Veterans & Military
Caring for our veterans and active military involves more than thanking them for their service. As veterans return home, our nation has an obligation to assist them in preparing to reenter into civilian life, including access to earned benefits, education, jobs and opportunities.
Brian’s fight for those who fight for our nation includes protecting the needs of the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station and its future, and supporting the services provided through the Veteran Administration Western New York Healthcare System.
Higgins has successfully pushed through legislation ensuring blinded veterans and Blue Water Vietnam veterans receive the benefits they deserve. He cosponsored legislation expanding the successful Veteran Treatment Court program, which began in Buffalo, to communities across the nation. And he repeatedly fought to maintain the Kids Korner program which provides free child care services to veterans during medical appointments at the Buffalo VA Hospital.
More on Veterans & Military
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) joined local veterans, including members of the Vietnam Veterans of America and Military Order of the Purple Heart, to announce the addition of 280 names, of Vietnam veterans from Western New York who were killed in action, to the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor.
“This is truly an incredible undertaking led by veterans on a mission to remember their own,” said Congressman Higgins. “We are honored to assist the effort to forever memorialize the service and sacrifices of these fallen Western New York service members.”
During the Wingate Wallace “National Night Out” Block Party, community leaders and residents took time to recognize the military service of two of their neighbors who served during World War II. 2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the end of the war. Private First Class Frank W. Parlato served in the United States Army and Claire Ruth Swanson Smith served in the United States Navy WAVES program during the war.
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) was joined by VA Western New York Healthcare System Director Brian Stiller and local veterans to announce the introduction of a bill to improve access to child care for veterans receiving health care at U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs medical centers.
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) and City of Tonawanda Mayor Rick Davis presented United States Army veteran Albin Mazur, a City of Tonawanda resident, with a Bronze Star and other military recognitions for his service during World War II.
At a special presentation, on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the day that Charles J. Dolan was killed in action by enemy forces during World War II, Congressman Brian Higgins and Village of Williamsville Mayor Brian Kulpa presented the Dolan family with the Purple Heart and Bronze Star in recognition of his sacrifices. In addition, a Bronze Star was presented to the family of Frank A. Grassia, Charles Dolan’s brother-in-law, who served with him in the U.S. Army.
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) named local residents to serve as members of his Service Academy Advisory Committee. The panel recently met to interview students applying to a military academy and make recommendations to the Congressman.
United States Army Corporal Norman Blatner was captured during the Battle of Hurtgen Forest and held as a Prisoner of War during World War II but made it back to Western New York thanks to a brave escape and special encounter with a German prison guard. Today, Congressman Brian Higgins will be joined by North Tonawanda Mayor Robert Ortt and others as he presents the Blatner family with the Bronze Star, Prisoner of War medal and other recognitions earned by Corporal Blatner for his service.
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) announced approval of H.R. 5059, the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention Act for American Veterans (SAV) Act. This legislation creates a comprehensive community response for coordinated mental health care at Veterans Hospitals across the country. Congressman Higgins cosponsored this legislation.
“Thousands of men and women devote their lives every day to serve our country,” said Congressman Higgins. “We cannot turn our backs on these individuals. This legislation is a step forward to protecting the safety of these service men and women.”
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) recently spoke on the House floor to recognize the significance of this Sunday, December 7, 2014, the “date which will live in infamy.” This date marks the seventy-third anniversary of the attack on the American naval base at Pearl Harbor. Countless men and women lost their lives that day and over a thousand others were wounded.