There seems to be a lot of confusion over payment of dues and key cards being turned off. Although the membership year works on the calendar year the dues year begins on July 1. On July 1, 2019, the dues for 2020 became due, you had until the first week in January 2020 to pay them. At that time if you had not paid, your key card was shut off and your drawing chip removed. You can be reinstated if you pay your dues after that, but remember that 2021 dues will start in July 2020. You could also lose your right to vote for officers if not paid by April 30, 2020 and you could lose your years of service. Please don’t give the bartenders any guff over membership that is the purview of the Post Adjutant or First Vice.
This year we begin our second century of serving our veterans and the community. If you haven’t heard or seen your buddy (friend/neighbor) check on him or her and see if everything is ok. Spend some time and talk with them. Invite them for coffee or to come to the Legion Post with you if they haven’t paid their dues encourage them to do so and to get involved with the Post and to stay in touch with friends and Post members. If you know of a member that needs help let us know so that we can get them to the proper person or organization to help them.
The American Legion recognizes the first week of February as the “Four Chaplains” week with the first Sunday as “Four Chaplains’ Sunday”. These chaplains gave their lives so others could live. I recommend the book “Sea of Glory” by Ken Whales and David Poling. It tells the story of these four brave men and the ship they served, the USAT Dorchester, in WWII. The ship was torpedoed by a German U Boat on its way to Greenland. The chaplains, George Fox a Methodist, Alexander Goode a Jewish Rabbi, Clark Poling a Dutch Reformed and George Washington a Catholic Priest, gave their life jackets to others that didn’t have them. They locked their arms in a circle near the fantail, lifted theirs heads to the sky and started singing - “Eternal Father, strong to save whose arm doth bind the restless wave.” “Greater love hath no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13).
March 15, is the designated birth date of The American Legion. On that date in 1919, the first American Legion caucus was held by members of American Expeditionary Force, convened in Paris, France and formed the American Legion. The four pillars of the Legion are a strong National Defense, Veterans Affairs, Americanism and Patriotic Youth Programs. We are about serving those that have served and those that continue to serve. “Veterans serving Veterans” Other important dates in March: 3/3 1969 Cpl. David Johnston, KIA Vietnam, 3/7 1945 US Troops invade Germany over Ludendorff Bridge at Renagen and 3/19/03 Operation Iraqi Freedom begins.
For God and Country - Commander Dave