Author | Ashley Severs

Inaugural Beyond the Boots, a Military Fashion Show Raises $14,000 for Veterans Count

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More than 200 guests attended Beyond the Boots fashion show on April 25, at Manchester Country Club, benefitting Veterans Count. The Manchester Chapter hosted the inaugural event raising more than $14,000 for local veterans, service members, and their families.

Our models, comprised of 20 NH service men and women, were generously adorned by Alapage, Benton Shoe Company, Britches of Concord, Fabulous Looks Boutique, George’s Apparel, Gondwana & Divine Clothing Co., Jos. A. Bank of Concord, Men’s Wearhouse of Manchester, and Statement Boutique.

“These men and women wore fatigues every day, and we wanted to showcase how they could easily adhere to the everyday styles by visiting local clothing stores,” says Denise Petrin, Manchester Chapter Member.

Guests enjoyed 37 outfits from casual wear to black-tie, and everything in between. In addition, Bellman’s Jewelers generously donated a necklace and earring set to be raffled, in which a US Army veteran won.

Beyond the Boots was proudly sponsors by Bellman’s Jewelers, Granite Group Benefits, Soil Away, Envy Sports Club & Café, Bentley Commons at Bedford, Core Insurance, Eleanor Dahar, Franklin Savings Bank, Kaplan Development Group, Beth Kreick, Next Step Bionics & Prosthetics, B2B Video Solutions, Great NH Restaurants, Phaneuf Funeral Homes, PJ’s Florist, Radura Salon, Salon Thairpy, and Trayce Gregoire Photography.

To view photos of the event visit www.facebook.com/VeteransCount.

About Veterans Count
Since 2006, Easterseals Military & Veterans Services provided more than 9,600 individuals with services for challenges including suicide prevention, employment, homelessness, substance abuse treatment, transportation, and mental health issues resulting from post-traumatic stress disorder and/or traumatic brain injury. Additionally, Veterans Count provides emergency financial assistance for food, home maintenance, utilities, housing, rent, fuel assistance, vehicle repair, child care, gasoline, and medical bills.

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Belknap Subaru Shares the Love with Veterans Count

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Belknap Subaru has presented $20,000 to Veterans Count, an Easter Seals program dedicated to providing emergency assistance and financial support for service members and Veterans of all eras across the state of New Hampshire.

Mark Johnstone, president of Belknap Subaru, with his staff, and John Hayes, and Bill Bergeon, representing Subaru of New England, presented a check to, Joe Emmons, executive director of Veterans Count. The $20,000 was raised by Belknap Subaru’s customers, selecting the local charity to receive donations under Subaru’s National Share the Love Program.

Johnstone, thanked their customers for participating, and the sales staff, at the dealership for creating the awareness of the critical work done by Veterans Count, and Easter Seals, in the Lakes Region.

“This is an amazing partnership, customers, local business, and Subaru, coming together to do the right thing for our veterans,” said Johnstone.

John Hayes, expressed his excitement for the annual program, and acknowledged the company’s delight in being able to help fund local organizations, and be a part of the community.

Belknap Subaru selected Veterans Count, as its local partner, and customers could also select from their choice of the following charities: ASPCA, Make-A-Wish, Meals on Wheels Association of America, and the National Park Foundation. From Nov. 17 to Jan. 3, Subaru donated $250 for every new Subaru vehicle sold, or leased, to the customer’s choice

“We are grateful that local businesses like Belknap Subaru are willing to go the extra mile for our veterans! Their efforts will help us continue our mission, helping Veterans and their families,” said Veterans Count board member Jane Love.

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An American Solo Film Premier Raises Nearly $14,000 to Support Veterans Count

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On Sunday, April 2, New Hampshire filmmakers Bob Bear and Jay MacNamee, premiered An American Solo to a crowd of more than 200 individuals at 3S Artspace in Portsmouth, raising nearly $14,000 for Veterans Count, a program of Easterseals NH.

An American Solo chronicles the extraordinary life of NH resident Col. Norman Phillips (USAF ret.), as told in his own words, starting with his parentless childhood in a small Massachusetts mill town. Norm went on to become a highly decorated WWII fighter pilot with 99 combat missions to his credit.

During the Cold War with the Soviet Union, Norm commanded the US Air Force’s elite 22nd Squadron in Germany – one of America’s first fighter squadrons armed with nuclear weapons. Among the pilots he mentored in that group were future astronauts Ed White and Buzz Aldrin, award-winning novelist James Salter, and Pete Peterson, a six-year prisoner in the “Hanoi Hilton” who became the United States’ first post-war Ambassador to Vietnam.

Norm went on to serve several years in the Pentagon and then chose to go train pilots to fly the F-105 during the Vietnam War. He eventually became a “reluctant volunteer” for the war himself and, as a 46 year old, full Colonel, flew dozens successful combat missions in Southeast Asia before being shot down over Laos.

After barely surviving a harrowing rescue, Norm retired from the Air Force and embarked on his second life. He turned down a lucrative offer to become a business executive, opting instead to go to college. He enrolled at the University of Massachusetts, where he earned his BFA and MFA in Art. Upon finishing his Masters, he was hired by the University to teach sculpture, which he did for 19 years.

Now a vigorous 95-year-old, Norm is a published author who is currently working on his second novel. Having witnessed a significant portion of the 20th century from 12,000 feet, Norm may be one of the last clear voices of a generation, and is he very candid in his assessments and opinions, some of which stand in stark contrast to those of other military veterans.

An American Solo is a “labor of love” by two first-time filmmakers, and is a 2017 Normandie International World War II Film Festival Official Selection.

About Veterans Count
Since 2006, Easterseals Military & Veterans Services provided more than 9,600 individuals with services for challenges including suicide prevention, employment, homelessness, substance abuse treatment, transportation, and mental health issues resulting from post-traumatic stress disorder and/or traumatic brain injury. Additionally, Veterans Count provides emergency financial assistance for food, home maintenance, utilities, housing, rent, fuel assistance, vehicle repair, child care, gasoline, and medical bills. To learn more about Veterans Count, please visit www.vetscount.org/nh.

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3rd Annual “Make 12 Hours Count” Radio Thon Raises $140,000 for Veterans Count

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The 3rd Annual “Make 12 Hours Count” Radio Thon for Veterans Count raised more than $140,000 for veterans, service members, and their families. This annual event hosted by iHeartMedia and NH Today’s Jack Heath, was broadcasted on News Radio 96-7, WGIR-AM 610, and iHeartRadio.com.

The Radio Thon, presented by LTC Partners, featured 12 hours of compelling content about the challenges faced by military families and how Veterans Count and other organizations across the state provide support. Additionally, the Radio Thon included testimonials from clients, celebrity endorsements, and sponsor recognition.

More than 120 volunteers, comprised of sponsors, radio personnel, Veterans Count chapter members, and Easterseals employees participated throughout the day helping make the event a great success.

“We are honored by the passion and dedication of our communities throughout the state of NH to pull together in support of our states bravest men and women,” says Easterseals NH President & CEO Larry Gammon.

Thank you to our supporting sponsors: Bank of America, Charter Trust, Comcast, Eastern Bank, Eastern Propane, Frisbie Memorial Hospital, Granite Group Benefits, Kittery Trading Post, McLane Middleton, New England Dragway, Service Credit Union, and Walmart.

If you missed the Radio Thon you can hear the hourly podcasts by visiting https://goo.gl/mAAOli. If you would like to make a donation to help NH veterans and their families please visit www.vetscount.org/nh. And, to view photos of the event visit www.facebook.com/VeteransCount.

In the three-year history of our “Make 12 Hours Count” Radio Thon, Veterans Count, with the help of our generous sponsors and supporters, has raised almost $440,000 to support NH veterans and their families!

About Veterans Count
Since 2006, Easterseals Military & Veterans Services provided more than 9,600 individuals with services for challenges including suicide prevention, employment, homelessness, substance abuse treatment, transportation, and mental health issues resulting from post-traumatic stress disorder and/or traumatic brain injury. Additionally, Veterans Count provides emergency financial assistance for food, home maintenance, utilities, housing, rent, fuel assistance, vehicle repair, child care, gasoline, and medical bills.

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An American Solo Film Premier to Benefit Veterans Count

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A new documentary film entitled An American Solo will have its premiere at 3S Artspace on Sunday, April 2, at 3:00pm. All proceeds from the event will benefit Veterans Counts, a program of Easterseals NH.

An American Solo chronicles the extraordinary life of NH resident Col. Norman Phillips (USAF ret.), as told in his own words, starting with his parentless childhood in a small Massachusetts mill town. Norm went on to become a highly decorated WWII fighter pilot with 99 combat missions to his credit.

During the Cold War with the Soviet Union, Norm commanded the US Air Force’s elite 22nd Squadron in Germany – one of America’s first fighter squadrons armed with nuclear weapons. Among the pilots he mentored in that group were future astronauts Ed White and Buzz Aldrin, award-winning novelist James Salter, and Pete Peterson, a six-year prisoner in the “Hanoi Hilton” who became the United States’ first post-war Ambassador to Vietnam.

Norm went on to serve several years in the Pentagon and then chose to go train pilots to fly the F-105 during the Vietnam War. He eventually became a “reluctant volunteer” for the war himself and, as a 46 year old, full Colonel, flew dozens successful combat missions in Southeast Asia before being shot down over Laos.

After barely surviving a harrowing rescue, Norm retired from the Air Force and embarked on his second life. He turned down a lucrative offer to become a business executive, opting instead to go to college. He enrolled at the University of Massachusetts, where he earned his BFA and MFA in Art. Upon finishing his Masters, he was hired by the University to teach sculpture, which he did for 19 years.

Now a vigorous 95-year-old, Norm is a published author who is currently working on his second novel. Having witnessed a significant portion of the 20th century from 12,000 feet, Norm may be one of the last clear voices of a generation, and is he very candid in his assessments and opinions, some of which stand in stark contrast to those of other military veterans.

An American Solo is a “labor of love” by two first-time filmmakers, Bob Bear and Jay MacNamee, both NH residents, and is an 2017 Normandie International World War II Film Festival Official Selection.

Admission to the premiere is $25 per person, with 100% of proceeds benefitting Veterans Count.  To purchase admission, or for more information – including a link to the film’s trailer – visit www.vetscount.org/nh/events/an-american-solo or go to www.3Sarts.org/theater-performances.

About Veterans Count
Since 2006, Easterseals Military & Veterans Services provided more than 9,600 individuals with services for challenges including suicide prevention, employment, homelessness, substance abuse treatment, transportation, and mental health issues resulting from post-traumatic stress disorder and/or traumatic brain injury. Additionally, Veterans Count provides emergency financial assistance for food, home maintenance, utilities, housing, rent, fuel assistance, vehicle repair, child care, gasoline, and medical bills. To learn more about Veterans Count, please visit www.vetscount.org/nh.

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3rd Annual “Make 12 Hours Count” Radio Thon

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News Radio 96-7, WGIR-AM 610 and iHeartRadio Team Up with Veterans Count to Support Our Military Families

In a state-wide, patriotic show of support for all that our veterans, service members and their families have sacrificed,  Veterans Count, a program of Easterseals NH, in partnership with iHeartRadio, will take to the airwaves for the 3rd Annual “Make 12-Hours Count” Radio Thon, presented by LTC Partners.  The broadcast will be March 22, from 6am – 6pm on News Radio 96-7, WGIR-AM 610 as well as iHeartRadio.com.

The Radio Thon will feature 12 hours of compelling content about the challenges faced by military families and how Veterans Count and other organizations across the state provide support. Additionally, the Radio Thon will include testimonials from clients, sponsor recognition, celebrity endorsements and check presentations. The Radio Thon, hosted by the host of NH Today Jack Heath, will be broadcast live on Manchester’s WGIR-AM 610 and Rochester’s News Radio 96-7. Listeners not in the coverage area for these two stations will be able to access the broadcast online at iHeartRadio.com, or through the iHeartRadio app.

This major effort will directly impact the lives of service members of all eras and their families. Since 2006, Easterseals Military & Veterans Services provided more than 9,600 individuals with services for challenges including suicide prevention, employment, homelessness, substance abuse treatment, transportation, and mental health issues resulting from post-traumatic stress disorder and/or traumatic brain injury. Additionally, Veterans Count provides emergency financial assistance for food, home maintenance, utilities, housing, rent, fuel assistance, vehicle repair, child care, gasoline, and medical bills.

Thank you to our Supporting Sponsors: Bank of America, Charter Trust, Comcast, Eastern Bank, Eastern Propane, Frisbie Memorial Hospital, Granite Group Benefits, Kittery Trading Post, McLane Middleton, New England Dragway, Service Credit Union, and Walmart.

For more information about how to get involved, please contact Senior Development Director Joe Emmons at 603.621.3570. Please call 844.650.VETS on March 22 to make a donation. To learn more about Veterans Count, please visit www.vetscount.org/nh.

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Veterans Count Elects Senator Kelly Ayotte to Executive Committee

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Veterans Count, a program of Easterseals, is pleased to announce that Senator Kelly Ayotte, of Nashua, NH, has been elected to serve as a Member-at-Large of the Executive Committee.  

In this role, Senator Ayotte will join a team of statewide volunteers to help oversee Veterans Count chapters throughout the Northeast including New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont.

As the philanthropic arm of Easterseals Military & Veterans Services, the mission of Veterans Count is to provide critical and timely financial assistance and services when no other resource is available to veterans, service members and their families, to ensure their dignity, health and overall well-being.  In the past decade, Veterans Count has helped more than 9,400 individuals in a variety of ways including suicide prevention, homelessness, substance abuse treatment, employment, transportation, and mental health issues resulting from post-traumatic stress disorder and/or traumatic brain injury. Veterans Count supports families through a care coordination model and provides emergency financial assistance for food, home maintenance, housing, rent, fuel assistance, utilities, vehicle repair, gasoline, medical bills, and child care.  

As a tireless supporter of veterans during her tenure as Senator for the State of New Hampshire, Ayotte worked closely with Veterans Count and promoted it as a program to replicate throughout the nation. Her husband Lieutenant Colonel Joe Daley, ret., a veteran himself, has been an active volunteer in the Veterans Count Nashua Chapter for more than four years.

“Nothing is more important to me than ensuring that our veterans and their families receive the care and support they have earned defending our great nation and our freedom,” said Ayotte. “I am deeply humbled to serve on the Executive Committee of Veterans Count and to assist this incredible and important organization as it continues to serve the needs of veterans and their families in NH.”

Ayotte comes to Veterans Count with an extensive leadership background. Following a brief time in the 1990s as a law clerk in the New Hampshire Supreme Court, Ayotte was hired by McLane, Graf, Raulerson & Middleton in Manchester. In 1998, she became a prosecutor for the Office of the New Hampshire Attorney General. She was then promoted to deputy attorney general and, in 2004, was appointed the state’s attorney general.  In 2010, Ayotte was elected to the U.S. Senate and officially began serving as senator for New Hampshire in January of 2011. Serving on the Senate’s Armed Services, Budget, Commerce and Small Business Committees, Ayotte was also the ranking member, among Senate Republicans, of the Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support.

“Kelly has been a tremendous advocate and supporter of Veterans Count as a United States Senator,” said Easterseals NH President & CEO Larry Gammon. “We are so privileged and honored to have Kelly join our executive committee and continue working on behalf of our veterans, service members, and their families.” 

To learn more about Veterans Count and to get involved as a volunteer or with fundraising activities, visit www.vetscount.org/nh.

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Hoops for Troops Basketball Doubleheader to Benefit Veterans Count

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Bishop Guertin and Trinity High Schools boys and girls varsity basketball teams will host the inaugural Hoops For Troops basketball doubleheader on Sunday, January 29 at 1 pm at Stoutenburgh Gymnasium at Saint Anselm College in Manchester. Tickets can be purchased at the door ($3 students; $5 adults and veterans are FREE).

This event will benefit Veterans Count, a program of Easterseals, that provides critical and timely financial assistance and services when no other resource is available to veterans, service members and their families, to ensure their dignity, health and overall well-being. Since 2007, Veterans Count volunteers have raised more than $2.8M to support this critical cause. 

The Hoops for Troops game is a way for student athletes from both high schools to do their part in giving back to the brave men and women who have served our country. The girls varsity game will begin at 1 pm and the boys at 3 pm.

“We are so fortunate that these two schools and their student athletes recognize the struggles of our veterans and want to support our mission” said Brian McLaughlin, chair of the Manchester Chapter of Veterans Count. “Since its inception Veterans Count has provided emergency assistance to more than 9,600 individuals in a variety of ways including rent and mortgage assistance, job placement help, substance misuse treatment, fuel and gas payments, access to mental health treatment and referrals to community and military resources. We are incredibly thankful for the generous support of these two high school and all the fans that will allow us to continue serving our veterans, service members and their families.”

Members of each branch of the military will be on hand for a special ceremony between games.  There will also be half time entertainment and 50/50 raffles throughout afternoon.

For more information contact Joe Emmons, 603.621.3570 or jtemmons@eastersealsnh.org

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Swig, Swirl and Salute Our Solders at the 1st Annual Red, White & Brew

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Craft Beer and Wine Festival to benefit Veterans Count-Lakes Region Chapter

Honor our brave military at the inaugural Red, White & Brew—a Draft Beer & Wine Festival hosted by the Lakes Region Chapter of Veterans Count, a program of Easter Seals. This fun and patriotic event will take place on Saturday, October 1, 2016, from 2-5 pm, with a special VIP Hour from 1 -2 pm, at FunSpot at Weirs Beach. All proceeds will benefit Veterans Count, whose mission is to provide critical and timely financial assistance and services when no other resource is available to veterans, service members and their families, to ensure their dignity, health, financial and overall well-being.

In addition to beer and wine samplings, the festival will feature a car show, music, food, local artisans and most importantly a military appreciation day.

“Special thanks to Belknap Subaru for their lead sponsorship of our inaugural event,” said Cynthia Makris, chair of the Veterans Count Lakes Region Chapter. “As the newest chapter in the Veterans Count family, the Lakes Region is committed to doing our part to supporting those who served us!”

Raffles will be drawn hourly and attendees will have the opportunity to bid on a variety of silent auction items all in support for those who served, and are still serving, our country.

“We are so lucky to be working with our tremendous sponsors and expect to have a terrific event! Veterans Count truly offers a hand up to our military families,” said Leah Desrocher, Red, White & Brew chairperson and Lakes Region Chapter member. This event will offer an opportunity for all members of the community to show their appreciation for the sacrifices made by members of our brave military and their families.”

We are grateful to our generous sponsors which include: Belknap Subaru, Cerutti Contracting, The Naswa Resort, Porsche of Nashua, FunSpot, Amoskeag Beverages, Bootleggers Footwear, Meredith Village Savings Bank, Home Beautiful, AmeriGas, TBones/Cactus Jacks, Pine State Beverage, Horizon Beverage, Perfecta Wine Company, MS Walker, Coca Cola, Metrocast and Mix 94.1FM.

For more information, or to buy tickets visit vetscount.org/nh. If you would like to be a sponsor or volunteer for the event, please contact Joe Emmons, Director of Development at 603.621.3570 or jtemmons@eastersealsnh.org

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BELKNAP SUBARU CUSTOMERS SHARE THE LOVE FOR VETERANS COUNT

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The Belknap Subaru Share the Love Program recently donated $17,000 to Veterans Count, a program of Easter Seals, to help provide critical and timely financial assistance and services when no other resource is available to veterans, service members and their families, to ensure their dignity, health and overall well-being.

The money was raised by Belknap Subaru’s customers, selecting the local charity to receive donations under Subaru’s National Share the Love Program. Mark Johnstone, President of Belknap Subaru, with his staff, and John Hayes, representing Subaru of New England, presented a check to Veterans Count Director of Development Joe Emmons and Board Member Jane Love.

Mark Johnstone, thanked their customers for participating, and the sales staff, at the dealership for creating the awareness of the critical work accomplished by Veterans Count. “This is an amazing partnership, customers, local business, and Subaru, coming together to do important things,” said Johnstone.

Belknap Subaru selected Veterans Count, as its local partner, and customers could also select from their choice of the following charities: ASPCA®, Make-A-Wish®, Meals On Wheels Association of America®, and the National Park Foundation. From Nov. 20, 2014 to Jan.2, 2015, Subaru donated $250 for every new Subaru vehicle sold, or leased, to the customer’s choice.

“We are humbled by the efforts of Subaru and Belknap Subaru, and will use this money to continue our mission, helping veterans and their families,” said Love.

Belknap Subaru in Tilton, NH sells and services Subaru and other vehicles. They have been in business since 2001, and are a Better Business Bureau accredited business partner. For more information about the dealership or Share the Love, call Scott Ives at 603.7291300.

If you know a veteran, service member or military family in need of support from Veterans Count, please call 603.315.4354 or visit vetscount.org/nh.

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