funded Memberships.  Eric Hobson announced an anonymous benefactor committed to pay the first year’s membership for all first time members recruited during the chapter’s 2014-2015 fiscal year.


Flag Lighting.  New flag lighting, motion sensor lighting, and new code-compliant wiring on the west side of The Bunker has been installed, and a bill for $277.49 has been submitted to the chapter.

Motion.  William Schaeffer moved the chapter should pay the bill, seconded by Mike Miller (unanimous).


Collection for Disabled Veteran.  Vice President Ron Reinhardt reported the desperate financial circumstances of Mark Willis, a disabled veteran living on SSI/SSDI in the old Oddfellows nursing/retirement.  Dee Gardner stated she would donate a television to Mr. Willis, who presently does not own one.  Ron requested of the chapter, one time only, to pass the hat to defray immediate expenses facing Mr. Willis.  The chapter contributed $310, entrusted to Ron Reinhardt for appropriate distribution.


IRS Recommendations.  Included in tonight’s documentation was a set of recommendations planned by the IRS to assist 501(c)(19) organizations in meeting the membership documentation requirements (see this meeting’s documentation packet).

Hot August Nights Color Guard Invitation.  John Dickinson reported receiving an invitation from Rich Crombie, MC/DJ at the Hot August Nights Sparks venue, requesting to explore the possibility of the chapter Color Guard be honored by leading one of the nightly cruises.  John will report further developments for this opportunity.

19:01 – 19:16

Break.  The meeting took a break before moving on to the principal agenda item.

Election.  John Dickinson took the chair in order to conduct the election of chapter officers.  He began by announcing changes in the ballot:

-Ron Reinhardt withdrew as candidate for Vice President.

-Bill Baines withdrew as candidate for Vice President.

-Bill Schaeffer was nominated and seconded for the office of Vice President.

Motion.  Dee Gardner moved, since each office had only one candidate, the chapter dispense with voting and elect the slate of officers by acclimation, seconded by Norm Graham (unanimous).


Election.  The following slate of officers was elected by acclimation:

-PresidentJohn Sheets

-Vice PresidentWilliam Schaeffer

-SecretaryLinda Dickinson

-TreasurerEric Hobson


Installation.  Chapter 388 President Frank Reynolds swore in the new slate of officers.


President John Sheets announced Norm Graham would continue as Sergeant at Arms and Jim Kelly would continue as chapter Chaplain.


Good of the Chapter

Dennis Espinosa.  Chaplain Jim Kelly circulated a note received from Ladonna Espinosa, widow of Dennis:

Please extend my thanks to all!  It was heart touching to read all of the notes,  

Dennis would have been touched by your kindness.



Birthdays.  The following members celebrated birthdays this month:

William Baines, David Billau, Tony Bowser, Jean Gerrero

Jeff Gundersen, Jay Jamison, Tyler Lubsen, Robert Marshall

Roger Sanchez, James Wallace, Gerald Wittman


MotionBill Baines moved to adjourn, seconded by Mike Miller (unanimous).  Meeting adjourned at 19:24.