Flag retirements set

Several organizations are conducting or hosting flag- retirement/disposal ceremonies on Flag Day, which is Thursday.

They are:

Lowellville American Legion Post 247, 5:30 p.m. at city hall, followed by an installation of officers dinner.

AMVETS Post 44 and the Mahoning Veterans Memorial, Canfield Fairgrounds, 6 p.m., at the memorial. Flags can be dropped off any time at the memorial or at AMVETS Post 44, 305 Elm St., Struthers. Boy Scouts will help with the program. For information, call 330-533-1522 or 330-755-3333.

Shepherd of the Valley- Howland, 4100 North River Road, is collecting torn or faded American flags through Thursday for disposal at a 7 p.m. retirement ceremony conducted by a local Boy Scout troop. For information, call Traci Luther at 330-856-9232, ext. 2614.

Training for benefits


The Family and Community Resource Center, 134 S. Market St., has completed training for the Accessing Veterans Education Benefits Program through the Ohio Benefit Bank.

The program will assist more than 900,000 veterans in or returning to Ohio. The benefits make education affordable but also may assist with housing and stipends depending on the benefit chosen.

Programs available include requests for military records; post 9/11 GI Bill Education Benefits and Yellow Ribbon; Montgomery GI-Bill active duty and selected service; Reserve Education Assistance; Veterans Education Assistance Program; and vocational rehabilitation and employment. Each program has specific criteria for eligibility and time constraints for the education program.

Interested veterans should call the FCRC Community Center at 330-420-0044 for information or to schedule an appointment.

Retraining assistance


The Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Labor is launching the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) on July 1.

The program offers 12 months of training assistance to veterans who are at least 35 but no older than 60, are unemployed, received an other than dishonorable discharge and are not eligible for any other VA education-benefit program. Also, the veteran must not be in receipt of VA compensation due to being unemployable and not be enrolled in a federal or state job-training program.

Participants must be enrolled in a VA-approved program of education offered by a community college or technical school. The program must lead to an associate degree, noncollege degree or certification and train the veteran for a high-demand occupation.

For information or assistance with the application process, contact the Mahoning County Veterans Service Commission at 330-740-2450.


Hammar is Lt. Col.


Army Lt. Col. George L. Hammar IV, son of George and Lydia Hammar of 2213 Burma Drive, was promoted recently to his current rank while assigned to the 4th Battlefield Coordination Detachment, 3rd Army at Shaw Air Force Base, S.C.

He has been selected to command the 3rd Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment in Hawaii.

Hammar, a 1989 graduate of Chaney High School and a 1995 graduate of Youngstown State University, previously served during Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. He is married to the former Joy Hawley of Dodge City, Kan. The couple has two children.


Serving in Afghanistan

Navy Constructionman Anna L. Parcher, daughter of Deborah A. Foltz of Jamestown, Pa., and Mark E. Parcher, of North Lawrence, Ohio, and Petty Officer 2nd Class William M. Ferenczy, son of Linda L. and William J. Ferenczy of North Jackson, are deployed to Afghanistan.

They are manning defenses and constructing a compound in the Lashkar Gah District to support Marines who will advise Afghan Uniformed Police and prepare them for a transition upon the eventual draw-down of U.S. and allied forces.

Parcher, a 2010 graduate of Jamestown, Pa., Area High School, joined the Navy in August 2010.

Ferenczy, a 2005 graduate of Northshore High School of Slidell, La., joined the Navy in March 2009.


Field artillery course

Army Pfc. Robert L. Wright Jr., a 2006 graduate of Liberty High School and a 2011 graduate of the University of Tampa in Florida, and Army Pvt. Nickolis S. Reed, a 2009 graduate of Hickory High School, Hermitage, Pa., have graduated from the Basic Field Artillery Cannon Crewmember Advanced Individual Training course at Fort Sill, Okla. Reed is the son of Katherine E. Stevenson of Sharon, Pa., and Joseph A. Blaze of Hermitage, Pa.


Air Force: Airman 1st Class James E. Jackson II (Salem High School, ’06, and Bradford School, Pittsburgh, ’08), son of James Jackson and Jill Stallsmith, both of Salem; Reserve Airman 1st Class Solange C. Nevels (The Rayen School, Youngstown, ’03, and Westminster College, New Wilmington, Pa., ’08), daughter of Joy Nevels sister of Tamika Nevels, both of Youngstown.

Army: Pfc. Jonathan Kling (Lowellville High School, ’11), son of Alane and Gary Kling of Youngstown.

Marine Corps: Pvt. Travail J. Donaldson, son of Alexis Tucker of Boardman; Pvt. James B. Kubeck (West Branch High School, Beloit, ’11); Pvt. Ethan M. Huostal, son of Sandra M. and Martin J. Huostal, Hermitage, Pa.; Pvt. Gage B. Elwood (Warren G. Harding High School, Warren, ’11); Pfc. Ian P. Pass, son of Linda L. Pass of Hubbard and Rex T. Pass of Pittsburgh; Pfc. Gary N. Bass Jr., son of Joyce A. Bass and Gary N. Bass Sr., both of Girard; Pfc. Amber M. Carroll (Lincoln High School, Ellwood City, Pa., ’11); Pvt. Brandon T. Rowland (Lakeview High School, Cortland, ’11), son of Kimberly A. Shaw of Hubbard and Jeffrey J. Rowland Sr. of Pensacola, Fla.

Navy: Seaman Recruit Nicole L. Freeman (East Palestine High School, ’11), daughter of Tina and James L. Freeman of East Palestine; Seaman Recruit Cortland J. Burns (West Branch High School, Beloit, ’11), son of Jeniffer J. and Charles W. Burns of Beloit; Seaman Anthony J. Davis (Warren G. Harding High School, Warren, ’11), son of Gary S. Davis of Warren; Seaman Apprentice Tyler M. Lucy (Joseph Badger High School, Kinsman, ’11), son of Michelle L. Lucy of Kinsman and David M. Lucy of Hubbard; Seaman Patrick F. King (Chaney High School, ’07), son of Gina M. and Jerald T. King of Youngstown; Seaman Nicklas A. Lyon (Howland High School, ’05, and Mercyhurst College, Erie, Pa., ’09), son of Diana L. and John A. Lyon of Warren; Seaman Recruit Gabriel T. Jaques (Jefferson Area High School, Jefferson, ’11), son of Lori A. and Thomas J. Jaques of Jefferson.

Items of note for the Armed Forces Digest can be sent to The Vindicator, Regional Desk, P.O. Box 780, Youngstown 44501-0780, or emailed to

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