The TAPS Daily - November 9, 2020
Welcome to The TAPS Daily - curated news and resources relevant to military, veterans, and their families. For more news and resources, visit our Government Resources page.
- Trump fires Defense chief Mark Esper
President Trump on Monday announced he had fired Defense Secretary Mark Esper, a move that comes days after Joe Biden was projected to have won the presidential race.
- Court orders VA to pay retroactive benefits to thousands of Blue Water Navy veterans
The VA must redecide thousands of Blue Water Navy veterans' benefits claims that may have been wrongfully denied, and pay retroactive benefits, a federal judge ruled last week.
- Where President-elect Joe Biden stands on national security issues
After five days of counting votes, former Vice President Joe Biden has been declared the winner of the U.S. presidential election, unseating President Donald Trump.
- Jill Biden could make military families her cause again
As the former second lady, Jill Biden has championed troops and military families for years, including attending TAPS events. Now, she brings that experience back to the White House.
- U.S. surpasses 10 million COVID-19 infections
The United States became the first country to surpass 10 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 on Monday, a grim milestone that comes as experts warn of a surge this fall and winter.
- We salute the Army Black Hawk crew who saved a child from hurricane floodwaters in Honduras
Task & Purpose
Amid the chaos in the world these days a video released by the Defense Department over the weekend of a Black Hawk crew rescuing a child from hurricane floodwaters is worth your time.
- This year's Marine Corps birthday video is a who’s who of service heroes
Task & Purpose
The Marine Corps puts out a video message every year in honor of its November 10 birthday, and this year’s video features a number of Corps heroes who continue to inspire Marines of today.
Veteran Day News
- Veterans Day: How veterans feel about their federal holiday
For the veterans themselves, having a federal holiday dedicated to them elicits a number of different responses.
- Unique Veterans Day events for COVID-19
While many organizations and communities have converted Veterans Day events to virtual venues for COVID-19 safety reasons, some have come up with unique, creative ways to celebrate.
- Variety 'Salute to Service' Bows Veterans Day on History Channel
Each year, Variety celebrates heroes in the military space, from the troops on active duty to veterans who have thrown their lives on the line in service of our country.
- 100th Anniversary Of The Unknown Warrior
On 11 November 1920 the Unknown Warrior was taken from a battlefield cemetery and given a full state burial at Westminster.
- National Museum of the United States Army to open Veterans Day 2020
The U.S. Army plans to open the National Museum of the United States Army on Veterans Day, November 11, 2020.
Child Grief Awareness Month News
- Helping Kids Grieve
Sesame Street in Communities
Coping with the death of a loved one brings enormous challenges for the whole family.
- 10 Ways to Help a Grieving Child
Tips for caregivers on supporting children on their grief journey.
- Helping Children Process Grief & Loss During COVID-19
advice for parents on how to help their children work through the death of a loved one.
- How slimes and squishies soothe children in times of stress
From moon sand to cloud dough, these DIY recipes will help kids relax and decompress at home.
TAPS In the News
- Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors Upcoming Events
Make plans to join your TAPS Family at an upcoming event.
- TAPS News Archive
Catch up on all the TAPS news stories over the years on the TAPS media resource page.
- The power of nature inspires and heals
TAPS Outdoors shares how outdoor experiences can reduce mental fatigue, inspires, and helps us become better individuals. They recently launched “Breath of Fresh Air”, a program geared to encouraging survivors to connect with the outdoors, wherever they are, to find peace and healing.
Government Relations / Benefits
- VA transition work on hold as Trump disputes Biden election win
GSA has thus far refused to sign any paperwork officially beginning the transition process, in response to President Donald Trump’s ongoing legal challenges to vote counts in multiple states.
- Biden Names 13 Health Experts To COVID-19 Transition Advisory Board
Biden made COVID-19 a central part of his campaign, calling for a stronger and more coordinated federal response to the pandemic.
- States legalize marijuana: What it means for veterans
As of Election Night, 15 states had legalized adult use of cannabis in some form, representing about a third of the U.S. population, "including millions of veterans.”
- Report: VA hospitals may be using faulty temperature sensors for coronavirus fever checks
Numerous VA medical centers may be using faulty temperature screening devices that could miss signs of coronavirus infection among visitors.
- Delayed military funeral honors being given in Kentucky
Dozens of veterans who did not receive military funeral honors during the coronavirus pandemic will be honored during ceremonies in Kentucky this week
- DoD Fails to Address the Health Care Needs of Female Troops, Advisory Board Claims
In an exhaustive review the Defense Health Board found that previous DoD efforts to bolster gender-specific health care across the services have not led to "sustained improvements."
Grief / Mental Health / Wellness
- Mental health and suicide crisis among U.S. veterans getting new approach
Two top lawmakers say it’s time to try a new national approach to veterans suicide prevention and mental health care.
- Post-9/11 veterans have 'alarmingly high rates' of insomnia, VA study finds
Insomnia rates were even higher in veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury (TBI), and chronic pain.
- Dogs and PTSD
Dogs can lift your mood, help you feel less stressed by providing companionship. All dog owners, including those who have posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can experience these benefits.
- Read the 2020 Marine birthday message from Commandant Berger
Marine Corps Times
2020 marks both the 245th birthday of the United States Marine Corps as well as many key anniversaries of defining battles of Corps history.
- Here's SecDef Mark Esper's Final Memo to Pentagon Staff
Esper's farewell memo focused on Defense Department milestones and accomplishments during the 18 months he spent in the position.
- On display: Soldier forever enshrined at National Army Museum
Lt. Col. Ashley Hartwell let out a joyous gasp as she marveled at a unique display in the National Museum of the United States Army for the first time.
- Soldier embraces Native Alaskan heritage
Much of Alaska's native population is across great land swaths in some of the harshest and most challenging environments Alaska has to offer.
- Soldier at Fort Jackson suffers fatal injury at rifle range
An 18-year-old soldier from California died Thursday during training at a rifle range on Fort Jackson, South Carolina, according to a brief statement from the soldier’s unit.
- Fort Benning Soldiers Injured During Live Fire Exercise
Three soldiers were hospitalized with injuries they received at a live-fire range at Fort Benning, Georgia, on October 31.
- After I Received the Medal of Honor, the Hardest Battle of My Life Began
A day 13 years in the past can seem like both yesterday and a lifetime ago. At least, this is how it feels looking back to November 9, 2007.
- This 97-year-old just finished the Marine Corps Marathon. Here's how he earned a Silver Star
Marine Corps Times
For World War II Iwo Jima Marine and Silver Star recipient Thiele Fred Harvey, 97, crossing the finish line during the Marine Corps Marathon in October brought him full circle.
- These 2 Cities Have Both Been Declared Best for Veterans
The Best Cities After Service list released Monday by Navy Federal Credit Union, in partnership with the Operation Homefront nonprofit advocacy group, crowns Charleston as the winner.
- WWII veteran Norm Crosby, comic mangler of language, dies at 93
Norm Crosby, the deadpan mangler of the English language who thrived in the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s as a television, nightclub and casino comedian, has died. He was 93.
Banner photo courtesy of the School of Advanced International Studies | John Hopkins University.