Lackawanna County Sets Guidelines For Armed Forces Drawing & Essay Contests

Lackawanna County is once again sponsoring its patriotic drawing and essay contests for students in the public and parochial school systems focusing on our veterans, founding fathers and patriotic ideals of our Country.

The categories for the contest are as follows: kindergarten to second grade involves the youngsters preparing a patriotic drawing; third to eighth graders will be asked to develop an essay on the topic of “Why I Appreciate America’s Veterans;” and ninth through twelfth grade students will reflect on the topic of “What I Would Tell America’s Founding Fathers About Our Country.”

The drawings should be done on 8 1/2 x 11 inch paper.  The essays for grades 3 – 8 should be no less than 100 words but no more than 300 words.  The upper grades essays should be no less than 300 words but no more than 500 words.

The format for the writing contests can be a traditional essay or a poem.  Each entry must include the student’s name, grade, school district, address, telephone number or email along with a parent’s name and contact information.

All participants must be residents of Lackawanna County.

Submissions should be sent to the Communications Office, Lackawanna County, 200 Adams Avenue, Sixth Floor, Scranton, PA 18503 by April 18, 2014.

Lackawanna County Veterans Affairs Office Services

The Lackawanna County Veterans Affairs Office is on its way to another record-setting year in terms of helping the County’s 38,000 veterans secure the federal and state benefits that they are entitled to receive.  Currently, the office has secured $2.55 million in pension, disability and other benefits.  That amount is on pace to top the 2012-13 total of $2.846 million.  

Many veterans and their families are unaware of what benefits are out there.  Veterans Affairs Director Robert Tuffy encourages former servicemen to contact the office to see what may be available to them.  The office staff will make an appointment with a veteran or his/her family to see what they may qualify for in benefits.

Also, the staff’s outreach representatives will visit veterans’ homes, if necessary, along with scheduling appointments at local nursing homes or assisted living facilities to discuss benefits. 

The office’s goal is to support all veterans and their families with whatever is needed.   If the office cannot provide assistance, the staff will be able to point people to where they can get the proper help. 

The Veterans Affairs Office is open from Monday through Friday from 9 AM to 4 PM and is located in The Scranton Electric Building, 507 Linden Street.  Along with Mr. Tuffy, the staff includes: veterans service officers Anissa Fetchen and Dave Eisele and office assistant Steuart Bailey.  The direct phone number is 570-963-6778.

Lackawanna County Veterans Affairs Office Recognized For Benefits Work

With the monument honoring all those who have served in the United States military as the backdrop, the Lackawanna County Commissioners recognized the staff of the Veterans Affairs Office for its efforts in helping local veterans and their families. During the period from July 1, 2012 to July 1, 2013, the department secured a record setting $2,846,000 in benefits for area service personnel. The Pennsylvania Department of Military & Veterans Affairs honored the staff for its commitment to helping others with the Five Star Service Award for “Outstanding Recoveries of Veterans’ Benefits.”

L-r, David Eisele, Veterans Service Officer; Steuart Bailey, Veterans Affairs Office Assistant; Commissioner Patrick M. O’Malley, Robert Tuffy, Veterans Affairs Director; Commissioner Jim Wansacz, and Anissa Fetchen, Veterans Service Officer and Coordinator.