Personal Giving Stories

Veteran Widow Names DAV in Her Will

"You Have Been There 100% for Us So We Should Give Back"

donor-brown.jpg Nora Brown has much to say about why she decided to name the DAV in her will. "I myself am a veteran and was in the Navy. The military did a lot for me physically and mentally, and I've always been proud of my service. I believe with all my heart that I should give back for what the military has given me."

But that's just one of Nora's motivations. Her deceased husband, Edward, was a Korean War veteran who suffered from back and feet injuries and was haunted by memories of friends he lost and things he saw. He channeled those hardships into service to others and became a drug and alcohol counselor. In Nora's words, "He was a wonderful, wonderful man."

Nora remembers Edward attending veteran support groups for what he had endured, but he chose not to share that corner of his life with her. She distinctly remembers him saying, "Never ask me about the war, Nora."

There was a time when the DAV had to go to bat for Edward when his disability rating was severely reduced. Nora recalls the DAV conducting interviews and gathering medical information on his behalf, and eventually his rating was restored. In his later years, Edward took advantage of the DAV's transportation network for rides to the VA Medical Center in Albany, N.Y.

Reflecting on all of this, Nora says, "I looked back on my life and asked myself, 'Who has helped me and my husband?' And I thought, the DAV. You have been there 100% for us so we should give back. I really believe in you people. I know I made the right decision to include DAV in my will, and I know my husband is looking down on me and saying: 'You did good, Nora.'"