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SDDVA Secretary Whitlock’s August Column – No One Goes it Alone



For more information, contact: Audry Ricketts (South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs) at 605-773-8242 or audry.ricketts@state.sd.us  


During the past few weeks, I had the opportunity to network with our county and tribal veterans service officers (CTVSOs) and our staff. This afforded me the opportunity to hear about the challenges and roadblocks that our veterans are currently facing, especially with the ongoing events in the Middle East.


Veterans from all eras are reacting to the events in Afghanistan. Our team at the South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs (SDDVA) and our partners want veterans to know there are resources available for them.  

South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs (605-333-6869)        

County and tribal veterans service officers


VET Centers

          Rapid City – 605-348-0077

          Sioux Falls – 605-330-4552

VA Medical Centers

          Sioux Falls – 605-336-3230 or 800-316-8387

          Fort Meade - 605-347-2511 or 800-743-1070

Veterans Crisis Line 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255


SDDVA will also have members of our team at the South Dakota State Fair. They, and representatives from the veterans service organizations, will be in the Veterans Building on Flag Avenue throughout the Fair. Veterans are encouraged to stop by the building and visit with our team. 


No matter how complicated war might be, it always comes down to the ones who shoot, move, and communicate. And our country's military has left a legacy like no other fighting force ever assembled. The uniform they wear, and the flag they carry, are held in esteem wherever they have served. Every man and woman who wears America’s uniform is part of a long, unbroken line of achievement and they deserve our support. 


They are America’s veterans, and they are still the pride of our nation. They have fought our wars, defended our shores, and kept us free.


Combat is a team sport where no one goes it alone. Regardless of rank, branch, or specialty, a servicemember is always a servicemember. We are all on the same team and we all have the camaraderie of knowing what it is like to put our lives on hold and fight for our country.




Greg Whitlock, Secretary

South Dakota Department of Veterans Affairs