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Memorials and Salutes for Veterans and Caregivers Military History Toolkit Produced by the Veterans Advisory Council National Hospice and Palliative Care.

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Presentation on theme: "Memorials and Salutes for Veterans and Caregivers Military History Toolkit Produced by the Veterans Advisory Council National Hospice and Palliative Care."— Presentation transcript:

1 Memorials and Salutes for Veterans and Caregivers Military History Toolkit Produced by the Veterans Advisory Council National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization

2 VA Mission To care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan ~Abraham Lincoln~... by serving and honoring the men and women who are America’s Veterans

3 Purpose of Salutes Recognizes and pays tribute to our Veterans for their service to their nation Encourages Veterans to share their personal experiences and stories Provides an opportunity to be reunited with active duty service personnel Promotes camaraderie among residents living in ALFs, AFCHs and SNFs Facilitates the creation of a legacy

4 Purpose of Memorials Provides an opportunity for family, caregivers and staff to honor and remember Veterans who have died Promotes healing and recovery during the grieving process

5 The Settings At the Veteran’s bedside (salute) Peaceful setting such as a private park with outdoor pavilion near a lake or pond (memorials and salutes) Facility activity room, fellowship hall, community center or meeting room (memorials and salutes) The Essentials Handicap accessible Choose a time when parking is readily available

6 Suggestions for Memorials Twice a year –Spring –Fall Military holidays –Memorial Day –Veterans’ Day –Armed Forces Day –Pearl Harbor Day

7 Suggestions for Salutes Public salute –Schedule for military holiday –Send invitation to facility residents, staff and family/caregiver Private salutes at the bedside for individual Veteran –Film and give DVD to family –Include other Veterans and active military personnel

8 A Special Salute – The Pinning Ceremony Publicly acknowledges military service and sacrifices Gives the Veteran an opportunity to share part of his or her story Can give a sense of meaning and purpose to the Veteran’s life

9 Types of Pinning Ceremonies Planned –Coordinated to allow family and caregivers to be present –Involves family and other significant people in the Veteran’s life Impromptu –May be connected to a military holiday –Takes place in homes or healthcare facility where other Veterans are living

10 The Pinning Ceremony Have lapel pins made to reflect your organization or purchase bulk pins with a flag motif While pinning the Veteran... –Acknowledge Veteran’s service –Ask Veteran to share stories of service –Thank the Veteran “Thank you for the sacrifices you made and your willingness to serve our country.”

11 We Appreciate Our Veterans Veteran’s Name We pay special tribute to you for your military service to America and for advancing the universal hope of freedom and liberty for all. Organization Name Insert Organization logo here United States Army

12 Invitations and Programs Send memorial invitations to family members or caregivers of Veterans who have died in the preceding six months Invitations and programs should communicate a patriotic theme

13 Decorations and Setup Arrange head table with a patriotic tablecloth and red, white and blue accessories. For Memorials – an encased tri-fold American flag behind red, white and blue candles. Silk flowers and greenery could be added. Arrange Veterans’ photos and other military memorabilia around flag and candles.

14 Decorations and Setup Additional decorations – red, white and blue buntings or yellow ribbons tied to pavilion pillars and trees. Other decorations may include patriotic place mats and centerpieces set on refreshment tables. A “Missing Man Table” could be set in a prominent place in the room for memorials.

15 Have a display table Photos Helmet Boots Leggings ID Card Dog tags Service medals Uniforms

16 The Service Include as many IDT members as possible Reconnecting with hospice staff/team members is important and especially gratifying for survivors at memorials.

17 The Service Arrange for active duty military personnel to attend Veterans Salutes through Public Information Offices at military bases. Veteran volunteers can assist with escorting guests to their seats, in uniform, if possible.

18 The Service … the beginning Play patriotic music as guests arrive and sign guest book –U.S. Army Band; 1-800-USA-AWAY; –U.S. Air Force Concert Band; 1-800-423-USAF; –The Vocal Majority Chorus; Freedom’s Song; 800-vmsongs;

19 The Service … program Welcome by Bereavement Services Manager Posting of Colors (for Salute), enlist VFW Color Guard, JROTC, Cadet Unit, or Boy Scout Troop Invocation by Hospice Team Chaplain

20 The Service … Program Inspirational song (e.g.: “An American Hymn”) played or performed by vocalist and accompanist for Memorial National anthem for Veterans Salute Inspirational reading (i.e.: “What is a Veteran” or “To our absent brothers”, etc Words of reflection by team member Effective grieving (bereavement coordinator)

21 The Service … Rituals of Remembrance While light music is playing in the background –Background slides –Invite guests to come forward to accept a red carnation as a symbol of their grief; release it into the lake or pond –Lighting of the red, white and blue candles to represent their courage (red), faithfulness (blue), to keep their memory alive (white)

22 Rituals of Remembrance –Arrange for a dove release symbolic of sending forth their thoughts and care for deceased loved ones or a sign of “letting go” –Encourage Veterans to tell stories of fallen brothers or experiences and formally give sacred space for reconciliation/forgiveness

23 Other Rituals Write down feelings or memories of war/personal loss on paper and burn it, bury it at a gravesite, or release in a helium balloon Drop stones into the water Plant a tree, flower bulbs, rose bush, etc. in memory of the Veteran or fallen soldier

24 The Service …continued Team nurse or nurse aide reads a litany or remembrance Hand out certificates of recognition with name of Veteran to family members Invite survivors to share a personal reflection or have a Veteran volunteer share personal stories affirming the journey through grief

25 The Service …continued Inspirational song performed (e.g., “Let there be peace”, “Battle Hymn of the Republic”) Team Chaplain performs benediction, offers invitation to fellowship and refreshments Postlude of patriotic music plays in the background

26 Useful Websites Summary of Military Conflicts in U.S. History Veterans History Project Veteran Demographics

27 Useful Websites Small Gifts _4th_flag_bracelets.html _4th_flag_bracelets.html Memorial Tree veterans-day.html veterans-day.html 3.html

28 Additional Resource Good Grief Rituals: Tools for Healing –Elaine Childs-Gowell, ARNP, PhD

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