Newsletter Articles

Detective Nicole Stone

Post 8870, District 1 & Department of Washington. Law Enforcement Officer of the Year

Post 8870, District 1 & Department of Washington 

Law Enforcement Officer of the Year 

Detective Nicole Stone
Post 8870, District 1 & Department of Washington
Law Enforcement Officer of the Year

Detective Nicole Stone began her career in law enforcement working as an assistant to the Traffic Unit Sergeant in the Spokane Police Department, while attending Spokane Community College, studying Administration of Justice/Law Enforcement. Continuing her education, she became a Reserve Police Officer for the Spokane P.D. and worked as a Corrections Officer for Spokane County Jail. 

Graduating from the Spokane Community College program in 2005, she then began a course in Psychology at Eastern Washington University. Following graduation from EWU, Stone joined the Mukilteo Police Department, where she worked as Patrol Officer from 2008-13 at which point she became a detective. 

Stone has since built an impressive record investigating and achieving convictions in major cases, including the notorious Chennault Beach Triple Murder case, working as co-lead for the house party triple murder case, which garnered nationwide media attention. She received the Mukilteo Police Department Commendation Award for her work on this case. 

Since 2015, Stone has been one of the elite investigators chosen from all police agencies county wide forming the Snohomish County Multiple Agency Response Team. 

Post 8870 is proud to be able to recognize Detective Stone’s work and to sponsor her to the District 1 and now Department of Washington awards. Our thanks for her dedication to public safety. 

New Member Herb Bender

New Member Herb Bender

Members of the post welcomed our newest member, Herb Bender who was inducted at the January Post meeting. Herb was sponsored by member Jay Hansen. 

Herb, at left in this photo, is a Navy Veteran who served in Vietnam, is currently a resident of Mukilteo and retired from Boeing. During his eight years in the Navy, his rating was Radarman with a terminal rate of E-5. 

Herb’s service put him aboard a wide variety of ships, from aircraft carrier (USS Oriskany) an assault cargo ship and a guided missile destroyer, including a 30 day TAD to the brown water Navy in Vietnam aboard a river patrol boat. 

Welcome aboard, Herb! 

VFW Blue Water Navy Vet Wins Federal Appeals Court Ruling

Court of law now joins court of public opinion 

USS Hull, DD945, one of the many ships with Vietnam “Blue Water” Service

WASHINGTON (January 30, 2019) — The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed a decade-old ruling yesterday that potentially paves the way for the return of earned disability benefits for some 90,000 so-called Blue Water Navy veterans from the Vietnam War. 

The case, Procopio v. Wilkie, was supported by the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States and a number of other veterans service organizations and advocates. It had Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert L. Wilkie Jr. being sued by Navy veteran and VFW life member Alfred Procopio Jr., who was denied service connection for prostate cancer and diabetes mellitus because he never stepped foot on dry land or served within Vietnam’s inland waterways. Procopio, a life member of VFW Post 6587 in Spring Lake Park, Minn., was assigned aboard the aircraft carrier USS Intrepid, which was stationed inside Vietnam’s 12-mile territorial waters. Both of his illnesses are listed among the VA’s 14 presumptive diseases associated with exposure to Agent Orange. 

The Federal Appeals Court focused on the intent of the 1991 Agent Orange Act, which was to grant a presumption of service connection for certain diseases to veterans who “served in the Republic of Vietnam.” At issue was whether service within territorial waters constituted service “in the Republic of Vietnam.” By a 9-2 decision, the Appeals Court ruled it did. 

“Although very pleased with the ruling, the VFW isn’t quite ready to celebrate,” said VFW National Commander B.J. Lawrence. “ VA can always appeal the ruling and Congress has yet to pass a Blue Water Navy bill,” he said. “But, it is very encouraging to now have a court of law support Blue Water Navy

Commander’s Corner

VFW Commander

At the March post meeting, we will be holding nominations for post officers for the 2019-20 VFW year. 

Elective offices include Commander, Jr and Sr Vice Commander, Quartermaster and the three Post Trustees. If you have heard a call to duty to serve your VFW comrades, you may feel entirely free to nominate yourself, or, should you prefer, notify your Commander of your interest.

If you intend to nominate a Comrade for one of the elective posts a heads up, while not required, would be appreciated. 

Good Post leadership is vital to our success. I know there are many of you who are more than capable of providing such leadership and some fresh blood now and then is a good thing. 

Auxiliary Members Sought

Auxiliary Members Sought

Those interested are encouraged to call Valerie Ehlers 206-853-5673, or email Valerie at The Auxiliary meets monthly on the second Thurs., Edmonds Senior Center at noon. No host lunch. 

All of the veterans of our post have family and friends who might want to support our efforts through the programs of our Post Auxiliary. Please consider discussing membership with your spouse and other family and friends. 

More Honors for Fallen Heroes Artist Mike Reagan

More Honors for Fallen Heroes Artist Mike Reagan

United States Volunteers – Joint Services command presented VFW Post 8870 member Mike Reagan with an appointment as “HONORARY COLONEL” at a ceremony held January 19 in Lynnwood, in recognition of his ‘exemplary Service’ to the United States military community through the “Fallen Heroes” project. 

The USV-JSC is an organization focused on Augmenting the Regular and Reserve forces in two areas. First, to provide trained, uniformed volunteers who may be called upon to render final military honors to deceased veterans and second to fill the gap when and where needed by proper authority in incidents of civil emergency management. 

Presenting the award is BG Tim Miller, USAVR Commanding General, 103rd BCT. Miller is a member of VFW Post 3348 in Shoreline. 

Christmas at Puget Sound Fisher House.

Christmas at Puget Sound Fisher House

Terry Traner, shown with Carrie Brook, executive director of Fisher House, delivered 2 large bags of her 3 “B’s”, books blankets and bears. They are bundled together and will be given to the children who are spending the holidays with their family at Fisher House. Carrie was ecstatic with the donation. At the same time Terry delivered a donation from American Legion Post 66.

Relief Committee Distributes Gift Cards

Just in time for Christmas, members of the Post Relief Committee delivered gift cards to the veterans homes at Retsil and Orting, as well as to the Chaplains offices of the active duty military installations around Puget Sound of all service branches.

At below, Senior Vice Commander Carl Kurfess makes the presentation at the Orting facility. Other committee members helping with distribution included Dan Doyle and Rose Gilliland.

Relief Committee Distributes Gift Cards

Christmas in Vietnam by Jim Traner

Christmas in Vietnam“In 1967 our unit, 1st Squadron of the 11th Armored Cavalry, was dug in for the Christmas truce. We were in a FSB close to the Cambodian border. I won’t give you my thoughts on truces in a war as I would be banned on FB. One of our guys got a very small artificial tree from his family. I’ve been searching my memory as to the trooper but I’m drawing a blank after 50 years. We had no decorations but we did have some Jiffy Pop, carefully hoarded in our track from a stop in Base Camp a few months earlier. After tearing off a chunk of a brick of C-4 (plastic explosive for you civilians), we lit it and popped the Jiffy Pop. Someone had their sewing kit stashed in their gear and we threaded the popcorn and strung it around the tree. Every Christmas I look at our beautiful tree and remember that pathetic little tree that brought Christmas joy to a bunch of GI’s dug into a mountain top far from home.”

Jim posted this piece describing that little “Charlie Brown” Christmas Tree on Facebook recently and it was also published in the Edmonds Beacon. The photo, of different tree in Vietnam, was posted on Facebook around the same time as Jim’s post by another Vietnam vet.