Two veterans honored by Legion
Wednesday, November 20, 2013 2:06 AM
"The Everett H. Hale American Legion Post 68 would like to thank you for your longevity of service to your community," said Post Commander Nathan Pike, presenting post members Roy Christopherson and Harlan Marchant with pins in honor of their 60 years of membership with the American Legion.
Spring Valley American Legion Commander Nathan Pike pins a service award pin on Harlan Marchant as Roy Christopherson waits his turn. Marchant and Christopherson have each given 60 years of service to the Everett H. Hale American Legion post.
Pike stated, "It's unique because this is Veterans' Day, or as some older people call it, Armistice Day. It's about veterans and their service to America. There are some here who remember the Armistice Day blizzard of 1940, and there are some here who might have served in World War II or Korea."
He inquired of each when they served, and Christopherson replied that he was enlisted with the Army from 1952 to 1954, stationed in Anchorage, Alaska, at Fort Richardson as a mail clerk - which led him to a career in the United States Postal Service, and Marchant answered that he enlisted in the Army in 1952 and served first at Fort Riley in Kan., then at Fort Carson in Colorado, after which he returned home and worked for his father's auto dealership, Marchant Motors, of which he is now proprietor.
The commander reiterated the Legion's appreciation for their dedication to their country, stating, "We'd like to thank you for your combined 120 years of service to your state and nation."
Pike pointed out that the Everett H. Hale post is believed by many to be one of the first in the nation, formed "almost hours" after World War II began, and Legion member Paul Ness related that the post's number, 68, marks its national inception standing. "That means it's the 68th post in the United States."
Pike thanked the veterans for coming to the awards ceremony, adding that they will eventually receive a certificate from the national American Legion organization, then had the privilege of presenting Spring Valley Area Food Shelf volunteer Kathy Baarsch with a check for $1,000 to help the shelf purchase food and household supplies for families in need.
"This came about during the government shutdown, when we thought that it might be a while before the government would reopen, and then when the SNAP benefits changed the beginning of this month, we decided to do something for the food shelf," said Pike.
Baarsch accepted the check and shared that the food shelf has indeed experienced an increase in visits from clients whose Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits have decreased as a result of changes to the program, noting that she and the other volunteers are glad to have donations such as this to offset costs for the pantry.