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AMERICAN LEGION BICENTENNIAL POST 1976 Non-profit Organization 4206 Daniels Avenue U.S. Postage Paid Annandale, VA Annandale, VA Post Info Line: Permit No
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AMERICAN LEGION BICENTENNIAL POST 1976 Non-profit Organization 4206 Daniels Avenue U.S. Postage Paid Annandale, VA Annandale, VA Post Info Line: Permit No Website: DATED MATERIAL TO: November 2011 NEWSLETTER THE SPIRIT OF 1976 VOLUME XXXIII ISSUE #35 November 2011 Officer s Call Commander s Report I think the cooler weather is bringing us all back to the post home. It s good to see everyone back from a busy summer. We had our famous chicken wing contest on Saturday the 15th and it was a good turn out through the entire evening.. I see our entertainment Committee has been busy lining up activities for the upcoming months. With cooler weather it s a good time to come out and see all your friend at the Post Home and join in the fun. I have learned that Harry Stevens passed away the 2 nd week of October, He will be missed by all. Harry took the time to make all the arrangements for American Legion Post 1976 to place flags on all Veterans grave at the Annandale United Methodist Church cemetery. During the month of November, and not just on Veterans Day, take time to thank a service person for their service to our Country. After all, they are the one who make it possible for us to have our freedom. Later this month we will all set down with family and friends to celebrate Thanksgiving. Take a moment and be thankful for everyone at your table. There are some families that have an empty chair at their table so you and I can all still be as one. Being we are so blessed, let s keep that thought as we get closer to Christmas. Find a needy family, be it a Veterans family or just someone down on their luck and see if we can do something to make there Holidays a little brighter. Please try to attend the General Membership Meetings on the 2 nd Tuesday of the Month to keep up to date on everything at your post home. Till next month. Tony Gerner, Commander 1 st Vice s Report As of 10/12/2011 our membership, paid for 2012, is 280 members. 15 new members, 205 renewals, 34 PUFL, and 26 paid on-line. We are at 66.83% or our goal. The Early-Bird drawing was conducted during the General Membership Meeting on October 11/2011. The winner was Gordon Green for $200. The prize will be given out at the next General Membership meeting in November so that pictures can be taken. Again, for those of you who are taking advantage of the on-line renewal this year, you will receive a letter from National once your renewal is processed. The letter from National will have a thank you note from the National Adjutant, temporary card, and a confirmation slip. You must send me the confirmation slip before I can issue you your permanent 2012 membership card. Please mail the confirmation slip to American Legion Post # 1976 P.O. Box 1976 Annandale, VA 22003 Keep in mind: The cost of membership is small in comparison to the price you paid to be eligible. Mike Strickler, 1 st Vice Commander 2 nd Vice s Report Another month has gone by and November looks to be a promising one for events. If you would like to volunteer for anything or have any suggestions for some new events, you can contact anyone on the entertainment committee. Diane s is and Wanda s is DID YOU KNOW THAT YOU CAN RENT OUR HALL FOR ANY OCCASION? Birthday parties, funerals, weddings, you name it. Just call our hall coordinator, Patricia Ness at November Events are as follows: Friday, November 4, 2011-Pool tournament at 6PM, no fee to enter and cash prizes for the winners. Friday, November 11, 2011-Veterans Day Ceremony on the Island 11:00AM with refreshments at the Post home afterwards. Friday, November 18, 2011-ALR Hog Chop night from 6-8pm Thursday, November 24, Thanksgiving dinner at the post. Come over and eat with us. Saturday, November 26, 2011-Karaoke with Babs, 8PM. Don Taylor, 2d Vice Commander 3d Vice s Report o House Committee meeting has been changed to the first Monday of the month so that it can be completed prior to the Executive and General Membership meetings. o Sunday football food is back on schedule so come out, enjoy the games and partake. o Still working on problem with fruit flies, will set out more jar traps, seem to work very well. o Estimates still being formulated to address the water pooling condition under the building, more to come on this later. o Estimates being formulated to replace hot water heater, will address this with house committee and executive board prior to general membership. Tom Ritchie, 3d Vice Commander Chaplain s Report TAPS: Joe Santos (Passed away in July. Sick Call: Bobby Wholford Mike Strickler * Please keep everyone in your prayers. Inspirational Quotes: Neither fire nor wind, birth nor death can erase our good deeds. - Buddha Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced. - James Baldwin Not knowing when the dawn will come, I open every door. - Emily Dickinson Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal. - Henry Ford Obstacles cannot crush me. Every obstacle yields to stern resolve. He who is fixed to a star does not change his mind. - Leonardo da Vinci Obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it. - Michael Jordan One of the greatest discoveries a man makes, one of his great surprises, is to find he can do what he was afraid he couldn't do. - Henry Ford Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work. - Aristotle The greatest inspiration is often born of desperation. - Comer Cotrell The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing that you will make one. - Elbert Hubbard The inspiration of the almighty gives man understanding. - Bible Job 32:8 Gretchen Trujillo, Post Chaplain Finance Officer s Report The current month s finance report is posted on the bulletin board for all to review. Joe Fidd, Finance Officer Club Manager Report If you would like your birthday put in the newsletter, me at November Birthdays are: Mollie Swicegood November 1 Mary Leach November 2 Sharon Yeager November 4 Carol Keating November 5 Patricia Ness November 7 Bryan Leach November 9 Bob Nagle November 11 Bill Galanis November 13 Doug Cribbin November 22 Tom Jones November 26 Pete Gerner November 26 Sara Rodney November 27 There will be no spiced shrimp on the 4 th Thursday of this month because we are making food on Thanksgiving 3 rd Vice Tom Ritchie and his wife Margie Ritchie have been cooking football food on Sundays and I would like to thank them. From here on The Legion, SAL, Auxiliary and Legion riders will be taking turns doing football food and we thank them. Eric Anderson is my man of the month; his wife probably doesn t give him as many honey do s as I do. Thanks Eric and hello to his wife Marcie, thanks for letting him help out around here. Diane Ramsey, Club Manager Peace, Love & Murder (A Murder Mystery Dinner) A far-out message to all you groovy Flower children in a 1960 s mood, this is an official save the date kinda happening on January 14, 2012 So get your bread together for our far out Murder Mystery Dinner! That s right Cat, not peanut butter sandwiches like at Woodstock Man. But a bitchin soup to nuts affair guaranteed to cure the munchies man. I gotta split for now man but keep on lookin for updates and we ll have a gas. Peace Baby. Patricia Ness, Weston Hall Rental Manager American Legion Auxiliary Report Thanks to the 7 helpers and 5 dessert makers for our October spaghetti dinner! At our October meeting, our presentation on Veterans Affairs was quite interesting. We had 18 members, our 3 guest speakers and 3 legionnaires. We have sent $300 to support the Washington VAMC for Christmas gifts for the 800 veteran residents, and $100 to Martinsburg VAMC for their gift shop. We also sent $100 to USO for Christmas support. Our changes to the Constitution, By-laws and Standing Rules were approved and it has been forwarded to Department for approval. Our dues to National and Department have been raised $5 and we need to prepare to raise our dues to either $25 or $30 effective with the year (not this current year ). Plans are being made for our Unit and Post to enter a team in the Susan Korman Breast Cancer Walk next June. This is a shorter walk than Avon, about 3 miles, one day around the Mall. Gretchen Trujillo is the coordinator. It is open to anyone, men and other friends too! There will be fund raising involved. Minimum will be $35 per walker (registration). If you work in private industry, maybe your employer would sponsor you, and the Auxiliary will donate some. Please let us know if you can participate. Our 200 White House Christmas ornaments have been sold and the profits are used for supporting our programs, such as the cancer walk and girls state, other community service and children and youth programs that we cannot use our poppy fund money for. Thank you, Patti George, for carrying on this fund raising and to our members who purchased. If you need to buy, we have contacts with the Annandale Women s Club and Elks who also have them for sale. Our next meeting is THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3 RD at 7 p.m. Dessert will be served and I will make it a shorter meeting. Keep in mind the December CHRISTMAS PARTY ON DECEMBER 17 th. The Auxiliary will be coordinating the pot luck dinner. Auxiliary and Legion members will be preparing a THANKSGIVING dinner and the Post will be open. Karen McDaniel, President Phone Auxiliary Membership Report CONGRATULATIONS, the first membership report is in and we were one of only three Units that made our 55% goal. Our next goal is 70% by Jan. 23, We already are at 61%. Please keep the renewals coming in. I would love to have 100% by December. We only need 62 more to do it. Thanks for your hard work. Wilma Ranck, Auxiliary Membership Chairman Sons of the American Legion SAL Squadron 1976 has processed 29 applications for 2012 membership as of mid October. We do have eight more applications which we will be sending in for the October transmission. Our Department October goal for our squadron is 25 new members, which we have surpassed; but we still have a long ways to go to get all SAL members renewed for I will be more than happy to receive your renewal applications and payments for 2012 membership any time you would like to provide them. You can place your renewal request in an envelope addressed to Mike T, with the $30 renewal fee. Dual members who pay only the State Membership cost will pay $11 for their dual SAL membership. The bartender on duty will pin it on the bulletin board, and I will provide a 2012 membership card; which I will either mail to you or place it in an envelope on the bulletin board for your retrieval. The November SAL meeting is scheduled for the first Thursday of November, 11/3/2011. Please schedule this meeting in your calendar, and if you are interested in renewing that night, you will receive your 2012 card immediately, laminated by yours truly. See you all at the November meeting. Mike Trujillo, SAL First Vice American Legion Riders Unfortunately, the weather is starting to get chilly. Speaking of...did you stop by the Post Sunday, October 16th, for some Legion Rider Chili during the football game?? A big thanks to Don Taylor who handled all the details. Don made the chili, JoAnn Barnes baked cornbread, Dick George made a Mexican salad, and quite a few Legion Riders helped with the rest. Thanks everyone! The local Honor Bus trip October 2nd to DC was a huge success. We had Annandale Post WWII Veterans who attended and 13 Legion Riders from Annandale and Fairfax escorted the bus to DC. The volunteer photographer, Ken Wright with Wright Image, dropped off over 700 photos (many are posted on our Riders website and Face Book page) and he also gave us two enlarged photos that will be hung on a wall soon. One is a photo of the 13 Legion Riders and the other is a photo of the WWII Veterans in front of the WWII Memorial. Having our own members on the bus made this escort EXTRA special. NOVEMBER EVENTS: Sunday 13 November - the Riders are hosting another football Sunday at the Post. Friday 18 November - the Riders are throwing a HOG CHOP DINNER. Yummy pork chops and side dishes with dessert. Details are forthcoming, look for the flyer in back, at the Post or on our website soon. Ride and drive safe and PLEASE LOOK TWICE before turning into oncoming traffic! Pamela Barnes, Director, ALR Chapter 1976 or For our calendar, click Riders logo on the post website or visit us on Facebook: Legion Riders, Annandale, Va Service Officer We currently have several cases pending VA adjudication and a couple of other cases at various stages of completion for submission all actions on our part have been accomplished. Two items of potential interest: COLA 2012: Federal workers face at least one more year without a pay raise, but government retirees are cautiously looking forward to a cost of living adjustment (COLA) of around 3.3% in January. That will be the first inflation catch-up federal, military and Social Security retirees have had since a 5.8% increase in The raise could be higher if inflation creeps up. To get the full retiree COLA, you must be retired while the inflation is taking place as COLA s are prorated. As an example, individuals who retired in June will get one half of the January COLA. Wreaths Across America (WAA): Arlington National Cemetery officials have asked the WAA organization to place a wreath on each grave marker within the cemetery (over 250,000). Mr. Wayne Hanson, WAA coordinator for Virginia, has asked for American Legion help in placing the wreaths on Saturday, Dec 10 th. Legionnaire Bill Kegelmeyer, our current 17 th District Chaplain, is spear-heading the effort at the District level. I will continue to serve as the Post 1976 point of contact please or call me if you are available and interested in supporting this worthy cause. Marv Rodney, Post Service Officer Public Relations One of the main responsibilities of a Post PR Officer is to ensure that the good work and efforts accomplished by Post officials and members are publicized within the public sector. Another responsibility is to ensure our Post members are aware of and become involved in programs and positive activities that promote The American Legion in the public s eye. Toward that end, below is a list of activities and events that have recently or will occur during the September/October time frame: I traveled to Indianapolis and attended portions of the National Fall Conference and supported Dan Dellinger s National Commander Campaign between Oct 9-13 th. I attended the 17 th District Fall Conference which was held at Fairfax Post 177 on Sunday, Oct 16 th. The 17 th District Color Guard led the annual Annandale Chamber of Commerce Parade on Saturday, Oct 22 nd. Our Post participated in the Color Guard. We were also a sponsor of the Parade and associated Fall Festival. The Department Fall Conference will be held in Williamsburg, Nov 4-6 th The annual Annandale Inter-Service luncheon will be held at Annandale High School on Wednesday, Nov 9 th. Our Department Commander s Dinner will be held at Springfield Post 176 on Thursday, Nov 10 th. We will conduct our normal Veterans Day ceremonies starting at 9:00 a.m. at the Annandale United Methodist Church on Nov 11 th by placing a flag by each Veteran s grave marker with the support of family and friends. We welcome our Post 1976 family members to attend and participate in this event. Then at 11:00, we will have a minute ceremony at the Island Cannon to honor all of our Veterans both living and deceased. Again, bring your neighbors and family members to this patriotic event. If you want additional information or want to help support any of the above Veterans or Communityrelated events, please contact Marv Rodney at all of these events need assistance and/or participation. Marv Rodney, Post Public Relations Officer Open Letter to the Editor Dear fellow Legionnaires of American Legion Bicentennial Post 1976: A round of applause and a big thank you for unanimously approving and sending the resolution to the Department, and then to the National convention of the American Legion, a resolution concerning a forgotten American Military cemetery in the Philippines. Without Marv Rodney's advice and Tony Gerner's leadership, it would not have happened. Following your lead, both the Department and the National Convention approved it unanimously. A copy of this Post-approved Resolution can be read on the Post Home Bulletin Board. It now becomes the marching orders of our staff in Washington DC. I suspect our Post has many Subic Sailors like me and others who have been to the Philippines. I hope it brings back memories. The story begins over a hundred and ten years ago when the U.S. annexed the Philippines after the Spanish American War. In the early 1900's the U.S. Army established many forts in the country, including Fort William McKinley in Manila and Fort Stotsenburg in central Luzon. Similarly the U.S. Navy established bases including Subic and the Naval Station at Sangley Point in Cavite. Each of these facilities had a large hospital and some a military cemetery. Over the next fifty years American casualties, veterans and their dependents were interred in the post cemeteries. Then came World War II. Up until that time, these military cemeteries were solely administered and maintained by the Army and Navy. After the war, the U.S. Government, in collaboration with the new Philippine Government, decided to create a special cemetery and memorial to honor those who fought and died during WWII. The location for this new cemetery was to be the same site as the old and previously established post cemetery at Fort McKinley in Manila. Unfortunately, there were over 5,000 non- WWII remains already interred there. So a decision was then made to create a new military post cemetery at Fort Stotsenburg, today known as Clark, and to move and consolidate all the non- WWII dead there. During the period over 5,000 non- WWII remains were disinterred from Fort McKinley as well as two thousand others from Sangley Point, and two older pre-existing cemeteries at Fort Stotsenburg. Also moved to Clark from Fort McKinley was a historic 1908 Monument dedicated to the Unknown Soldiers, Sailors and Marines who were buried at Fort McKinley and had died during the Spanish American and Philippine American Wars. For the next forty-two years the U.S. Air Force managed the Clark Veterans Cemetery and proceeded to inter an additional 1,000 veterans and family members. Following the volcanic eruption of Mount Pinatubo in June 1991 the Clark Air Force base and facilities were destroyed. Later, a decision by the Philippine Senate not to renew the military bases agreement led to an accelerated USAF departure from Clark in November No provision was made for the perpetual care of the cemetery. When the USAF left, as much as a foot of ash covered the cemetery with half of the epitaphs of the vertical head stones hidden and the flat headstones totally buried. What heavy vegetation did not encroach, vandals began to steal, including over half of the wrought iron perimeter fence and the maintenance equipment. Local VFW Post 2485 with the help of Legionnaires from other Posts, embarrassed by the deterioration and dishonor to those interred, stepped forward in 1994 to restore some minimum level of honor by removing ash, cutting overgrown vegetation and protecting the cemetery. Today, the Post helps arrange funerals for American service personnel who continue to be buried there, the most recent being veterans from World War II, Korea, Vietnam and our conflicts in the Middle East. It is an American military cemetery. In order to augment the Post's volunteers, they founded a Grave Diggers program as a way to help pay for the salaries of five groundskeepers. Individuals who join the Grave Diggers Program pay a onetime annual membership
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