The Kuya Fund was established after a series of conversations at the first full blown
6922nd Security Wing Reunion in Las Vegas in April 2002. Many of the Kuyas had joined with their brothers after over 30+ years to relive our youth and celebrate our reacquaintance with brothers we had lived with, enjoyed good times together, and sacrificed together.
We are all proud of our brother's accomplishments and decided to establish a fund that could be used for financial assistance and charitable activities involving our Kuyas, American Veteran needs, and other charities related to our experiences in The Philippines and the United States military. Also, the Kuya Fund may be used to provide expressions of sympathy in case of the deaths, incapacitation, or tragic situations involving our Kuyas and their immediate families.
A major topic at the "Commander's Call" meeting during Kuya Reunion 2004 was the Kuya Fund. At least "Commander's Call" wasn't after a mid shift, but with all of the partying it felt like it. Mike "Lulu" Gilson explained the noble intentions of the Fund and the background which had its' foundations at the Kuya Reunion 2002 in Las Vegas. Numerous contributions were made and the Kuya Fund jelled at Kuya Reunion 2003 in St. Louis. A donation of a stereo unit with 10 speakers was made to The State of Illinois Department of Veteran's Affairs, Quincy Veteran's Home in honor of our Kuya, Jim Chance, who had suffered a tragic accident. The stereo systems services the entire floor where Jim resides.
The Kuya Fund has also been used to send flowers and fruit baskets to comfort Kuyas and their families during difficult surgeries, hospitalizations and illnesses.
The latest moves have been to develop a more formalized structure and process. Each Flight will have a representative. The Board for the Kuya Fund now is comprised of Mike Gilson (Able Flight - email address is firstname.lastname@example.org) , Ralph Rotunno (Baker Flight - email address is email@example.com) or Randy Roberts (A/B/C/D Flts firstname.lastname@example.org), TBD (Charlie Flight), and Don Orbin (Dawg Flight - email address is email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org). They will connect with respective Kuyas and decide on, prioritize and apportion funding of Kuya Fund activities. These Kuyas would like your help to know what the needs are and any ideas on how to make the Kuya Fund responsive to the entire group. Please let them know your thoughts. Volunteerism is highly encouraged.
If anyone hears about the death of a Kuya, one of the Kuya's immediate family, hospitalization or any unfortunate event, make sure Mike "Lulu" Gilson is informed at the above email address or call him (his phone numbers are on the Secure Animal Roster located on the Green Badge Page). He will respond in 24 hours or less. To get the word out, please also include your respective flight representative. Or, contact the Animal House webmaster Mouse via email (email@example.com).
The Animal House will keep abreast of developments and the Kuya Fund Board can use the web site to provide information to you. As always, your recommendations and ideas are welcome.
"But we in it shall be remember'd. We few, we lucky few, we band of brothers...."
Shakespeare - Henry V
If you would like to contribute to the Kuya Fund, please make it out to Mike Gilson and notate on the bottom of the check: Kuya Fund. Send your contribution to Mike Gilson, 1200 Woodborough Road, Lafayette, California 94549. If you need further information Mike "Lulu" Gilson can be reached 24/7 on his cell phone 925-766-6114. If you would like to designate your contribution to a specific memorial, organization, cause or in remembrance of an individual, let Lulu know. One of the Kuya Fund's primary purposes is to honor the memories of our Brothers whose friendship, companionship and caring were integral parts of our lives.
The steering committee of our amazing and distinguished group decided that we should proceed to seek tax exempt status for our group. The main benefit of the tax exempt status is that when you make acontribution to the Kuya Fund it will be deductible from your personal tax
returns and may also enable us to gain more contributions that can be used to support veterans activities as we have done in the past. For your information, we have made a charitable contribution to a local veteran's group at each of our recent reunions out of proceeds (remaining funds) from our reunion - and we will continue this tradition at all future Kuya Reunions.
To make it easy to keep track of funds, we will continue to collect deposits for our reunions in the 6922nd Reunion Fund. Any money left over after the reunion will be transfered to the 6922nd SW Kuya Fund.
Any donations you make during the year to the Kuya Fund can be used as an itemized deduction on your tax form.
The following are the specifics: *6922nd Kuya Fund is a 501(c)(19) nonprofit, and our Tax ID is 45-3784480* Please feel free to ask any questions that you may have. Mike "Lulu" Gilson, Treasurer.
((Click this link for a memorial to our fallen Kuyas))
Kuya Fund 2013 Report from Mike "Lulu" Gilson
I am remiss in not sending you a report in January on the funds received and expended from the Kuya Fund in 2013. The overall financial picture is as follows: we began 2013 with just over $4,000 in the Fund, we received contributions of approximately $2900, and we spent nearly $3500. We ended 2013 with just over $3400 in the fund. The following is a brief summary of the expenditures we made in 2013, and is included in the thank you letter I send with each contribution:
Your continued generosity enabled us to continue to make contributions such as the following that we made in 2013: Support for relief efforts following Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, continuing financial support for the restoration of the cemetery at Clark Air Base that is the final resting place of 6,800 American and Filipino Veterans, the purchase of books and proper clothing for elementary aged school children in an ongoing support effort that is sponsored by a VFW Post in the Philippines, a significant contribution to the Veteran’s Service Center in Reno, Nevada. In addition we have made the following memorial contributions: to the American Legion in honor of Bob Maki, to Camp Kemo in honor of Swede Swanson, to Teller County Search and Rescue in honor of Dickie Meyers, and to the American Cancer Society in honor of Tom Folkes, all of whom passed in 2013 and were members of the 6922nd Security Wing. We closed out 2013, with the purchase of a Christmas Wreath for Arlington Cemetery in honor of one our own – Harmon “Chap” Chapital, who fittingly is buried just off McArthur Road in the Cemetery.
Finally, in the month of January 2014, we sent “get well” baskets of fruit to four Kuyas who either underwent serious surgery or are battling various forms of cancer. The notes of thank you from the Kuyas and their families reinforce the fact that this is a very welcomed and valuable means of support that we provide from the Fund.
On behalf of the Kuya Fund Board: Kevin “Pooh Bear” Brown, Randy “Random” Roberts, Don “DonO” Orbin, Bob “Hippo” Buhr, I want to thank you for your continued generosity and remind you that all contributions to the Kuya Fund are tax deductible as we are a registered 501(C)19.
Mike “Lulu” Gilson
1200 Woodborough Road
Lafayette, Ca 94549
Here is an update to one of the Kuya Fund's charitable endeavors to contribute to the restoration of Clark AB Veteran's Cemetery. In 2013 the Kuyas made two contributions after Mt. Pinatubo spewed over a foot of ash over Clark and the cemetery, which is located just inside the main gate. The fate of the Veteran's Cemetery was in doubt as the U.S. left and there was no agreement on authority and cost sharing with the Republic of the Philippines. Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 2485 volunteered to remove the ash and vegetation that had grown on top of the ash after 3 years of neglect. The cleanup and restoration was completed and, in 2011, a new perimeter gate and fence was constructed.
There are approximately 8,600 individuals interred at Clark Veteran's Cemetery with VFW Post 2485 providing full military honors. On average, 40 burials per year, including WWII and Vietnam veterans. The cemetery is now under the American Battle Monuments Commission which assumed responsibility for maintenance.