Why Veterans and Civilians Should Share Their Faith Journey Together

When we were planning our Veteran Christian group in 2017 one of our Advisory Council members asked an obvious question, that I didn’t at first understand. He asked, “Would it would be appropriate for me to attend since I did not serve in the military.” I didn’t understand because at Lone Star Veterans Association our motto for events is that they’re fun, positive, and inclusive. We have focused on inclusivity recently because we were founded with a focus on Iraq and Afghanistan combat veterans but decided to expand our focus to all eras of service and to civilian supporters. It was at that point that we discussed how important it was for this group to focus on not just attracting Christian Veterans, but any Christian that wants to hear a veteran share his or her faith journey.

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Why I Support LGBT Vets, and You Should Too

Why I Support LGBT Veterans, and You Should Too

They served our country. Period.

If you need more convincing or would just like to learn more about our LGBT Veteran community keep reading. But first and foremost, remember that these are men and women who have served our country in our armed forces to provide the liberties and freedoms we all cherish.

Full disclosure, I do not have a long history of engagement with the LGBT Community in Houston or inside the military. Before we launched a Veteran LGBT group I had a few LGBT friends that I was connected to mostly through our engagement as business owners in Houston's small business ecosystem locally. I never had strong feelings for or against the LGBT community, and honestly didn't know much more than I had learned from watching Modern Family.

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2017 Year in Review

 

We're excited to share an update and results from our programs in 2017.


Third Quarter Calendar

LSVA would like to challenge you to come out to an event and bring a friend.  Our mission is to build the Veteran Community - we need you to do that! Come on Out!

Download 2017 3rd Quarter Calendar Here!


Sponsor Our Newsletter

We are looking for a couple good sponsors to help us print our Newsletter. We would like to take it to events with us and educate others on what we do at LSVA. If you would like to advertise to Veterans and help us with our mission, please contact Connie at connie.gray@lonestarveterans.org.

Rates for Sponsoring (Quarterly - 4 Ads):

Full Page Ad           $1000.00
Half Page Ad          $500.00
Quarter Page Ad     $250.00


Did You Know?

Ever been to Jones Hall for a concert or seen The Nutcracker at Christmastime there? Its namesake, Jesse Jones, while not a native Texan, arrived in the Lone Star State at age 24 and left an imprint on Houston like no other citizen before or since. Instrumental in building the Houston Ship Channel, surrounding wharves and piers to create an international port, ownership of the Houston Chronicle, and the city’s largest radio stations, Jones sculpted Houston’s industry and skyline and enlivened and funded its art institutions, universities, and health care centers, not as a tycoon, but more of a grandfather to the city of Houston. He gave almost everything to Houston Endowment, a foundation instrumental in helping improve the lives of the people of greater Houston. Most notably, he went to Washington as an appointed official and provided the pragmatic leadership that salvaged capitalism during the Great Depression and militarized industry in time to fight and win World War II.

The Eddie, as mentioned on page 8, is an annual surf contest on the North Shore; very famous.  Eddie Aikau was a lifeguard and legendary Hawaiian surfer who saved over 500 lives.  He was lost paddling from a leaking canoe originally headed to Molokai, but he tried paddling on his surfboard, sans lifevest to make better time, to Lanai to get help for the rest of the boat crew.   Everyone was rescued, but Eddie was never found.  His heroics then and as a lifeguard spawned a phrase, Eddie Would Go, because he wouldn’t hesitate to venture into any kind of situation to help someone.

Did you know the only item inside the Gold Ball Atop a Flagpole is the bolt that attaches the ball to the rest of the pole? No razor blade, pistol, ammunition, matches, or pennies, but the myths and stories endure, fiercely defended.

Please submit your items - we would love to share them!


Name our Newsletter

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This Newsletter is being written to provide and share information, tell our stories, entertain and aid the veteran community. We would like to have your input. This is just a beginning and we hope to improve each quarter. We would appreciate any assistance we can get.

With that said, we don’t know what to call it. What do you think? Submit your ideas and we will vote on them. I will compile a list and post to FaceBook. LSVA {what]? Send your submissions to connie.gray@lonestarveterans.org.
The winning submission will win a wooden flag made by Patty O’ Furniture, and a set of LSVA Logo Dog Tags.


Vettes for Vets

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On a sunny morning in May, Sugarland’s Constellation Field was a lot louder than at any Skeeters game as nearly 100 Corvettes filled the parking lot, engines roaring. Gathered for the day were just as many veterans ready to be paired up with car owners from various Corvette clubs around the Houston area and beyond. After coffee and kolaches and a morning prayer, there was lot’s of ogling the sleek, shiny cars and plenty of camaraderie before pairing up for the drive to MSR Racetrack in Angleton. The show-stopping caravan rumbled along the 35 mile drive, drawing envious stares and raucous cheers. Upon arrival at the racetrack, each Corvette driver treated their veteran co-pilot to several spins around the snaky, curving track, while friends, family, and volunteers cheered everyone on from the observation decks high above. After swapping stories and experiences over finger-licking barbecue and cold iced tea, drivers and veterans saddled up for the spirited journey back to Constellation Field.

Members of the Corvette Owners Club of Houston, the Sam Houston Corvette Club, the NAACC - National African American Corvette Club, the San Jacinto Corvette Club, plus two Corvette owners from as far away as Oklahoma (!) donated their time and gleaming, thundering rides to give veterans a thrilling experience on a sunny spring day. Many of the Corvette owners were veterans themselves, which lent a feeling of a sort of reunion throughout the day. But the experience wasn’t only the thrill of the ride; the camaraderie and conversations, too, were a big part of the magical day. The biggest question from Corvette owners and veterans alike was, “when is the next one?” So, who knows what shined the brightest that day - chrome and colorful chariots or the smiles of everyone gathered on what would otherwise be just another Saturday.

- Tanna Harris


We Love Our Volunteers

18403150_10158687499955486_7903645778732846511_n.jpgOn behalf of LSVA, I would like to thank you for all the Volunteer support we have received in the past few months. Without your hard work and support there would be no US!

We will have one off Volunteer opportunities that we will come across. Please be on the lookout for email updates from me.

#LSVACommunity

Asiah

asiah.coleman@lonestarveterans.org

Without the Committee Volunteers, we could not accomplish near what we have been achieving. We always have room for anyone that would like to get involved with Events or Marketing and PR. We meet over lunch hours at Combined Arms and have a lot to do with the big Veteran’s month Picnic coming up!

#LSVACommunity

Connie

connie.gray@lonestarveterans.org

IMG_5394.JPGCommittee Volunteers

I want to extend a special Thank You to our Committee Volunteers! We could not complete all that we are working on without the volunteers in our committees. We have a Marketing Committee, with a mission of establishing a consistent LSVA brand that creates a public awarementss of LSVA in a positive, quick, responding, informative way. We are working on this newsletter, a corporate video, social media, whatever we can improve in the LSVA Marketing/PR world.

We also have an Events Advisory Committee, with a mission of creating memorable events, including as many veterans and their families as possible, while raising funds to create more events. We are working on Operation Backpack, The Veteran’s Month Kick-off Picnic and Operation Lone Star Santa. We value the members of these committees, and have room for many more. We have a lot to do and appreciate all that want to help.

Volunteer Orientation

Come out and learn more about what is going on for veterans in Houston. We have some of the most innovation programming and organizations in the country serving and supporting the veteran community. This is a great chance to get some situational awareness on what is going on, and more importantly, how you can get involved.

It’s not just LSVA that needs volunteers; all non-profits need talented and passionate volunteers to fulfill our mission to build the veteran community and serve one another. This event is open to veterans of any era, family members, and civilians. The only requirement is that you are passionate about volunteering and supporting veterans.

Our desired end state is for the LSVA volunteer program to be a force multiplier for all organizations we work with and create a community of veteran leadership that is recognized statewide. Veterans are graduates of the greatest leadership training in the world’s greatest military; this is the first step in becoming servant leaders in your own community.

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Volunteer Concessions

We have begun working with Levy Restaurants and participating in the Volunteer Concessions at the Toyota Center and BBVA Compass Stadium. Funds raised during these events are going towards building our Volunteer Recognition Program. Here are the next events that we plan to participate in:

• Saturday July 8th – Houston Dash (BBVA)
• Saturday July 15th – Houston Dash/Kendrick Lamar Concert (BBVA/Toyota)
• Saturday July 29th – Houston Dynamo (BBVA) Spouse’s Group fundraiser

If you are interested in Volunteering for this event you will need to be TABC and Food handling certified, as well as a background check. LSVA will cover the cost of the certifications.

Volunteer Tuesdays

We will also begin training for our Volunteer Tuesdays and Volunteer From Home opportunities by reaching out to our new and existing members. We need to keep all of our members informed of our resources. We could use your help.

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From Boots to Elected Official

marquez.jpgWhen I decided to run for an elected office, I knew that it would be hard, and at times, I would have to step up my knowledge meter to a whole new level. I was elected as a Council Member for the City of Glen Rose on May 7, 2016, and for a whole year, I have dedicated myself to working hard and finding innovative ways to spark the volunteerism and ownership in the city. I am also trying to modernize the process of government and policy in a conservative manner.

I have put together a list of tips that a Military Veteran might need if the decision to run as an elected official is a go.

  1. Know why you are running and have a plan that includes objectives that are achievable.
  2. It is not a sprint, but a marathon. Don’t go guns a blazing, because you will be overcome with the just procedural information required to change policy and laws.
  3. When campaigning, know your audience and learn the lay of the land. People live in groups for a reason, most likely because of shared beliefs or culture.
  4. Be yourself, but a translated military veteran understands that less than about 8% percent of all living Americans have served in the military at some point in their lives.
  5. Walking and talking matters, social media is good, but you need to get out and make contact. Ask yourself how many people actively on social media actually vote.
  6. Remember you will represent all people in your area, this means you will come in contact with people that don’t like your views. Listen to them and keep an open mind, they might have good ideas.
  7. Wear comfortable shoes and always make yourself comfortable before you sit down for meetings.
  8. Before any speaking event, have a warm up session with someone that knows you, It will help you calm down and be better prepared.
  9. Lastly, I did not highlight my military service, but it will always be a part of me. Introduce yourself and if a citizen brings it up, be prepared to share one story that connects you to your objectives as an elected official. This helps a lot.

I have not decided to run a second term, but thought I would pass some information that could help in the future for someone out there that decides to run for an elected office. See you out there.


- Robert Marquez Jr.



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