Dear Colleagues-Friends,

Since becoming a national holiday in 1954, Veterans Day has served as a reminder for us to show our appreciation for all those who have stepped forward to serve our country. From the front lines to disaster relief efforts, the members of our Armed Forces have answered the call to protect and serve, no matter the personal costs.

We benefit greatly as a school, university and health system from having faculty, staff and trainees who have answered the call to military service. They are models of servant leadership and bring the core values of duty, honor and service to bear in all they do in support of our tripartite mission.

Today on November 11, we are pleased to be able to highlight just a few of our colleagues from across our academic medical center and share how they have drawn on their military experience to make a difference in their chosen fields. For example:

  • Five School of Medicine faculty, staff and trainees share how serving in the military led them to careers in academic medicine in this photo essay.
  • Emergency medicine physicians Dr. Brandon Wills and Dr. Peter Moffett describe the Army training and mentorship that connected their careers and brought them to VCU in this feature on our School of Medicine’s website.
  • In this video, Dr. Stephan Weinland reflects on his nearly two decades of service in the United States Army, during which he helped train providers and was deployed overseas to support soldiers near the front lines – experience he leverages as he provides services to patients as part of the Hume-Lee Transplant Center care team.

We also are proud to be able to help support and serve veterans in our local community and across the nation through our longstanding partnership with the Veterans Health Administration. Members of our faculty provide clinical care through the Central Virginia Veterans Affairs Health System, serve as national VA directors across a number of specialties and conduct research to help improve the lives and well-being of service members.

This expertise translates into exceptional care for patients like Tokoyo Carlton, an Army veteran and father of six who is happy to have a second chance at life following a heart transplant on Memorial Day this year. His surgeon, Dr. Dipesh Shah, said in this article on VCU Health News: “It was such a happy moment for me personally when Mr. Carlton, a veteran himself, received a gift of life on Memorial Day. It’s so rewarding caring for these patients who’ve done so much for our country.”

More stories about our veteran colleagues across the health system can be found on the VCU Health intranet.

I hope you will join me in recognizing those who have served, and use today as an opportunity to share your appreciation with them for all that they have given in service to us all.

With gratitude,

Pter F. Buckley, M.D.; Dean, VCU School of Medicine; Executive vice President for Medical Affairs, VCU Health System