A picture of Representative Betty McCollum
Betty M.
Democrat MN 4

About Rep. Betty
  • Honoring Mn State Commander of the Disabled American Veterans, Robert J. Erickson

    by Representative Betty McCollum

    Posted on 2013-03-19

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    McCOLLUM of minnesota in the house of representatives Tuesday, March 19, 2013 Ms. McCOLLUM. Mr. Speaker, today I rise to pay tribute to Robert J. Erickson, upon the completion of his term as the State Commander of the Disabled American Veterans, Department of Minnesota (DAV MN). Commander Erickson has been committed to fulfilling the primary mission of DAV MN and honoring the promises our nation made to the brave men and women who have served America in uniform. I am honored to call him a personal friend.

    From the broadest vision to the smallest detail serving disabled veterans, Commander Erickson has been intimately involved in the various ways the DAV MN accomplishes its mission. He has visited all 31 state chapters, from Rochester, to Fergus Falls, to Hibbing, Minnesota, and witnessed firsthand how veterans are served--and how many veterans still serve through volunteering. Under his direction, DAV MN has several unique programs to serve specific needs of Minnesota's disabled veterans. Minnesotans love the outdoors, and DAV MN organizes hunting and fishing trips to allow all veterans to continue to access these wonderful opportunities. Commander Erickson speaks proudly about the joy he sees in the hundreds of volunteers and veterans who participate in these outings.

    Under Commander Erickson's leadership, DAV Magazine recently highlighted the DAV MN Donor Connection program, which has provided approximately $400,000 in donated equipment for disabled veterans. Another source of pride is the partnership with the Minnesota Twins: the MN Twins/DAVMN Winter Warm Up Coat Drive that collects new and gently used coats for disabled veterans and their families. None of these commendable efforts would be possible without Commander Erickson and his tireless team.

    Commander Erickson has left a lasting mark through his leadership role on the board of the DAV MN Foundation, the charitable arm of the organization which supports projects by chapters, units, and partner organizations throughout the state. The DAV MN Foundation provides clothing and emergency assistance to homeless veterans, assists in funding the five state veterans homes, provides funds for various camps and lakeside retreats that allow veterans safe and accessible places to enjoy the outdoors, and assists with other equipment and needs for veterans living in our MN Veterans Homes. The DAV Transportation Network also serves a critical link, providing veterans with free transportation to and from VA medical facilities. Commander Erickson has helped to lead these critical programs and more as part of repaying the debt owed to our disabled veterans.

    Mr. Speaker, in honor of Robert Erickson's service as Commander of DAV MN, I am pleased to submit this statement recognizing the achievements of this dedicated servant to our disabled veterans and this nation.


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