Travis Post 76 Newsletters 2005


January 2005

Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

Another year has come and gone and Travis Post 76 is moving on. How many of you have tried constructing a building of any size all by yourself? Was it easy or would the task have been simple if you had the help of at least one person or better still two or three?
So it is with your Post. We have many irons in the fire that could use another person or two in order to complete the task and there are other items that need to be undertaken by our Post in order to help those who are currently serving on active duty and those like yourselves who are in need of assistance.
The American Legion was founded for the simple reason that there were ex-servicemen and women who needed help from the Nation they served faithfully for years. In most cases the only way to obtain that help was by joining forces. You see, one person’s voice may not be heard over the crowd in Washington, nor 10 or 100 but, you get together 10,000 or 100,000 or maybe 1,000,000 voices and you get the attention of those sitting in Congress. What would be even better is 4 or 5 million voices, then Congress would not think about getting rid of the VA hospitals and clinics or cutting your other promised benefits.
This past December, Travis Post 76 sent four members to the VA Hospital in Temple to help put together care packages and then distribute them to veterans who could not be home with their family and friends during the Christmas holidays. Not only did these members give of their time, they also opened their wallets. How much better it could have been if we had sent ten times the number of members to Temple to help and at least twice the amount of funds we did send. Do not take me wrong, I am pleased that the membership together gave $700.00 to help see that those in need were able to have a little spending money for the holidays and you all deserve a big THANK YOU.
Come, join in the comradeship that only a few members are currently enjoying. We need your help and would welcome you with open arms as our lost brothers and sons. Election time is drawing near and we need some new blood to serve as officers. Won’t you please take your place of leadership in your Post?
Thank you and may the grace of God be with each of you.
Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

Planning Schedule
by Gene Volcik, 1st Vice-Commander

Executive and Business Meeting...1st Monday... February 7 th, March 7 th, April 4 th

Dinner Meeting...3rd Monday... February 7 th, March 7 th, April 4 th

DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM
January 17 th ......................... Max Noe
He will discuss his experience as a German Prisoner of War in World War II.
Entree ............... Shrimp plus other Seafood
Come and hear about his experiences as a prisoner of war. You will realize the hardships endured by any prisoner of war - it was not pleasant.

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta

Thank you for your Christmas food donations.

AMERICAN LEGACY SCHOLARSHIP FUND.

Did you participate in The American Legion Operation Iraqi Freedom and America’s war on terror by donating to the American Legacy Scholarship fund? This American Legion program collects money to be used toward a college education for children of those active duty military personnel killed in action. Your gift is a tax deductible contribution. Check it out at www.legion.org.
Note: Report any donations to the Post. These can be included in the annual Consolidated Post Report to Department and National.

DUES ARE DUE!
99 members haven’t paid their 2005 dues!
We’re striving for 100%.
Are you 1 of 99?

POST ACTIVITIES

December was a very active month at Post 76 with many rentals. You too can rent the Post facilities for that reunion or party and at a reduced rate less than for non-members. The Post acquired a one-year old, almost new Baldwin studio piano and for only half price from Strait Music Company. It replaced the very old and heavy upright piano. This one sounds great and should be welcomed by our renters.
Future projects at the Post are: Replace window screens and replace the old wooden benches on the front porch. We are searching for contractors that would do good work. Do you know someone that you could recommend?

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

I am pleased to welcome the following new members to Travis Post 76:

Sarah Bourgeois
Daniel Brock
Phillip Denney
Marvin Gruesen
Kenneth McCurdy

I know we all look forward to visiting with our newest members at the Post.

If you didn’t have the chance to go to the VA hospital in Temple on December 23 rd , you missed a great opportunity. Bringing a little hope and cheer to veterans spending the holidays in the VA hospital was very rewarding. I would encourage any of you to make the trip next year to show your fellow veterans that The American Legion is there to help them. Also, I would like to thank those members who donated money to the VA hospital. We presented a check from Travis Post 76 for $700. The money will be used to make life a little more enjoyable for those who are in a not-so- enjoyable situation.
I know that some of you have received membership renewal notices from the Legion’s national office even though you have already paid your 2005 dues. Typically, during each membership year, the national office sends out five renewal notices to members. Each renewal period has a scheduled cut-off date. For example, the cut-off date for the December 15th renewal mail-out is November 10 th . If you paid, but the national office did not receive confirmation until November 20th, you would receive another renewal notice in December. I know this can be annoying, but I assure you that I process all of your renewals in a timely manner. If you get a notice and want to confirm that I received your renewal, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

It is with sadness that I report the recent passing of one of our Post’s Past Commanders, Harry L. Smith, Jr. Our deepest sympathy goes out to his family during their time of sorrow.

“Because of them our lives are free;
because of them our nation lives;
because of them the world is blessed.”

Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

February 2005

Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

Just a reminder, if any member is in need of a wheelchair please call the Commander as we now have two (2) wheelchairs stored at my farm and I will deliver one to you. I also have some crutches if anyone needs some.
Are you a veteran who obtains your meds from the VA clinic? Do you know that the president wants to increase your cost from $7 to $15 in addition to an annual fee of $250? Are you just going to sit back and allow this to happen? What can you do? Well, get active in your Post, renew your membership and let us unite in sending the president and congress the word that we are not going to let them take away the benefits earned and promised for giving of ourselves for the sake of our country. It takes more then one or two voices shouting in the wind to make ourselves heard in D.C.; it takes every veteran adding their voices together just like a choir. Do you want to join this choir? Then come to the Post meetings and let your voice be heard. If you cannot drive because of the hour, call the numbers you find in this newsletter and one of us will be glad to bring you to the Post and return you to your home.
We are thinking about having a Post reunion of all the members on a Saturday during the summer where we will provide food and drinks and give the new members a chance to meet those of you who not only served in the military, but also helped make this Post what it is today. Call or write me telling me what you think about this.
May God bless each of you,
Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE by Gene Volcik
1 st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1 st Monday March 7 th , April 4 th , May 2 nd
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3 rd Monday February 21 st , March 21 st , April 18 th
DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM
February 21 .................. Dr. Thomas Cedel
President of Concordia University
Topic ..................... Pakistan Tour of Duty
Entree .......................... Chili Cook-Off
Our Post is fortunate to have Dr. Cedel as our speaker this month. His topic should be of utmost interest to everyone. Let us show him our appreciation by taking time to be with him, considering the fact that his schedule is very busy.
We are having our annual “chili cook-off”, so if you are not bringing chili, bring some other dish which will be compatible with the main meal. Remember there are prizes given for the best chili.

2 ND VICE COMMANDER by Joe Trochta
To bring you up-to-date on various projects at Post 76:
EMERGENCY EXIT LIGHTS
How can an oversight be considered an emergency? After all these years there were no emergency flood lights for the exit areas. They are now being installed and we can all feel better.
FRONT PORCH BENCHES
The very old wooden benches on the front porch were patched and repaired many times. The white benches style was in keeping with the historical building decor. We found a general carpenter that gave us a “winter” rate in replacing the five benches. Ted Steadman of HandiHome Repairs,did the work using clear yellow pine. Consider giving a memorial contribution of $420 [the price of one bench]. A plaque having your name or the name of someone you want to honor will be placed on the bench.
CARETAKER’S COTTAGE REPAIRS
Steadman is also repairing, rescreening and painting the window screens and doors on the Caretakers cottage. This upgrade has been needed for some time.
Joe Trochta
Second Vice Cmdr

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis
Please don’t forget to pay your American Legion dues. By paying your dues on time you not only maintain your “Continuous Years” of Legion membership (the number on your membership card), you directly support programs that provide much needed assistance to our nation’s veterans.
We all know that with the situation in Iraq and Afghanistan, we are going to have many combat veterans in need of assistance – more than we have seen in quite a few years. Now is the time when we members of The American Legion show our fellow veterans what The American Legion is all about – helping. I hope you will continue to help not only our nation’s veterans, but also your local Post in carrying out the mission of The American Legion. Travis Post 76 has a long tradition of helping veterans in the Austin area – we’ve been doing it since 1919! Sometimes we meet people and discover that they are veterans and want to tell them about The American Legion. However, because we aren’t exactly sure if they are eligible to join, we hesitate. So that you will have them for future reference, here are the membership eligibility dates:
World War II
December 7, 1941 to December 31, 1946
Korean War
June 25, 1950 to January 31, 1955
Vietnam War
February 28, 1961 to May 7, 1975
Lebanon & Grenada
August 24, 1982 to July 31, 1984
Panama
December 20, 1989 to January 31, 1990
Gulf War
August 2, 1990 to Cessation of Hostilities as determined by the U.S. Govt.

If you don’t have an American Legion cap, contact me and I will order one for you. The caps are wool and lined with smooth nylon. If you haven’t seen one up close, our Texas caps are very sharp looking with their embroidered “Star and Steer” emblem on the front. The caps are $36.95 each plus $4.95 shipping & handling. There are a wide variety of other American Legion items available through the American Legion Flag & Emblem Catalog. You can view the catalog online at www.emblem.legion.org.
If you haven’t been attending, I hope you will consider coming to our monthly meetings. Carrying out the programs that help Austin’s veterans and our community requires an “all hands” effort. Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

March 2005

Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

It seems I am the one voice shouting in the wind when it comes to asking help from those who call themselves members of Post 76. I heard from only one member in regards to our last newsletter. We have 374 members who have renewed their membership in this Post and only one member calls me to give me his input and that was about the Post reunion. There were only 13 members present at our business meeting on the 7th of this month. Does the rest of the membership not believe in what the Legion stands for and what your Post is trying to accomplish?
Post 76 was founded by veterans in 1919 who wanted to help other veterans, family or children of all walks of life, but now it looks like the membership, except for a few, no longer cares about other veterans, family or children of any kind. Is this so? Tell me! What is it you want of Post 76? Of the American Legion? If you refuse to stand up and be counted by being a part of the Legion, the Legion will fold and those you love will be the ones who will lose the most because of your non action. Do you have children or grandchildren who are in the armed services? What is happening to their benefits because your voice is not amongst those who are trying to obtain medical help and other benefits for those who are currently in need of them?
I receive mail from the National Headquarters of the American Legion five days a week and the news is not good. Few in Congress are backing the needs of those who are giving of themselves and the President is not holding true to his word to us and to those who are now serving.
WE NEED YOU TO JOIN WITH US IN NUMBERS IN ORDER TO OBTAIN WHAT IS RIGHTFULLY DUE OUR SERVICE PEOPLE AND YOU CAN NOT DO THAT BY SITTING AT HOME WATCHING TV OR READING A BOOK NOR BY PLAYING GOLF.
I want you to get mad at me to the point where you decide to take action, come to the meetings and elect officers who will not get your dander up or by God you just might not have me at the helm again next year along with the rest of the current officers and I will keep trying to browbeat you into getting off your rear and doing something constructive. It is a proven fact that those who sit around doing nothing do not live as long as those who get involved in life.
Your Post is considering having a flag retirement ceremony on April 11. Do you want this to take place? Do you want to join with the few of us who would like to conduct a Memorial Day service once again at the Post? What about the Post reunion in June, do want that to happen?
WAKE UP! Write or call and tell me or one of the other officers how you feel about what I have placed here in your newsletter. Get MAD at me.
May God bless each of you.
Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE by Gene Volcik
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday April 4th , May 2nd,June 6th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday March 21st , April 18th.May 16th
DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM
March 21 .................. Carl Diechmann
Topic ..................... Armed Forces Museum at Camp Mabry
Entree .....................Spaghetti with Meat Sauce and other Sauces

A suggestion for additional items to bring are french bread and salads which will compliment our entree. We are going to increase the efforts at our Post to increase our attendance at our dinner meetings because we want to be more active. We are planning some future extra activities in this endeavor so we hope more will become active in our efforts. Again, we will provide transportation to those who do not drive at night. Just give one of the officers a call and we will make the arrangements.

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta

FRONT PORCH BENCHES

Thank you to Marshall Nichols, WWII veteran and over 50 year member of Post 76, for buying one bench in memory of his father, Homer Nichols, a WWI veteran and caretaker of Post 76 from 1937 to 1950. For a $400 donation, you too can get a memorial plaque on one of the four remaining benches.

BOYS STATE

Presently,Paul Barker and myself are interviewing Junior high school boys for this American Legion citizenship program, held on the University of Texas Austin campus, June 4-10, 2005. American Legion Boys State,began in 1935, is an activity of high educational value, born out of a need for youth training in practical citizenship. It is a leadership program in which qualified male high school juniors develop a working knowledge of the structure of government. Post 76 recruits boys from Anderson, Austin, Lanier, McCallum, Westlake, Hyde Park, Hill Country Christian, Lago Vista, Lake Travis, St. Michaels and St. Stevens. The applications fee is $275 per student. The Northwest Kiwanis Club contributes $1100 (four boys) and Lago Vista Lions club $275 (one boy). Some school activity funds provide some assistance.
If you or your organization would like to support a boy fully or partially, you should forward your donation before April 30. Thank You.

Joe Trochta
Second Vice Cmdr

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis
I am pleased to welcome Frank Weber to Travis Post 76. I know we all look forward to visiting with Frank soon at the Post.
I am currently preparing our annual Consolidated Post Report. This report is completed by each Post across the country and indicates all of the activities Posts have been involved with throughout the year. We report on such things as the number of boys we send to Boys State, our baseball program, Scouting involvement, veterans assistance programs, community service, flag education, and volunteering. The National Commander and others use the data in this report in testimony before Congress on behalf of The American Legion and all veterans. If you have been involved in any of these areas, please contact me and let me know what you did and how much time you invested. We want to be sure that Congress gets the message that more needs to be done to assist veterans and that Legionnaires are "Still Serving America".
The Post recently purchased copies of a DVD entitled For Which It Stands. This is a 20 minute video designed to help grade 5-9 meet state mandates for required flag education. Topics include the history, significance, meaning,proper display, and treatment of the U.S. Flag. The video is designed to be used in schools and comes with learning activities and a teachers guide. If you know of a school that would like a copy of this DVD to teach children about Old Glory, please contact me.
If you have moved, please be sure to give me your new address so I can update your records. This will ensure that you continue to receive the Legion magazine, the Post newsletter, and renewal reminders. As always, if you have any questions or need assistance, don't hesitate to call or email me.
Do you know of someone who would like to attend Post activities but does not want to drive? If so contact any of the officers and we will make arangements to provide a ride.
Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

AUXILLARY NEWS

by Pat Ivie

Auxillary members are needed to attend business meetings on the first Monday of each month to vote on miscellaneous business and expenditures. If you are unable to attend on the first Monday, it may be possible to have a brief business meeting before the dinner meeting. This is the time period when we are processing Girls State candidates, and we can discuss this as girls apply. Four girls have already applied to attend Girls State in June. The other "busy" times are mid-year when dues are collected, and year end when we have such expenditures as the Christmas assesment to help the VA hospital.
Let Pat know if you are able to attend business meetings.
Pat Ivie

April 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

It makes me sad to read about the efforts of American Legion Posts throughout the nation who, with less than 60 members in their Posts, conduct programs for the veterans and citizens in the area while our post with a membership of over 400 does very little.
The March 18th edition of The American Legion Dispatch has a story of a Post in Lake Meade, Pennsylvania with a membership of 58 that conducts Memorial Day, Patriots Day and Veterans Day programs. They have an "adopt-a-road" program, they purchase and donate flags to their local fire department in addition to collecting used flags and giving them the proper respect in retirement. The Post distributes Blue star Banners, they have children and youth programs that include presenting School Award Medals and they sponsor an event at Lake Meade's Family Festival plus a picnic for veterans who reside in a long term center.
The list goes on and on. What do Post 76 members do? Well, the few of us who are active work with Boys and Girls State, Oratorical Contest, Baseball, Scouting, ROTC awards at UT, Veterans Day Parade, Flag retirement service every few years and for the past two years, we have gone to the VA Hospital in Temple at Christmas time to help with the events there.
What would you like to see us do for you and for others? Call or write me an email: I have received two calls and two letters. How about you? Do you wish to express your feelings and thoughts?

May God bless each of you,

Charles E. Matheson,Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE by Gene Volcik
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday May 2nd,June 6th,July 11th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday April 18th, May 22nd(Special Sunday Meeting),June 20th

DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM
April 18 .................. Hugh Sparks
Topic ..................... Hands on Housing
Entree .....................Fried Chicken

May 22(Sunday)..............Travis Post 76 Reunion
Entree......................Fajitas

Ya'll come and enjoy the evening with us because our Post is on the upbeat and we are gaining momentum.
In addition to our speaker at this April meeting, we will have a flag retirement ceremony; so if you have an old or out-dated flag, bring them so they can be disposed of in the proper and dignified manner.
Also we plan to have a special meeting of our Post on Sunday May 22nd instead of our regular Monday night meeting so that some who can never attend on Monday may be with us on this date. Mark your calendar now. This is your opportunity to visit the Post and enjoy the fellowship with other Comrades and their families.
The entree for the day will be fajitas. There will be a complete description of this special day in the next months newsletter. All of the members of our Post will be contacted before this meeting so that all will get an invite. We are trying to update our records at the Post, so when you get a call, we would appreciate your comments and cooperation so that this can be expedited as soon as possible.

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta

FRONT PORCH BENCHES

The five new front porch benches are built and in place. Sturdily built, they are very much in keeping with the historical building decor. Marshall Nichols,WWII, purchased one bench for $400 in memory of his father, Homer Nichols, WWI. Now, Will Brown has purchased one in honor of Korean Veterans. Several veterans could all contribute a small amount toward a bench honoring all World War Two and then for Vietnam Veterans. Send contributions to Post 76, P.O. Box 1214, Austin, TX 78767. Any questions, contact Joe Trochta.

BOYS STATE

Boys at our assigned high schools are being interviewed and selected to attend the Texas American Legion Boys State program on June 4 through 10 at the University of Texas,Austin. So far all except two of the 21 boys selected are fully funded.

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

I am pleased to welcome Jim Kester and Bill Pierce to Travis Post 76. I know we all look forward to visiting with our newest members at the Post.
I would like to develop a list of email addresses of members so we can send Post-related news items by email. If you have an email address, please send it to me.
A Travis Post 76 Reunion is scheduled for Sunday, May 22 at 5:00 p.m. at the Post. As part of the preparation for the Reunion, we will be conducting a phone survey of our members, including asking you to verify your contact information. This phone survey will help me keep our Post membership records up to date. Please be sure to let us know of any changes. Also, if you would like to help with the Reunion, please let me know.
I look forward to seeing you and your family at the Reunion.

Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

May 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

I recently received a book of poems written by James J. Metcalfe and would like to share one with you today.

OUR STARS AND STRIPES

Our stars and stripes are more than just a pretty flag today
They symbolize the faith and strength of our great U.S.A.
They are the banner that proclaims the freedom of our land
With justice and equality and truth on every hand
From Tripoli to Tokyo from Yorktown to Berlin
Our standard has inspired us to lead the way and win
It is a flag made sacred by the blood of countless men
Who died for liberty and who would do the same again
Let us protect our heritage with every firm endeavor
God bless Old Glory on this day our stars and stripes forever.

James J. Metcalfe

Maybe each of us should send a copy of this poem to our so-called leaders in Washington,D.C. and ask them to take a stand on the Flag amendment after reading it.
Those that did not attend the meeting on the 18th of April missed a good one. Not only did we have a good speaker, we retired some used flags in the proper fashion. You might want to ask the city fathers why we had to pay a fee of $50.00 in order to hold this ceremony.
We also added to our membership that night a young man who has been in service 10 years and is completing studies at U.T. He was visiting our Post hoping to rent it for a ceremony promoting him to the rank of 2nd Lt. As he is on active duty, the Post has paid his first year dues. He is also planning his wedding and the Post may again be the place he chooses for this event. His wife to be is a member of the R.O.T.C. at U.T. so the two of them may be serving in the Marines together. His father (a former Marine) was at the Post and stayed for the meeting and might transfer his membership from Post 83 to 76. Sure hope so.

I also want to make all of you aware of a new program. The program is "Soldiers 4 Soldiers". this is a program started by a young lady currently serving in the U.S. Air Force and the American Legion is supporting her and the program. If you have an ink-jet printer you can bring your empty ink cartridges or used cell phones to the Post and the Post will notify Soldiers4Soldiers who will then send us a mailing label and we will send the cartridges or used cell phones to them. Soldiers4Soldiers will se that the service men serving overseas will receive cell phones in order to call home. I have already sent all of the cartridges I had been saving which amounted to 41.
Say "Good Morning" to God at the beginning of each day and receive His blessings.

Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE by Gene Volcik
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday June 6th,July 11th.August 1st
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday May 22nd(Special Sunday Meeting),June 20th,July 18th

DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM

May 22(Sunday)..............Travis Post 76 Reunion
Entree......................Fajitas and all the triimin's

This is a special meetinmg of our Post on Sunday ,May 22nd instead of our regular Monday night meeting so that some who can never attend on Monday may be with us on this date. Mark your calendar now.
The entree for the day will be fajitas; nobody needs to bring anything; just come and be prepared to have a good time. No matter what you call it-May22nd is when you need to be at the Post. The festivities start at 5:00 p.m. where everyone will be able to meet old friends, make new ones and just enjoy the afternoon. Bring your family and friends and come on out to the Post and see all that has been improved.
Don't forget that if you need a ride, just call any of the officers and they will insure that you get there. Also remember that this will be in lieu of the regular meeting this month!

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta

BOYS STATE
Post 76 is sponsoring 20 boys to the 2005 American Legion Boys State citizenship program. Thanks to several sponsors who assisted with the financial support.

REUNION-OPEN HOUSE

On Sunday May 22nd at 5:00 p.m., we are proud to show off the Post.
Please come to the Reunion-Open House and get aquainted with your Post home. Remember, this is an historical building, built in 1858 and owned and maintained by the American Legion Post 76 since 1924. Come and see the several projects that are planned for the Post.

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

I am pleased to welcome the following new members to Travis Post 76:

Frank Alba,Jr.,Ed Lach, Richard Traavalini

I know we all look forward to visiting with our newest members at the Post.
I have been getting some good feedback from our member phone survey. In addition to informing members about the upcoming Post 76 Reunion, the phone survey will help me update your records and contact information. The survey also includes asking members and events they would like to see the Post involved in. If you have not received a call, it's possible we do not have a current phone number for you. If you think that may be the case, please contact me and give me your phone number.
Did you know that you can request copies of your Military Personnel Records online by going to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) website at http://www.archives.gov/research_room/vetrecs/index.html. Using the NARA website you can create a customized order form to request information from your, or your relatives military personnel records. You may use the system if you are:

I look forward to seeing you at the Post 76 Reunion on the 22nd!

Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

June 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

For those of you who did not make the reunion in May, you missed seeing some who had not been to the Post in years as well as those of us who have been holding down the fort for you. We also picked up a new member or two at the meeting.
The food was good and the friendship even better. I was not able to get around to speaking with everyone on a one to one and for that I apologize but there were about 70 people present.
After the meal everyone joined in singing some old military songs and some others from the 40's and 50's. It was a truly great meeting. We are planning to hold the next reunion on Memorial Day next year so make plans to attend now.
Another poem written by James J. Metcalfe to share with you, I hope you enjoy.

I believe in God

One time I wondered to myself...is there a God above?
A God of justice,mercy and...Of everlasting love?
And then I felt my human pulse...I took another breath
And tried to measure life on earth...Against that certain death
From where am I? Why am I here?...And where am I to end?
How could I be except for God...Who surely is my Friend?
There is no answer to...The theory of life
There must be One Whose Word allows...Our happiness and strife
And so I honor Him,my God...And thank Him every day
And humbly I implore His heart...To help me on my way.

Charles E. Matheson,Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE
by Gene Volcik
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday July 11th.August 1st,September 12th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday June 20th,July 18th, August 15th

DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM

June 20th...................Veterans Benefits,Ollie Pope, Travis County Veterans Service Officer Entree......................Salads-All Kinds

Bring your favorite salad. We did salads last year and it was so successful that we want to try it again. Put this date on your calendar because we all need to know what are the options and benefits as veterans even though you may not need them now. We need to have a good attendance to show our appreciation for what our service officers do for our veterans.

REPORT of the NOMINATING COMMITEE

The slate of officers for 2005-2006 were elected unanimously as follows:

Commander............Charles Matheson Sr.
1st Vice Commander............Larry Miller
2nd Vice Commander...........Joe Trochta
Adjutant...........................Clayton Griffis
Finance Officer.........................Will Ivie
Service Officer......................R.D.Brown
Chaplain.................................Al Banzer
Judge Advocate.........................Art Day
Sergeant-at-Arms..................Joe Cook
Historian..........................Doug Luckey

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
Guy Davis.Bill Stramler.Gene Volcik

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta

WHY SHOULD YOU BUY PEACHES
FROM THE NORTHWEST KIWANIS CLUB?

They have sponsored four boys to the American Legion Boys State from Post 76 for many years/ Application fees for Boys State are $275 per boy or $1100 for four boys. The Loring and Red Globes are the best free stone peaches of the crop. Get a 22 pound box for $28.00 or $1.27 per pound.Pre-order from Legionnaire 2nd Vice-Commander Joe Trochta. Pick up peaches on Saturday July 2, or Saturday July 9, in the parking lot of Bank One at 7600 Burnet Road. If 22 pounds of peaches are too much, share a box with family or friends. You will be given instruction on how to freeze them. Support the organization that supports our Boys State program and get the best peaches available.
Please Note: You must place your order NLT 28 June.

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

Are you taking advantage of your Legion benefits? We all know about the many Legion programs that assist veterans and provide service to our community. But,in addition to these, are the benefits to being a member of the nations largest veterans organization. Did you know you could get discouts on travel, lodging, health and dental insurance, prescriptions, eye care, computers, and even cruise vacations?
One of your benefits is discounted prescriptions through RxAmerica. American Legion, sons of The American Legion, American Legion Auxillary members, and dependents save as much as 20% or more on presciptioon drugs in participating pharmacies, and even greater saving through mail service. The discount varies by location, and at no time time would a Legion, SAL or Auxillary member be charges more than the pharmacy's everyday retail price. To find a participating drugstore near you or place a mail order request, call the RxAmerica Legion Toll Free Number. For local service, simply present your current American Legion, SAL or Auxillary membership card at a participating drugstore. For mail service, obtain a mail order request form by calling the toll-free number,complete the order form and send it to RxAmerica. The mail service is guaranteed to be more cost effective than AARP mail order.
See the American Legion website at www.legion.org for information on the many discounts available to Legion members.

July 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

Well, we have finished another year or will with the installation of officers at our dinner meeting next month. I have enjoyed serving as your Commander this past year and will serve another year with my installation next month.
This is the time where you can make a resolution to start attending our meetings each month. I can assure you that you will enjoy the fellowship each time; come on out and try it, you’ll like it.
I continue to be amazed at the small number we have at our meetings, yet our Post is alive and well. We sponsor many activities and one of the most important ones is Boys and Girls State. We will honor those attending at a meeting later on this year and it would be so nice if you were present to congratulate these young boys and girls on their accomplishments. It will be a wonderful program hearing them tell of their exploits at State. Come on out and let them know we appreciate their participation.
That is a future meeting! Why don’t you come out for the July meeting this coming Monday night. We have an excellent program for you and one that you don’t want to miss. The fellowship is always great and you are the only one missing.
Don’t forget that if you are out there with no way to get to the Post for our meetings, all you have to do is call one of the officers and we will see that you attend. We are here to serve you and hope that you will start attending our meetings.
Until next month, keep the faith and pray for our country. God bless America!
Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE
by Gene Volcik
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday August 1st,September 12th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday July 18th, August 15th

DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM

July 18th...................Abundant Living: Mind, Body & Spirit Nancy Lamb from Samaritan Center Entree......................Chicken Tenders

We are privileged again to have Nancy Lamb as our speaker because she is an exciting and informative speaker. You will definitely leave having a better appreciation of life — as we all age gracefully.
Remember that we have our installation of officers in August.

Auxillary News

by Pat Ivie

Here is an update to all members on a couple of activities.
We’ve received a congratulatory letter from Department President Vicki Pollard on reaching our membership goal for 2005.
Also, we processed paperwork to send 10 girls to Girls State. Girls attended from St. Andrews, Westlake, McCallum, Austin High, Hill Country Christian School and Hyde Park Baptist. As usual, Girls State was held at Texas Lutheran University in Seguin, June 7-14. The girls will be invited to a dinner meeting later this summer with the Boys State candidates so we can hear about their activities at this year’s session.
Also, as always, I appreciate the help that everyone gives in helping me and Dallas organize things at the dinner meeting.

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta

Thanks to all the Legionnaires who bought peaches from the Northwest Kiwanis Club this month. Your purchase enables the Kiwanis Club to support four boys to the Boys State program each year. Those large freestone peaches were good, too! Hope you enjoyed them!>BR> Perhaps many of you Legionnaires belong to other civic or fraternal organizations that have money to support youth and community activities? Consider inviting them to support a boy to Boys State next year.
Are you planning a family reunion or a family member wedding party? Legionnaires can rent the Post facilities for a reduced rate. Think about it!!!
JOE

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

I am pleased to welcome the following new members to Travis Post 76:

Timothy Carlett • Simon Rodriguez

I know we all look forward to visiting with our newest members at the Post soon.
The national office of The American Legion has already mailed out their Early Bird Renewal Notice for paying your 2006 dues. If you have not received this notice yet, you will likely see it in the mail soon. The dues for our Post will stay the same for 2006, $25 per year. If you have any questions about your membership or dues, please do not hesitate to contact me. Note: If you have not yet paid your 2005 dues and you want to remain a member of The American Legion, please contact me ASAP.
I look forward to serving another year as your Post Adjutant. I learned a great deal over the last year, which was my first year on the job. I know I still have a long way to go, but I hope you will bear with me as I gain more experience. Over this last year, I have enjoyed the friendship of many of our long-time Post members, as well as the opportunity to get to know many of our new Post members. In my admittedly biased opinion, I think Travis Post 76 is the best American Legion Post around, and this next year will see us expand and improve in many ways.
Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

August 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

I would like to urge all members to renew your membership BEFORE 31 Dec as this will mean your Post will receive a $1.00 per member return from the Department. We can use that money to support another boy or girl to Boys State/Girls State or even to help another veteran in need.
We are starting another new year at the Post and want to thank all of you who have given so much of yourselves to advance the programs we have undertaken for the benefit of veterans and children.There is nothing better in life you can do than to help anotherperson in need. Having been raised by a loving mother who raised six children without our father and her pride in herself and her efforts to give us the best she possibly could, it instilled in me the desire to help all I was able to without depriving my family of their needs.
Won’t you please join with the 15 of us who have been working on your behalf by taking on some of the responsibilities? If you cannot attend the meetings for one reason or another, can you contribute to one or more of the programs or the expense of the upkeep of the building and grounds? We will put the money in any account you name.
There is much work that needs to be done on the building and on the shed over the box car as some of the posts that support it are rotting and need replacement. In addition we need to put up some sort of fence to keep small children from climbing on the stairs and falling and hurting themselves which could lead to the families suing the Post. We have posted notices for the parents about allowing their children to run free about the grounds and it seems parents these days do not take the interest in their children as we did when ours were young.
Those of us who do attend the meetings would like to build a monument to honor all branches of the armed services and of all wars. Would you please let one of us know your feelings on this?
May your days be filled with blessings from the ONE who created each of us and the universe.
Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE
by Gene Volcik
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday September 12th.October 3rd, November 7th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday August 15th,September 19th,October 17th

DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM

August 15th...................Installation of Officers
Installing Officer and Speaker Donna Swopes,Past Commander 10th District
Entree......................BBQ

We are fortunate to have some wonderful officers at our Post and they work very hard each year to keep our Post at the highest quality – So show your appreciation with your support by attending this installation meeting.

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

I am pleased to welcome the following new members to Travis Post 76:

Keith Cureton     George Ruiz    Jack McClary

I know we all look forward to visiting with our newest members at the Post soon.
As a continuation of my “Are you taking advantage of your Legion benefits?” series, here is some information regarding discounts on prescription eyewear that are available exclusively to membersof TheAmerican Legion..American Legion members now have access to the Vision One Eyecare Program offered through Cole Managed Vision. This program provides competitively priced discounts on routine eye examinations, eyeglasses, contact lenses and supplies. American Legion members can save 10-60% off the retail price at participating providers. Choose from quality names you know and trust SearsOptical,Pearle Vision, Target Optical, JCPenney Optical and Independent Doctors of Optometry. American Legion members can call 1-800-804-4384 for discount information.

It is with sadness that I report the recent passing of the following Travis Post 76 members:

Walter Schwarzer   G.B. Bourland    Simon Rodriguez    Sam Saxon    James Kaster

“Because of them our lives are free; because of them our nation lives; because of them the world is blessed.”

Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

Health Care Benefits
The health care mission of The American Legion is to "Promote universal access to quality health care for veterans and their families through advocacy, service and support." We do this in many ways through Congressional testimony, the National Field Service (NFS) reports, VA&R Bulletins and Memorandums, veterans' inquiries, articles in The American Legion Magazine and presentations before service officers schools, conventions, conferences and workshops around the country.
Eligibility formost VA benefits is based on discharge from active military service under honorable conditions.
TheVeterans Health Care Eligibility Reform Act of 1996 established a standard health benefits plan, a "Uniform Benefits package." To receive health care under this program, most veterans must be enrolled. They do not have to be enrolled if they:

Have service connected disability of 50% or higher
Want care for a compensable disability during the 12 month period following discharge
Want care for a service-connected disability.
VA health care includes programs for Gulf War, Agent Orange, Ionizing Radiation, Women Veterans, Homeless Veterans, and Medical Care for eligible Dependents and Survivors (CHAMPVA)
Questions, concerns and problems involving health care should be directed to your local American Legion Department Service Officer.

September 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

If any member is in need of a wheelchair please call the Commander as we now have two wheelchairs stored at my farm and I will deliver one to you.
On the 19th of this month we are having a dinner to honor those boys and girls who represented our Post at Boys and Girls State. You can show them you support their endeavors by attending this meeting. Please come and if you need a ride, call one of the officers.
How many of you enjoy a good pancake breakfast? Well, on Saturday, September 24, at the First Baptist Church in Pflugerville they are having a fund raiser for the Pflugerville Fallen Warrior Memorial beginning at 9:45 a.m. This would be a good time to get your pancakes and help a good cause at the same time. The church is located at 306 S. 10th St. Pflugerville. The web site for the memorial is http://www.fallenwarriormemorial.org/.
May the Good Lord bless and keep you in His hands till the day when we meet at the Heavenly Post where HE is the Commander.
Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE
by Larry Miller
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday October 3rd, November 7th, December 5th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday September 19th,October 17th,November 21st

DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM

September 19th...Boys and Girls State Participants Entree...............................Fried Chicken

The program for the September 19th meeting will honor the boys and girls who attended Boys and Girls State this year. Please come and support these wonderful kids as they tell of their experiences. Our entree will be fried chicken.
We would be remiss if we didn't ask for the prayers and support of those displaced citizens and our government officials who are dealing with the tragedies of Hurricane Katrina in the Gulf Coast region. God bless each and every one of them, especially those giving a helping hand.

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

As you probably know, membership renewals are in full swing. Many of you have already received your renewal notice and paid your 2006 dues. Please don't forget to pay your dues. Your annual dues of $25.00 not only goes to help the Post and to support the many American Legion programs, the money directly helps veterans, and that's what we're all about. If you have any questions regarding your membership, or if you need to change or update your mailing address or phone number, please be sure to contact me so I can submit the changes "through channels". That way, your information gets updated at all levels- the Post, Department, and National.
If you have some ideas about how Post 76 can better serve veterans and the community in the coming year, we want to hear from you. Also, if you are interested in getting more involved in Travis Post 76, say on a committee, we would welcome your help. Plese let any of the officers know if you can spare some time to help the Post be the best it can be. We want Travis Post 76 to set the example in Austin for service to veterans.
Please note: The Post needs only 147 more members to pay their dues by 12/01/05 to reach 100% and also receive "big bucks" according to Commander Matheson. If you are one of the 147, please remit your dues as soon as you can.
Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta

Have you ever attended a Post 76 Boys State and Girls State dinner? As a member of the American Legion Post 76 you should be proud of this program and the participation of these young people. They attended either Boys State or Girls State during this past summer. They were graduated Juniors in High School, going into their senior year this fall. They were selected because of their outstanding academic records and extra curricular activities. They are the "cream of the crop".
A must-attend this one dinner meeting if you do not attend any other meeting all year long. Come meet these outstanding young people and their parents as they tell of their experiences and thank the American Legion for this opportunity to attend this citizenship program.
See you on Monday September 19th at 7:00 p.m.
Joe Trochta
Boys State Committee

October 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

On October 5th Gene Volcik and I traveled to the Killeen area for the dedication ceremony of the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetary. Sorry we did not see any of you there.

The 1st Cavalry Division Band from Fort Hood was there and they did an outstanding job as did the Color Guard. There were speeches by all the politicians involved with the creation of the cemetary and I give them credit for keeping their speeches short. Major General James E. Simmons also was on hand and gave a short talk on how this all came together and we veterans owe him our thanks for a job well done.

For those of you who are interested, you can visit the cemetary which is located on Highway 195 on the south bound side only a few milies from Highway 190 in Killeen. You can take IH 35 to Hwy 195 north and follow it through Florence and watch for the cemetary on your left or you can stay on Hwy 35 till you reach Hwy 195, turn left and when you come to the cemetary you will make a right turn onto the grounds.

The grounds are not completed as of this date but what has been completed looks very good and many of you might want to think about this as a final resting place for yourself and family. Go visit and see for yourself.

We still need 140 of you to send in your membership renewal, please help the Post meet its goal. Thank you.

May the Good Lord bless and keep you.

Charles E. Matheson, Sr
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE
by Larry Miller
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday November 7th, December 5th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday October 17th,November 21st

DATE SPEAKER/PROGRAM

October 17.......................Alexander Ladge
Topic...How Middle East Conflicts Affect Academy
Entree..........Chicken Fried Steak and Potatoes

Our dinner meeting speaker for October will be Alexander Ladage. Alex was a West Point graduate in 1996. He also completed the Ranger, Airborne. Air Assault, Jungle Operations and Special Operations Counter Terrorism Courses. His talk will center around how the current conflict in the Middle East has affected the Academy.

Alex is currently the President of the West Point Sociaety of Central Texas. I can promise you a very interesting update on the efforts and attitudes of our young men and women serving as military leaders today. The personal stories of some of the recent graduates is very uplifting and will reassure you that the future is in good hands.

The main entree for this month will be chicken fried steak and potatoes. Please bring salads, vegetables and desserts if you can. We are urging everyone to come and support our speaker and enjoy the fellowship of a great evening.

Our prayers go out to the residents of the Gulf Coast and as always those in harms way along with the leaders of this great country.

See you at the Post.

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

I am pleased to welcome the following new members to Travis Post 76:

Jack Stearman...Bill Cravy

I know we all look forward to visiting with Jack and Bill at the Post soon.

Do you need an American Legion cap? If so, just contact me by phone or email and I can order one for you. The caps are wool with a nylon lining. If you haven't seen one up close, our Texas caps are quite impressive with their emboidered "Star and Steer" emblem on the front. The caps are $36.95 each plus $4.95 shipping and handling.

Do you know someone who may be eligible to join The American Legion? We all work with, attend church with, or meet veterans every day. Next time you're talking with a veteran, ask them if they would be interested in helping other veterans by joining the oldest and largest veterans organization in the world. You'll be suprised how many are interested, but didn't know about the great opportunities offered by The American Legion.

It is with sadness that I report the recent passing of Travis Post 76 member William R. Zurrow.

“Because of them our lives are free; because of them our nation lives; because of them the world is blessed.”

Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

November 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

I recently received a phone call from a member who shall remain nameless suggesting that the Post conduct a meeting once a week. If you are in favor of such an event, call me or another officer and express your view. I do not think it will work as only 12 to 15 members show up for the two meetings we curently hold.
If the only reason you do not attend our meeting is because you do not have a responsibility within the Post, I can remedy that for you. We will be assigning members to different committees and expecting you to fulfill that obligation.
We need chairmen and team members for the below listed committees. If we do not receive volunteers, we will do like they did when I was in the Army-you, you and you will serve on such and such committee.
The committees are Baseball, Boys State, Boy Scouts, Oratorical team, Membership, ROTC Awards, Building/Facility, Law & Order Awards (Police, Fire and EMT), Public Relations, Honor Guard/Flag Detail and Dinner/Food/Speaker Comittee.
With over 400 members in this Post we should have a better turnout and the same 15 members should not be serving as your officers year after year. I know some of you are not able to get out and about but there are many more members who are and should be taking a leadership position within the Post.
Like so many other small Posts throughout Texas, Elgin Post 295 will be conducting a Veterans Day ceremony and here we are with 400 members sitting on our butts doing nothing. I am ashamed for Travis Post 76.
We have been given several flags by Camp Mabry for disposal and one of the flags was once flown at the camp until it was time to be replaced. We need to set a date for the flag ceremony-any ideas?
My He who set in motion the creation and evolution of all things living, bless and keep each of you in His hands.
Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE
by Larry Miller
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday December 5th,January 2nd, February 6th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday November 21st, December 19th, January 16th

For those of you that weren't able to attend the October dinner, you really missed out on a great chicken fried steak and an excellent speaker in Alexander Ladage. Hopefully you can make this next dinner meeting on the 21st of November. Our program will consist of the Boy Scout Troop conducting their "Ring of Honor" ceremony along with the Post presenting our Community Service awards for this year. This should be a nice family event.
The Entree will be turkey so bring your Thanksgiving favorites. This month we will be having a special combined social while frying the turkeys on Sunday afternoon, the 20th. Our cooking committee will be put to the test with activities starting around 1:00 p.m. at the Post. Drinks, refreshments, football on the TV and an unusual cooking experience will be furnshed and sponsored by the Post for those who would like to participate. Don't miss the action as we tune up for the holidays. Please come and help us prepare the meal or just enjoy the fellowship. If you can't come Sunday afternoon, please try to attend Monday night's dinner and program.
See you at the Post! "Geau Tigers" (LSU) beat Bama!!

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta
BUILDING AND FACILITY COMMITTEE

Three Legionnaires have joined with me on the Building and Facility Committee-Al Banzer,Rich Travalini and Gene Volcik. Our objective is to develop a repair and upgrade plan for the Post 76 facilities. Numerous rentals have taken their toll.
If anyone has any ideas or suggestions. or would like to join the committee, let me know.
REMEMBER ALL OF OUR VETERANS ON NOVEMBER 11th, 2005! Scroll down after reading and click on the link the view the slides. A beautiful presentation! Those folks gave so much so that you and I could live like we do in total Freedom!
The Veterans of World War Two are currently dying at the rate of almost 2000 per day. Of all the wars of the 20th century, World War Two truly threatened our very existence as a nation and as a culturally diverse, free society. We have written "Before You Go" as a profoundly heartfelt "Thank You" and tribute to the men and women who truly saved our lives and our way of life.
Our goal is to get this song to every living veteran of World War Two while we still have them, and to their families and survivors. Please help us by forwarding this link to every World War Two veteran (or their families and descendants) that you know. We have not thanked them enough.
Just click on this link http://www.managedmusic.com/B4UGo.htm to hear our song and view our show of thanks-then please send it on. If you get a script error just say, yes, run it.

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

I am pleased to welcome the following new members to Travis Post 76:

James Farrell*Donald Martin

I know we all look forward to visiting with James and Donald at the Post soon. We have recently formed two committees to assist in carrying out the many activities of the Post:

FOOD COMMITTEE

The Food Committee plans and helps prepare meals for the monthly dinner meetings and for other social occasions. The Food Committee currently consists of Will Ivie (Chairman). Larry Miller, Gene Volcik, Joe Trochta, and Clayton Griffis.

BUILDING COMMITTEE

The Building Committee is responsible for maintenance and repair of the Post building, and for Post rental activities. The Second Vice Commander supervises the committee. The Building Committee currently consists of Joe Trochta, Rich Travalini, Larry Miller, Gene Volcik, and Al Banzer.
In addition to these, we hope to form several other committees, including a Membership/Outreach Committee soon. These committees are in addition to the Post's standing Executive Committee. If you're looking for a way to become more active in Post 76, please consider joining a committee-we can use your help.
Last December, Post 76 members showed their commitment to veterans by assisting with handing out gifts and cards to veterans who were spending the holidays in the VA hospital in Temple. There are several opportunities coming up to help out again this year.

The American Legion Auxillary is asking for volunteers for the following dates:
December 5th: Decorate and set-up the American Legion Auxillary gift shop (9:00 a.m).
December 6th: Ribbon cutting and opening of the gift shop (9:00 a.m. -4:00 p.m.)
December 7th: Gift shop open (9:00 a.m. -4:00 p.m.)

Veterans staying at the VA hospital can go through the gift shop and pick out gifts for their families, extended families, or themselves.
Later in December, we will be car-pooling again to the VA hospital in Temple to hand out gifts and let veterans know the American Legion is there for them. As soon as I get the date for this, I will let you know. If you have any questions about these opportunities, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

"It is the soldier, not the reporter, who has given us freedom of the press. It is the soldier, not the poet, who has given us freedom of speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, who has given us the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier, who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag, who allows the protester to burn the flag."

December 2005


Commanders Comments

Charles Matheson,Sr., Post Commander

I begin by thanking each of you for your kind thoughts and prayers, they have been most helpful.
I am recovering from this latest operation very well. The doctors went into my spine and removed a mess of bone growth which was pressing on my nerves that run down my right leg and now the pain is gone. I am only left with what the doctors call CRPS, which means I cannot stand anything brushing or touching the skin on my legs. I can live with that.
Ladies and Gentlemen, Fellow Comrades in Arms, this is our last chance to earn some big money from the Department. We need less than 100 members to renew their membership for the coming year in order for the Department to pay us for making 100% renewal. Will you please help us reach that goal before the end of the year? Remember, it takes a few days for the payment to reach our Post Office box and then several days before it is recorded at the Department and the staff at the Department will be taking off for the Christmas season the same as any person who has a job. Please, send in your renewal now.
I pray that each of you has a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. May the God who created the Heavens and all therein bless each and every one of you.
Charles E. Matheson, Sr.
Commander Post 76

PLANNING SCHEDULE
by Larry Miller
1st Vice Commander

Executive & Business Meeting ........ 1st Monday January 2nd, February 6th, March 6th
Dinner Meeting @ 7:00 p.m. .......... 3rd Monday December 19th, January 16th, February 20th

Those of you who were not able to attend our November dinner meeting missed a great program as we honored the Scouts and Community Service Officials. Our thanks go out to the brave hearted who helped with the frying of turkeys. A good time was had by all those participating.

This month will be filled with Christmas joy as we participate in our annual singing of carols. The entree will be cold cuts so bring your favorite holiday side dishes. This is always a good time to rejoice together on this special time of the year.
As usual, don't forget our troops and their families as we begin this holiday period.

2ND VICE COMMANDER
by Joe Trochta

The American Legion Post 76 building is an old historical building built in 1858 as the Johnson home. Upkeep and maintenance is a continuous process. The most recent activities included repairing the roof rain gutters and installing new screens. One smoke chimney, crumbling from age, was repaired and is now intact again. Constant improvements keep the Post building very attractive for renters, our primary source of income.
Visit the post and see the decorations for the Christmas and holiday season. Bring your friends and introduce others to where the Legion's work and activities are ongoing.
Have a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and a safe New Year.
Joe Trochta

ADJUTANT’S COLUMN
by Clayton Griffis

I am pleased to welcome the following new members to Travis Post 76:
John King...Roger McLain...Earl Sanders,Jr

All three were transferred from the Department.
I know we all look forward to visiting with these new members at the Post soon.
Our annual Christmas party is coming up on December 19th. We expect to have plenty of food and music to help celebrate the holidays. If you know someone who might be interested in joining The American Legion., this might be a good time to invite them to our Post-when it's decorated and full of song and good cheer. When you think about it, we all know someone we work with, go to church with, or who are members of other organizations who are eligible to join The American Legion. If you have the opportunity, be sure to invite someone.

Bringing Cheer to Veterans at the VA Hospital in Temple

We will be traveling again this year to the VA hospital in Temple to help prepare fruit baskets and hand out gifts to veterans having to spend their holidays at the VA. This your chance to directly help your fellow veterans by showing them they are not forgotten, that The American Legion is there for them. Those of us who went to the VA hospital last year remember the warm welcome and sincere thanks we got from those veterans who were in a not-so-fortunate situation. If you would like to volunteer your time to bring a little cheer to the lives of veterans, this is a great opportunity. We will be carpooling from the Post. Please be at the Post parking lot by 7:00 a.m. on December 23rd. We should return to Austin by around 2:00 p.m. If you would like more information about this opportunity, please give me a call. Have a Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year.

Clayton Griffis
Adjutant

Corpus Christi Awarded Next Texas State Veterans Cemetary

Jerry Patterson, Chairman of the Texas Veterans Land Board, recently announced a 54-acre site in Nueces County will be the location of the next Texas State Veterans Cemetary. A site off Carbon Plant Road donated by Flint Hills Resources and submitted by Nueces County, will be proposed to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for grant funding in 2008.
Construction on the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetary in Killeen is almost complete and it should be ready to receive its first internment in December. In September, ground was broken for the Rio Grande Valley State Veterans Cemetary in Mission. A site in Abilene has also been selected. The Texas Veterans Land Board has legislative authority to build up to seven Texas State Veterans Cemetaries.
These cemetaries will complement the four U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs national cemetaries in Texas, located in San Antonio, Houston, Dallas-Ft.Worth and El Paso. There are no known plans for additional national cemetaries in Texas. Approximately 600,000 of Texas' 1,700,000 veterans are 65 or older.

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