The JAN 20TH MEETING was interesting and we now have 9 new members!  Col Terri Coles came from MOAA National and shared some new information with us.  For one thing, she advised us how to apply for a grant from USAA and, also, one from MOAA National.  We may be able to qualify under the community service programs that we have been doing.  I had not fully understood that what we do here in the Mountain Empire may help us to qualify.  Since we work with the JR ROTC programs in the area and give out awards every year, and, also, we have been awarding a $500 scholarship to an upcoming Senior in the ETSU ROTC program, we may qualify with those programs. 

Is anyone interested in receiving a weekly legislative update from National?  If you are and your email isn't on their list, please send to me and I will forward your name to National.

I can't find the newsletter input from National for February, so I am just going to pass on local events coming up, and things to watch for.  I am headed out of town tomorrow and just wanted to share what a success our January program was!!!

Upcoming Events:

MECMOAA Chapter Meeting and Luncheon, March 17th (yes, that is ST Patrick's Day) at 11:30 at Johnson City Country Club.  The meal will be off the menu.  The program will be exciting, and very different from any program in the past! 

SPEAKER: MURIEL KAGAN ZAGAR, Author, and Journalist.  She was doing work for the U.S. and Israeli military when she was asked to cover a crisis that was occurring in the Middle East and that led to a long career;  she says the people she met  inspired her.  As one of the first women to cover the Middle East (a pioneer) she struggled within the Arab areas.  
Though known for her writing, lecturing and teaching, Muriel's real passion is people, especially those of the Middle East.  One of her most memorable interviews was with U.S. troops in Lebanon during the Lebanese war, a few days fore the Marine barracks were blown up.  She never wanted to find out which of the troops that she interviewed survived.  She prefers to think that they "all made it".  Retired Marine General, Jim Joy, said of Muriel, "You are my hero, keep your head down" while operating in that part of the world.  Muriel's eyes were, and still are, windows to a part of the world that is difficult, especially for the Western mind, to comprehend.  As Muriel says " If you think you understand the Middle East, you haven't been properly briefed".

In addition to writing, Muriel also endows a yearly lecture series at East Tennessee University dealing with diversity, and she sponsors a program at Emory and Henry University for Holocaust Studies.  She has been a guest expert on Middle East affairs on television and radio.  She has had articles in the Congress Monthly and the Jewish Spectator, and has participated in many panel discussions on the Middle East.  She has traveled to and lectured in Iran.

It will be my honor to introduce Muriel to our members, and to learn from what she has to share.  I am sure she will take questions. 

On Tuesday,  February 13th  the ladies lunch group will meet at Giuseppe's in Kingsport.  Please call the host, Mary Shull, to RSVP.  Her number is 863-3937.

There are many more things to follow, but we don't have exact dates and times yet.  We are working on the 3rd Annual Run For The Dogs, and a group picnic in July, and maybe a few surprises.  Standby for those!

Sarah McNany

Coming Events

MECMOAA Chapter Meeting and Luncheon,

March 17th at 11:30 at Johnson City Country Club

The meal will be off the menu. 

Social Hour: 11-12. Lunch and the program will begin at 12pm.

Program: MURIEL KAGAN ZAGAR, Author, and Journalist

RSVP by Wed, March 14 to Tom Shafer at or 423-426-1416.