Westbrook Veteran Services Officer Arty Ledoux said he is proud of the city’s work for veterans, including the creation of a new Veterans Services Advisory Committee.

Ledoux

The committee, comprised of two residents, two veterans, two veterans representing the local American Legion posts and Ledoux, rounds out the work of the Veteran Services Office and shows the city’s commitment to those who have served in the nation’s military, he said.

“I think this committee will grow the program, and maybe we can be a model for many municipalities here in the state with our commitment to vets,” Ledoux said. “We’re doing really good and we are proud of what we’ve done so far.” 

The committee, which met for the first time last month, will oversee events like the city’s Memorial and Veterans Day ceremonies, but is also actively looking at issues vets are facing in the city, Ledoux said.

“We are excited to have a Veteran Services Office here in the community to help our veterans get the services they deserve,” Mayor Mike Foley said. “Now, with the Veteran Services Advisory Committee, we can begin to formalize our commitment to the veterans of our community.”

The Veteran Services Office, located at the Community Center, opened in January 2020 as the state’s first municipal-level veterans office. Since then, Ledoux said, the office has helped connect veterans with vital services. 

“The biggest contact comes when they reach out to me, or a family does, to ask for help and assistance and I put them in the right direction,” Ledoux said. “I have worked on questions on things from health care benefits to widow benefits all the way through to burial.”

He is working on creating a list of all the veterans in the city, which he said has been challenging because veterans rarely “reach out for help or identify themselves,” he said.

“It’d be great to have more contact information for veterans,” Ledoux said. “Let’s say I wanted to set up a monthly coffee-and-donuts meeting for Westbrook vets and their families, it’d be nice to be able to rather than just put a sign up.”

He added, “We are public, reach out to me, we are always wanting to hear people’s thoughts or ideas.”

To learn more, visit the city website here.

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