Nevada charity steps in where government won’t

We wish the federal government provided adequate personal and financial support to military veterans and their families. It doesn’t. Terrible overseas conflicts have put extraordinary hardships on our military personnel. No amount of thanks and sympathy can comfort the relatives and friends of service members who lost their lives. And those men and women fortunate enough to make it home often don’t get the assistance they need to address disabilities and long-term joblessness.

Where the government can’t or won’t help, charities and their generous donors step in. The Nevada Military Support Alliance provides help to the families of fallen heroes, veterans with special needs and organizations with similar goals. Next month, the alliance aims to boost its fundraising — and the services it provides — with its Inaugural Las Vegas Gala, on May 11 at Red Rock Resort.

The alliance merged with the Nevada Patriot Fund in 2010 when their leaders recognized their missions overlapped, and that neither could deliver all the services that military personnel and families require. Over the years, the alliance has provided more than $1 million in financial assistance to the families of 57 lost Nevada patriots, as well as housing for veterans who lost arms and legs in combat. Last month, for example, the alliance, with Homes for Our Troops, built and presented an adaptive house in Hawthorne to returning veteran Timothy Hall. The 22-year-old lost his legs in a mortar attack in Afghanistan in 2010, and after more than 60 surgeries he is close to living a normal life.

The proceeds from next month’s dinner will help the alliance “offer assistance to Nevadans who are serving in combat, or are now returning, some with very serious or catastrophic injuries, from their military service.” (Full disclosure: Review-Journal Publisher Bob Brown is on the alliance’s dinner committee.) Retired Army Gen. Bryan Douglas “Doug” Brown, former commander of the U.S. Special Operations Command, will be the guest speaker.

Go to the alliance’s website, www.nvmilitarysupport.org, for more information about next month’s dinner or how to donate. Through the support of companies and individuals alike, our troops and their families will be able to get the support they need and deserve.

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