Travis Post 76 Newsletters 2001
Gene Volcik, Post Commander
Happy New Year!
For 2001, did you make any New Year's resolutions? Whether you did or not you need to make one-a promise to help our American Legion Post 76 to increase its membership and the attendance at our dinner meetings. We have a great organization with some great people in it but it could be better. If you haven't been coming to our dinner meeting, try to come. If you need a ride, call a member to come get you.
Our Christmas party was a lot of fun. We had a good group singing Christmas carols; now we may not win any prizes with our singing, but by golly we thought we were good. We can never thank Bill and Avadne Montandon enough for making our Christmas program such a success. Bill for being our pianist each year and Avadne for bringing the carol music sheet. May God always bless you both.
Our next dinner meeting is January 15th, so try to come out and bring a friend or a prospective member.
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....Feb 5th, March 5th, April 2nd.
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....Jan 15th, Feb 19th, March 19th.
As we begin the new year of 2001, let us turn our thoughts to this great nation, particularly as we begin a new era with a new President and administration. I offer the following prayer:
Our Heavenly Father: Give us the understanding, the courage and the strength to carry out Thy Commandments, and to follow in all Thy ways. Bless and guide our President and his administration, that our Country may ever be right in the power of Thy Holy Might. Make us worthy of Thy loving kindness. Receive our fallen comrades into Thy heavenly kingdom, and let their sacrifice be not in vain. Amen
Merle Wheeler, President
May Peace, Hope and Happiness be your Gifts this Holiday Season and a Happy New Year to All! One of the very important functions of the American Legion Auxiliary is community services. Each year we send a report of our community service to the Texas Department Headquarters and they send it to National Headquarters. Each state receives recognition for their services; and also each Unit receives credit for their work.
As President of Unit 76, I am encouraging every member of Unit 76 to make a list of all the community service work that you have done this year and send the list to me as soon as possible.
Some community service examples are:
- Taking food to the sick or bereaved.
- Giving a ride to the doctor's office or to the grocery store.
- Making an encouraging phone call to a person in trouble or who has sadness.
- Helping a person in need of a friend.
- Giving a gift to charity.
- Teaching children in school or church, or both.
- Doing benevolent work.
Every Unit 76 member that sends in a report will help our Unit 76. Please mail your list to me as soon as possible and I will see that it is sent on its way.
Thank you and with God's blessing,
For God and country!
Our sympathy goes out to the family upon the death of Ralph Hilson, a member with fifteen years in the Legion. May God rest his soul in peace.
Gene Volcik, Post Commander
Happy New Year!
"Uncle Sam Needs You", - do you remember that World War II poster where Uncle Sam was pointing his finger, asking for us to join? That's sort of the position of our Post. Our 2001 membership stands at 83%, so if you haven't paid your dues, please do so we can report a 100% membership.
Our 2001 goal is 100% of our present membership plus adding some new members. This is a task for all of us. If you know a veteran, just tell them about our organization. We have probably one of the most beautiful posts in the state. We have a neat bunch of members who really care for each other and we participate in many projects such as Boys State, Girls State, American Legion baseball, Boys Scouts, Oratorical Contest and other projects. Our Post is a non-smoking one and only wine is served at our dinner meetings. Our funds are mostly derived from renting our facilities for different functions. These funds are used to maintain our buildings and grounds. So we can continue to be proud of what we have and we should invite prospective members so they can share it with us.
At our February 19th meeting, our program will be presented by our past Commander Larry Miller. His topic will be "The Capitol Restoration Project", which really promises to be very interesting. Also, this will be our annual Chili Cook-Off so if you feel competitive, bring chili; if not, bring some other dish. How long's it been since you had a good bowl of chili-Well that's too long. So ya'll come!
We have been mailing out a form to return to the Post showing any address corrections,etc. The deadline for getting these back is February 28th. After that date we will publish a new directory. Please get your changes in now if you have any.
God's Greatest Gift
How you can have a personal relationship with God.
Realize that all people need God. There is only one way to have a personal relationship with God. This relationship comes to you as a free gift. (Ephesians 2:8-9-"For by grace you are saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-not by works, so that no one can boast" God's Holy Spirit works in our hearts to let us know of our need for the free gift of salvation from God.
Accept God's offer. Jesus came to bring God's offer of a personal relationship. Jesus is God's Son. He died on a cross to pay for our sins. God's gift was the life of His Son in order that we may obtain eternal life. Romans 5:8-But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Jesus died for us.
Respond to God right now. Turn away from your old way of life and turn toward God by accepting His free gift by faith. Romans 10:9-...if you confess with your mouth, Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. You can accept what the Bible says and receive God's gift through faith in Jesus, or you can turn away and reject God's gift.
What Will You Do?
If you are ready to receive God's free gift, you can by inviting Jesus into your life by praying to Him right now!
"And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved"-Acts 2:21
He was only thirty-three when the tide of public opinion turned against him. His friends ran away. He was turned over to his enemies and went through the mockery of a trial. He was nailed to the cross between two thieves. While he was dying, his executioners gambled for his clothing, the only property he had on earth. When he was dead, he was laid in a borrowed grave through the pity of a friend.
Nineteen centuries have come and gone, and today he is the central figure of the human race and the leader of mankind's progress. All the armies that ever marched, all the navies that ever sailed, all the parliments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned, all put together, have not affected the life of man on this earth as much as that..."One Solitary Life".
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....March 5th, April 2nd, May 7th.
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....Feb 19th, March 19th, April 16th.
Gene Volcik, Post Commander
Happy Birthday, American Legion!
The American Legion was born in France in March, 1919 following the armistice of World War I and its organization was completed in St. Louis in May 1919. In May 1919, a meeting was held to plan for the organization of Travis Post 76 which was finalized on June 12,1919. The Women's organization was organized in July 1919.
Our Post originally met for a short time over the old Hancock Opera House, then moved to the 900 block of Congress Avenue. Later we moved to the upstairs quarters in the Pope Building on East 6th Street. In 1924. we purchased our present home and land and our home was renovated in 1925. Just wanted to remind ourselves on the history of our Post and historical home.
We had another great dinner meeting in February because our Past Commander Larry Miller did a great presentation on the "Restoration of the State Capitol". Many of us never realized the effort needed to restore our Capitol to its authentic status.
Lift Every Voice and Sing
by James Weldon Johnson
Lift every voice and sing,
'Til earth and Heaven ring,
Ring with the harmonies of liberty;
Let our rejoicing rise
High as the listening skies,
Let it resound, loud as the rolling sea.
Sing a song full of the faith that the dark past has taught us,
Sing a song full of the hope that the present has brought us;
Facing the rising sun of our new day begun,
Let us march on 'til victory is won.
Stony the road we trod,
Bitter the chastening rod,
Felt in the days when hope unborn had died;
Yet with a steady beat,
Have not our weary feet,
Come to the place for which our fathers signed?
We have come over a way that with tears has been watered,
We have come treading our path thro' the blood of the slaughtered;
Out from the gloomy past,
Til' now we stand at last
Where the white gleam of our bright star is cast.
God of our weary years,
God of our silent tears,
Thou who hast brought us thus far on the way;
Thou who hast by thy might,
Lead us into the light,
Keep us forever on the path we pray.
Lest our feet stray from the places, our God where we met Thee,
Lest our heart, drunk with the wine of the world, we forget Thee;
Shadowed beneath Thy hand may we forever stand,
True to our God, thru to our native land.
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....April 2nd, May 7th, June 4th.
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....March 19th, April 16th, May 21st.
Gene Volcik, Post Commander
March marked the anniversary of the birth of the American Legion. April will be a big month for Texas when a great museum of Texas history that is named for Bob Bullock will be dedicated to his memory. Whether you are a Democrat or Republican, you can rest assured that Bob Bullock was truly a Texan from morning to night and from January through December. Hopefully. President George Bush will be in attendance for this dedication which should make this a great event, so make an effort to attend.
Our March program was presented by Joe and Charlene Trochta describing their trip to the Antarctic. Their presentation was excellent in the description about such an enjoyable trip. If you missed our meeting, you missed a treat. This is just one of the many interesting programs we have had during the past few years. Mark the third Monday on your calendar and join us-we know you will enjoy it.
Our next dinner meeting is April 16 and we will have as our speaker, Hugh Sparks, who is with the Austin Area Inter-religious Ministries and his topic will be a "Hands on Housing" program. The dinner entree will be ham.
Come on out, meet your fellow Legionnaires and enjoy the evening. See you there!
Merle Wheeler, President
Annual Report Sent to 10th District President Vicki Wehemeyer
Hello! My name is Merle Wheeler, President of Unit 76. The year 2000-2001 has been another good year for Unit 76. We have done many good works so far. I will name some of them:
Although we are small in number, we do good works. We four are the caring ones in our Unit. All others are too busy with other things in their lives, or too elderly to attend. Although all but one of us is elderly we hope to be able to carry on with Unit 76, and this is our hope and prayer-that Unit 76 will survive and have a future.
- We made 100% membership goal for the year 2000-2001.
- We participated in the Veterans Day Parade. The parade was a success.
- Registered for the Mid-Winter Conference, but illness prevented our attendance.
- We gave to the "For the Children" fund.
- We gave to the Salvation Army fund.
- We gave quarterly donations to the Cancer Fund.
- We gave to the American Red Cross.
- We sponsored a girl for Girls State.
- We made all our donations and gifts, and paid our dues to the American Legion Auxillary, Department of Texas, and the Veterans Hospital.
- We mailed out two scholarship applications.
- We gave to the Scholarship Fund.
- We bought 200 poppies this year and are using them as displays on our tables at our dinner meetings on Veterans Day and on Memorial Day for decoration. Everyone wears a poppy and gives a donation. It is pretty successful.
- We honor the flags of the United States and Texas, and we sing "God Bless America" with the Legion at our dinner meetings.
- We do community charity works.
- We have successful business meetings. Our meetings are called to order with a quroum present and on time. Officers and members present are usually:
Members...Clara Hohertz and Leonara Schlueter
Occasionally, one or two other members will join us.
- I have been President of Unit 76 since 1992 minus one year when Ginny Smith was President.
- We remember the sick and bereaved and open our meeting with a prayer. We pledge allegiance to the American Flag.
- We recite the preamble to the American Legion Auxilliary Constitution.
- We have updated our constitution and by-laws and they have been accepted and approved.
- We take care of our business in a respectful and orderly way.
- We try to increase our membership
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....May 7th, June 4th, July 2nd.
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....April 16th, May 21st,June 18th.
Gene Volcik, Post Commander
On Memorial Day, May 28th we pause to recognize and remember the sacrifices made by all Veterans; especially those who gave their lives and those who suffer from wounds-both physical and mental from the effects of all wars. All Americans should fly their flags on this day and especially all Legionnaires. We need to be leaders in this by showing our patriotism and love for this country, needless to say-the best in the world, even with its faults.
Our speaker at the April dinner meeting was Mr. Hugh Sparks, who spoke to us about "Hands on Housing" which was very interesting. The attendance at this meeting was very small which may have resulted from many not receiving the newsletter on time and also the Easter weekend. Our editor had the newsletter in the post office on time but since it is bulk mail and the Easter weekend; it resulted in late delivery. So that we will stay out of this predicament, we need to mail our articles 5 to 7 days after our dinner meeting to our editor, Steve Rye. You must remember that it is your newsletter, not just the officers of the Post and the Auxilliary. We want to hear from you.
Our program for May 21st will be presented by our Boy Scout troop telling us about their activities which should be very interesting. Let us show them our support by being in attendance. Our entree will be hamburgers and cheeseburgers.
Some future dates and programs we need to remember are June 14th which is Flag Day; June is Boys State, July is Girls State and also American Legion baseball is starting. Let us support all these projects involving our young people because they are our future leaders.
Merle Wheeler, President
Mothers Day is Sunday, May 13,2001. Every living creature and "critter" has a mother through Gods plan of procreation. The following is a tribute to Mothers:
Mother is a Word Called Love
Mother is a word called Love.
All the world is mindful that the love that's given and shown to others is different from the love of Mothers--
For Mothers play the leading roles in giving birth to little souls,
For though "Small Souls" are heaven-sent and we realize they're only lent,
It takes a mother's loving hands and her gentle heart that understands to mold and shape their little life and shelter it through storm and strife--
No other love than Mother's love could do the things required of,
The one to whom God gives the keeping of His wee lambs, awake or sleeping,
So Mothers are a "special race" God sent to earth to take his place,
and Mother is a lovely name
that even saints are proud to claim.
Memorial Day is Monday, May 28, 2001. It is observed in memory of all veterans that fought in service to their country.
A Memorial Day Prayer
They served and fought and died so we might be safe and free,
Grant them, O Lord, Eternal Peace and give them the "victory",
And in these days of unrest filled with grave uncertainty,
Let's not forget the price they paid to keep our country free--
And so on this Memorial Day we offer a prayer--
May all the people of all nations be united in thy care,
And may the stars and stripes forever be blessed from above,
Build on FAITH and TRUTH and LOVE.
So the month of May has two special memorial days for us to remember and give tribute to, and be thankful for:
- Those who gave us life in this world, and love and care and guidance;
- And those that gave their lives that we might live a free and happy life.
We all owe so much to both of them. Let us all try to be worthy of their special love.
Words of Inspiration
by Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus
Just for today we will be unafraid. Especially we will not be fearful of enjoying what is beautiful, and we believe that, as we give to the world, so the world will give to us.
Giving and receiving are not just reserved for the able and the exceptional, they are just as essential as breathing and as vital as life itself.
So remember, greatness and rewards are perhaps within your grasp if you see the needs of the people about you and apply yourself to fulfilling their needs.
Let us keep our zest for living, for the joy we can find and the warm human friendships we can make--and mindful of our life as a trust--do what we can to make life useful.
And for a prayer...
We pray that we shall never be so blind,
That our small world is all we see.
Or so supremely satisfied that all we see,
is all we feel we want to be.
God grant us the joy of feeling someone's need.
Make us gracious followers
if we were not meant to lead.
And most of all we pray on through the years,
We will remember there Are Always New Frontiers.
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....June 4th, July 2nd, August 6th.
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....May 21st,June 18th, July 16th.
It is with regret that we report the following Legionnaires
who have gone to the Post Everlasting:
Robert S. McCauley
Our sympathies go out to the families. May they rest in peace.
Gene Volcik, Post Commander
What a crowd! We had an overflow crowd at our May dinner meeting-many had to stand during our meeting. We honored outstanding persons from the police, fire and sheriff's departments. Also, we had several members of our scout troop, plus its scout masters, who updated us on their activities.
We plan to have a Flag Retirement Ceremony at our June 18th meeting plus have our Boys State youth telling about their adventures at the State Capitol. The Flag Retirement program will be conducted on the front porch and lawn. If you have flags you want disposed of properly, bring them to the June meeting. Our entree will be fried chicken.
We have been requested to participate by walking as a group in a July 4th parade at Circle C at 9:00 a.m. The parade will last from 20 to 30 minutes. Hopefully, several of us will be a part of this parade. We will meet at Kiker Elementary School at 5917 LaCrosse by the Children's Development Center and the swimming pool.
Also,we want to have an informal fireworks watching party at the post on July 4th starting around 7:00 p.m. Plans will be in place to protect our parking lot that evening. Our menu will be pot luck with each of us bringing sandwiches, chips and dip, and cookies.
Our American Legion Post has always been a great supporter of our Boys and Girls State youth, so let us continue to show this support by being at our June 18th meeting. These young men and women are our future leaders-and believe me, they are inspiring.
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....June 4th, July 2nd, August 6th.
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....June 18th, July 16th, August 20th.
Nominations for Officers-2002
The Nominating Committee under Chairman Junior Past Commander Larry Miller submitted the following nominees at the May 7th regular meeting:
|1st Vice Commander||Bill Stramler|
|2nd Vice Commander||Charles Matheson|
|Finance Officer||Will Ivie|
|Service Officer||Horace Johnson|
|Judge Advocate||Joseph Cook|
2000-2002...Will Brown, Joseph Trochta, Jim Burrill
2001-2003...Ladd Patillo, Arthur Day, Larry Miller
Eugene Volcik, as Junior Past Commander, will also serve on the Executive Committee.
Nominees will be accepted from the floor at the June 4th business meeting. The election will be held on the same night.
From the Adjutant
by Loman Wheeler
We plan to prepare a new membership directory soon. Please let us know if we do not have your correct address and phone number. Also, regretfully, some of you may have lost a spouse since the last printing and we may not be aware of it. Please advise us of it. Thank you.
General Order 11
Let us then, at the time appointed, gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with the choicest flowers of springtime...
Let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from dishonor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us as sacred charges upon the Nation's gratitude-the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan.
Major General John Logan
Grand Army of the Republic
Reprint from American Legion Website
Washington (May 22,2001)-Congress and the Bush administration are doing the right thing by removing roadblocks to contruction of the World War II Memorial, American Legion National Commander Ray G. Smith said.
Legion Praises Congress, Bush for Saving Private Ryan's Memorial
Congress approved a bill today that would permit the World War II Memorial to be built at its approved, dedicated, ground-broken and Legion-backed Rainbow Pool site on the National Mall. The 2.8 million member American Legion, the nations largest veterans organization, fought for the introduction and passage of the approved legislation, which Rep. Bob Stump of Arizona and Sen. Tim Hutchison of Arkansas introduced. President Bush said he would sign the measure.
"I want to thank Mr. Stump, Mr. Hutchinson, every member of Congress who voted for this legislation, and President Bush for eliminating further delays on construction of the World War II Memorial", Smith said. "This project will be a fitting tribute to the "Private Ryans', indeed the entire 'greatest generation', who sacrificed for freedom in the Second World War.
"In the end, neither the cliffs of Normandy nor a vocal minority would stop this nation from doing the right thing".
Gene Volcik, Post Commander
At our June dinner meeting, we had a wonderful large crowd to greet and meet our Boys State youth.Many thanks to Joe Trochta, Paul Barker and others who helped with the Boys Staters. Although we do not have very many Girls State youth attending this year-we need to welcome them like we did our boys. Our Girls Staters will also become an important factor in our society just as our young men. Remember these are the future leaders of our country.
Our Flag retirement ceremony was a success but it could have been better. We had competition from the noise of the MoPac traffic which we did not anticipate. There are things we will correct before we do another Flag Retirement. We did receive several compliments from the parents of the Boys Staters. The most frequent comment was they had never seen a Flag Retirement ceremony and they were very impressed. So the bottom line is-it was properly performed but it needs improvement. Special thanks to Charles Matheson whose Boys Scout Honor Guard performed with proficiency.
Remember our next dinner meeting-July16th! The program is our Girls Staters and our entree will be chicken tenders.
Travis Post 76 sponsored 15 boys to Boys State from Anderson,Austin,Hyde Park Baptist,Lake Travis,Lago Vista,St.Michaels Academy,McCallum and Westlake High Schools.
Travis Auxilliary Unit 76 sponsored 5 girls to Girls State from Austin and McCallum High Schools.
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....August 6th, September 10th, October 1st.
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....July 16th, August 20th, September 17th.
From the Declaration of Independence:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights, that among them are life,liberty and the pusuit of happiness.
Today, our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen continue a bond with patriots before them: Protecting the common cause of America-a cause of freedom and human rights for themselves and their families.
As we celebrate the 225th anniversary of our nation's birth, let us recall as well the sacrifice and selfless service of American patriots over the last 225 years, serving the cause of freedom throughout the world.
We Americans must never take too lightly our blessings of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Those blessings, which began with the birth of our nation on a hot July day in Philadelphia, have not come cheap.
WANT AN ORGAN?
Post 76 has a Hammond organ that is need of repair to the wiring and keys. The post has decided to donate the organ rather than repair it. If any member is interested in taking the organ, please contact Pat or Will Ivie about moving the organ.
Welcome New Members,
Gerald P. "Jerry" Campbell, Governor Rick Perry, Charles Spangler.
It is with regret that we report that Legionnaire Robert Coonrod has gone on to the Post Everlasting. Our sympathies go out to the family.
Gene Volcik, Post Commander
Our July program turned into a sing-a-long with us singing patriotic songs and oldies. Hey! We sounded really good.
We set several goals for the year, and even though we did not meet our goals 100%,it did turn out to be a successful year. We fell short on our membership but the year ended very promising with several new members joining in the last month or so. This is a good start for possible continued growth. During the year we installed a new built-in oven in the kitchen,plans were made for a new American Legion sign which will be more visible, the oak trees were trimmed, ideas made to improve the entrance hall tile, building a new utility building to be located behind the boxcar and the removal of the old one which will provide a little extra parking. The Flag Retirement ceremony was performed this year after an absence of several years.
Our August 20th meeting will be the installation of the new officers. Our installing officer and speaker will be our 10th District Commander, Kenneth Mueller. Make a great attempt to attend so we can show our support to the incoming officers and the appreciation for the outgoing officers. Our entree will be chicken and beef bar-b-que.
Our American Legion baseball program continued under the tremendous leadership of Larry Mileer and Paul VandenDries/ Thank you,gentlemen!
This will be my last commanders letter and I want to express my appreciation and compliments given to me as your commander. It has been an enjoyable year. My only request of you is to continue to support the commander and his officers so our Post will continue to be successful.
Auxilliary Unit 76
Unit 76 will continue with current officers and committee members in the year 2002. As President, I commend the faithful members of this group for a job well done. These ladies are:Pat Ivie,Unit Secretary-Treasurer,Clara Hohertz,Member,Leonora Schluter,Member and myself.
We welcome any members of Auxilliary Unit 76 to come to our business meetings and join in the joy of doing good works. We meet the first Monday night of each month and we spend one hour in our meetings serving God and Country,and upholding the welfare of all veterans and their families-especially the children. We walk hand in hand with Post 76 Legionnaires and we thank them for their support. To show my appreciation of the ladies who were named I have a small gift for each of them. Thank You, Merle Wheeler
Agenda for the Dinner Meeting
Opening Remarks and Welcome
Eugene Volcik, Commander, Travis Post 76
Post 76 Chaplain Joseph Cook
Pledge of Allegiance to the United States Flag
Song: "God Bless America"
Introduction of Special Guests
Commander Eugene Volcik
Report for the Auxilliary
Merle Wheeler, President
Introduction of District Commander
Commander Eugene Volcik
Installation of Post 76 Officers
Past Commander Eugene Volcik
Commander Guy Davis
Chaplain Stanley Juba
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....September 10th, October 1st,November 5th
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....August 20th, September 17th,October 15th.
Make America Proud
Make America Proud of You
In Everyting You Say and Do...
Make America Proud to Say
You are a Son or Daughter of the U.S.A.
In America You are Free
To Be Whatever You Want to Be...
So, It's Up to You, Whatever You Want to Do...
To Make America Proud of You.
Whatever the game you choose to play...
Whatever It Is You Want to Be...
Whatever the Road You Choose to Take
Take It Straight with Your Head Up in the Air
And Make America Proud.
Guy Davis, Post Commander
From A Humbled Commander
This summer I had the opportunity to travel through the Czech republic,Poland, and what was Eastern Germany. This opportunity was not available when I was stationed in Germany from June 1980 until July 1985, At that time the wall was still up and the Cold War was still a reality.
What I received from my trip was a gratitude for each Allied veteran who had participated in the fight for world freedom. In the former Eastern Germany along both sides of the Autobahn were two rows of fences running parallel to the highway. In between each row, was a vacant area, a no mans area. Sometimes the fencing had a thick solid metal bar. This bar ran about two and one-half to three feet above the ground. This bar was about 3/4 inches thick. I wondered if this bar carried electricity to block attempted escapes. Many areas were void of trees away from these fences. You could picture soldiers guarding the fences to make sure no one escaped.
Now, in what was Eastern Germany was a freedom that had been lost for over four decades. What I saw was a new spirit, a new growth. The joy of a smile without suspicion, a conversation without looking over ones shoulder, the ability to go where one pleased, the happiness of finding food stocked on shelves without being rationed were some of the things we take for granted. I think these ideas are counted a blessing for those people that were deprived of them for so long.
I feel like each one of us had a part in the return of freedom for those who now have gained a newness of life. For this, I salute you all; all military veterans of previous wars and campaigns; all active duty personnel, and all those in the future who join the military to service our wonderful country.
Has the battle been won? I think not. There are still many countries where the people do not enjoy the freedoms we have. There are many governments that still try to take away freedoms of their citizens.
How can we maintain our freedoms? Is this not part of what the American Legion is about? I hope you have ideas that our Post can implement to help the future generation of Americans maintain the ideas of freedom we recognize. Please come to our meeting and give us your ideas. This nation was built on the efforts of many gallant and brave soldiers. Be a brave and gallant legionnaire.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve as your Post Commander. I would like to have a successful year, but I recognize that the success will only come if you become an active part of the Post. The strength of any organization comes from within.
Welcome New Members
George H. Covert,Raymond Roark, James E.Vasil,Earl F.Evans,William L.Denson,Horace V. Proctor
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....October 1st,November 5th,December 3rd
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....September 17th,October 15th,November 19th.
by Merle Wheeler
Dear Post 76 Members and Unit 76 Members:
Welcome to the beginning of a new year,2002. On the evening of August 20,2001,Post 76 Legionnaires and Unit 76 Auxilliary attended our monthly dinner meeting and we witnessed the installation of Post 76 new officers for 2001-2002. Tenth District Commander Kenneth Mueller from Brenham was our keynote speaker and installation officer. The line-up of officers to be sworn in was very impressive, and the ceremony was awesome. It made one feel proud to be an American.If you missed it, I'm sorry. I wish you could have been there. Commander Mueller had a good message for us about business things that we need to know-he did a good job.
Four"Thank You" honor plaques were given and the receivers were Horace Johnson, Loman Wheeler, Pat Ivie and Merle Wheeler. Commander Eugene Volcik received a Past Commanders plaque for a job well done.
Auxilliary Unit 76 will continue with our current officers and committee members in the year 2002. I commend the faithful members of this group for as job well done. These ladies are Pat Ivie, Secretary-Treasurer;Clara Hohertz,member; Leonora Schlueter,member; and myself. We are looking forward to working together another year, and to the joy of doing good works serving God and Country, and upholding the welfare of our veterans and their families, especially the children.
We say a special "Thank You" to Post 76 for their generous grant to Unit 76. this will enable us to meet all our assesments and obligations to Auxilliary Headquarters, and to make our donations to such worthy causes as the Veterans Hospital Fund, Cancer fund, Childrens Fund, Childrens School Supply Fund and other charities. We thank you for your support.
We pledge to walk hand in hand, in harmony with Post 76 always for the good of our Post and Unit-and God and Country.
Before I forget, I want to say that our food for the dinner was outstanding. We had catered barbecue beef and chicken and all the goodies that go with it plus many good side dishes and delicious desserts that members brought. It was all so very good and everyone enjoyed it and we had a fun time remembering the past year with Commander Volcik, We are looking forward to the new year with Guy Davis.
Post 76 and Unit 76 each have our seperate business meetings on the first Monday night of each month. All members are welcome to come join in these meetings. Guests are also welcome. Our doors are open to all.
As we go into our new year, this is our prayer:We ask God to grant that we may have the health and strength to serve in spirit and in truth and wisdom-and peace-for the good of our comrades everywhere. may we ever be loyal to our country. Happy New Year!
Thank You, Merle Wheeler.
American Legion Mobilizes
An intense nationwide effort is underway by The American Legion to assist families of American service persons whose deployment in response to the heinous acts of terrorism in New York and Washington, D.C. seems inevitable. American Legion National Commander Richard J. Santos says, "Our Family Support Network is desighned to meet family needs that seem to slip through the safety nets of society."
Nationwide Military Support Network
The American Legion toll-free telephone number, 1-800-504-4098 is available to family members and military personnel around-the-clock. "Our members know what family separation is like and the unexpected problems it can bring. The Family Support Network is a volunteer effort that works to ease those problems", Santos said.
Calls are processed and referred to members of The American Legion, The American Legion Auxilliary and the sons of The American Legion in the communities where military families reside. These hometown volunteers will attempt to assist the family members. Callers are expected to provide their name, the city and state they are calling from and telephone numbers where they can be reached. In most cases they will receive a call within two working days.
"As the nations largest veterans organization, our committment to our men and women in uniform and their families never wavers", Santos added. "American Legion Service Officers and other volunteers among the Legion family know their communities and they know how to get things done".
The Family Support Network coordinates with family service personnel at military bases and state headquarters for National Guard and Reserve units to monitor specific needs and to avoid duplication of effort.
"We know the military services have a solid family support operation, we want to supplement those efforts, with a special focus on those families who are not living near an active duty military base where such operations exist", Santos said.
During the Persian Gulf War, The American Legion Family support Network handled more than 34,000 telephone calls and provided a variety of services for family members. Support included such everyday needs as cutting grass, child care and minor home repairs to the extraordinary efforts to teach a family member how to drive, rescuing a car from a police impound lot and even delivering a car from Texas to Maryland, at no charge to the military family.
Honoring the Victims of the Incidents on Tuesday, September 11,2001
By the President of the United States of America
As a mark of respect for those killed by the heinous acts of violence perpetrated by faceless cowards upon the people and the freedom of the United States on Tuesday, September 11,2001, I hereby order, by the authority vested in me as President of the United States of America by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, that the flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff at the White House and upon all public buildings and grounds, at all military posts and naval stations, and on all naval vessels of the Federal Government in the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its Territories and possesions until sunset, Sunday, September 16,2001. I also direct that the flag shall be flown at half-staff for the same length of time at all United States embassies,legations,consular offices, and other facilities abroad, including all military facilities and naval vessels and stations.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this eleventh day of September, in the year of our Lord two thousand one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and twenty-sixth.
GOD BLESS AMERICA
Veterans Day Parade
Veterans Day Parade will be held Sunday, November 11th starting at 9:30 a.m. Our annual Post 76 Commanders breakfast will begin between 7:15 to 7:30 a.m. Kitchen volunteers should arrive by 6:00 a.m. We will assemble for the parade between 8:00 to 8:30 a.m. The little Kiwanis train will be available for those who want to ride. Let's have a good turnout.
Guy Davis, Post Commander
You Still Count
No doubt the events since out last newsletter have drastically affected our lives. The unthinkable has happened; our country was attacked on our own soil with our own resources. This act of barbaric aggressive behavior served as a call for all of us to wake up to the fact that our country needs our individual support and efforts beyond the time when we wore the uniform. Patriotism is not a onetime adventure. It must be practiced each day.
But what can you do? Many of you think that old age puts you in some kind of inactive state that keeps you from serving. Nothing could be farther from the truth. You are needed in continuing to build our great country. Excuses for most of us should not exist. If you can move,talk,think, and take care of yourself, there are no excuses for not helping in our country's efforts to remain free.
There are many organizations, institutions, and government agencies that can use your support. During our September Dinner meeting, Stanley Knee, Austin Chief of Police, responded to the question "Does the police department use volunteers?" by not only saying "yes", but gave examples of the volunteer work and those who did them. These agencies need volunteers to do many tasks. Your first efforts should be to find one of the agencies that can use the support you can provide and an agency you would like to support.
I teach at Austin High School and I know that there are many areas that could use volunteers. Your volunteering would serve not only in accomplishing needed school requirements, but more importantly, it would show our young people that patriotism is alive. You would set an example that expressed the idea that to serve is worthwhile and rewarding; that you have faith in our youth. Your volunteering would project an attitude that there is a pride that you have in your country that you are willing to serve. There is a sense of responsibility that one never relinquishes. There is a comradeship that you have with all people. There is a spirit of unity and service that transcends all ages,races,and religions. Young people need to see this kind of leadership from those who served before and are willing to always serve when our freedoms are at stake.
I call upon you to volunteer your services.
Executive/Business meetings at the Post on 1st Mondays at 7:00 p.m....December 3rd,January 7th,February 4th
Dinner Meetings at the Post Home on 3rd Mondays at 7:00 p.m....November 19th,December 17th,January 21st.
The entree for the dinner meeting on November 19th is fried catfish. The speaker is Mr. Sam Godfrey, the Director of Finance and Operations for the Bob Bullock Museum. Don't miss Mr. Godfrey's presentation.
by Merle Wheeler
(My feeble way of expressing my thoughts-MW)
Tomorrow will be a Better Day
The sun comes up and the sun goes down,
This old world goes around and around,
The birdies sing sweetly in the trees,
The flowers are kissed by a gentle breeze,
And they say hello to the honey bees,
We walk, we talk, we eat a bite,
The moon comes out and it shines very bright
And then it's time to say good night.
Morning comes-we wake from a pleasant sleep,
Our hearts are full of promises to keep,
We have hope and faith and love,
We have peace that comes on the wings of the great white dove,
Then the Evil ones come with the plans made well,
To leave this earth for the "Pits of Hell",
Their hearts are black with evil plans,
To spread sadness and fear in all our land,
They blast the towers where good people abide,
That were working together with hope and pride,
And were sisters and brothers side by side,
Destruction and pain are all around,
As the mighty building comes tumbling down,
The heroes and the angels joined hands,
As they flew on gossamer wings,
They went to Heaven to join our Father, our heavenly King,
Our hearts are broken, we mourn our loss,
We have had to pay such a heavy cost,
We look up to God, He is our way,
To find hope and courage, and the will to say,
God bless America, Tomorrow wiil be a better day.
Father, once again we are reminded that any security we have as individuals and as a nation comes only from the abiding hope and trust we have in you. Once again we are cut to the heart at the loss of life and damage to peace that we have suffered as a nation. So, Father, we come to you and seek your peace for the families and victims of the horrible tragedy. For those still lost in the rubble of destruction, we ask for the safety of your hand. For those consumed by worry and fear as they try to locate missing loved ones, we ask for the comforting presence of your Spirit.
We seek your peace for the emergency workers,that you would guard their lives as they seek to guard the lives of others. Give them the wisdom they will need to perform their duties above and beyond the levels of their training.
And Father, we seek your presence for our nation and our world. In the midst of our questions and uncertainty, we recognize that the unknown details of these days are already in our grasp. We know you sent your Son as the Prince of Peace and He desires to draw all people unto Him. Help us to find the strength and comfort we need as a nation to continue to humble ourselves, to continue to pray and seek your face for a new day in America and a new hope for our world.
In Jesus name,Amen
It is my prayer that each of us will become more spiritual in the coming year;
Father of all men and women, we love and praise you for your daily protection. Keep all who have gone before us in your mercy until we meet again. Give each of us knowledge and grace to grow daily closer to you and buld in us more loving care for each other.Amen
Your Chaplain. Please contact us if you need us for anything.
As America continues the war on terrorism, National Commander Richard J. Santos wrote a letter to President Bush urging him to step in to the campaign to provide a place in the U.S. Constitution for protecting the American flag.
Here is Commander Santos' letter.
The Honorable George W. Bush
President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President:
Images of September 11th are seared in my mind. The attack, death and destruction are overwhelming scenes that trouble all Americans. Yet, the single image of tired and drawn New York City firefighters hoisting an American flag over the rubble of the World Trade Center is profound in its inspiration to the people of our great nation.
With this image at the forefront, it is the right time for the U.S. Senate to do the right thing and bring the Flag Protection Amendment, SJR 7, to the Senate floor for a vote. An overwhelming majority of Americans earnestly believe that the flag of our nation deserves Constitutional protection.
Mr. President, I know that you support the amendment. I know that you do not view flag desecration as "speech". With todays heightened level of patriotism and unity behind Old Glory, now is the time to act.
As America wages war on terrorism, our military leads the way under the American flag, symbol of the essence of our nation, for which they are willing to lay down their lives and protect from all enemies, foreign and domestic. We,on the home front, must also protect our flag from the hateful acts of physical desecration.
I ask that you urge Senators Tom Daschle and Trent Lott to move this measure forward and work with all members of the Senate. Ask them to listen to the majority of Americans and vote in favor of SJR 7.
The issue has been debated. No opinion has gone unheard. The only purpose that future hearings would have for SJR 7 is for delaying tactics by those who oppose a flag protection amendment.Absent your intervention, the Senate will push aside the bill.
It is of the utmost importance to the majority of Americans that the Constitution be amended to protect the Flag of the United States from acts of physical desecration. The time for action on this amendment is now. I ask for your support and leadership to bring the amendment to the floor of the Senate for a vote, as quick and direct as law allows.
Richard J. Santos
cc:Senator Tom Daschle
cc:Senator Trent Lott