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SALUTE VETERANS DAY Honoring all who servedNOVEMBER 2017 Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily News2 | November 2017 | Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman…
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SALUTE VETERANS DAY Honoring all who servedNOVEMBER 2017 Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily News2 | November 2017 | Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily NewsSALUTEReady to defend Retired Navy Senior Chief Petty Officer Rockey Davis continues the fight for fellow veterans By Josh Babcock // Lewiston TribuneOn Sept. 11, 2001, shortly after the attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, Rockey Davis, then 48, was ready to come out of retirement. “I called the recruiter and said I’m ready to go,â€? Davis, a retired U.S. Navy senior chief petty officer (E-8), said. “I thought they might need me.â€? Davis, an aviation electrician, was never shot at. He never fired a shot and wasn’t issued a weapon during his 22 years serving his country. Instead, he protected pilots by blinding the enemy. Between 1977 and 1994, Davis, now 65, embarked on five cruises on aircraft carriers throughout the Mediterranean Sea, Persian Gulf and the Pacific and Indian oceans. He was tasked with repairing the EA-6B, a four-seat, twin-engine aircraft, capable of jamming enemy radar devices and throwing up false targets; the plane usually led an air strike. “We had to scramble to keep those planes working,â€? Davis said. “When the EA-6B didn’t go everyone knew where those planes were.â€? Davis experienced some tense times at sea. In 1979 — during the Iranian Hostage Crisis — Davis sat on the USSKitty Hawk, in the middle of the Indian Ocean, at a time many hesitated to turn on a radio. “The intel we had was Iran had the capability of carrying Harpoon missiles on a plane that would hit where radio traffic last occurred,â€? he said. In the early 1990s Davis was aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln in the Persian Gulf, monitoring a no-fly zone in southern Iraq. “We would get to a point (an aircraft) couldn’t go any farther into Iraq, so the aircraft would turn around and once they did the airplanes would get a warning they were locked on by a surface to air missile,â€? Davis said. Eventually an EA-6B was used to destroy two missile sites. “Who knew if they were ever going to launch a missile and take out a plane?â€? he said. “They finally got permission to take them out each time they locked on; that happened twice in a row and they quit locking on after that.â€? Life on an aircraft carrier didn’t make things any easier. The flight deck can get you killed if you’re not careful. “We had an F-14 hit the back of the ship and it put pieces all over the place,â€? Davis said. “He never made it.â€?TTohAallnWkho SYeroveu d From all of us atRoyal Plaza517973K-17RETIREMENT AND REHABILITATION CENTER-XQLSHU'ULYH /HZLVWRQ,'  5R\DO3OD]D+HDOWK&DUHFRP517987K-17Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily News | November 2017 | 3SALUTEThe only way for aircraft to land on the carriers is by a cable catching the plane by a hook on its tail end, known as a tail hook. “If one of those cables broke and you were in the way it would cut you in half,” he said. “And if you get too close to a jet intake you get sucked into it and come out the back end.” Davis said one man was on an elevator to lower airplanes to a lower level of the carrier, when a wave washed him overboard. “It was 80 feet to the water,” he said. “They never did find him.” An aircraft carrier is about as dangerous as it is uncomfortable. Davis said the shower is the most private place on a carrier. “But if you use too much water they could shut off water to the showers,” Davis said. “It’s no fun when you’re all lathered up and have no water to rinse off with — it usually only happens once.” Bunks are stacked on top of each other and offer a little more than 2 feet for sleeping quarters between each, he said. And unlike today, “slow mail” was mostly used to keep in contact with family. Davis said that was the hardest part, and the reason he only went on one cruise after his first child was born. “A lot of guys miss their kids graduate high school and sporting activities,” he said. “You figure a soldier or marine deployed in Afghanistan for a year, they miss a whole year of their kids’ life and we got veterans doing that three or four times during their time in the military.” Davis spent several years in Corpus Christi, Texas, Adak, Alaska, and Whidbey Island, Wash., where he was military substance abuse counselor. He mostly dealt with alcohol, marijuana and occasionally cocaine abuse. “It was a break from working on airplanes,” he said.Join us in Saluting America’s Veterans for Their Commitment to Our Country and Freedom.Tribune/Steve Hanks Rockey Davis is retired from the U.S. Navy.Davis said he was tracked down by a wife of a man he counseled who died in a car accident. “She told me that he always told her that I made a big difference in his life and she said I just wanted you to know that,” he said. Davis calls it “just taking care of our veterans,” and a part of the military brotherhood. Now, Davis is the senior vice commander for the state of Idaho Veterans of Foreign Wars, where he assists veterans filing claims for disabilities that they incurred while they were on active duty. He will become the commander for the state of Idaho VFW in June. “We’re trying to help them any way we can,” Davis said. “It never stops.” ——— Babcock can be reached at (509) 339-3423, or by email to us in supporting our Armed Forces and their Families. We honor your Dedication and Sacrifice. Ask about our “Veterans Memorial Program”.“Where Quality Products and Expert Installation Meet”1225 E. 6th Street, Moscow (208) 882-4534 www.shortsfuneralchapel.com1036 Bryden, Lewiston 208-798-4738 www. • 4618234 | November 2017 | Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily NewsSALUTEProviding support to those who served Retired Navy Capt. Doug Welch continues to lead through L-C Valley Veterans Council, American Legion, VFW By Kerri Sandaine // Lewiston TribuneAhigh-ranking combat veteran retired to the Lewiston-Clarkston Valley three years ago and immediately put his experience to work by helping others who have served in the military. Retired U.S. Navy Capt. Doug Welch’s 34 years of active duty — coupled with a long family history of service — prompted him to take leadership roles in several groups, such as the Lewis-Clark Valley Veterans Council, American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars. “I didn’t want to sit around the house eating bonbons and watching soap operas,” Welch joked. “As a result, I do way too much.” Welch, who is among a handful of veterans who were on duty from Vietnam through Desert Storm, is familiar with post-war issues and the importance of providing support and assistance to people who have been in combat. “Sometimes the quiet times are the worst times,” Welch said. “Vet organizations can be a good place to talk about your experiences. Unlessyou’ve been there, you can’t really relate to how horrible war is.” He and his wife, Nini, returned to Lewiston after his last post in the Netherlands, where he was deputy medical adviser to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Allied Joint Force Command. In addition, Welch was a senior medical intelligence officer and planner who helped provide support and casualty evacuation in Afghanistan. During his career, Welch helped coordinate medical requirements and planning efforts at the fleet level in direct response to the terrorist attacks on the USS Cole, the World Trade Center and Pentagon and served as the medical planner on five major combat operations in Iraq. After graduating from Lewiston High School in 1972, Welch enlisted in the U.S. Navy as a hospital corpsman and later became a combat medic during his years with the Idaho Army National Guard. He and other vets, including some of his LHS classmates, are now involved in myriad projects, ranging from suicide prevention to parades,Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily News | November 2017 | 5SALUTEin an effort to help and honor those who have served. “In this area, Vietnam veterans are the preponderance of active members in veterans organizations,â€? Welch said. “The younger vets don’t have a lot of extra time because many are still raising families and working.â€? The various groups are trying to reach out to any veteran in need. A good place to see Tribune/Steve Hanks all of the active Doug Welch is a retired Navy captain. organizations is today’s parade in downtown Lewiston. It begins at 11:11 a.m. on the 11th. “We have a good, cooperative effort here,â€? Welch said. “Vets from both sides of the river are involved and we cover two states and eight counties. There are plenty of organizations to get involved in. The vet parade is oneof the biggest things we do.â€? As a young Boy Scout in Lewiston, Welch recalls the days when a similar parade rolled through the Orchards. The tradition ended many years ago, but the downtown Lewiston event now fills the gap. The annual parade continues to grow with more people entering each year, he said. Many other veterans events are on the calendar, including sending Christmas care packages overseas, Toys for Tots and the Pearl Harbor Day ceremony in December and unveiling of the “Silent Battleâ€? bronze artwork in March. A complete list can be found online at www. Among the members are some World War II veterans, such as Welch’s 96-year-old father, Les, who served in the U.S. Navy. The family’s military roots run deep as Welch’s grandfather, William “Ollieâ€? Welch, was a coxswain on the USS Oregon in World War I and promised to “to keep the lights on at homeâ€? during WWII. His grandmother, Grace, was a WWII veteran serving in the Women’s Army Corps and another ancestor fought in the Civil War. Upon retiring, Welch’s volunteer work has been a seamless transition that keeps him busy and fulfilled. “Everything I did in the military, whether it was with the U.S. Navy, Army National Guard or U.S. Marines Corps, was focused on trying to help people,â€? Welch said. “I look at this as a continuation of what I did when I was in the service. I’ve been in 38 countries around the world and my job in all of those places was not only to support the military operation but also the people we were there to protect.â€? ——— Sandaine may be contacted at or (208) 848-2264. Follow her on Twitter @ newsfromkerri.The History ofVeterans DayVeterans Day, formerly known as Armistice Day, was originally set as a U.S. legal holiday to honor the end of World War I, which officially took place on November 11, 1918. In legislation that was passed in 1938, November 11 was “dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be hereafter celebrated and known as ‘Armistice Day.’â€? As such, this new legal holiday honored World War I veterans. In 1954, after having been through both World War II and the Korean War, the 83rd U.S. Congress -- at the urging of the veterans service organizations -- amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armisticeâ€? and inserting the word “Veterans.â€? With the approval of this legislation on June 1, 1954, Nov. 11 Kermit Malcom says goodbye to became a day to honor American one of his daughters, 1945. veterans of all wars.Malcom’s Brower-Wann Funeral Home & Cremation. (208) 743-4578 • 1711 18th St., Lewiston www.malcomsfuneralhome.com45555-(#),5&#0#(!5#(551")&5(15&#!".85 )5&,(5'),5)/.5))5',#.(5 )#.35@5 )-)15 #&&!65&&5 BhfnC5nnh7lklf85 "MMGBJUITPSCFMJFGTBSFXFMDPNF6 | November 2017 | Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily NewsSALUTEServing with purpose Retired Lt. Col. Sheila Kopczynski loved life in the Army and continues to find ways to serve By Tom Holm // Lewiston TribuneIn many ways, Sheila Kopczynski is unlike a lot of veterans. She’s not tight-lipped about her 30-year career in the U.S. Army. If you want to hear a war story Kopczynski will regale you with as many as you like. If you want her opinion on a current controversy, to know what it’s like to be a woman in the armed forces, or even hear a little bit about her current employment with the U.S. Department of Agriculture; then keep your ears open because Kopczynski has got a story for you. But similar to most veterans — if not all — Kopczynski is passionate about her service, her country and what that duty continues to mean to her.“Everyday in the Army you never have to wonder what your purpose is for that day,” Kopczynski said. “I miss feeling like I’m contributing.” Kopczynski couldn’t leave behind the service after retiring as a lieutenant colonel in 2006. She continues to volunteer with the Veterans of Foreign Wars and took over organizing the annual Veterans Day parade in Lewiston. She said she misses being in the Army every day. She carried with her the need to serve into her civilian life. Though still working full time from home for the USDA, Kopczynski finds time to try and get younger veterans involved in VFW and puts together the annual parade. She also volunteers in the 2nd Judicial District’s veterans treat-(LEFT) Sheila Kopczynski started boot camp in 1982. After she completed it and ROTC, she worked for the Military Police-Army Reserves. She retired from the U.S. Army in 2006 with the rank of lieutenant colonel. Tribune/Pete CasterDr. Terri Drury Palmer GraduateTHANK YOUVETERANSfor your service and protecting our country and freedoms. Elm View Chiropractic Clinic (509) 758-0660 • 1303 6th St, ClarkstonFind us on Facebook! 517237K 17491597KJ 16Thank you to all who serve our country. $FFRXQWLQJ $XGLWLQJ‡3HUVRQDO)LQDQFLDO3ODQQLQJ %XVLQHVV&RQVXOWLQJ‡%XVLQHVV9DOXDWLRQV‡7D[6HUYLFHV www.presnellgage.comLewistonMoscowPullmanOronoGrangeville208-746-8281 208-882-2211 509-332-6541 208-476-3012 208-983-1254THANK YOU VETERANS Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories honors all who have served.Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily News | November 2017 | 7SALUTEment court designed to help veterans convicted of a crime to rehabilitate. “I may be retired but I’m not expired,” Kopczynski said, pointing to her shirt displaying the same slogan. She started her career out of necessity, enlisting in 1981 to afford college. The structured daily routine of Army work got its claws into her and Kopczynski ended up spending most of her adult life in the armed service. She began as military police while attending school in her home state of Michigan. After finishing some schooling she went back to active duty in 1989, being trained in cryptography and communication security logistics. Her unit was deployed to the Gulf War in 1990, where she spent eight months on the ground assigned to patriot missile systems. She said as she stepped off a plane in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia — in a country where women were not allowed to drive — she was a bit nervous but had the air of confidence that Army service had instilled in her. A group of religious police met her and her comrades as they disembarked. “I come down the stairs and this guy looks at me all hateful because I’m a girl,” she said. “His eyes get all big and he starts to back up. I was thinking they’re afraid of me, I didn’t know it but the guy behind me is some big Midwest guy with fingers as big as sausages. And here I was thinking I was Billy badass.” During her time in-country Kopczynski was in charge of making sure the missile systems ran smoothly and repaired anything that needed fixing. She said she could be a bit hot-headed if fellow soldiers pushed her buttons. Though one such instance of her back talk may have saved her life. She was out on one of the missile launchers repairing it. She said she Sheila Kopczynski was a major and commanding a unit in Alaska. On the day this photo was taken was lying on her belly as the missiles were pointed up but disabled so she was training her platoon to shoot at Fort Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska.SALUTING THOSE WHO SERVED!0% FOR 72 MO. 1,000 CASH BACKPLUS $ON ALL 2017 FORD VEHICLES (EXCLUDES SUPER DUTY AND FLEX)MILITARY $ EXTRA 1,000 DISCOUNT PLUS ANFOR VETERANS, ACTIVE MILITARY AND FIRST RESPONDERS1617 21ST STREET LEWISTON, ID | JOEHALLFORD.COM | 208-746-2391 On approved Credit. Price after all incentives, see dealer for details. Offer Ends 11/19/178 | November 2017 | Lewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily NewsSALUTETribune/Pete Caster Sheila Kopczynski, retired from the U.S. Army in 2006 with the rank of lieutenant colonel, talks about her time in the military.We ServedP R O U D T O S E RV E OUR VETERANSSERVICESL O C AT I O N S• Complete Family Eye CareMOSCOWMikeMikeyMarkMichael• Audiology (Hearing Services) • Glaucoma (iStent)LEWISTON• Bladeless LASIK866.770.2020• Eyelid Surgery • Diabetic Retinopathy • Macular DegenerationClearView Eye Clinic www.CVeyes.comLOLO SPORTING GOODS 1026 Main St. Lewiston • 208-743-1031 • Mon-Sat 10-6.• Laser-Assisted Cataract SurgeryLewiston Tribune & Moscow-Pullman Daily News | November 2017 | 9SALUTE“I thought the launcher was dropping its hydraulics so I go to push the drawer in and there’s the bullet holes,” she said. “If they hadn’t been nagging my ass and I hadn’t been such a (expletive) I’d be dead.” Upon returning from the Gulf War, Kopczynski spent the remainder of her time in Alaska serving as an education officer and eventually commander. She decided where troops in the Alaska Army National Guard should be deployed and had three sergeants under her command. She eventually moved to Lewiston with her husband, who was born and raised here. Kopczynski said she values whatever community she’s been a part of and Lewiston is no different. She’d also like to share what service has meant to her and congratulates anyone who “pays their taxes, votes,” or simply picks up litter as serving America. “I love my country. I would like to be representative of what a lifelong commitment means,” she said. “Everyday I’m thinking how can I make my community better. Even if I’m just walking my dogs and picking up another dog’s poo. Service should be lifelong. You still give until you can’t breathe anymore.” ——— Holm may be contacted at (208) 848-2275 or Follow him on Twitter @ TomHolm4496887A-17she could continue her work on a pullout tray. A truck of soldiers came up and told her she needed to stop what she was doing immediately and get back to safety. They were informed a sniper may be out and training his glass on Kopczynski. Kopczynski was far more concerned with the repairs telling
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