Veterans Day Voices: Doug Mangione, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers

In looking back 46-years ago when I landed in Vietnam, I get a bitter-sweet feeling. In 1969-70, we were losing an average of 200+ lives a week. When I think of all that I have experienced since that time with my family and life in general, I always remember those who will never have those moments, who will always be as they were when they shipped out. Their families are left only with memories and thoughts about what might have been.

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USS Iowa clean up

Great turnout at the USS Iowa this morning! Labor fielded 33 volunteers to help clean up the historic battleship launched in 1942. Among the many wonderful things we got to experience, the highlight was meeting WW II Veteran Ernie Thompson. He served aboard the USS Missouri and witnessed the surrender of the Japanese Empire in Tokyo Bay in 1945. Job #1: Get the galley ship-shape for Veterans Day festivities this weekend. We also got up close and personal with a visiting Army Helo that landed on the ship's fantail.



Here is our USS Iowa clean-up volunteers bright and early this morning.

Posted by Orange County Employees Association on Saturday, November 7, 2015
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Honoring Veterans on Main Street

It’s just a way to say thank you. As we prepare for Veterans Day this year, OCEA is seeking out opportunities to show our support for the men and women who sacrifice so much to keep us safe. These are the veterans of our armed forces who elected to take on the awesome responsibility of defending this great nation, its people and its principles. We found a small way to express our appreciation to veterans by helping to maintain the banner under which they fought.

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Labor hosts service projects, community celebration to commemorate Veterans Day 2014

California’s labor unions stood with veterans this November to commemorate Veterans Day 2014 with service projects and a free community celebration attended by 9,000 people in Orange County. Attendance nearly tripled this year as Southern California residents came to the OC Fair & Event Center to honor our nation’s heroes and enjoy free food, music and activities for the family.

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Labor union Food Drive for Veterans raises nearly 9,000 lbs. in donations

Local labor unions collected nearly 9,000 lbs. of food and supplies for veterans in need during a food drive at the free community Veterans Day celebration hosted by California's unions Nov. 11 at the OC Fair & Event Center.

Dubbed “Thanks a ton,” the food drive aimed to collect one ton (or 2,000 pounds) of donations for veterans in need. Thousands turned out at the free community celebration and helped to more than quadruple that goal, raising 8,957 lbs. of supplies.

Donations—including canned and instant foods, toiletries, and more—were weighed for free by Alex Moving & Storage in Santa Ana and will benefit Veterans First, a Santa Ana organization that feeds 175 homeless veterans daily, and the Orange County Food Bank.

"The sacrifices our veterans and their families make for our freedom are staggering, and so is the generosity demonstrated by so many this Veterans Day," said Jennifer Muir, Assistant General Manager of the Orange County Employees Association, which represents 18,000 local government workers. "Standing together, we accomplished something so much greater than ourselves. No veteran should ever have to worry about basic needs."

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PHOTOS: Thousands turn out for free Veterans Day celebration at OC Fair

Thousands of Southern California residents came to the OC Fair & Event Center Tuesday, Nov. 11, for a Veterans Day celebration including free food, music and fun!

Hosted by California's unions, the event is a way to honor our heroes and thank them for the sacrifices they have made for our great country. 

Click here for more than 50 photos from the event!

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KTLA 5 Live! OCEA prepares for Food Drive for Veterans at OC Fair

The Orange County Employees Association and Southern California's labor unions want to say "Thanks a ton!" to veterans and servicemen and women in need by raising at least 2,000 lbs. of food and supply donations at the OC Fair & Event Center, 88 Fair Drive in Costa Mesa, this Veterans Day, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014. 

Southern California television station KTLA 5 reporter Gayle Anderson was at OCEA Monday to talk about the food drive and FREE community celebration at the fair. 

Click here to see KTLA's video coverage of the Food Drive for Veterans

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Union members restore battleship USS Iowa to commemorate Veterans Day

SAN PEDRO—Armed with buckets of simple green and scores of rags, union members volunteered Saturday, Nov. 8, to be the USS Iowa crew for a day, scrubbing down bunks and cleaning walls in the 72-year-old battleship.

More than 40 members of Southern California’s labor unions—including Orange County Employees Association, United Food and Commercial Workers, the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and several others—came to commemorate Veterans Day and honor our nation’s heroes by giving back.

The celebration will continue from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday with a FREE community Veterans Day event at the OC Fair & Event Center, 88 Fair Drive, in Costa Mesa.

The events are part of the Veterans + Labor initiative,launched in 2013 by California’s unions. Through the initiative, union members across California volunteer to support veterans in their communities, and fight for policies and programs that provide resources for veterans in need and connect them with good jobs.

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