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Commander's Update 

 

 

 

September is a month of much activity; from kids first days of school, Labor Day, and Grandparents Day, to the solemn days of Patriot Day on the 11th and Yom Kippur on the 27th. These days of Summer, moving into Autumn, are usually my favorite days of the year……..usually. This year has been such a strange one to say the least. The fires in Oregon, California, and the devastation here in our own state of Washington, have now brought memories of Iraq and Afghanistan to mind with the "chewy air” we must endure. I pray for those that are adversely affected by these devastating fires, and hope that you all, as members of the VFW, reach out to your membership in your Posts to give a hand, help with relief funds, or even host a fundraiser for those in your community in need. My Post is actually hosting "Community Dinners & Breakfasts” every week. I know that a homeless lady that sleeps in our neighborhood park is one that gets a home cooked meal from us, delivered by yet another neighbor that delivers it to her. Just showing our neighbors that we are here, and that we care, breaks that thought of us just being a group that meets at a smokey bar to tell war stories. REACH OUT and help one another!

Our mission is so important that we can’t lose focus. We have to remember what that total mission is. It’s not just youth essays, or supporting VMS, although they are important too; we have the mission of "remembering our dead, while helping the living.” I’m saying this because I was just reminded of this important part of our mission. Sometimes I get so "focused” on dates to complete certain things, or "checking the box” that I sometimes forget what other parts of our "mission statement” say. I received an email from my counterpart in Hawaii, who has first hand access to DPAA (Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency), giving me a "heads up” that one of our own is on his way home, finally. A USS Oklahoma Sailor from Yakima named Patrick L Chess. Patrick, 24 years of age, was a Navy Shipfitter 3rd Class, assigned to the battleship USS Oklahoma, which was moored at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, when the ship was attacked by Japanese aircraft. On 7 December 1941, the ship sustained multiple torpedo hits, which caused it to quickly capsize. The attack resulted in the deaths of 429 crewmen, including Chess. January 9th of this year, Patrick Chess was identified through DNA and dental records. He will be laid to rest in October.

THIS is why we’re here…….. not this alone, but because of these ultimate sacrifices, we MUST maintain focus on our FULL mission. Just knowing that there are individuals working day in and day out so one of our lost can come home to rest, and his family can have peace knowing he’s home, gives me goosebumps.

Please, Commanders, make sure you read/recite Section 230102 of the Congressional Charter right after your Post’s opening ceremony. It says right there what we are to do, "……to perpetuate the memory and history of our dead, and to assist their surviving spouses and orphans…” I thank those Honor Guard members who spend hours at our Cemeteries conducting the last honor a Service Member will receive, with dignity and respect.

SF3 Chess; you are not forgotten, and welcome home, brother…… welcome home.

 
"Stay Focused!!!"
Traci

 
(Updated: September 11, 2020)

Announcements

Please join me in congratulating the following Comrades on their National Appointments:
 
National Deputy Chief of Staff:
  • Joshua Schreck - Post 1263
  • Steve Woodward - Post 2224
 
National Assistant Inspector General:
  • Nestor Tamayao - Post 3063
  • Brad Pieratt - Post 3617
 
Department Special Aide-de-Camp:
  • Frank Persa - Post 5580
  • Filiberto Rivera - Post 24
 
National Aide-de-Camp:
  • Daniel Chism - Post 24
  • John Gifford - Post 239
  • Amy Buckley - Post 318
  • Kenneth Smith - Post 318
  • Darrell Pilat - Post 1263
  • E'Lona Kearney - Post 1263
  • Ronald Jacobson - Post 1373
  • Cheri Knox Reid - Post 1435
  • Debbie Maund - Post 1561
  • Richard Angeli - Post 1948
  • Carla Scott - Post 2047
  • Tom Repass - Post 2224
  • Rebekah McGinnis - Post 5580
  • Ted Blaine - Post 5785
  • Rod Stern - Post 5924
  • Kathy Seureau - Post 6853
  • Keith Wooldridge - Post 7392
  • Drew James - Post 7511
  • Kyle Saltz - Post 7952
  • Eugene Fraker - Post 9106

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