Saturday, March 30, 2019

Iraq war veteran victim of road rage

Indianapolis, IN. (March 29, 2019) VRI – Friends and family hope camera footage will help find the person who punched James Yacconi and broke his jaw. The incident happened Wednesday, sometime between 3:45 and 4:30 p.m., at the intersection of South Madison Avenue and Pleasant Run Parkway. The two had stopped at a red light when the driver of a white sedan got out of his vehicle and confront Yacconi on his motorcycle.


After the two exchanged some words, the driver of the car punched Yacconi, knocking the Army veteran into another car. Video shows the entire incident. Moments after the punch, the driver got back in the car and drove away. Yacconi looked confused to what happened. A friend of his said Yacconi drove home, about three miles away, before deciding he needed to go to the hospital. "James is a big guy," the friend said. "You can see in the video. He’s a wrestler, he can take a punch. "So, when that guy sucker punched him and it knocked him into the other car, it broke his mandible and it broke the other side of his jaw when he hit the other car." Yacconi's wife said James spent 16 years in the Army.

People who know him are surprised one punch could take him down; they think the driver used something to deliver a more forceful attack. Yacconi's wife said her husband went to the VA hospital, but staff transported him to Methodist where he had surgery. As of Friday afternoon, Yacconi was still in the hospital and his family said James is dealing with some further medical complications. "He stopped breathing," Yacconi's wife said. "That’s a scary thing to watch someone go through." Friends and family were able to get the video from a Lyft driver. In fact, the driver who owns the footage can be heard saying he knows the man on the motorcycle, Yacconi.


The roughly five-minute clip begins a couple minutes before the punch is thrown. In it, Yacconi rides next to the Lyft driver and tells him he has a broken taillight. The Lyft driver tells Yacconi thank you. A few seconds later, the driver who threw the punch is seen passing Yacconi on his motorcycle. The next time the two cross paths is at the stop light.

James' friend said he thought the driver of the sedan was in a white Nissan Sentra that is missing its rear bumper. He said friends have already begun collecting money as a reward for any information that leads to an arrest. "I hope someone knows who it is and calls the cops," said the wife. "Please. They need to. He could do this to someone else."

A police report was filed with Indianapolis police. Anyone with information should give police a call. Tips can be reported anonymously to Crime Stoppers of Central Indiana at 317-262-TIPS (8477).

SOURCE: Fox 59

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Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Indiana native selected for prestigious program

Bremerton, WA. (March 26, 2019) VRI – Lt. Cmdr. April Gilbrech, a Indianapolis, Indiana native and Beech Grove High School, Beech Grove, Indiana 1998 graduate, was selected on March 10, 2019, for the Navy’s Perioperative Nurse Training Program, a challenging, highly sought-after assignment, and nursing specialty, to prepare a registered nurse like Gilbrech to work in both inpatient and outpatient settings providing highly technical and critical patient-centered care to those in need. “Her selection is a testament to her pursuit of professional excellence and sustained superior performance, said Capt. Jeffrey W. Bitterman, NHB commanding officer.

Photo By Petty Officer 1st Class Gretchen Albrecht

Gilbrech, also a 2003 graduate from Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis, had considered joining the Navy while in college, but decided to stay close to home and family. “After working at my job for five years, I decided to look into it again. I wanted to go explore different places and potentially go overseas,” said Gilbrech, adding that a friend’s husband was in the Army, so she had been exposed to military medicine while in college. “I wanted to serve a greater purpose. I had considered the Army first, but the duty stations with the Navy were much more appealing.”

Navy Medicine has taken her from Inpatient Pediatrics to the Pediatric Intensive Care unit at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth, to Labor and Delivery ward and Pediatric Clinic at Naval Hospital Jacksonville to her current assignment with the Pediatric Clinic at NHB. Gilbrech has held such positions as clinical resource nurse and charge nurse, clinic nurse and division officer, along with pediatric advanced life support instructor, basic life support instructor, Nurse of the Day coordinator, and electronic health record MHS GENESIS super user for NHB’s Pediatric Clinic to help the staff with system knowledge and use of the system.

Gilbrech attests that the best part of her Navy Medicine career revolves around the other staff members she has worked with and for from the Navy Medical Corps, Nurse Corps and Hospital Corps, as well as numerous support personnel. “It has been an interesting experience seeing the bigger picture and meeting some great people along the way. It’s a sense of, we are all here for the same reason. We can relate with each other, provide comfort when needed and help each other carry on when times get tough. You are never truly alone. I never interacted with my chain of leadership outside my work area when I was a civilian nurse,” related Gilbrech.

Being selected for the Navy’s Perioperative Nurse Training Program, done through a very competitive process contingent on already having shown and proven the necessary medical-surgical nursing knowledge and skills, the ability to function independently, able to handle stress, have good subordinate management skills, has proven that Gilbrech is readily capable for perioperative nursing, a highly-technical, critical patient-care arena. Being selected adheres to the Navy Medicine’s renewed emphasis on operational and mission readiness.

Her skill will be of paramount importance as the Navy and Marine Corps move towards more distributed operations that will call for casualty care and survival depending on individual medical personnel whether on ship or shore. “I was just selected for the Perioperative Nurse Training Program, so I believe I will be more operationally ready as Navy Medicine is heading towards that goal,” stated Gilbrech.

When asked to sum up her experience with Navy Medicine in one sentence, Gilbrech replied, “Being part of Navy Medicine has been a challenging, yet rewarding experience. The opportunities are endless as long as you are willing to put in the time and hard work to get to where you want to go.”

SOURCE: Defense Visual Information Distribution Service 

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Sunday, March 10, 2019

Grissom Air Base in need of pilots

Bunker Hill, Indiana (March 10, 2019) VRI – An air force base in Indiana is ramping up efforts to recruit pilots as a national shortage has military and commercial airlines struggling to fill positions. Col. Brian Hollis, the 434th Operations Group commander at Grissom Air Reserve Base, seeks to increase their combat pilots by 20 percent. Hollis didn't specify how many pilots the base is looking to recruit, but said they would fly KC-135R Stratotankers, which are mainly used on refueling missions.

First Lt. Steven Bretscher, a pilot in 74th Air Refueling Squadron, said the base is working to highlight the different perks it can offer. “One benefit of being sponsored through Grissom is that members know they will be flying tankers at Grissom, unlike pilots on active duty who can be sent to any base flying whatever air frame they are selected to fly,” he said. “It's a huge stress relief that lets you focus on your training.”

1st Lt. Tim Robertson, 74th Air Refueling Squadron KC-135R Stratotanker pilot, completes final checks before takeoff on a night refueling mission over Kansas at Grissom Air Reserve Base in 2015.

Grissom is also focusing on recruiting non-pilot airmen who already work at the base, Bretscher said. Officials aim to emphasize that reserve pilots can also have a civilian career while flying missions. The Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard have seen major staffing issues since 2013, according to a study the U.S. Government Accountability Office released in June. A large number of retiring Vietnam War veterans who have flown commercial planes for decades has contributed to the national pilot shortage, Hollis said. Aggressive commercial recruitment makes military recruitment even more difficult.

The military has difficulty retaining pilots because of the intensity of the position, the Accountability Office said. Hollis said Grissom is doing better than most military units to address the issue, but pilots still have more work and more deployments. “We're doing pretty well, which is kind of an oddity,” he said. “You have different locations like California where you'd think more people would be flocking to, but we seem to be doing pretty good here.”

SOURCE: The Journal Gazette