Veterans Affairs Chairman

November 2023

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Brother Knights!
November is a month to remember our Veterans!   It was on the 11th Hour of the 11th day in 1918 that the “Great War/ War to End All Wars” finally came to a close.   Due to the massive destruction and large number of soldiers killed in that conflict – the idea to remember the dedication and sacrifice of the military became a “Day of Remembrance” in many nations of the world.   Eventually “Armistice Day” became “Veterans Day” that we celebrate on 11 November in the United States. 
Many of our Knights' Assemblies and Councils work with their Parish/ Diocese to sponsor Veteran’s activities during November – perhaps with a dedicated Veterans Mass, leading a “Patriotic Rosary” event, cemetery flag placing or other patriotic activities.  Hopefully your local Knights group is taking part on one such activity.  Our 4th Degree Master, SK Pat Glavin (, is a good resource for ideas on how your Council or Assembly can honor our nation’s Veterans during November or throughout the year – helping fulfill one of our Order’s fourth Core Principle (Charity – Unity – Fraternity – PATRIOTISM!)
 HONOR FLIGHTS:   You are probably familiar with “Honor Flights” that provide military Veterans a day of honor and respect with a flight to/ from Washington, DC, and visits to major memorials and honor recognition in our Nation’s capitol.   Many Knights have either been on an Honor Flight, or have been part of the “Welcome Home” celebrations at airports for returning flights.
Our State Veterans Affairs Working Group (VAWG) has researched the upcoming HONOR FLIGHTS for the State of Indiana, and are now ready to use a portion of the funds raised during our recent “Great Bourbon Raffle” to help sponsor Veterans for 2024 Honor Flights from our state.  We particularly would like to “Partner” with some Indiana K of C Councils and/ or Assemblies to split the costs for various Honor Flights – thereby expanding the number of Veterans our Indiana Knights can sponsor next year.   [Specifically – this means that a Council/ Assembly would cover 50% of the cost to sponsor a Veteran on a specific Honor Flight, and our Veterans Affairs Working Group would pay the other half.   There are 4 different Honor Flight Groups in Indiana, and each has a different cost associated with their Honor Flight (see below).  Our VAWG is looking to “partner” for 6 Honor Flights in 2024 - working on a “First Come- First Served” basis for our partnerships.]
If your Council or Assembly would like to partner with the VAWG to sponsor a Veteran on an Honor Flight during 2024, please contact me (contact info below) or SK Rick Santangelo (PH: 317.622.2202/

The 2024 Indiana Honor Flights are:

13 April 2024   (50% cost - $250)

Fort Wayne (2): 
24 April; 15 May 2024. (50% Cost = $325)

Indianapolis (2):  
13 April; (TBD) May 2024.   (50% Cost = $500)

Lafayette (1):   
(TBD) April 2024.   (50% Cost = $350)
2024 Warriors to Lourdes International Military Pilgrimage (PMI):   The Veterans Affairs Working Group (VAWG) is proud to announce that the Knights of the state of Indiana will be paying for/ sponsoring 2 Wounded Warriors to attend the 2024 Military Pilgrimage in Lourdes, France.  The funds to pay for these 2 military members ($6000) is the first expenditure from the $19,100 raised through the VAWG’s “Great Bourbon Raffle” that was supported by many Knights, Councils, Assemblies and friends between May – September 2023.  
[Other expenditures to soon be funded by your Raffle contributions includes donation to the “Blessed Fr McGivney Military Chaplains Scholarship Fund” for Co-Sponsored Seminarians of the Archdiocese for the Military Services (AMS), and the purchase of “Traveling Mass Kits” for currently serving Catholic Military Chaplains from the 5 Dioceses of the state of Indiana.]
 Brother Knight Currently Deployed in Hazardous Duty Area:   There are many Knights who have served in the US military, or who currently serve.  Our VAWG is interested to communicate with Brother Knights who are now currently serving in a Combat Zone/ Hazardous Duty area.   The Goal would be to let our Indiana Knight in harm’s way know that he is in the thoughts and prayers of his Brother Knight at home.   As we become aware of Indiana Knights serving in these areas – we will work to pass information to our Councils and Assemblies.  We hope you will remember these Knights in your Prayers/ Good of the Order at meetings – as well as send a Card signed/ thoughts/ well-wishes from your Council/ Assembly members.   As a former military member, I was deployed a few times, and it was always very special to receive prayers and thoughts from family and friends.
 An Indiana Knight currently deployed is US Army SPC (E4)  Nick Corral.  Brother Knight Corral is 21 years old and a member of Council 16065, St Jude Parish in FT Wayne.  He is deployed as an Airborne Infantry soldier guarding an Airbase against Rebel forces threats in Kenya.   He is a 2020 graduate of Bellmont High School, and outside his Army National Guard service, Nick works for Three Rivers Ambulance Authority (TRAA), as a First Responder EMT, for the city of Fort Wayne. We Knights can help make a lasting impression of Unity/ Fraternity by letting Nick know that “good Catholic Men” back home care about him and will keep him in our prayers.  I encourage your Council/ Assembly to mail a card to Nick Corral during this month of November; his mailing address is:
                        SPC Nicholas D. Corral
                        PSC 831    Box 205
                        C Co    2 – 134th Airborne Infantry
                        FPO. AE. 09902

 Thank you for all you do for our Knights and Veterans – and for the outstanding support of our state’s Veterans Affairs Working Group (VAWG) that allows us to fund worthy projects in the name of the Knights of Columbus.   It is an honor for me to serve as your State Veterans Affairs Chairman.

* - Photo of SPC Nick Corral (Brother Knight, Council 16065/ FT Wayne) with local children near their air base station:

Steve Lutz
Indiana State Council - Knights of Columbus
Veterans Affair Chairman
Vivat Jesus


Steve Lutz
Indiana State Veterans Affairs Chairman
PGK/ FDD/ US Army (R)