Today marks the 25th Anniversary of the Montgomery GI Bill. Named after former House Committee on Veterans' Affairs Chairman, G.V. "Sonny" Montgomery, the Montgomery GI Bill was signed into law by President Ronald Reagan on June 1, 1987, and continues to serve today's veterans and servicemembers. The Montgomery GI Bill was a successor to the original GI Bill, which put hundreds of thousands of World War II veterans through college upon their return home.
To mark today's anniversary, the Members of the 112th Congress' Committee on Veterans' Affairs have issued the following tribute:
"The Montgomery GI Bill was emblematic of the nation meeting its obligation to those who serve in uniform. Countless veterans were able to use this benefit to get the education and tools that enabled them to become valuable members of our society. America is strengthened by the contributions of our veterans, and our veterans were strengthened by the Montgomery GI Bill."
--Rep. Jeff Miller (FL-01), Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs
"The Montgomery GI Bill is a great American success story. After the Second World War, the GI Bill was critical to our nation's prosperity and the rise of the middle class. The Montgomery GI Bill and its successors continue to allow Americans to thank our defenders by helping them transition into a new field following their service to our country."
--Rep. Doug Lamborn (CO-05)
"Sonny Montgomery was the chairman of the Veterans' Committee when I joined Congress in 1993. He was a man who served the veterans, and worked to make sure the compact this nation made with their soldiers was not forgotten. The GI Bill that bears his name made sure that all veterans were able to use their benefits for education. I was pleased to support a successor of his GI Bill [Post-9/11 GI Bill] that expanded educational benefits to cover more expenses, provide a living allowance, money for books and the ability to transfer unused educational benefits to spouses or children."
--Rep. Corrine Brown (FL-03)
"Today marks the 25th anniversary of the Montgomery GI Bill, which continues to provide invaluable education benefits to our servicemembers. It is the duty of our nation to honor and support those who have put their lives on the line to serve our country. That is why I am happy to support such an exceptional program that funds servicemembers' expenses related to their college education. This is another way we can honor our nation's heroes."
--Rep. Phil Roe (TN-01)
"The Montgomery GI Bill has been a critical resource for those who have served our country, and I applaud our veterans and Veterans Service Organizations for ensuring that GI Bill benefits meet the demands of the men and women becoming veterans today. We must continue to work to get servicemembers and veterans access to the educational and job-training opportunities that will help them continue on to successful careers in the civilian world."
--Rep. Mike Michaud (ME-02)
"On Memorial Day, we paid tribute to the brave service members who have fought and died for our country. Today, we mark the anniversary of the Montgomery GI Bill, one of the important ways that we honor the service of our men and women in uniform. Nearly 2.6 million veterans have used their much deserved Montgomery GI Bill benefits to earn an education and make the transition to civilian life. I'm immeasurably proud of our troops and I'm proud of our commitment to their service."
--Rep. Marlin Stutzman (IN-03)
"Today, we celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Montgomery GI Bill. This legislation has provided our nation's veterans with support to obtain a college education. After more than a decade at war, our veterans returning home deserve our support, and it is our duty to keep our promise to them. With a struggling economy and increasingly expensive college tuition, we have an obligation to guarantee that our veterans have every opportunity to compete with their civilian peers. We cannot break our nation's promise with those who have already given so much for our country"
--Rep. Bill Flores (TX-17)
"As a 26-year veteran of the United States Air Force who earned my college degree with the help of the GI bill, I know firsthand how important this opportunity is to our veterans who have so bravely served America."
--Rep. Bill Johnson (OH-06)
"The Montgomery GI Bill has helped some 2.6 million veterans in advancing their education and transitioning to civilian life and has been a critical tool to attract a high quality all-volunteer force. Given the state of our nation's economy and the need for Congress to cut spending, it is important to prioritize the nation's appropriations. I can think of no other program that deserves to be continued to attract quality recruits and reward our nation's military men and women for their service."
--Rep. Jon Runyan (NJ-03)
"On the 25th anniversary of the Montgomery GI Bill, it is important to recognize all those who have worn a uniform on behalf of our country. These heroes have fought to defend our freedoms and it is our job to ensure they receive the best care and benefits. The Montgomery GI Bill encouraged U.S. citizens to enlist in the greatest military in the world in exchange for education benefits. It was and continues to be a great opportunity for Northern Michiganders and all Americans. I hope people will continue to answer "the call of duty.'"
--Dr. Dan Benishek (MI-01)
"The Montgomery GI Bill has helped millions of veterans fulfill their potential by encouraging them to attend college when they come home. On the 25th anniversary of the Montgomery GI Bill, I am glad I live in a country that takes such care of our honored veterans. There is more to do, but the Montgomery GI Bill is a wonderful example of how Americans come together to support those who protect our way of life."
--Rep. Russ Carnahan (MO-03)