- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Dear Sgt. Shaft:

May you please help me find information on my status. I am from Lithuania and a resident of the United States since July 9, 2010.

My husband, a U.S. citizen and veteran, died recently.

We had been married for 10 years. Do you have any information on when and how I might apply for U.S citizenship and how is this impacted by my husband’s death.

I will be very, very thankful for your help.

Via the Internet

Dear R.G.:

I don’t have any insight as to exactly how to help you. My suggestion would be that you contact an immigration attorney or the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services at www.uscis.gov. Their National Customer Service Center can be reached at 800/375-5283. I hope this helps.

Shaft notes

• In 2011, the Newman’s Own foundation, through a partnership with Fisher House Foundation, awarded the Armed Services YMCA (ASYMCA) based in Alexandria, Va., a $300,000 grant to serve military families through 2012.

The grant provides family support for military families nationwide and has already impacted thousands of military and their families. ASYMCA has distributed program grants ranging from $30,000 to $50,000 to support programs at its locations serving Marine and Army families, including:

* Camp Pendleton, Calif.
* 29 Palms, Calif.
* Camp Lejeune and Fort Bragg, N.C.
* Wheeler Army Air Field and Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii.
* Fort Richardson and Fort Wainwright, Alaska.
* Fort Campbell, Ky.
* Fort Hood, Texas.
* Fort Sill, Okla.

Free ASYMCA programs target junior enlisted and their families, who are typically younger and have more financial and emotional burdens without nearby family to assist. As of March 2012, more than $200,000 has been provided in support of thousands of military and their families. Direct support has included: emergency assistance, respite for medical issues, summer camp opportunities for low-income families, diapers, groceries, car repairs, emergency housing, house fires, and support for travel and respite for families of wounded warriors.

Armed Services YMCA CEO Mike Landers is thrilled with the impact that the Newman’s Own donation continues to make for military families.

“We thank our friends at Newman’s Own for their generous donation, as well as the Fisher House for facilitating the Newman’s Own award. We are proud to partner to make military life easier and help our junior enlisted military and their families ‘pay it forward’ by eliminating problems today or ensuring they don’t become greater ones tomorrow,” he said.

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