Medina County Veterans Service Office

Following the Civil War, Medina was called to help soldiers and their families who were in need of assistance. Times were hard for soldiers coming back from the war and it was their need that led to the establishment of county buildings in 14 different states. These buildings, mostly in the Northern part of America, came about as a part of the Soldiers and Sailors Act.

Over the course of many wars from the Civil War to today, veterans’ need for aid has always been around. One specific need came from veterans in Medina who came home from the Vietnam War. Some veterans like Alvin L. Dickenson came back from the Vietnam War after coming in contact with Agent Orange. After being exposed to Agent Orange, he had to undergo an expensive biopsy and was diagnosed with prostate cancer. Alvin Dickenson’s experience with cancer was expensive and painful and it took a toll on his family as they struggled to pay their daily bills. Men like Alvin Dickenson could have gotten aid by going to what stands as the Medina County Veterans Service Office today. There, he could have been assisted in filing claims against the Department of Veterans Affairs for his prostate cancer due to exposure and been given assistance in getting healthcare for his illnesses.

In 1941, after World War Two, men like Boone were provided a maximum of five dollars a month from the Soldiers’ Relief Commission. This amount was significantly less than men like Rumph, who was allotted 25 dollars a month. This is because single men like Boone are given less than men who have a wife and children like Rumph. Another reason for a difference in financial aid provided to men after wars like World War Two is the state that the men were in. Men who had come home to find their farms or houses destroyed were in greater need of help and therefore provided with more money.

Another case after World War Two of a family in need involves brothers Jim and Bob Anderson. These two brothers worked 33 different jobs to support their family because their father, a World War One veteran, was crippled by rheumatoid arthritis. It was tough for the two boys two provide enough income to take care of their parents, their sister, and themselves, but by persevering they were able to sustain their family. It is cases like these that justify the need of buildings established for veteran aid purposes. These buildings have been created to help soldiers and their families and are the reason why the Medina County Veterans Service Office stands today.

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James Anderson

James Anderson

In the case of James and Bob Anderson, providing for their family would have been made easier by applying to the MCVSO for financial assistance. They may have been able to assist him and his family in rent and mortgage payments, utilities like gas, electric, and water, food, personal hygiene items, or even certain medical expenses. Image Courtesy of The Medina Gazette View File Details Page

Widowed Women

Widowed Women

Wives of veterans, such as Dorothy E. Nichols, can seek refuge at the Medina County Veterans Service Office in addition to the soldiers that come. Even if widows such as Dorothy Nichols didn't fight in the war, the MCVSO recognize their husband's sacrifice and service to the Untied States and provide aid as they see fit. Aid may also be provided to children of veterans who need it or adults who were born with a disability due to their parents involvement in the war. Image Courtesy of the Spinelli Family Archive View File Details Page

Plaque Commemorating the Start of the MCVSO

Plaque Commemorating the Start of the MCVSO

During the Civil War, life was hard for many individuals. There was a shortage of labor on farms with so many men at war and this forced men who were too old to go to war, women, and even children to step up and tend to life at home. After the war, life for many didn't improve because of the loss of a family member or the return of a family member who was now injured and unable to work. Many veterans returned to their homes defeated and weary. Some returned to find their homes abandoned or their wives and children dead. In this time, soldiers and their families were in need of assistance and it was this need that drove the creation of the Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act. Image Courtesy of the Spinelli Family Archive View File Details Page

Robert W. Bertram

Robert W. Bertram

Veteran, Robert W. Bertram, was one of many soldiers to come back form the Persian Gulf War with PTSD. Post-traumatic stress disorder affects thousands of veterans and on average 50% of those veterans do not seek treatment. Those with PTSD may also have other mental illnesses such as depression and should seek help immediately. The MCVSO coordinates with the Westside Vet Center to provide a counselor one day a week in Medina's community where any eligible veteran is welcome to come. This is an especially good service for men like Robert Bertram to seek help for their PTSD. Image Courtesy of the Spinelli Family Archives View File Details Page

Korean War Memorial

Korean War Memorial

The Korean War, which is commonly referred to as 'The Forgotten War' is overlooked by many today. This is because it came right after World War Two and was quickly overshadowed by the Vietnam War. At the Medina County Veterans Service Office there is a belief that all veterans should be honored. It is for this reason that a medals ceremony was held to present Korean War veterans with medals. They recognize every veteran and understand that these soldiers were not chosen by a draft, but that they had the courage to step up and serve their country. For this reason and many more, the MCVSO makes it their job to let every veteran know they are deeply appreciated. Image Courtesy of Spinelli Family Archives View File Details Page

Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery

Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery

Many veterans lay down their lives to allow America the freedom that it has today. At the Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery, a part of the National Cemetery Administration, they understand the sacrifice that soldiers are willing to make and it is their goal to provide proper burial for veterans. It is important to honor veterans today because not only do they make a sacrifice when they volunteer to fight in a war, but even after they return, many veterans are active in the community. Whether it's volunteering or actively working in police, fire, and health care services, veterans make a difference in our community and it's appropriate to honor them. The MCVSO understands this, and even if they can no longer provide help to veterans who have passed away, eligible family members who apply can still receive aid from the MCVSO. Image Courtesy of Spinelli Family Archives View File Details Page

Audio

One Family that the MCVSO Helped

Director/ Service Officer, Edward Zackery, tells a story about one family that the Medina County Veterans Service Office helped get back on their feet during a time of need. View File Details Page

Why We Should Honor Our Veterans

Retired U.S. army member, Edward Zackery, shares why he feels we should honor our veterans. View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Janae Spinelli, “Medina County Veterans Service Office,” Discover Medina, accessed April 29, 2017, http://discovermedina.org/items/show/249.

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