Assemblymember Eloise Gómez Reyes Honors the 2020 Veteran of the Year

San Bernardino – Assemblymember Eloise Gómez Reyes honored Shirrell McCarey as the 2020 Veteran of the Year for the 47th Assembly District,  during the 4th Annual event held virtually this year due to COVID-19.

Shirrell McCarey served in the U.S. Navy, both active duty and reserve, from 1977 to 2012 as a Naval Commander. During this time Shirrell McCarey would serve in the final stages of the Vietnam War and she would also serve in the Gulf War. Her military career would see her be deployed to Vietnam, Grenada, Chernobyl, and the Middle East . After her time in the military, she would become a mental health advisor for the Loma Linda Mental Health Advisory Board for fifteen years.

In addition to her service and leadership, she maintains a membership with the California Leadership for Women, Cal Vets, Disabled American Veterans, and is the Lecture Knight for the Elk Lodge in Victorville. Mrs. McCarey’s primary interest is serving as a mental health advisor for veterans across the country. As a mental health advisor, Mrs. McCarey acts as a counselor to veterans suffering from things like PTSD, other mental health issues, and physical issues. This role also allows her to act as a mediator between veterans and their doctors regarding their mental and physical needs. 

After a review of the many nominations, twenty-five veterans were selected as finalists from throughout the community for the Veteran of the Year award which honors veterans who live, work, or volunteer in the 47th Assembly District who have served our country, protecting our freedoms, and who continue to serve our community. “I congratulate Shirrell McCarey for her selection as the 2020 Veteran of the Year for the 47th Assembly District. Mrs. McCarey served our country honorably during her time in the U.S. Navy and she was honorable discharged in 2011. Mrs. McCarey has received several awards over her illustrious career including the Unit Citation Award and Good Conduct Medal but the award she is most proud of is the one she received from Loma Lima VA clinic. She received her award on May 25, 2016, after saving the lives of three veterans during a hostage situation where she was able to get the suspect to surrender peacefully via negotiations. The dedication she has demonstrated in supporting her fellow veterans is just one example of how tries to fulfill her life’s mission to uplift others. I’m proud to honor a good soldier and a good friend,” said Assemblymember Reyes. 

Veteran of the Year Finalists for the 47th District:

Heather Lee – Grand Terrace

    Toshiro Henry “Hank”         Kanbara – Grand Terrace

Hector Reynoso – Colton

Raymond Gómez – Colton

Julie Calderilla Porter – Colton

Eloy Sanchez – Colton

Bob Amaro – Colton

Arlie Hubbard – Colton

Mike Humphrey – Colton

Steven Miranda – Bloomington

Ben Munoz – Bloomington

Artist Gilbert – Rialto

Agustin Ramirez – San Bernardino

Gil Narvarro – San Bernardino

Judy Bryant – San Bernardino

Cynthia La Verne Epps – San Bernardino

Reverend Ching Lee Trenchard – San Bernardino

Basil Kimbrew – San Bernardino

Shirrell McCarey – San Bernardino

Joseph Mosely – San Bernardino

Martin Daly – Fontana

Kylee Quintanilla – Fontana

Howard Eckert – Fontana

Dennis Acron – Fontana

For more information on the Veteran of the Year and finalists contact District Representative Daissy Arteaga at (909) 381-3238 or email at

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