2021-2022 National Hospital Ambassador
What is the Honors Escort Program?
Honors Escort is a brief ceremonial procession for Veterans at their hour of death in an institutionalized setting. It honors military Veterans who have unselfishly served our country. Honors Escort offers fellow Veterans, family members and staff a moment of reflection and creates a visual display of military heritage.
Many Veteran Affairs (VA) facilities have an Honors Escort in place. As a Veteran Service Organization volunteer, you may have participated in an Honors Escort ceremony at your local VA. Ceremonies may vary at each VA facility throughout the country.
Non-VA healthcare facilities take strides to honor Veterans, and while some facilities have a Honors Escort in place, others may not. It is said that there are 464,687 Veterans projected to die this year outside of VA medical facilities. Many of these Veterans will receive home hospice care in the community.
How can I share this mission?
To learn what the VA and National Hospice and Palliative Care is doing for Veterans in community facilities access the website wehonorveterans.org. We Honor Veterans recognizes the unique needs of America’s Veterans and their families. They empower hospice and community organizations to meet the unique needs of Veterans by offering guidance and resources focused on respectful inquiry, compassionate listening and grateful acknowledgment for a peaceful ending of life. The We Honor Veterans program is provided at no cost to hospice organizations.
Please reach out to community facilities to see what programs they offer for Veterans.
Get Involved! Now is our time to brainstorm ideas about ways we can engage staff in an end-of-life Honors Escort. As VFW Auxiliary members, lets spread the word about why this type of honor is important.
September is National Suicide Prevention Month
Educate members and your community about how to recognize the signs of a suicide risk:
- Thinking about hurting or killing oneself
- Looking for ways to kill oneself
- Talking about death, dying or suicide
- Self-destruction behavior such as drug abuse, reckless behavior, weapons, etc.
Please continue to share resources to support Veterans and inform our members and the public.
- Veterans Crisis Line 1-800-273-8255, press 1
- Confidential Crisis Chat at net/ or text to 838255
** Some VA and non-VA facilities refer to Honors Escort as “Final Salute.” Once the end-of-life ceremonies at all facilities have adopted this name, we, too, will update the language used by the VFW Auxiliary.