“I can honestly say the VFW has been my life’s greatest accomplishment, and I am proud to have a sense of purpose that has such a strong impact on my community,” said Ginger Graham who is #StillServing as a past All American Commander of VFW Post 6740 in Leesville, South Carolina.
Graham was in the U.S. Army for approximately three years and spent part of her time serving in Korea. She transitioned into a civilian career of 18 years with Ford Motor Company and was involved with the Veterans Committee of the United Auto Workers. In 2018, she attended the Memorial Day program held by her local Post. Ready to jump in, Graham joined the VFW a week later and became her Post’s service officer that same day.
“I was eager to help in any way I could. In three months, the Quartermaster position was vacant and I was elected to fill it. That provided me with a much-needed opportunity to learn about the VFW and my own Post,” Graham recalled.
“By attending meetings at Post, District, Department and National levels, I was prepared with the knowledge and experience needed to take a higher position. All my volunteering, training and learning became essential when our Commander unexpectedly resigned in August 2019. I was voted in and served in that position until June 2021.”
With her experiences helping veterans’ causes and her desire to make a difference, Graham took an already engaged Post to a new level of activity and service. When the spread of COVID-19 shut everything down, she led Post 6740 in finding ways to continue fundraising and helping veterans.
During her two years as Commander, the Post partnered with other VFW Posts and organizations to raise thousands of dollars for a variety of needs. This included helping purchase a wheelchair accessible van for a past Commander, providing financial support to repair a veteran’s heating system and assisting a veteran with a hot water heater, two kitchen appliances and a $200 gift card. They also donated $600 and collected more than $2000 worth of supplies for tornado victims and gave $400 to a local school for food and Christmas items.
“We’re very active, but our Post did not accomplish all this on our own. We have an amazing Auxiliary and we work together with other VFW members and veterans groups to accomplish goals,” said Graham.
“Our VFW does not try to reinvent the wheel by doing community service or fundraising alone. We’ve spent the past two years working with others to strengthen our camaraderie which creates more successful events … and this makes our District grow stronger day by day.”
In addition, Graham is passionate about ensuring that service members and veterans receive the respect they are due. Even during the pandemic, she continued the Post’s efforts to support JROTC graduating cadets, participate in community military appreciation events, visit veterans in assisted living facilities and host programs to honor POW/MIA Recognition Day, Veterans Day and Memorial Day.
“I am eligible to be a member of the VFW because I served in Korea, but this honor is very humbling when compared to the sacrifices of my brothers and sisters who actually served in combat. I strive to earn my position on a daily basis,” Graham said.
Graham believes one of the greatest qualities of Post 6740 is now the relationship shared with the Auxiliary and Posts throughout the District and the Department of South Carolina. She hopes to inspire more veterans to come together and achieve all they possibly can, ultimately united in the mission to be there for veterans.
“I am the VFW because I am #StillServing and I will never stop serving! I am dedicated to honoring and serving our military, veterans and my community,” stated Graham.
“The VFW is never-ending dedication and service. This is why I’m proud to say ‘I am the VFW.’”
If you’re a veteran with a #StillServing story to share, we want to hear from you.