BATTLE CREEK, Mich. –
The Hart-Dole-Inouye Federal Center’s Veterans Day program took place today with James Doelling, director of the Battle Creek, Michigan V.A. Medical Center serving as guest speaker.
Doelling has been at the helm of the Medical Center for a year. Overseeing the health care needs of 45,000 Veterans in 22 Michigan counties.
DLA Disposition Services Director Mike Cannon welcomed the members of the HDI Workforce to the center’s Palm Garden Room. Thanking the veterans in the audience for their service and reminding the gathered of the building’s history of serving veterans though out the years.
Doelling’s presentation in part focused on preventing veteran suicide. “It’s preventable by you,” he said while pointing to members of the audience. “Reach out to someone who looks like they are having a rough time,” he said.
He added that 20 veterans a day commit suicide and that everyone needs to work on ending that. He stated that all it takes is if you see something, say something. Reach out and have that conversation.
He informed his listeners of some highlights from that past year that the Battle Creek V.A. Medical Center has had, including hosting the National Veterans Creative Arts Festival.
He explained that Department of Veterans Affairs use the creative arts as one form of rehabilitative treatment to help Veterans recover from and cope with physical and emotional challenges. The festival brings together the winners from competitions across the nation.
“Having this in Battle Creek was quite an honor,” Doelling said.
He also explained how his facility is noted for treating veterans with mental health issues and are treating veterans from other parts of the country.
“If you have a Veteran, there is a team to make sure you are going to get the best care,” Doelling said of his facility.