The new commissioners and director of the Fayette County Veterans Service Commission have all been sworn in — with the most recently sworn in being commissioner Jerred Mitchell.
The Fayette County Veterans Service Commission is comprised of veterans from Fayette County. The commission has three primary goals: to oversee the operation of The Veterans Service Center, to provide temporary financial assistance to indigent veterans, spouses dependent children and surviving widows, and to obtain benefits earned by the veterans of this county and their family members and survivors.
Meet the commissioners and new director:
Jerred S. Mitchell – At Large Commissioner
Jerred S. Mitchell, established March 1977 to John and Chardel Mitchell from Thompson Ohio, graduated high school in 1995, then served in the military 23 years (July 1995-July 2018) including his Reserve and Guard duty.
He joined the Army when he was 17 and spent three years as a field artilleryman. He then did brief stints in the Army Reserve, Army National Guard, Air Force National Guard and Air Force Reserves and finally enlisted in the Air Force in 2001. Along the way he held 3 MOS’s and 6 AFSCs, he deployed four times, twice to Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
He has been married to his wife, Joanna, for 16 years. They have two boys together, Alex being 15 years old and Caleb being 13 years old.
“Being selected for the Fayette County Veterans Service Commission is an honor to serve our Veterans and their families. In my tenure, I plan to bring my passion, planning, and purpose to making sure Fayette County Veterans are being taken care of. I will be working diligently with my colleagues to make sure no veteran is left behind from not knowing their benefits,” said Mitchell.
Russell E. Bernard – VFW Commissioner
Russell Bernard is a retired Chief Master Sergeant from the 121st Air Refueling Wing located at Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base where he was the Maintenance Operations Flight Superintendent.
He has been married to his wife, Linda, for more than 40 years. They have two children: Matt Bernard and Lindsey Hummel, along with four grandchildren ranging from 21 months to 8 years of age.
After getting married, one of his friends recommended that he consider joining the Ohio Air National Guard because they travel all over the world. Due to his interest in travel and in military aircraft, he joined in 1985. After retiring from a distinguished 33-year career, he now enjoys supporting his grandchildren at their sporting events throughout the year and attending horse shows and livestock events with friends.
His favorite memory of his military career was flying over the Pentagon on 9/11 providing air refueling support to military aircraft that were ensuring the safety of American air space on that momentous day.
The last deployment that he participated in was to Kandahar AB, Afghanistan. This deployment proved to be his most rewarding. As the Maintenance Operations Superintendent, he was instrumental in establishing the first ever air refueling squadron in a combat zone.
Compassion for people and the determination to ensure veterans are provided with the most effective support and care after their sacrifice and unwavering commitment to this great country is what prompted him to become a Fayette County Veterans Service Commissioner.
William D. Rheinscheld – Director/ Veterans Service Officer
William is 39 years old and married to Bethany Rheinscheld. They have been married for 17 years, and they have two boys together — Ian and Liam.
Rheinscheld decided to join the military to change pace in his life, to give himself a little more self-discipline, to be part of something bigger, to make a difference, and to make a life for his family.
“I have a lot of fond memories of being in the Army but the best are the friends that I made. The friendships made with complete strangers from all over the globe. We share a lot of good times as well as some not so good times. When you really think about it, if not for the Army, I probably wouldn’t have ever left Ohio, and all of these people who have become my brothers and sisters—I wouldn’t have a clue that they exist in this world,” said Rheinscheld.
“As the new Director/CVSO, my first set of goals are to become acquainted with everyone involved: other board members, city officials, office staff members, and veterans in the community. I also want to learn as much as possible about the programs available and the ways we are helping local veterans.
“I started as a Commissioner and then became the Director/ Service Officer. I became interested in becoming a Commissioner because I have been home for 12 years and have no affiliations with the veterans or the community. Being with the Veterans Service Commission allows me to continue to provide for my family but also gives me the opportunity to make new acquaintances and to gain knowledge in programs to help my brothers and sisters in times of need. I was a Commissioner for a few months and the Director/ Service Officer position because available. I knew it was my time to do more for the veterans. I could work with them daily, rather than a few times a month and make more of an impact on their lives. In short, I just want to help people, especially men and women who put their lives on the line for this country,” he said.
The Fayette County Veterans Service commission is located at 133 South Main St., suite 404, in Washington Court House. The office hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.—please call for an appointment, 740-335-1610. The office can also be reached by email at email@example.com.