Where did you serve and what did you do?
I am the Commander of VFW Post 10904 as well as the Adjutant for American Legion Post 78 and Disabled American Veterans Chapter 90. I am also an Associate with Marine Corps League Det-1128 and the Chairman of the Coffee County Veterans Association here in Tennessee.
How are you #StillServing?
Despite all the problems with COVID, our Post has remained active in a variety of ways. For example, we have had public observations of every patriotic holiday or event by holding them outdoors or in a safe way including Patriots Day, Memorial Day, Flag Day, Vietnam War Veterans Day, Purple Heart Day, just to name a few.
We held an All-American Celebration event as our Post has been awarded the All-American Award for 3 straight years in Tennessee. And as we had worked hard on this and to be a vital part of our community, we invited every distinguished guest we could including the mayors, city officials as well as VFW National, State and other officers. The event was open to the public and all were encouraged to come and attend.
We explained what the VFW is, what the All American award means to us as a Post, what a “streamer” is, and how we enjoy working with students, teachers, veterans, schools and organizations to better our community.
Our officers were given special All-American awards and our Post members received pins and a special ribbon which we had made.
We also wanted to thank those in our community who had helped us in so many ways. To this end, we gave out 6 community service awards to companies and individuals who help us in our work including Humana, Hardees, Spring Street Market and others.
Despite the weather being as horrible as it could be, with flooding everywhere, we had over 200 people show up. With better weather we may have had more than double that amount.
We are so active in our community, that we seem to be in the newspaper weekly, which is wonderful for promoting what we do. Our members try to participate in every way they can. For example, just this month we have helped 2 veterans with moves, got a new hot water heater for a needy National Guard member, supplied an Honor Guard for a funeral with just an hour’s notice, participated in suicide prevention events, obtained a high school diploma for a worthy WWII veteran, performed at 6 assisted living centers in a program we call “Operation Joy”, a fun, comedy, musical program, given awards to First Responders, again to name a few.
Why do you do it?
As we can see the patriotic spirit of America at risk, this is the best way we can educate the public on what the VFW is about, why our country is the greatest, and to continue serving in the best way we can not only for veterans but also for our community as a whole.