‘For God and Country’
The Preamble to the American Legion Constitution begins, “For God and Country.” The newly elected American Legion National Vice Commander Wayne D. Satrom said, “I think that is one of the things I am most proud of about the American Legion is the fact that we are for God and Country. It brings a tear to my eye.”
Satrom and Department (State) Commander James E. Demarest were the guests of the Washington American Legion Post 29, Monday night, in the Washington Readiness Center. They and other national, state and local members, as well as Sons of the American Legion and the Legion Riders, gathered to talk about the organization and the importance of bringing new members into the Legion.
Satrom said he was voted in as National Vice Commander for the Midwest region on Aug. 29, 2013. The region includes the states of North and South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Iowa and Minnesota. This Iowa tour is the first he has done as national vice commander.
One of the top priorities Satron talked about was asking members to contact their senators and representatives in Congress and urge them to work on a flag protection amendment to the U.S. Constitution — House Resolution 47 and Senate Resolution 17.
“Desecration of the flag is totally — they say is free speech,” he said. “That is definitely not free speech. We seen that when they were protesting up there in New York and everything — that was pitiful. It made veterans cry.”
Satrom spoke against the federal government shutdown and sequestration.
“Who suffers first?” he asked. “The military and the veterans. They use them as pawns.”
No one branch of government or political party is spared from blame. Satrom said he blames all parties.
Satrom also spoke about Operation Comfort Warriors, which helps veterans who are wounded or ill. He said their scars and wounds can last a lifetime.
District Commander Bob Kennedy spoke about his enthusiasm for the Legion and that he’s ready to sign up new members. He also spoke about the Legacy Ride that raises funds for the American Legion Legacy Scholarship Fund. The fund provides scholarships to children who have lost a parent, to obtain an education. He said the national goal is $20 million.
Demarest spoke about an event that is going to happen in five years — the 100th birthday of American Legion. Special committees have been set up to celebrate the milestone at national, state and local levels.
All spoke first and foremost about the Legion’s focus on veterans helping veterans and their families.