Only DAV Chapter in the Best Southwest
CEDAR HILL – The Cedar Hill Disabled American Veterans Chapter #240 was installed on April 24, 2021.
Ramona Ross-Bacon, who is also a Cedar Hill ISD School Board Trustee, stays busy as an active member of the chapter. In fact, she has been an active member of the DAV for more than 20 years and her official title with the DAV is a 1st Jr. Vice Commander of the Chapter.
And, she is the founder of Chapter #240 as well.
She retired from the US Navy and Gunner’s Mate, Missiles and Torpedoes are her specialty. She is also a Gulf War veteran.
“In 2018, when I worked at the Cedar Hill Recreation Center, my boss, BJ Stevenson, allowed me and a couple of my comrades who are also Chapter Service Officers (CSO) to hold monthly Claims Clinics in one of the meeting rooms,” Ross-Bacon explained. “The then Mayor Pro Tem Stephen Mason saw what we were doing for the veterans and wanted to know more about the DAV and our initiatives. He agreed with the need for a service organization in Cedar Hill and well, the rest is history.”
In early 2019, she enlisted the help from four of her comrades and submitted the package. It was approved to be charted in Cedar Hill in 2021 and Ross-Bacon noted “We are coming up to our one-year anniversary on April 24, 2022.”
The Cedar Hill chapter is responsible for Cedar Hill, Glenn Heights, Duncanville, Desoto, Red Oak, Ovilla, Waxahachie, Maypearl, Mansfield, and Midlothian. It is the only DAV Chapter in the Best Southwest with 98 members and new transfers and members monthly.
Fairs, Clinics and More
Since its inception, the chapter has held several Resource Fairs and Claims Clinics. Also, on November 11 last year they held a large Resource Fair and Veterans Claims Clinic at the Cedar Hill Government Center.
“Chapter 240 has also adopted Bray Elementary School,” Ross-Bacon added. “We raised funds and received toy donations to bless each student at that school with a toy or clothes from their personal wish list.”
Ross-Bacon mentioned recently, the DAV Adjutant Teresa Johniken contacted the Cedar Hill Chapter offering four individuals the opportunity to visit with President Biden at the Ft. Worth VA Hospital in early March.
“We didn’t get the opportunity to speak with the president but I got the opportunity to speak with the Secretary of the Department of Veteran Affairs, Denis McDonough,” Ross-Bacon said. “I was able to voice my concerns with him concerning the disability claims process. This was an awesome experience.”
The DAV Chapter in Cedar Hill is dedicated to a single purpose. “Empowering veterans to lead high-quality lives with respect and dignity. We accomplish this by assisting the veteran, spouse, widow/widower, dependent children and/or parents with accessing the benefits that the veteran has earned through their selfless service to our country. These benefits could be disability claims, widow/widowers benefits, and healthcare eligibility just to name a few,” said Ross-Bacon.
They also volunteer at the VA hospitals and nursing facilities.
“Our ultimate goal is to expand our services to include assisting our ill and injured heroes and their families with their everyday needs. We also support our community in various areas,” she added.
Readers can help by providing sponsorship and financial donations to the chapter. Ross-Bacon said they are in need of a larger facility to hold meetings and implement initiatives. They would like to have space to host support groups for those dealing with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)/MST (Military Sexual Trauma), Chronic Pain and Chronic Diseases etc.
“We have a large number of Vietnam and Gulf War, and some WWII and Korean War Veterans within our chapter and this needed space is essential to being able to provide additional services for our nation’s heroes,” she concluded.
“These chapters are important because veterans need to be around comrades that know how they feel. We have shared experiences that only fellow veterans can relate to. Many of us miss our military years and to be around like minded persons is a blessing. Another reason these chapters are important is because service organizations are basically the mediators between the VA and the veteran. We are trained to help the veterans understand the paperwork and protocol for filing a claim.”
If readers would like to support the Chapter and its initiatives through a donation or sponsorship make checks payable to:
DAV Cedar Hill Chapter #240
P.O. Box 1415
Cedar Hill, Texas 75106
*All donations and sponsorships are tax deductible
Cedar Hill DAV Chapter #240 upcoming events:
- Sunday, September 11, 2022 Benefits Fundraiser Concert on to be held at the Cedar Hill Recreation Center; 5 to 9 p.m.
- Tuesday, October 25, 2022 they will have the Buffalo Soldiers to be present at the City Council Meeting at 7 p.m.
- Friday, November 11, 2022 is an Annual Resource Fair and Claims Clinic from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the chapter’s first Military Ball from 6 to 9 p.m.