Major Donations for SGV Stand Down

The San Gabriel Valley Stand Down Committee is excited to share that we recently received two majors donations that will be given out at the 3rd Annual “Heroes In The Shadows” San Gabriel Valley Homeless Veterans Stand Down. Each will be presented on Saturday, April 5, 2014 at aprrox. 1500 Hrs.

Vehicle Donation

Jose Gonzalez (USMC Veteran), SGV|VEC 1st Vice-Chair & Member of Vet Hunters Project has graciously, donated a Nissan Altima to the Vet Hunters Project to be given to a deserving Veteran. Vet Hunters Project has decided to donate the vehicle to a Veteran at the Stand Down. Eligibility to be entered in the drawing will be determined upon registration at the Stand Down and the lucky Veteran will be announced publicly on Saturday Afternoon.

Vehicle Photos &   Specs:

Altima 2 Altima 1 Altima 3

  • Silver Nissan Altima
  • Clean Title
  • Manual Transmission

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Register as a participant of the Stand Down
  • Attend the Stand Down both Friday & Saturday
  • Honorable Discharge from the US Military (will be verified)
  • Valid California Driver’s Licence
  • Ability to cover insurance & vehicle maintenance after receipt of vehicle

Organizational Incentive

Veterans Learning Centers of America has graciously donated funds to be given to Top 5 Organizations that can prove how many Veterans they assisted during the Stand Down. Organizational donation to used for future supportive services. An On-Site Assessment Form will be used to count the services Veterans served, and cash donations will be awarded publicly on Saturday afternoon. Each awardee will have a photo taken, mention in media outlets be listed on the Stand Down Website as well as other perks to be determined by the Stand Down Committee.

Award Levels

  1. $1,000
  2. $750
  3. $500
  4. $250
  5. $250

Eligibility Criteria:

  • Provide services to Veterans and other participants during the Stand Down on both Friday & Saturday.
  • Organization must be able to prove actual services rendered (Housed, Employed, Enrolled, etc.)
  • Sign-In Sheets will not be accepted


3rd Annual “Heroes In The Shadows” San Gabriel Valley Homeless Veterans Stand Down


Third Annual “Heroes In The Shadows” San Gabriel Valley Homeless Veterans Stand Down, Begins April 4, 2014 In South El Monte at the Whittier Narrows Recreational Area

Three day event presented by the San Gabriel Valley Veterans Employment Committee and the Vet Hunters Project aims to combat Homelessness by providing on-site assistance, services and resources to those in need.

March 27, 2014, Commerce, CA – For the third year, The San Gabriel Valley Veterans Employment Committee (SGV|VEC) with the leadership of Vet Hunters Project, will present its Annual “Heroes in the Shadows” San Gabriel Valley Homeless Stand Down.
Attendees may pre-register online as well as at several partner locations throughout the San Gabriel Valley. Walk-up registration opens on Friday, April 4 at 8:00AM and continues until noon on Sunday. On-site dental, medical, vision, legal & counseling services will be available as well as accommodations for (sleeping quarters, showers, laundry facilities, food, entertainment, personal grooming/wellness), as well as transportation to and from the site.

This year’s opening ceremony takes place on Friday, April 4 at 10:00am and features US Congresswoman Grace F. Napolitano CA-32nd District and City of El Monte Councilman Juventino “J” Gomez as the keynote speakers. Numerous dignitaries representing the State of California, Los Angeles County and various other Federal Agencies, will also be in attendance. The general public is welcome to attend the Opening Ceremony or visit the Stand Down to volunteer.

Unique in its ability to not turn anyone away based on criteria such as area of residence, gender, and Veteran Status, the 2012 Stand Down attracted close to 400 residents including Veterans, Active/Reserve/Guard Service Members, and civilians ranging from 19 to 82 years old. Unlike other similar Stand Down events throughout Southern California that rely on government grants to fund their operations (which could limit the types of services and populations served); “Heroes In The Shadows” is made possible through personal and organizational donations and sponsorships.

Working to combat Veteran Homelessness by utilizing this “No Red Tape” method, with little to no government grants, is a long list of valued partners. In addition to Congresswoman Napolitano and Councilman Gomez, key partners include the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, Whittier Narrows Recreational Area, Vet Hunters Project, State of California Employment Development Department, US Army Reserve 155th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, US Dept. of Veterans Affairs and the many community partners that operate in the San Gabriel Valley as well as Southern California. A complete list of sponsors, partners and donors may be found at

According to the 2013 Homeless Count conducted by LAHSA, Los Angeles County alone has over 57,000 Homeless Individuals, which was a 15% increase since 2011. Of that over 8,000 (14%) were identifies as Homeless Veterans, the largest in the Country. In the San Gabriel Valley, there are an estimated 4,444 Homeless Individuals and 12% identified as Veterans. One of the subpopulations amongst Veterans that we are seeing a sharp rise in is of recently released Veterans.

About San Gabriel Valley Veterans Employment Committee (SGV|VEC):
The San Gabriel Valley Veterans Employment Committee ( is an all-volunteer organization that works in partnership with various federal and state agencies, employers, training institutions and nonprofit organizations. Its purpose is to serve as an employment-focused “network” for Veterans, their Spouses and Children, as well as to organize events geared toward connecting Veteran jobseekers to employment opportunities and social support service providers.
More information about the San Gabriel Valley Homeless Veteran Stand Down can be found at, donations are still being accepted and can be given online at

Apolonio E. Muñoz III
SGV|VEC, Public Relations Officer
C: 818.280.6060 | VM: 818.856.1236


To download a pdf version of this Press Release, Click Here.

Stand Down Meeting/ SGV VEC Quarterly Meeting

Stand Down Meeting/ SGV VEC Quarterly Meeting

THe SGV|VEC is glad to announce that the next Quarterly Networking Meeting/Semi-Monthly Stand Down Meeting will be hosted at Azusa Pacific University in the Wilden Hall Atrium. Please see the details listed below. If you have any questions please contact the  Jason Jones, SGV|VEC Secretary.

Date:  Thursday, June 20th

  • 12-1pm (Stand Down Meeting)
  • 1-2pm (Meet, Greet, and Eat)
  • 2-4pm (SGV VEC Quarterly Meeting)

Location:  Azusa Pacific University (East Campus | Wilden Hall Atrium)
901 E. Alosta Ave.
Azusa, CA 91702

The assignments are by last names

  • A-F (Drinks)
  • G-L (Desserts)
  • M-S (Main Dishes)
  • T-Z (Side Dishes)

AVER-GLA President to Lead Pledge at County Board of Supervisors Meeting

AVER-GLA President, Apolonio E. Muñoz III

AVER-GLA President, Apolonio E. Muñoz III

On 11 June 2013, as part of LA Pride Celebrations, the LA County Dept of Military and Veterans Affairs has asked, Apolonio E. Muñoz III, President, Greater Los Angeles Chapter, American Veterans for Equal Rights(AVER) to lead the Pledge of Allegiance for the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Meeting. Apolonio will be attending the meeting as a special guest of Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich, Los Angeles County 5th Supervisory  District. At every Regular Board of Supervisors Meeting, a Veteran, and a minister from the community  is selected to open the meeting by leading the Pledge of Allegiance and giving the benediction, these individuals are also recognized by the Board, and every week it rotates between the various Supervisory Districts.

Apolonio is the first openly Gay OIF Veteran to participate in the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Meeting to date, and is honored to represent the 5th District. He was asked to participate in the meeting due to the extensive work he has been doing with LGBT Veterans in and around the Greater Los Angeles Region. Apolonio also currently serves on the AVER National Board as the National Membership Chair, the Southern California Veterans Employment Committee as the Public Relations Officer, the San Gabriel Valley Veterans Employment Committee as the 2nd Vice-Chair and the Public Relations Officer, The Los Angeles Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence as a Fully Professed Sister/Board Member, the 211 LA County Veteran Advisory Committee, and the San Gabriel Valley Homeless Veteran Stand Down. Apolonio is currently enrolled at University of Phoenix in Pasadena, where he is studying for his Bachelors in Human Services (thanks to the Post 9/11 GI Bill), and plans to continue working in Veteran Social Work upon completion in November 2014. Sadly however, he is currently unemployed, but keeps busy with school, and his philanthropy until the right Social Services position comes along.

Apolonio served in the US Army from Oct 2001-June 2004, at which time he was honorably discharged under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Apolonio was on deployment to Baghdad, Iraq in support of combat operations under Operation Iraqi Freedom (March 2003-March 2004) with B Company, 440th Signal Battalion, 22nd Signal Brigade, V Corps (out of Darmstadt, GE), when he was outed by his fellow soldiers, and subsequently kicked out of the military for being openly gay. Despite his paperwork claiming to have served Honorably and receiving the following medals/certificates: Army Commendation Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and induction into the Order of the Combat Spur (2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment); there still is a blight on his record for being kicked out for violating the UCMJ. His paperwork states he was removed from service for “Homosexual Admission,” an indicator to any who reads the documents, such as potential employers, the the Veteran is Gay and could be subject to further discrimination. Also, Apolonio will forever be labeled as a Gay Veteran by the Dept of Defense and Dept of Veterans Affairs simply due to the wording in his discharge. Being that Apolonio has lived his entire adult life facing discrimination for being a Gay Veteran, he works with groups all over Southern California to make sure that no other Veteran has to go thru what he did. It wasn’t until only a few short years ago that Apolonio even qualified for benefits, which was a separate struggle in it of itself, related mostly in part to his discharge. Another reason, why Apolonio works with Veterans, Gay and Straight alike, so that every Veteran receives the care and treatment they deserve. Apolonio lives by one simple motto, “They [Veterans] put their life on the line for us, the least we can do is take care of them when they come home.”

TUESDAY, JUNE 11, 2013, 9:30 A.M.

  • Click here to download a copy of the Agenda.
  • Click here to view the meeting live.