Skip to Content

Cumberland County Veterans Services Officer Retires

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader

Cumberland County Veterans Services Officer Bill Ward retires this month after seven years of service.

Ward helped veterans secure disability and pension payments throughout his tenure. Ward said the most important part of a Veteran Service Officer is being able to guide veterans through the bureaucratic language efficiently and correctly.

“The thing that makes me the most proud is that I am able to stand for these people, look the federal government in the eye and say you owe them for what they have sacrificed,” Ward said.

Ward said after retirement, he will miss the daily social interactions with veterans and their families. Ward said learning about the veterans lives has shaped his life for the better.

“I enjoyed being able to help the veterans and their families get benefits they were denied in the past,” Ward said. “In a lot of cases the Veterans Administration leaves a sour taste in people’s mouths. I have been able to overcome that for people.”

Cumberland County Commissioners approved hiring Ward in October of 2012. Ward served 23 years active as a solider with nine years in the reserve. Ward entered the service at 17 years old in 1978.

“My first 13 years in service, I was an intelligence operator,” Ward said. “I used radios and electric equipment all over Europe during the Cold War. In 1992, the wall had come down and they did not need as many folks for what we were doing, so I decided to go to the reserves.”

Each year the office sees over 1500 veterans and receives at least 4000 phone calls. Ward is a member of the Cumberland County Veterans Council, the Cumberland County Homeless Veterans Committee, American Legion, Fleet Reserve Association and the 13th Judicial District Veterans Court Advisory Committee.

Ward said he plans to hunt, fish, tend the garden and travel with his wife during retirement.

Garry Blaisdell was approved as the new officer and will begin working in the office part-time. He will take over full-time on July 1, 2020.


The post Cumberland County Veterans Services Officer Retires appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.