By Bill Frazer
Yes, you can see the STARS & STRIPES fluttering on all of the light poles of main avenues in LaFayette, AL. To those of us of the older generation who see regularly the disrespect shown the symbol of this great nation, it is a Blessing. It is gratifying to see that the Electrical Department of the City Of LaFayette would take time and expense, according to City Electrical Superintendent Randy Norred, to hang an estimated 100 of these flags around the town on every State Holiday.
This program was initiated by the local American Legion Post. Commander of Post 141, Curtis Adams, filled me in on the details of the source of the staffs and flags. The flags and staffs,which cost approximately $25 each, are donated to the City Of LaFayette by the local American Legions Post. Due to the fragile nature of the flags and the masts, regular replacement of these ornaments is required which there is considerable annual cost to the local American Legion Post 141.
The American Legion, organized in 1919, is the nation’s leading Veterans organization. Headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, the Legion is composed of an estimated 2,400,000 members made up from all the branches of military service. Its primary political interest is lobbying for the interest of all veterans. One of its greatest legislative achievements was promoting the passing of the GI Bill.
The local Legion Post 141 has a membership of 65 veterans. The Post possesses 40 acres of land, a 3800 square-foot event center with an 6 acre lake located on the site.
The local post meets every last Thursday in the month and has a covered dish supper on site. There are several fund raising events each year each including a TV raffle event every Christmas. In addition, a drawing was held for a gun donated by John Newman owner of the Newman Farm Supply Store. All members pay a $40 national membership fee.
The local post, every Veterans Day (the last Monday in May) holds a ceremony around a stature honoring veterans of Chambers County that died in service of their country. This memorial was donated to the County by the local Legion post and erected on the west portals of the Chambers County.Court House. There were 35 in World War 1, 67 in World War 2, 7 in the Korean War and 11 in Vietnam conflict. A 120 of our local population lost their lives serving our country which the OLD GLORY represents.
I watched with interest as Jessie Watters of Fox News interviewed people on the streets of New York. Almost to the person, none knew the words to the National Anthem (The Star Spangled Banner). None knew the words of America The Beautiful, God Bless America or the Battle Hymn Of The Republic. This is common among the millennial generation and kind of offensive to our heroes both past and present. Especially to the families of ones such as my wife who lost two brothers in Korea. One of the two brother’s remains are still somewhere in North Korea.