CHESTERTOWN - After completing a fund drive and annual elections, the American Legion Post No. 964 is now seeking new members, and is planning to launch an organization of Legion motorcycle riders affiliated with the post.
On the weekend of July 4, the local Legion held its annual coin drop, and the effort was very successful, Legionnaire Joe Slattery said.
"We thank both our year-round residents and our summer residents for their generous coin drop donations," he said.
The fundraising effort resulted in receipts about $400 dollars short of the Legion's goal, Slattery said.
"This is not bad considering the economic situation," he said.
The donations are used for many Legion projects including upkeep of the Legion Post, sending local North Warren High School students to American Legion Boys' State, plus contributing to both the Wounded Warriors project and underwriting the local Boy Scout organization.
This next year, the Legion post will likely be starting a new branch of the post to help increase the post's membership, Slattery said.
A new charter hopefully will be established for a group called the American Legion Riders, an offshoot of the post, he said.
To become member, an individual must be a Legionnaire or a member of one of the Legion's related organizations.
The Legion Riders will hold their own meetings separate from regular Legion post meetings and will conduct their own fundraising, both to help out Post No. 964, as well as making a positive contribution to the local communities, Slattery said.
Those veterans and spouses that are motorcyclists and interested in joining this new organization as charter members are urged to contact Joe Slattery at 494-5989 for more information.
Slattery said all the Post needs at this point to launch this this group is five new members.
The Legion Riders, he said, are likely to be high-profile in the community and welcomed by citizens, he said.
"As you seen in past weeks, the Patriot Guard escorted a local soldier home," he said, talking about how a group of motorcyclists served as escorts for the wake and funeral of Jeremiah Monroe, a U.S. Army soldier who was recently killed in action in Afghanistan.
Several members of the Patriot Guard, Slattery said, are members of American Legion Riders, both men and women, in and around Hudson Falls. Some riders came from longer distance to honor Monroe, he said.
"What a way to continue our service to our country, our state, and our community," Slattery said of the proposed Legion Riders group.
Legion officers re-elected
Elections were held recently for the American Legion Post No. 964, and the following officers were re-elected for the 2009-2010 year:
Joanne Ellsworth, Commander and Co-Adjutant; Louis Russo, 1st Vice Commander, Chaplain and Service Officer; John McConnell, 2nd Vice Commander; Joe Slattery, 3rd Vice Commander, Treasurer, Co-Adjutant and Historian; and Ken Little, Sergeant-at-Arms Arms.
In related news, the American Legion's Ladies Auxiliary group has recently welcomed three new members to their organization.