2017 AFBA Fall Newsletter

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Chairman − President’s Message

As your Association celebrates its 70th anniversary, it is stronger than ever and well prepared to support AFBA members and their families in their daily lives as well as in their time of need. Our leadership team is proud to be a part of an organization whose noble mission of serving those who serve this great nation has not changed in 70 years. We are honored and humbled by the responsibility to carry the organization forward to serve new generations of AFBA members.

Salute to Veterans — The upcoming Veterans Day provides the perfect opportunity to express our gratitude to all the men and women who have served. AFBA salutes all veterans and offices will be closed in observance of Veterans Day on Friday, November 10.

Enhanced service to the National Guard — We are pleased to announce that AFBA/5Star Life and American Equity Investment Life Insurance Company (AE) have partnered to transition AE’s National Guard and Fire Fighter group life insurance coverage to AFBA. read more »

Natural Disasters — Unfortunately our nation has experienced several natural disasters this year. From hurricanes and flooding to the fires in CA, our First Responders and the National Guard have been critical in helping people get back on their feet. read more »

Air Force Birthday — 1947 was a great year!  Both AFBA and the US Air Force were formed. We found a list of facts about the USAF symbol that you might find interesting. read more »

Member Benefits and Services to Better Serve You — AFBA continues to maintain strategic alliances with like – minded organizations to better serve you. read more »

Tell Your Friends About Us — AFBA reaches out to support all those brave men and women in this great nation who go into harm’s way. This includes members of the uniformed services, first responders, government employees and families of each group. With our affordable life insurance coverage, underwritten by 5Star Life Insurance Company, and unique features like no combat or terrorism exclusions, and an emergency death benefit of up to $15,000 sent within one business day of notice, we are here when you need us. Referrals are the greatest compliment. Please send your interested friends and family to www.afba.com or ask them to call us at 1-800-776-2322.

Ralph E. “Ed” Eberhart
General, USAF (Ret.)
Chairman − President


AFBA Welcomes New National Guard and First Responder Members

We are pleased to announce that we are partnering with American Equity (AE) to transition its National Guard SSLI and Firefighter group life insurance to AFBA/5Star Life on January 1, 2018.

American Equity is a well-respected carrier in the Guard market, with a strong pool of 15 state associations representing more than 65,000 Soldiers and Airmen and their families. We are deeply committed to working with American Equity to make the transition seamless and transparent for the state associations and their members. In addition, the AE Firefighter block consists of more than 100 groups with 13,000 members, and it is highly complementary to our current position and future growth plans in the First Responder market.

“We are excited to work with AFBA. With its long-standing commitment to service members and first responders, we are confident AFBA is the ideal partner as we transition our group life insurance business,” said John Matovina, Chief Executive Officer of American Equity. “We have been in the National Guard and Firefighter business since day one at American Equity. Supporting those who serve our country and communities is,  and will continue to be, part of our culture and identity. As our annuity business continues to grow, we believe our service members and firefighters will be well-served by an organization strategically focused on providing products and services meeting their needs.”

General Eberhart, USAF (Ret.), Chairman and President of AFBA, added “For 70 years, AFBA has been committed to serving those who serve this great nation. Our focus is on providing life insurance products and services tailored for service members and first responders. American Equity has been the pathfinder in serving the citizen-Soldiers  and Airmen of our nation and we are honored to work with their National Guard and Firefighter customers to provide excellent life insurance solutions and service.”

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Here When Disaster Strikes

We have seen extreme weather hit parts of the country causing extensive damage to property and major disruptions to people’s lives. It’s at times like these that we can show our members that we care by providing some relief in the midst of disaster. Due to hurricanes, flooding, and fires in TX, FL, GA, PR, USVI, and CA we are giving affected members more time to submit their payments without fear of losing coverage. When disaster strikes, we don’t want you to worry about losing your valuable life insurance coverage with so much else on your mind. These important messages are posted on our website at www.afba.com.

Read the article below about the valiant efforts of First Responders and the National Guard during these disasters.

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First Responders and the National Guard Crucial During Natural Disasters

This year’s hurricane season was one of the most devastating in recent history. Hurricane Harvey was the first major hurricane to make landfall in the U.S. in 12 years. The storm hovered over southeast Texas and unleashed an unprecedented amount of rainfall – anywhere from 40-61 inches, according to The Weather Channel and caused widespread flooding.

Following Harvey was Hurricane Irma, which also reached incredible extremes. The storm is one of five in history with maximum sustained winds at or exceeding 185 miles per hour. It maintained these speeds for 37 hours, which is the longest length of time on record. In terms of damage, Irma ravaged the Virgin Islands as well as Barbuda, Antigua, St Martin, and others. The state of Florida was also heavily damaged by the storm, leaving thousands without housing.

While recovery efforts were underway in those areas, Hurricane Maria came through and hit Puerto Rico as a Category 4 which was the strongest storm to hit there in 85 years. The energy grid was heavily damaged leading to an island-wide power outage. Maria also hit the US Virgin Islands again causing more damage to those islands already suffering.

Hurricanes weren’t the only disaster this fall. During October, a series of wildfires broke out in Northern California. They spread from 1,000 acres to over 20,000 acres within a day destroying an estimated 3,500 structures, according to ABC News. By October 14, the fires had burned more than 210,000 acres while forcing 90,000 people to evacuate from their homes.[

First responders and members of the National Guard have been essential in aiding those affected by these and other major storms. Their work helped ensure the people most at risk received the help they needed.

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Veterans Day

Since its inception following World War I, Veterans Day has evolved over the years in name, date and traditions, but the purpose of the holiday has always been to honor the men and women, living and dead, who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces.

Veterans Day is observed on November 11, regardless of the day of the week on which it falls. November 11 marked the end of World War I and its significance helps focus attention on the important purpose of Veterans Day: A celebration to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.

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Military Family Appreciation Month

Each year the President signs a proclamation declaring November Military Family Appreciation Month. This proclamation marks the beginning of a month-long celebration of the military family in which the Department of Defense and the nation honors the commitment and sacrifices made by the families of the nation’s servicemembers.

Throughout November, military families serving around the world are honored through a variety of observances and recognized for their commitment and the many contributions they make every day in support of the military and our nation.

Community leaders, businesses, and military bases and posts are teaming up to recognize military families through special events such as: open houses, fun runs, family fun nights, and community dinners; discounts at MWR facilities, local business and sporting events; and special recognitions during community activities throughout November.

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The US Air Force Turns 70!

AFBA is not the only one to celebrate a milestone birthday in 2017! The Air Force became a separate service on September 18, 1947 after President Harry S. Truman signed the National Security Act that same year. It is the youngest of all five services. In its 70 years of existence, the Air Force has become the world’s premier aerospace force. The mission of the United States Air Force is to fly, fight and win in air, space and cyberspace.

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New AFBA Video and Newsroom

We recently launched a new video featuring AFBA Chairman and President, General Eberhart, and 5Star Life’s CEO and President, Mark Singleton, covering our history and markets. Click below to watch it.


Earlier this year, we also debuted our redesigned Newsroom at newsroom.afba.com. Here you will find articles on timely topics that relate to each of our markets.

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Protecting Your Information

You have undoubtedly heard and read all the stories in the news about security breaches at companies such as Equifax and others. We want to assure you that we do everything possible to keep your personal information safe. We routinely have exercises where we go over certain incidents, such as ransomware, and develop a plan for each event. So, if the unthinkable happens, we will be ready and mitigate any damage as quickly as possible.

There are some basic rules that everyone should follow to keep your information safe and computer free from viruses. Below is a list of 9 things you can do according to Lifewire.com.

Remember, there’s far more good than bad on the Internet. The goal isn’t to be paranoid. The goal is to be cautious, aware, and even suspicious. By following the tips above and becoming engaged in your security, you’ll not only protect yourself; but you’ll also be contributing to the protection and betterment of the internet.

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Go Green!

Paperless Billing Benefits

Using the online services of AFBA’s website for paperless bill viewing and electronic bill payment not only has environmental benefits, it will also save you money on postage and provides round the clock access to your billing status. To sign up, log in to your account at afba.com and update your profile or call us at 1-800-776-2322.

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Follow Us On Social Media

Do you follow AFBA and 5Star Life on Facebook and Twitter? If not, you’re missing out on interesting articles, videos, and infographics on a variety of topics. We focus on matters important to our members, particularly, veterans and first responders, but there are also general-interest posts on resume writing and life insurance education.

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Member Benefits and Services

AFBA Scholarship

Since 2004, the Charles C. Blanton scholarship has been available to candidates for use towards an undergraduate degree at an accredited college of up to $10,000 per family per year for a maximum benefit of $40,000 for college tuition and fees. The scholarship is provided to the surviving spouse or children of an insured AFBA member who dies as a result of combat or a first responder who dies while involved in operations at the scene of an incident. 131 families are now eligible for this program.

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How Will You Pay for Your Care?

The AFBA Long Term Care Insurance Program can assist you in owning coverage that helps pay for extended care – costs that neither Medicare or Tricare are designed to cover. A specialist with LTCI Partners can help you own meaningful benefits that fit your budget. In a simple telephone conversation, they can shop and compare rates with numerous leading companies and help you enroll in the plan that provides the best value.

Call 1-855-581-6647 or click https://www.getltci.com/afba

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Special Discounts for AFBA Members from GEICO

Save even more on insurance from GEICO!

  • Savings for multi-car policies, good student, safety features, and more.
  • 24/7 support, online or by phone, for claims bill paying, policy changes, and more.
  • Great policy rates for renters, motorcycles, and much more.
  • Storage protection plans with reduced premiums.
  • More than 75 years of service to the military.

Get a free quote: http://www.geico.com/mil/afba or call 800 368-2734.

Some discounts, coverages, payment plans and features are not available in all states or all GEICO companies. GEICO contracts with various membership entities and other organizations, but these entities do not underwrite the offered insurance products. Discount amount varies in some states. One group discount applicable per policy. Coverage is individual. In New York a premium reduction may be available. GEICO may not be involved in a formal relationship with each organization; however, you still may qualify for a special discount based on your membership, employment or affiliation with those organizations. GEICO is a registered service mark of Government Employees Insurance Company, Washington, D.C. 20076; a Berkshire Hathaway Inc. subsidiary. © 2017 GEICO

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Emergency Assistance Plus Provides a Crucial Safety Net When Traveling Away from Home

Any time you have an accident or sudden illness while traveling away from home Emergency Assistance Plus (EA+), offered through AFBA, provides a crucial safety net that helps pay for emergency medical transportation expenses your health or travel insurance generally will NOT cover. With more than 20 assistance benefits, EA+ steps in to provide Medical Evacuation, Medical Assistance, Travel Assistance, and Assistance for Companions.

Read the testimonial below from a member to see EA+ in action:

“My wife Laura and I flew to Branson, Missouri to enjoy some world-class music. Our trip was cut short when Laura became ill and needed medical assistance. Unfamiliar with the area, I called EA+ and they helped me locate a hospital nearby where Laura received care for the next two days. Because of my wife’s condition, I knew we wouldn’t be able to continue our trip. EA+ made arrangements to fly us back home to Idaho. EA+ even upgraded Laura’s seat due to her condition and insisted I join her to monitor her medical state. We cannot express our thanks and appreciation for all that was done to make such a frightening situation, tolerable, calming and comforting.”

-Greg J.

For more information, visit www.emergencyassistanceplus.com/afba or call toll free 1-855-352-3032.

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Discounted, Convenient Health Screenings Offered to AFBA Members

As an AFBA member, you can receive a discount off of a package of four important preventive health screenings through our partnership with Life Line Screening. It is proactive and smart to take care of your cardiovascular health and stay healthy and active. AFBA and Life Line Screening have partnered since 2010.

Life Line Screening data shows that seventy percent of people aged fifty-five and older have at least two risk factors for cardiovascular disease and may not even know it.

By special arrangement, you can get four screenings for only $135:

  • Carotid Artery/Stroke
  • Abdominal Aorta
  • Atrial Fibrillation (irregular heartbeat)
  • Peripheral Arterial Disease

Other screenings are available as well at an additional cost, including”

  • HDL and LDL Cholesterol levels
  • Diabetes risk
  • Bone density as a risk for possible osteoporosis
  • Kidney and thyroid function, and more

The package of four screenings is discounted for our members, so take advantage of this important preventive health program today. If other screenings are recommended for you based on your age and risk factors, consultants will work with you to create a package that is right for you.

Call 1-866-895-3365 or visit www.lifelinescreening.com/afba.

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Save with the AFBA TRICARE Supplement Plan

  • Enroll in the TRICARE Supplement Plan and receive reimbursement for:
  • Inpatient and outpatient cost shares
  • Prescription drug co-pays
  • Excess charges up to the TRICARE legal limit

What does this mean for you?

Choosing the TRICARE Supplement Plan will provide you with worldwide coverage that wraps around your TRICARE benefit plan giving you the protection you need and want for you and your family.

We offer supplement programs for:

  • TRICARE Standard
  • Prime
  • Reservists

Don’t pay more than you need to for health care. AFBA TRICARE Supplement Plans can provide you with dependable coverage.

Enroll at www.afba-tricare.com or call us at 1-855-311-1478.

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