Dec 19 2017

Limo-to-Lunch Combined Event

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FUMC Military Ministry held a combined event at Tony and Joes Seafood Restaurant on the Potomac in Georgetown. It was the first time we held an event with guests from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD, the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Washington DC., and the 6 Fisher Houses in Bethesda, MD and Washington DC. We had a group of 20 which included the FUMC sponsors (Ed and Allen) and our 2 long time Limo Drivers (Arthur and Guy). We were pleased to be able host Evette Fields-Matthews our Government events coordinator and friend from WRNMMC. Veterans from the Army, Navy and Marine Corps under medical care at WRNMMC & VA were hosted. We had a superb meal, wonderful fellowship & joyfully celebrated Christmas holiday, the Military and the 16th Anniversary of a Veteran family. The event while a great experience for all, was bittersweet. Tony & Joe’s has funded much of the costs of this event. for 3 years 8 months supporting 500 Veterans However, as is their practice, have moved to a new charity starting in 2018. We presented a Certificate  and letter to Tony & Joe’s for their years of support and we toasted their management & staff.  We all experienced a very fine time.

Nov 02 2017

DAR Community Service Award

Ed and Kerryn McMeans were presented the 2017 National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution Community Service Award on November 2, 2017. Pastor Bonney attended with the McMeans. The McMeans were recognized for their over 12 years of service to US Military wounded, ill and injured as well as their family and caregivers. FUMC was also commended for providing the 501c3 accounting for the Military Ministry Charity.

The Military Ministry also supports the FUMC Veterans who served in WW2, Korea, Vietnam, the Cold War and the Global War on Terror which continues today

The McMeans and other FUMC members who volunteer, Allen Kriskowski and Bill Spellings, have earned accolades from the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, the Fisher House Foundation and the Veterans Medical Center in DC. Over 1,700 Veterans and Families have been served over the years. Excerpt from the DAR recommendation follows:

What Military Men and Women and their Families/Caregivers say about FUMC Military Ministry.

  • Thanks so much. I haven’t had a break since I came to take care of my daughter. It was wonderful and I felt reenergized.
  • I love to get out and ‘smell’ the roses!
  • Thanks so much for the great outing. The lunch was great, but the fellowship was better.
  • Thank you for a wonderful time! Kristine and I had a blast, and we had the chicken for dinner! We’ve posted on Facebook and acknowledged FUMC for its generosity. You guys are awesome! –Anne-Marie
  • Thank you for giving us the opportunity to get away from the Hospital environment even for only a few hours. The relaxed conversations were wonderful. Steph and Floyd
  • Please let the Church know that we had an incredible day at Wolf Trap to see Disney in Concert. We are very for the beautiful opportunity and experience. It was a girl’s night out with Mom and the girls. –Tiffany Albavara, spouse.

What Walter Reed, the VA, and Fisher House Foundation Say About Our Support.

  • Department of Veteran Affairs: FUMC has united Fisher House families and Caregivers by relieving the financial and emotional strain of being away from home. This simple act of kindness goes a long way in bridging the generation gap and brings smiles to our Veterans’ and their families’ faces and lifting their spirits.
  • Walter Reed National Military Medical Center: We witness firsthand how valuable your chauffeured limousine and lunch is to patients and their families recovering at Walter Reed. Thank you FUMC and your Volunteers and financial donations for recognizing our men and women who serve our Nation.

Fisher House Foundation: We express our deepest appreciation to FUMC’s Military Ministry for the support of our military and veteran families in their time of need. Where there was despair, you have spread hope. Where there was darkness, you have shown light. Where there was sadness you have spread joy. You have shown our service men and women and their families that our nation appreciates their sacrifices and stands behind them. We commend your ministry and pray that God’s grace continues to fill your hearts

Jun 20 2017

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Limousine and Luncheon supporting Walter Reed National Medical Center (WRNMMC} and Bethesda Fisher Houses

FUMC Military Ministry’s latest luncheon event included 6 service members (4 Army, 1 USMC and 1 Navy), 2 Family caregivers and 6 months old Lily, daughter of the O’Connor family.

The group of 9 pictured above was accompanied by Charlie our Limo Driver and Ed McMeans the sponsor from Fairfax United Methodist Church.

Noteworthy, three of the guests are members of the Global United Methodist Church. They were encouraged to have the event sponsored by a Methodist Church.

Six service members from our group were undergoing treatment at WRNMMC for various illnesses & injuries.

A soldier mentioned that he needs a final leg surgery before he could pursue his desire to finish his military career. Our Marine showed his grit by leaving his wheel chair at the Fisher House and made the long walk from the limo to the restaurant and back. Semper Fi!

We were blessed by an uplifting story concerning the O’Connor family of 6 of whom 3 were able to attend and are pictured above. The 3 are: Navy serviceman Dan in the helmet, baby Lily and mom Cynthia.  Dan is being treated for TBI (reason for the Philly helmet other than to irritate National fans) and had just received great positive news about the status of his condition.  Dan hopes to finish his active duty Navy career.

The day was bright and sunny, the seafood hors d’oeuvres were especially delectable and the fellowship among all of us made for a cheerful outing.

And in case you were wondering, baby Lily was a perfect angel throughout

Jun 13 2017

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Limousine and Lunch for the Veterans Administration Medical Center
and Fisher House in Washington, D.C.

Our ‘Limo and Lunch’ event was held for 8 first-time ‘Limo Lunchers’. The group included 4 Military Service Veterans and 4 Caregivers. Our limo driver was the gregarious Irishman Hugh O’Brady and our FUMC escort was Allen Kriskowski. The lunch was held at the picturesque Tony and Joe’s Restaurant on ‘K’ Street in Georgetown overlooking the Potomac River, Kennedy Center and the infamous Watergate Complex.

  • Katrina Pena from Austin, Texas is the caregiver for her father, Gulf War Veteran US Marine Joseph Pena who is undergoing treatment. He was a ‘ranked’ USA wrestler in his younger days. Semper Fi.
  • Timothy Van de Heyde, a US Navy Veteran from Fort Lauderdale, Florida is receiving pain management treatment.
  • Shermyonne Jones is Mother and Caregiver to her US Air Force Veteran son William. He is receiving radiation and chemotherapy treatment.
  • Newton Snelson, a Korean War US Army Veteran from Marietta, Georgia is being treated at the VA Medical Center accompanied by his sister and caregiver Rozzie Bell.
  • Patricia Poggi is the caregiver for her son, US Navy Retired Commander, Matthew Poggi, who due to his medical condition, was unable to attend.  He is receiving treatment for multiple medial difficulties. Matthew is a Doctor of Radiation Oncology. While on active duty, Matthew was stationed at: The National Institute of Health, Walter Reed and at medical facilities located in San Diego, Washington DC and Los Angeles.  Patricia is a Doctor of Education. She and Matthew reside in Pleasant Valley, NY.

We had a great time on another beautiful, sunny day. Some took doggie bag deserts back to Fisher House and the Medical Center. All thoroughly enjoyed the atmosphere, service and food that are the trademarks of Tony and Joe’s Restaurant experience and were very appreciative of those who made the Limo and Lunch possible

May 16 2017

Limousine and Luncheon for Walter Reed National Medical Center (WRNMMC} and the five Bethesda Fisher Houses

The day was beautiful, food delectable, the fellowship inviting and the walk on the Potomac superb! Members of the group were under treatment for various injuries and illnesses. A soldier was recovering from knee operations due to an injury. Two soldiers were being treated for heart issues.

We were blessed by an uplifting story concerning the Meadows’ family of 4.

Andrew, the youngest in the family at 25, entered WRNMMC with kidney failure. Andrew’s older brother gave him his kidney. At the time we took them out, Andrew was doing as well as can be expected and his brother was about to head back home to get married. He had put off his wedding until he was healed and his brother was on his way back to good health.

This latest FUMC Military Ministry luncheon event included 6 service members (3 Army and 3 Navy), 2 Family caregivers, Brody a young son of two Navy Corpsmen, and a Retired Navy Nuclear Submarine Torpedoman.  This group of 10 was accompanied by Romy our Limo Driver and Ed McMeans the sponsor from Fairfax United Methodist Church. Noteworthy, Don, a submariner, is the Son of a retired United Methodist Minister.

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Everyone enjoyed the day and especially the comradery. And in case you were wondering, young Brody behaved beautifully and enjoyed growling like a dinosaur when interacting with the Navy Submariner.

May 10 2017

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Limousine and Luncheon for the Washington DC Veterans Administration, Fisher House and Medical Center

A Limo Lunch event was held for 7 veterans, caregivers and VAMC Volunteers from Fisher House plus the Limo Driver, Hugh, and Allen, the FUMC host for the Lunch was held at the Red Lobster Restaurant in Silver Spring, Maryland.

About our guests:

Jeffrey Lee, a US Army Gulf War Era Veteran who has been stationed in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, is from South Engls, Iowa. He talked about his experiences as a Medic accompanying an Abrams Tank Crew during the first wave of the ground attack at the Tip of the Spear in the Gulf War Invasion to liberate Kuwait.

Sherry Ashby is caring for her husband who is undergoing surgery. He served in the US Navy in Vietnam. They are from Huntington, Maryland.

Mary Hamm is staying at Fisher House caring for her husband, a US Army, Vietnam Era Veteran. He is being treated for diabetes and blood pressure issues and is also improving his walking ability after an injury to his legs. They reside in North Carolina and are enjoying the peace and happiness that was difficult to fit in during their military years. They have 2 sons one who is veteran of the US Navy. 

Shay Bickley and Ms Bryant are volunteers at the Veterans Administration Medical Center and the Fisher House respectively.

Unfortunately we had 3 last minute cancellations, but we were not discouraged and went about having a great time on a beautiful day.

Each person was appreciative of the outing and those whose donations provided for the event.

Apr 18 2017

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Military Ministry Limo and Lunch for Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and Fisher Houses.

Eleven (11) Wounded, Ill and Injured (WII) Service Members and their families and caregivers accompanied our Chariots-for-Hire Limo Driver and FUMC Escort, Ed McMeans, to Tony and Joe’s Seafood on the Potomac River in Georgetown. The day was nice enough for some to take a walk on the Potomac boardwalk!

Six (6) WIIs accompanied us representing the U.S. Marine, Army and Navy service branches.

Our limo riders are being treated for a wide range of wounds, injuries and illnesses such as leg injuries, injury from a Recoilless Rifle and TBI. We had a young Army man who is getting ‘completely rebuilt’ in WRNMMC, Bethesda from ankles to back of neck for many months receiving back surgeries, knee replacements and shoulder surgery among other minor ‘repairs’.

As is typical for each of our Limo and Lunch events, everyone had a super time chatting and enjoying the fellowship.

As we were departing the Marine in our group offered his heart felt ‘Semper Fi” to all of us.

As we often say in the Navy – “It just don’t get any better than this”!

Apr 11 2017

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Limo and Lunch Event for Veterans Administration, Fisher House and Medical Center in Washington, DC.

A Limo Lunch event was held for two veterans, their caregivers, our Limo driver and Allen, our Fairfax UMC escort. There was a full load! The lunch was held for the first time at Tony & Joe’s Restaurant on the Potomac River in Georgetown.

  • Lois Noble Justice, is caregiver for her husband undergoing spinal cord injury, was an Air Force Chef in the 1950s. Both reside in Abell, Maryland. Lois took lots of pictures with her camera.
  • Sidney Clark is an Army Veteran who served in the 1970s. His wife, Juanita, his Caregiver, attended with him.
  • Claudia, wife of Retired Army Sargent, is his caregiver while he undergoes Rehab and PT to strengthen his legs. He served two tours in Vietnam where he suffered a head wound. They both reside in Essex, Maryland.
  • Donna Rae Petersen is the sister of Sargent Carmen Marshalek who served in the Army National Guard and Reserve as part of the 101st Military Intelligence in Afganistan. He is helping Donna while she recovers from her surgery. Donna is a Lakota-Native Born American and the Cultural Programs Administrator for the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe Cultural Preservation Office in Eagle Butte, SD. Connie Means, also Carmen’s sister, is here in a support capacity. She resides in Eagle Butte, SD.
  • Patricia King (Pattysue) is an Army Sargent Veteran who served during Vietnam. She was stationed 4 years at Fort Sam Houston, Texas and 2 at Baumholder, West Germany. Helped by several of our group, Pattysue successfully walked the distance from our limo to Tony & Joe’s and back.
  • Denise Eades is Caregiver to her husband having surgery. He is a Marine Veteran. Both are from Arlington, Virginia.

We had a great time on a warm sunny day. All took doggie bag desserts back to Fisher House. Georgetown and the Potomac River provided a pleasant atmosphere. The service and food at Tony & Joe’s were outstanding.

Mar 21 2017

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Walter Reed National Military Medical Center & Fisher Houses

A Limo and Lunch event was held by FUMC for 9 Wounded Veterans and their caregivers and families.  A 10th Wounded Veteran, Captain Smith, was unable to make it due to a medical appointment. Our Limo Driver, Arthur, and Ed McMeans, the FUMC Escort, were the hosts for the Lunch held at Tony and Joe’s Seafood Restaurant on the Potomac River in Georgetown MD.

  • Front, left: SFC Tonia M. Chestnut has been a member of the Army Reserves since 2000, has over 13 years of Active Duty and has served in Afghanistan. Since 2014 she has been in the WTU Program at WRNMMC for treatment related to active duty injuries.
  • Front, 2nd from left: LTC Sheila White and her fiancé Homer Williams. LTC White, Army National Guard, served during Desert Storm II and Iraq. Her fiancé Homer is a U.S. Army Korean War Veteran. He is also a Mediator, Personal Life Coach and a Retired Treasury Department Special Agent.
  • Front far right: Dustin Tuller, SSG U.S. Army, with his family, wife Cheryl and daughters Katherine and Haleigh. Dustin lost both legs while serving in Iraq due to multiple gunshots. He was retired on disability. For many years he did motivational speaking for the Army. He is currently recovering from Open Heart Surgery at the WRNMMC Bethesda Fisher Houses. Their home is near Pensacola FL where they live on 40 acres. An owner of Tony and Joes’ Seafood Restaurant, Greg Casteen, talked with them about peanut farming. Dustin and his daughter Katherine were able to answer all the questions that Greg threw at them about peanut farming!
  • Back, left: SFC Davis, U.S. Army, two tours in Iraq and one tour in Kuwait. Married to a beautiful wife and have 4 sweet daughters and a handsome son. Twenty-four years in the Army and anxiously awaiting decision on retirement.
  • Back, center: SFC Henry McFarlin, U.S. Army, two tours in Iraq. Currently awaiting decisions regarding US Army medical retirement.

We had a great time. Food was superb, fellowship was even better, and the sea stories were, well, “sea stories”!  We thank them all for their service to their country and their loved ones. 

NOTE: After lunch, some of our guests took a walk on the Potomac Boardwalk and enjoyed the views and chatting with each other.

Mar 16 2017

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Veterans Administration, Fisher House & Medical Center in Washington, DC.

A Limo Lunch event was held for 5 caregivers from Fisher House. All but one were first time Limo Lunchers. There were 2 last minute cancellations as a result of medical changes for their veterans. Our Limo Driver, Guy, and Allen, the FUMC Escort, were the hosts for the Lunch held at the Red Lobster Restaurant in Silver Spring, MD.

  • Lois Noble Justice is caregiver for her veteran husband William undergoing spinal cord injury rehabilitation. William was an Air Force Chef. Both reside in Abell, MD. Lois had her digital camera run low on AA batteries. Our driver Guy found a store and bought batteries for Lois.
  • Lois McCann is caregiver wife of Vietnam Era Army Veteran Thomas McCann who is having colon surgery at the VA Medical Center. Both reside in Pasadena, MD. Thomas worked with Hawk Missiles in Vietnam from 1966-1969.
  • Rose Krueger, daughter of Leo Taconi, is giving him care him for complications from a fall. Leo was a Yeoman in the Navy during the Korean and Vietnam wars. Rose is from Bay St Louis, MS.
  • Stephanie Callahan, is giving care for her husband Raymond undergoing Open Heart Surgery. Until this day she thought her husband had been in the Marine Supply Corp. When asked for details of his supply job she called her husband in the hospital and learned that he was a Marine Combat Engineer who faced risks inherent with his combat military responsibilities. In defense of and in credit to Shephanie, she and her husband were married after his Marine Career was complete. They reside in Baltimore, MD.
  • Barbara Strickland is caring for her husband Michael while he is undergoing 3 sessions of kidney dialysis over four days. Michael is a candidate for a replacement kidney. He was an Army Tele- communications Tech Vietnam in 1976. They both are from Goldsboro, NC.

We had a great time on a cold but sunny day. Several took doggie bag deserts and Red Lobster Biscuits for their veterans who were unable to attend. The caregiver families are military families through and through and all appreciated those who, through private donations and selfless efforts, say Thank You to those who have served and are serving today as well as to their families and caregivers who serve with equal measure of dedication, devotion, patriotism and sacrifice.