DETROIT ARSENAL -- Friday, Nov. 3, 2017 was a busy day for the U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command leadership team that began by flipping pancakes at the Parade Company's annual Pancake Breakfast and ended with a roundtable discussion on disaster preparedness, trauma care and emergency medicine with physicians, nurses and administrators at Detroit Receiving Hospital.

That same day, Maj. Gen. Clark LeMasters, TACOM commanding general, and Command Sgt. Maj. Ian Griffin, TACOM command sergeant major, took a tour and met residents of Piquette Square for Veterans and also saw construction projects underway after meeting with physicians and administrators at the John D. Dingell Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

The TACOM leadership team spent the day away from the headquarters at Detroit Arsenal to establish connections and foster ongoing relationships with civic leaders from the Southeast Michigan area.

"It is important for us to build and strengthen relationships with the people and organizations we may need to call upon, or who may need to call upon us. The better we know each other now, the better we can work together when the time comes," said LeMasters.

Piquette Square for Veterans

On Veterans Day we honor the brave men and women from all walks of life who have stepped forward to defend our nation throughout our history. Piquette Square for Veterans works to honor veterans all year long by placing homeless veterans in permanent supportive housing and providing counseling, job training and educational programs.

The TACOM command team visited to learn how to best support Piquette Square's efforts. John Van Camp, president and chief executive officer, and Chery Allen, manager of volunteer services, conducted the tour and introduced the TACOM command team to several veterans, from all branches of service, who call the facility home.

"It is always an honor to support visits from our military," said Allen, "to help them be a part of who we are and what we do -- helping veterans to connect with society, to be thriving adults, and to reach their goals."

Piquette Square for Veterans was built to house and care for homeless veterans in Detroit on the site of the historic Studebaker automotive factory that burnt down in 2005. The first tenants moved into the building, which features 150 one-bedroom apartments and 11,000 square feet of common space, in 2010.

John D. Dingell Veterans Affairs Medical Center

After leaving Piquette Square for Veterans, the TACOM command team took a short drive to the John D. Dingell Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Detroit to meet with administrators and physicians and see ongoing construction projects that will expand the John D. Dingell VAMC's ability to provide care to the 330,000 veterans in their primary service area, consisting of Michigan's Wayne, Oakland, Macomb, Sanilac, Lapeer and St. Clair counties.

The facility serves as a primary receiving facility within the Veterans Administration/Department of Defense contingency planning system and as a Federal Coordinating Center within the National Disaster Medical System.

Because the Army plays an important role in disaster response, with efforts in support of the lead federal agency and working closely with state and local officials, TACOM's visit was an important way to strengthen working relationships that will be necessary in the event of a disaster.

"We were thrilled to have the team visit. Anything we can do to involve TACOM in learning about and understanding the services we provide to our area veterans, helps all of us. We touch many of the same people, so a good understanding of both of our missions is important. We welcome to TACOM team anytime!" said Alysse Mengason, John D. Dingell VAMC public affairs officer.

The John D. Dingell VAMC is a 264-bed, full-service medical center proving inpatient and outpatient Mental Health, Sleep Clinic, Cardiac Care, Women's Health, Prosthetics, Eye Clinic and Dental Clinic, among many others, with 105 acute care beds and a 109-bed nursing home/palliative care unit.

Detroit Medical Center Detroit Receiving Hospital

The day's engagements ended at Detroit Receiving Hospital with a roundtable discussion on disaster preparedness, trauma care and emergency medicine with physicians, nurses and administrators from the Detroit Medical Center system.

The group discussed the importance of interdisciplinary cooperation and the mutual understanding of key concepts that are required for coordinated trauma care in large-scale emergency situations.
One important topic of discussion, prompted by the recent concert shootings in Las Vegas, was a program called "Stop the Bleeding." The program teaches techniques to stop bleeding, so victims can survive transportation to an emergency trauma center, and provides first-responders with bleeding control kits.

"We can think of no higher honor than to do our part to support the men and women that protect our country," stated Scott Steiner, CEO of DMC Detroit Receiving Hospital. "This partnership and our continuous dialogue showcases our dual commitment to the safety and well-being of the Metro Detroit community."

DMC Detroit Receiving Hospital is Michigan's first Level I Trauma Center, trains nearly half of practicing emergency medicine physicians in Michigan, and is the oldest and largest verified burn center in the state.