Naples church hosts event to educate veterans about benefits

Reporter: Gina Tomlinson
Published: Updated:

They fought for our freedom, and now many active veterans need a helping hand understanding the benefits they can receive. Many veterans don’t know about different benefits and services available for those who served our country. Local events are educating service members about benefits they are can receive.

Louis Carrier, a 94-year-old World War II veteran, says he learned a lot from a new program at Saint John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Naples.

“Mainly because we’re old, and we develop all kinds of things like me,” Carrier said. “My memory is gone.”

Carrier served in the Navy from 1943 to 1947.

“I’m old,” Carrier said.

Although Carrier said he is a little forgetful nowadays, the veteran still remembers his time he served like it was yesterday.

“Scary, very scary,” Carrier said. “You could have been sent any place. A lot of my friends, a lot of my friends flew up and never came back”

Carrier left the Naples event learning something new.

“To get registered in healthcare, which I never did,” carrier said.

Services like healthcare, spouse benefits and different veteran organizations were up for discussion at the church.

“I didn’t realize that I hadn’t signed up for the VA,” WWII veteran John W. Noonan said. “I’m going to. I didn’t realize that there was so much open to us veterans.”

The next event is scheduled for Monday, Feb. 11. with more details on how to register on the church website. This is an ongoing series of events called “You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know” at the church.

“This shows something that may have not occurred 10 years ago, said Wayne Smith, a Vietnam War POW. “Where we recognize even the WWII veterans that were here, that are still alive, in there 90’s for instance. They need help. And now there’s a lot of people that are willing to help, and this event showed just how much people care about some of these people.”

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