V.A. Medical Center To Conduct Virtual 911 Ceremony

Presented By McDonald’s, I’m Lovin’ It!

(Chillicothe) — On September 11, 2021, the nation will observe the 20th Anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the U.S.  This day in history has forever changed the lives of so many.  At the Chillicothe VA Medical Center, we vow to never forget.  Please join us for our virtual 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony that will be posted on the Chillicothe VA Facebook (facebook.com/ChillicotheVAMC) on September 11 at 9 a.m.

As the anniversary of 9/11 approaches, the Department of Veterans Affairs is providing those who served awareness of and access to all their health care services, specifically in areas of mental health and post-traumatic stress care.

VA Mental Health officials said there has been an uptick in Veterans seeking help, which could increase as they come to terms with their service and as the Afghanistan withdrawal comes to completion.

“Our nation is indebted to the men and women who served in Afghanistan and Iraq, because they made our world infinitely safer,” said VA Secretary Denis McDonough. “Their service did not come without sacrifice as some carry physical and emotional wounds. We must ensure they get the world-class care they’ve earned and deserve.”

VA’s Vantage Point blog (https://blogs.va.gov/VAntage/92731/afghanistan-how-veterans-can-learn-from-vietnam-veterans) is running a four-part series on Afghanistan featuring Veterans’ thoughts and perspectives on their time there and the drawdown. The series will run each Tuesday until completed.

The series focuses on:

  • Recognizing warning signs of posttraumatic stress.
  • How spouses, family members and friends can respond to and assist someone with PTSD.
  • Where and how to get help within VA.
  • Mobile apps and tips for recovery.

“Our purpose for being there was to prevent further attacks on the homeland,” said Chief Master Sgt. Ramón Colón-López.  Colón-López is an Air Force pararescue man who served in Afghanistan and is currently the senior enlisted adviser to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

He adds his fellow service members should be proud of their actions over the last 20 years but also be cognizant of any mental health difficulties.

Colón-López spent years hiding and ignoring his PTSD, which led to heavy drinking and reckless behavior.  It wasn’t until he had a mountain biking accident that his wife gave him an ultimatum to get help.

“Veterans should be on the lookout for red flags if news of Afghanistan starts changing behavior,” said the Director of the National Center for PTSD Consultation Program Sonya Norman, Ph.D.  “These include isolating, using alcohol and drugs or any increase in unhealthy behaviors compared to normal.”

Norman points out excessive working or video game playing could be signs someone is struggling and needs help.

The series provides information on Vet Centers which started after the Vietnam War and addresses the parallels between conflicts and how they can help through readjustment counseling.

“I’ve got Vietnam Veterans who are still coming here, not because we failed to resolve any issue in their life, but because they found a home in the community,” said Director of the Las Vegas Vet Center Joe Lasky.  “They found friendships and a way to come talk and deal with issues that may have started in Vietnam, but now affect their current health.”

Lasky added he’s seen a willingness among Vietnam Veterans to mentor more recent Veterans.  Decades removed from their own service; many will offer advice to younger Veterans to not repeat mistakes they might have made.

The Chillicothe VA recognizes this time of year can be difficult for many Veterans.  Please know, YOU ARE NOT ALONE.  Contact your local VA mental health provider, 740-773-1141, extension 17898, or call the Veterans Crisis Line at 1-800-273-8255 and then press 1.  The Veterans Crisis Line is also available by text at 838255, or chat online at VeteransCrisisLine.net/Chat.  This is a free, confidential resource available to any Veteran, even if they are not enrolled in VA health care or registered with VA.  Save the Veterans Crisis Line as a contact in your phone and encourage others to do the same.

“The events of September 11, 2001 called brave men and women to serve their country as members of the armed services,” said Dr. Kathy Berger, Medical Center Director.  “VA remembers their service and sacrifices.  We are here to serve you now.” 

Scioto Paint Valley Mental Health Center Works Through COVID Challenges

Presented By Rathkamp Financial

While many individuals, businesses, and organizations have been greatly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic since late 2019, mental health workers have been kept very busy trying to meet the needs of those suffering the impacts of the world-wide health crisis.

Locally, the Scioto Paint Valley Mental Health Center has been kept very busy with many of these concerns.

Litter Media’s Mike Smith spoke to some of the staff concerning their mental health services, which you can see their comments in the following Litter Media video found below:

Barbara Mahaffey, Executive Director of the Center, says they have had to adapt many of their day-to-day operations in working with those in Ross, Fayette, Highland, Pickaway and Pike counties. Some of what they traditionally did in group settings had to be adapted during the worst of the pandemic, while still maintaining in-person services for serious issues.

Tonnie Guagenti, Associate Director of Social Work Administration and Director of the Crisis Center says they have three separate hotlines: COVID Care Hotline, Crisis Hotline and their affiliation with the National Suicide Hotline.

Guagenti says they have seen their walk-in patients having various needs from being anxious or depressed, to being suicidal, and some with some type of psychotic behavior. Tonnie says family of those experiencing mental illness can also call Scioto Paint Valley Mental Health Center to alert them of family members experiencing some type of mental health need which could also potentially require law enforcement or even the courts to become involved for the safety of the patient as well as others.

Another service offered by the Scioto Paint Valley Mental Health Center is the Rulon Center, which is a 36 bed men’s inpatient drug and alcohol treatment center located in Chillicothe.

Their residential treatment facility for females is in Greenfield, called the Lynn Goff Center.

Both drug treatment centers are directed by Monica Boucher.

The main office for Scioto Paint Valley Mental Health Center is operated inside the Martha Cottrill Clinic, with their phone number being (740) 775-1260. They can direct your to the specific service you or a family member or friend might need,

Adena Local Schools Go For Income Tax Levy Increase

Presented By Hometown-Motors, Inc.

(Frankfort) — The Adena Local School District will have a levy issue on the November 2, 2021 general election ballot.

In a press release from Adena Local School District Treasurer Kell Morton, he states that the levy is a 10-year, 1% earned income tax for permanent improvements.  A permanent improvement levy requires funds to be spent for building maintenance and improvements, buses, technology, textbooks, equipment, and other non-personnel expenses.  The additional funds will allow the district’s general fund to maintain the operations of the school, enabling the Board to take a balanced and sensible approach to the overall financial condition of the district and remaining competitive with the surrounding districts of Ross County.

An earned income tax applies to earned wages and business income.  Property, retirement, pension, social security, and other investment income are not taxed under this type of levy.  

There will be two community meetings for the public to attend with any questions they might have.  One meeting will be held on September 20th (7:00 P.M.) at the Brick located at 113 East High Street in Frankfort. The second will be held on September 27th (7:00 P.M.) at Clarksburg United Methodist Church.    

OU-Chillicothe Plans 75th Anniversary Celebration

Presented By Atomic Speedway

(Chillicothe) — Ohio University Chillicothe is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year with an Open House Celebration, Saturday, October 2nd from 10am to 2pm. This will be a free event and open to the public. Planned festivities include the “Back to the Future” DeLorean car, the Mighty Children’s Museum demonstration, Petland pets, the Chillicothe High School Marching Band, a gallery exhibit, a food truck, cake cutting and hayrides.

Bennett Hall, dedicated in 1966, will provide the backdrop for this special event. With its massive brick façade and grand white columns, Bennett reminds many of the courthouse depicted in the fictional town of Hill Valley in the “Back to the Future” trilogy. The DeLorean will be on display as a photo prop from 10:30am to 11:30am.

“We like to think of ourselves as an institution that is closely tied to the needs of the surrounding community,” said Dr. Milliken. “In serving these, we contribute to well-being and vibrancy of the Chillicothe and the region.”

OHIO Chillicothe’s 75th Anniversary Open House Celebration is a time of reflection and a way to thank the community for their continued support. Area businesses and public involvement helped to create and sustain a vibrant campus community. This spirit of cooperation is the cornerstone behind the campus situated atop Carlisle Hill.

“The rich history of partnership Ohio University Chillicothe has enjoyed over the years with the surrounding community is a testament to the wonderful people who live and work in Ross County,” said Dr. Roberta Milliken, dean of campus and community relations of OHIO Chillicothe. “We are truly fortunate to live in an area that clearly understands and values the opportunities that education can provide.”

Mike Throne, CEO of The Ross County Chamber of Commerce, echoes this sentiment. “Ohio University Chillicothe’s impact on Ross County comes in the campus’ amazing ability to maintain partnerships. OUC not only builds, but sustains, partnerships with community organizations to help Chillicothe become a thriving community, but also works hard to find educational partners that will create future leaders in our community! From offering its faculty and staff with expertise in specific areas to students who give their time and ideas, OUC has helped us find some of the best solutions to our opportunities.”

In addition to education and training, OHIO Chillicothe’s faculty and staff are committed to mentoring future leaders and public servants in a quest to give back to cities surrounding Appalachia.

“Ohio University Chillicothe’s mission is inextricably tied to the region that we serve. It has been our privilege to collaborate with our community partners to provide much needed high-quality, affordable educational opportunities to residents,” said Dean Milliken. “We look forward to continuing the partnerships with the community we have enjoyed for many years–and forming new ones. These collaborations are mutually beneficial to ensuring our region’s general health, vitality, and endurance.”

For up-to-date information on all events at OHIO Chillicothe, visit ohio.edu/chillicothe and follow the campus on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.