Yuma, Ariz. --
The Yuma Chapter of the Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) exists as an extension of the national organization and serves to promote its goals at the local level, foster camaraderie and community service among retired, former, and active duty officers in the Yuma area, provide support to the local military and veteran community, and acknowledge the scholastic excellence of well deserving Yuma youth.
The chapter’s veteran support contributions vary greatly but one key annually recurring event involves chapter members spending Veterans Day visiting the veterans in local nursing homes and rehabilitation centers. During these visits the veterans are presented hand-made lap blankets and are reminded of the overwhelming extent to which their service to their country is appreciated.
The Young American Award is the chapter’s exclusive youth scholarship program which was created to acknowledge and reward three exceptional 7th Grade students (one winner and two runner-ups) and a single 12th Grade student. After a comprehensive interview and selection process, those selected in April each year are honored at our May monthly meeting where the students and their families are our guests and the selectees are presented certificates and monetary awards.
Our chapter’s most notable community contribution was facilitating the establishment of the Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (MCROTC) Program at Kofa High School. Our chapter members were instrumental throughout the stand-up of this program — most notably RADM Robert Sloncen (Ret.) and CWO Vernon McGee (Ret.) — from gaining initial approval from Headquarters Marine Corps, to the selection of the instructor staff, to the receipt and inventory of unit property.
The chapter’s social aspirations aside, our key goal is to ensure the longevity and success of our Young American Award Program, the Kofa High School MCJROTC Program, and support for our local military and veteran communities. The chapter holds monthly meetings at 6 p.m. on the third Wednesday each month (except July and August) at the Desert Hills Bar & Grill, 1245 W. Desert Hills Dr. In addition to the opportunity to dine with fellow officers (spanning the WWII era to present day), these meetings include quality programs ranging from military and civilian speakers to holiday themed musical entertainment. For more information contact Nicholas at (928)287-9915.