Soldiers, civilians visit Perry Point

Col. Robert Collins, project manager, Distributed Common Ground System – Army, speaks with retired Marine John Howard, during a visit to the Perry Point Veteran’s Administration Medical Center, Perry Point, Md., January 23, 2017.

Visit to VA Medical Center serves as opportunity to honor sacrifices of veterans

PERRYVILLE, Md. — The wind was so strong that it was raining sideways at times. The air was so cold it cut through camo Gortex and brown fleece alike. But in the dismal weather of a dreary Monday in January, the staff of Program Executive Office, Intelligence, Electronic Warfare & Sensors, or PEO IEW&S, had a place to be.

Maj. Gen. Kirk Vollmecke, the program executive officer for Intelligence, Electronic Warfare & Sensors (PEO IEW&S), listens to retired Marine Gerald Grimes tell a story of his time in the service during a visit to the Perry Point Veteran’s Administration Medical Center in Perry Point, Md., January 23, 2017. Vollmecke and 18 members of PEO IEW&S spent the afternoon talking to veterans, hearing their stories and assuring them of their place in both history and hearts of this generation of service members.

Maj. Gen. Kirk Vollmecke, the Program Executive Officer for IEW&S and 18 staff members traveled to the Perry Point Veterans Administration Medical Center to visit veterans from every branch of service. They were greeted warmly by Dr. Adam M. Robinson, Jr., director of the VA Maryland Health Care System, and his staff at the restored Perry Point Mansion, a structure built around 1750, and given a brief tour before moving on to the meet their fellow service members.

“On behalf of the veterans residing on our long-term care units, it was a pleasure to welcome Maj. Gen. Vollmecke and his team to the Perry Point VA Medical Center,” Robinson said. “These visits demonstrate to our veterans the gratitude for their service and reminds them that they are not forgotten.”

Vollmecke, along with Soldiers and government civilians from PEO IEW&S, shook hands and listened to veterans from World War II and after. The visitors from Aberdeen Proving Ground expressed their gratitude to the veterans assuring them they had laid the ground work for their service and how that their sacrifices serve as the foundation for the future of the armed forces.

“These veterans and their stories are incredibly important to us, as service members.” Vollmecke said. “Their history is our history. Their experiences and knowledge bring generations of Service together and inspire future generations to follow.”

One Army veteran, Jerry Sexton, warned the Vollmecke “Don’t get any article 15’s and you’ll be fine,” which Vollmecke had to admit was good advice.

“Don’t get any article 15’s and you’ll be fine” advised retired Army veteran Jerry Sexton to Maj. Gen. Kirk Vollmecke (foreground), the program executive officer for Intelligence, Electronic Warfare & Sensors (PEO IEW&S) during a visit to the Perry Point Veteran’s Administration Medical Center, Perry Point, Md., January 23, 2017.

By John Higgins, PEO Intelligence, Electronic Warfare & Sensors