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Breaking News:

August is Legion Board and Floor Meeting month.

Friday night dinner specials are back at the Legion. There is also a limited menu available. Serving 5:00-9:00 pm.

The Legion has frozen fish for sale. If you liked the fish we had for the Friday night dinners, you can purchase some from the Legion. Fish is packaged in 10lb boxes and there are 2 boxes per case. You can buy a box or a case. Price is $5.00/lb.

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BANDS ARE BACK!

CHECK OUT THE CALENDAR PAGE FOR BANDS, DATES & TIMES

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Meetings in August

Auxiliary – 8/1  @ Legion 

Riders 8/2 @ Legion 6:00 PM

Legion board @ Legion 6:00 PM

Legion floor meeting 8/9 @ Legion 7:00 PM

SAL 8/16 @ Legion 6:30 PM

All Legion Floor and Board meeting will be held on the 2nd Monday of even numbered months.

Meetings will be held on the main floor of the Legion. 

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A message from our Chaplain:

August 2022

I doubt if many of you will recognize the name Eugene (Gene) Parker. I didn’t know anything about this WW II navy veteran until late August of last year, when a John Hatcher brought Gene’s military decorations to Denny Hansen’s and my attention. John had purchased Gene’s framed military medals at an auction even though John had never met Gene. John purchased them because he wanted to keep the grouping of medals intact with hope of finding a permanent home for these medals. John contacted several American Legion posts as well as VFW’s in the area but no one seemed interested, until he contacted our Legion post. John came into our post with a frame holding 17 medals, ribbons and other military decorations. A small name plate with Gene’s name was affixed to the outside of the frame.

John’s only request was to find a place where these decorations could be placed and shared with the general public as a way to honor Gene’s military service. Denny and I were moved by John’s passionate plea for help to accomplish this endeavor. Denny told John that we really lacked wall space at our Legion post but he would see what he could do.

Denny found Gene’s obituary online and discovered that he had no family. Gene was married late in life and his wife passed before him and they had no children. In fact, there were no relatives listed whatsoever. There was a glimmer of hope, however, the obituary listed the AMVETS, VFW and the Legion posts that Gene had been an active and life member. Denny made calls to the posts and yes, they all knew Gene, but they too lacked wall space and it appeared that Gene’s medals would be relegated to the basement or an attic space in John’s home. When Denny called me to give me this sad news, I told Denny I would see what I could do. Maybe I could find a museum that would accept Gene’s decorations. Even if they placed the medals in storage they would be protected and preserved.

I went online and found several military museums in Iowa and Illinois, but it would take a number of calls because I would often have to leave a message, but no one returned my call. When I did make contact often it wasn’t the curator, and I would once again have to leave a message. When I finally made contact with the curators, I was told that they did not accept medals. They were very specific to a single branch of service, they only collected specific artifacts and not medals, or they had already had more medals than they could handle but would accept them if the person was someone who was historically famous. Frustration began to build and I would let a few weeks go by before I restarted my quest to find a home for Gene. They were no longer just medals; they had become simply Gene.

During the interim of time, I would reread Gene’s obituary trying to find some clue to point me in a new direction. I discovered that Gene had been a member of the Legion Color Guard and he helped provide military honors for hundreds of other veterans that were buried at the national cemetery on Arsenal Island. I called the son-in-law of a friend of mine who works at the Arsenal, and I asked Mike if the Arsenal had a museum? Yes, there was one and he gave me the phone number. I called but no one answered the phone. I would try calling at different times of the day hoping someone would pick up but to no avail. Out of desperation, I decided to call the Arsenal’s main switchboard, when the operator picked up, I explained to her what I was trying to do and she told me the museum was closed for renovations. She provided me with the curator’s name and direct line. When I called it went to voice mail and I left a message. Several days passed and no one returned my call. Okay I thought, I will call the operator one more time and see if she had the personal number of the curator. She told me she didn’t, but she would connect me with a lady by the name of Margo who ran the USO at the Arsenal and she might have the number. I explained to Margo my mission and she told me that the USO would take the medals and display them but first she would call the curator. Several days went by when I received a call from the curator and he told me that the Arsenal Museum only collected artifacts for the Army… another dead-end. He gave me the curator’s number for the Naval Museum at Great Lakes, IL but before I hung up, I told him of Margo’s offer and what were his thoughts for such a venue? He became quite excited and said the USO would be a perfect location because they had at least a 1,000 visitors a week. He encouraged me to call Margo back because he could not think of a better location for Gene’s medals. I called Margo back and she was very happy to provide a home for Gene’s medals.

On May 6th Denny, John Hatcher and I took Gene to the Arsenal Island’s USO where his medals will be on display for all to see. In addition, I wrote up some information on Gene to be displayed with his medals and decorations. Using his obituary to aid in my write-up, I discovered Gene’s body was interred on the Arsenal Island; a fact that I had either glossed over or it just didn’t register in my head despite previous multiple readings of Gene’s obituary. Upon reading this revelation, I knew Gene was truly home and a sense of joy filled my heart for a man I did not know personally.

I wish to thank John Hatcher for his selfless caring of a man he did not know and his desire to keep Gene’s military legacy intact and Margo for providing the proper venue for Gene’s legacy. As for Denny and I, in true military form, mission accomplished. Last but not least, Gene Parker, thank you for your service and rest easy big brother, you’re home now.

Doug Thompson, Chaplain    

 dotandjot@aol.com 

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The Legion would like to thank a few individuals and organizations for their support.

The bar and kitchen staff, the Women’s Auxiliary, and the volunteers that helped make Beef Days another success!

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KITCHEN HOURS:

Breakfast:

Monday-Sunday 8:00 AM – 11:00 AM (open until noon on Sunday’s)

Please watch the Facebook page and website for the most up to date information.

Dinner- Friday’s only 5:00pm-9:00pm.