Friday, January 19, 2024

Michigan Veterans News & Resources for Jan. 18, 2024 (Women Veterans, VA May Surprise You)

Michigan Veterans News

Defense Department expands retiree, dependent ID card renewals by mail

ID card

Military retirees and their dependents based in the U.S. may now renew their military ID cards online and receive them by mail, relieving them of a trip to the on-base ID card office.

The Defense Department announced Tuesday that it's expanding a pilot program that began in 2023 and initially allowed certain dependents' Uniformed Services Identification cards, or USID, to be renewed by mail.

Portions of the renewal process have previously been available online. However, the pilot program allows online ordering from start to finish. While in the past the renewed card had to be retrieved in person at a local ID card facility, it will instead be delivered by mail under the pilot program.


Woman veterans, VA may surprise you

VA women health care

Women veterans, if you haven't checked out VA in a while, things have changed. We recognize each of you are unique and your health care needs are not "one-size-fits-all." That's why VA continues to expand its services, so we can provide you with the best care possible to better fit your needs.

Learn more at VA News.

VA and Arthritis Foundation support veterans' health and wellness

Arthritis story

Veterans and service members experience arthritis at higher rates than the civilian population. VA is committed to supporting veterans with arthritis, ensuring they maintain a high quality of life.

In 2021, VA partnered with the Arthritis Foundation to increase access to care, education and support for veterans with arthritis. The partnership, facilitated by the National Center for Healthcare Advancement and Partnerships (HAP), increases access to valuable resources and initiatives to improve veterans' health and well-being.

Through the VA-Arthritis Foundation partnership, veterans living with arthritis gain access to an extensive collection of Arthritis Foundation health and wellness resources to support their physical and emotional well-being.

Walking programs such as the Arthritis Foundation's Walk with Ease (WWE) can help veterans embark on a more active lifestyle. WWE is a community-based physical activity and self-management education program that helps veterans with arthritis increase their physical activity.

Read more at VA News.

WWII veteran Bud Prottengeier: Going strong at 100

Bud Prottengeier volunteers at school

Bud Prottengeier volunteers at Bendle Schools in Burton. Contributed photo

Bud Prottengeier, Navy

In 1942, Maurice "Bud" Prottengeier, an 18-year-old college student, decided to enlist in the Navy along with his friends before they were drafted into World War II. Although that was 82 years ago, the Flint native has no problem recalling the details.

"At the time, I was in my second year of junior college at Northport College in Chicago," Prottengier says. "We all knew that we were probably going to have to go somewhere. We went down and joined the Navy that day."

On Jan. 13, 2024, Pottinger, surrounded by friends and family, celebrated his 100th birthday—one of only about 5,000 surviving WWII veterans in Michigan.

Prottengeier, a widower and father of three, is living proof that age is just a number. He still swims and does yoga, volunteers at a school in the Flint area and can recite the names of his fellow sailors and tell you how much he made in the Navy more than eight decades ago.

Prottengeier is our latest profile in the MVAA's I Am a Veteran campaign. Read his full story on our Special Advocacy/I Am a Veteran page.

Post-holiday winter blues? VA can help

VA mental health care

Now that the holidays are over and winter is settling in, are you feeling sad, depressed or just plain down? You're not alone. Many people feel that way around this time of year.

The good news is that the VA can help you cope with the post-holiday winter blues—in person and virtually.

How to get help right away

Any veteran in acute suicidal crisis can go to any VA or non-VA health care facility for emergency health care at no cost.

This includes inpatient or crisis residential care for up to 30 days and outpatient care for up to 90 days. 

You don't need to be enrolled in VA health care to get care.

Call or walk into any VA medical center—anytime, day or night. Find your nearest VA health facility

Call or walk into any Vet Center during clinic hours. Find your nearest Vet Center

Call us at 877-222-8387. The VA is here Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET. If you have hearing loss, call TTY: 800-877-8339.

Access the Veterans Crisis Line 24/7

The Veterans Crisis Line is a free, confidential service that supports veterans and their family and friends. It can support veterans experiencing mental health crises and connect users with resources. Respondents are trained professionals who are qualified to support veteran issues.

To access this service, call 988 and then press 1. You can also chat online or text 838255.

Read more at VA News.

Veterans Crisis Line: Dial 988 then Press 1


The Veterans Crisis Line is staffed by caring, qualified crisis responders who are there to help. Many of these responders are veterans themselves.

Online Resources



Call 1-800-MICH-VET



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