The TAPS Daily - October 8, 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.
- Feds say they thwarted militia plot to kidnap Michigan Governor
The Detroit News
The FBI says it thwarted a plot to overthrow the government and kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, and federal prosecutors are expected to discuss the alleged conspiracy later Thursday.
- Marine Corps Assistant Commandant Is 2nd Top Military Leader to Contract COVID-19
Gen. Gary Thomas was one of at least nine senior leaders who began self-quarantining after the Coast Guard's vice commandant, Adm. Charles Ray, tested positive for the illness this week.
- Hayes Introduces Bipartisan Legislation To Deliver Stronger Benefits To Military Surviving Families
Congresswoman Jahana Hayes (CT-05) introduced the Surviving Families Benefit Expansion Act, legislation to better support veteran families in Connecticut and across the country. This bill would expand monthly DIC benefits from the VA to more surviving spouses and family members. TAPS has consistently called on Congress to eliminate remarriage penalties on surviving spouses and we look forward to the passage of this important bill.
- 150 million people set to fall into 'extreme poverty' due to COVID pandemic, World Bank warns
The head of U.S. Transportation Command offered a sneak preview Wednesday of the results of a Defense Department test of particulate spread on commercial aircraft — and they are surprising.
- McConnell says he's avoided the White House for months because of COVID concerns
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said he hasn't gone to the White House since August because their approach to safety during the coronavirus pandemic "is different than mine."
- National Depression Screening Day
Today is National Depression Screening Day. Depression is a common condition we may all face now more than ever. Screenings are an early tool to taking care of your own mental health.
TAPS In the News
- Hundreds of veterans sickened by COVID-19 at veterans' facilities across Georgia
Now, even more families are turning to TAPS for help as thousands of veterans across the country lose their lives to COVID-19.
- We're All in This Together - COVID-19 Resources for American Public
Resources and support to help anyone facing the impacts of COVID-19.
- TAPS News Archive
Catch up on all the TAPS news stories over the years on the TAPS media resource page.
Government Relations / Benefits
- Sen. Gillibrand promotes new legislation supporting veterans exposed to burn pits
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) promoted new legislation she is co-sponsoring that would help veterans get VA benefits for illnesses stemming from exposure to burn pits and other toxins.
- Supreme Court rejects GOP effort to block mail voting in Montana
The Supreme Court rejected a Republican bid to block mail voting in Montana. The emergency application was denied by Justice Elena Kagan without additional comment or noted dissents.
- ‘Thousands’ of veterans with bad paper discharges might not know they can upgrade
Stars & Stripes
Veterans who received less than honorable discharges during eras when prejudices and stigmas clouded many discharge decisions may not know they are eligible now for upgrades.
- VFW statement on additional unreported COVID-19 deaths at NJ Veteran Memorial Home
The VFW releases a statement regarding the administration’s lack of transparency and failure for five months to report additional COVID-19 deaths of veterans.
- American Legion joins bipartisan effort to pass Buddy Check bill
The American Legion has joined forces with Sens. Joni Ernst, (R-IA); Doug Jones, (D-AL); and Maggie Hassan, (D-NH) in an effort to pass legislation aimed at combatting veteran suicide.
- Capito, Manchin introduce legislation to improve transparency at VA Medical Centers
The Record Delta
U.S. Senators Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) introduced legislation to require the VA Secretary to report on the use of security cameras in VA medical centers.
Grief / Mental Health / Wellness
- A guide to coping with grief
Grief over the death of a loved one is something we will all face and often the toughest experience we will go through.TAPS friends Winston’s Wish teamed up to provide a guide on how to cope.
- Mental Illness Awareness Week
This week is Mental Health Awareness Week. We all have mental health challenges. No one should ever feel alone or be without the information, support, connection and help they need.
- Real Stories from Real People: Overcoming Addiction - Substance Abuse Prevention Month
Help prevent overdoses during National Substance Abuse Prevention month and every month by sharing real stories from real people whose lives have been impacted by the opioid crisis.
- Economist Becomes Pandemic Sensation by Helping Stressed Parents
Legions of fans are taking their cues from a data-obsessed, bestselling Brown University professor who's teaching them how to make better decisions during the pandemic.
- Devastated Man Loses Photo Of Late Wife In Hurricane, Until Strangers Find It For Him.
Three years, nearly to the day, after losing his wife to brain cancer, Scott Christmas got a sweet surprise from strangers – and a sense that his angel wife was watching over him.
- Senior military leaders will have access to same COVID-19 treatments as Trump
DoD has traced Ray’s and Thomas’s possible exposure back to a meeting in the chairman of the Joint Chiefs' office on October 2. All who attended that meeting have been in quarantine.
- 'The Military's #MeToo Moment:' Fort Hood Victims Speak Out
Current and former soldiers have taken to social media with their own accounts of sexual assault and harassment at Fort Hood in wake of disappearance and slaying of Spc. Vanessa Guillen.
- Army Forced to Treat COVID-19 Infections Like Combat Casualties as Training Resumes
As large-scale training resumes under COVID-19 conditions, Army combat leaders are finding that coronavirus infections affect units the same way as battlefield casualties.
- Navy SEAL who saved 3 kids from drowning receives medal for his heroism
Task & Purpose
An East Coast-based Navy SEAL who swam into a rip current to save three young boys from drowning was recognized for his courage last month with a Navy and Marine Corps Medal.
- Immigrant Guardsman helps community while activated for COVID-19 response
Task & Purpose
Herrera, who arrived to the United States in 2017 and enlisted in 2019, was compelled to help his community in its time of need.
- Naval aviator dies in hiking accident
A Washington state-based naval aviator died last month in a hiking accident, officials confirmed.
- First monument honoring all military women to be unveiled at Arlington
Stars & Stripes
The first monument honoring military women, titled The Pledge, will be unveiled during a ceremony October 17 at Arlington National Cemetery.
- From Vietnam to Star Trek: 10 Questions with Tucker Smallwood
We Are The Mighty
Actor Tucker Smallwood shares about his time in the U.S. Army in Vietnam, what it's like to be wounded in combat and then his life in acting.
Military Family News
- Trump suggests he may have contracted coronavirus from Gold Star families
President Donald Trump suggested he may have contracted coronavirus from families of fallen troops during a White House event late last month because he couldn’t observe social distancing.
- 8 things I will teach my daughter about RBG
We Are The Mighty
We've had many conversations and reflections about the legacy of RBG and the work left for us to pick up. Here are eight lessons from the life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Banner photo courtesy of the School of Advanced International Studies | John Hopkins University.