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Badger &“Wisconsin”


January 4, 2018 Vol. 95, No. 1

Official Publications of The Wisconsin American Legion Family

The mission of The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin is to provide service to veterans, their families and their communities.

Season’s Greetings from Camp American Legion

Who said that things slow down here at Camp when winter arrives? It has been quite the opposite. We have several construction projects going on and more to start after the New Year. The main lodge restroom addition project is well under way and scheduled to be completed in late January. When it is complete, we will have two nicely designed, ADA compliant restrooms. One of which will be a family restroom with a baby changing station. This will be a wonderful enhancement, to our facilities with ability to serve all of our Campers. Phase one of the underground electrical service project is complete. The service will be switched over in spring. Besides the aesthetic enhancement this will add for the main lodge, it will also provide a much safer, greater access to the main lodge for delivery trucks. The lower level service area of the main lodge is getting an extreme makeover. We are reorganizing, repainting the floors and walls, repairing mechanical systems and basically reinventing the

logistic flow for operations. The Big Carr Lake overlook/Main Lodge landscape and patio project demolition is complete. When the snow melts we will be back at it. This outdoor space will provide better access for all campers while bringing a softer more natural flow of materials, and a focus for social gatherings. We are making great progress, yet, like many renovation projects, we have experienced some setbacks with the renovation of the Director’s quarters. We found significant structural issues, severe water damage, mold and electrical issues. However, with the support of the department leadership, local area contractors, supporters of Camp and our hard working staff putting in long days (and nights), we are back on track. With hard work and kind winter weather we expect to move our family back in to the house in early February. After our family makes that move we will transition to the renovation project of the main lodge second floor quarters and the completion of the main lodge entrance. Very soon we will be unveiling the

Contractors continue with Camp American Legion renovations.

final drawings of the Goldstar Family Cabin. Wade Weissmann Architecture has donated their services for this project and what an amazing job they have done. The cabin design captures the essence of the Northwood’s experience and the cabin will very respectfully serve the needs of families experiencing grief from the loss of their service member. We will be announcing a fundraiser campaign to help underwrite this project and others at our Midwinter conference later this month. As I discuss progress being made here at Camp, I need to stress that it would not be possible without the backing and vision of our Department of Wisconsin American Legion leadership, our supporters of Camp and basically the American Legion Family as a whole. The age old question is, how do we effectively communicate our mission, vision, values, our needs and more importantly our gratitude for all the support we have received and continue to receive? Of course, this publication is one effective venue. Another is our effort to get out there and meet with the Legion Family at their posts face to face. We speak at organization's events and communicate with Military leaders across the state of Wisconsin. When we receive support, we send out thank you letters expressing our gratitude. However, we can and need to do more. One of our directed efforts has been to engage our stakeholders, partners and Legion family via social media and the internet. As many of you may be aware, Camp American Legion has a very active Facebook page. In fact, there are two pages, which we understand can make (continued on page 3)


WISH LIST 2018 Looking for a way to pay it forward? Consider a donation to Camp American Legion. While a monetary donation is always welcome and appreciated, if you’d rather make a direct purchase, here is Camp’s wish list for the coming year… GIFT CARDS • Walmart • Menards • Home Depot • Ace Hardware • BP Gas • Generic use gift cards used anywhere

CLEANING SUPPLIES • Iron Out liquid spray • Pine Sol cleaner • Scrub a Dub Toilet Bowl Cleaner • Lysol spray • Laundry detergent – Tide • Bleach • Bounce Sheets • Small Liquid Hand Soap • Trash bags – tall kitchen bags and small - Large outdoor bags (30-60 gallon)

OFFICE AND MAINTENANCE SUPPLIES • AA, AAA Batteries • Printer Ink HP Deskjet 61 Black and 61 Tri Color cartridge • Paint Brushes and Rollers • Postage Stamps (forever stamps) • Printer Paper

KITCHEN SUPPLIES • Microwave popcorn • Sturdy paper plates, bowls, cups (not Styrofoam) • Ice Tea Packets – Sugar free • Hot Chocolate • Cereal • Chocolate chips (small bags) • Jell-O • Pudding • Nuts • Flower • Sugar • Brown Sugar • Cases of Water • Maxwell House Dark Roast Coffee MISCELLANEOUS • Large Marine Batteries • Queen Bed Sheets • LED Light Bulbs

BIG TICKET ITEMS • 15 through 20 Daily Reverse Osmosis Water Puri�ication System • STIHL Steel Commercial Grade Leaf Blower BR7000 • Wire Welder • 6 Passenger Golf Cart

Helping To Heal - those who served, continue to serve, and their families, through Wisconsin’s Northwood’s Experience

2018 Membership Goal: 53,500 • December 28th Total: 47,903 • 89.54% 9



























“Badger Legionnaire” & “Wisconsin” The Badger Legionnaire & Wisconsin are the official publications of the Wisconsin American Legion Family and are published ten times annually, once every five weeks, by The American Legion, Dept. of Wisconsin 2930 American Legion Drive P.O. Box 388, Portage, WI 53901. Periodicals Postage Paid at Portage, WI and additional mailing offices. USPS ID Number 010-135 ISSN: 2154-2627 Post Master: Send address changes to Badger Legionnaire and Wisconsin, P.O. Box 388, Portage, WI 53901

“Badger Legionnaire” The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin 2930 American Legion Drive P.O. Box 388 • Portage, WI 53901 Phone: (608) 745-1090 E-mail: Amber L. Nikolai, Executive Editor Dawn Brauner, Co-Editor 2017-2018 Communications Committee Renee Kasuboski, Chairman Rebecca Amundson, Vice Chairman Ray Pasbrig, DEC Liaison Susan Knudson Phil Ingwell Kendel Feilen Jennifer Rumbold Gordy Clewell, Historian Bonnie Dorniak, Auxiliary Liaison 2017-18 Department Officers Commander Laurel Clewell Vice Commanders James Lee Todd Braun Mark Sandow Chris Sower Adjutant Amber L. Nikolai Chaplain Milton Duntley Sergeant-at Arms Jeremy Nordie Mark Toll Service Officer James Fialkowski NECman Ken Rynes Alternate NECman Robert Shappell District Commanders 1st – Bill Babb 2nd – Greg Eirich 3rd – Harold Rihn 4th – Ray Pasbrig 5th – Julia Atkinson 6th – Jerry Lauby 7th – Ken Schoolcraft 8th – Ron Fregien 9th – Clarence Davister 10th – Paul Beseler 11th – James Lynn 12th – Don Slattery Change of Address & Other Information: Subscribers: To report any upcoming changes of address, please ask your Post Adjutant to fill out a Membership Data Form and forward it to Wisconsin American Legion Headquarters. The change of address form that will be completed by the Post Adjutant should not be confused with the change of address card filled out at the Post Office. Department financial statements are available to Legionnaires in good standing upon written request through their District Commanders.

“Wisconsin” American Legion Auxiliary Department of Wisconsin 2930 American Legion Drive P.O. Box 140 • Portage, WI 53901 Bonnie Dorniak, Editor Bonnie Jakubczyk, Department President Bonnie Dorniak, Exec. Secretary/Treasurer To change your address: Notify Unit Secretary Unit Secretary: Notify Department Headquarters on a Member Data Form The “Wisconsin” deadline for copy is 4 weeks before publication date.

Publication Schedule All articles due to the Editor four weeks before publication date. Send all copy to

JANUARY 4, 2018

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! This is truly the most wonderful time of the year. Many of us will Laurel Clewell Department Commander be celebrating with family and friends. Different celebrations, the birth of our Savior, the blessing of family, or the party with friends, but not all of us have family or a place to call home. So I am asking all of you to reach out to someone that may need a kind word or just a moment of your time. As we are celebrating the coming of the new year, let us reflect on the past year. As I reflect on 2017, I am reminded of the many reasons that I joined the American

Legion. We have a great organization that has four amazing pillars and many wonderful programs. I love the mission of the American Legion and I want to remind everyone that we are Veterans still serving Veterans. What a legacy that we have continued in 2017! So why did you join the Legion? We have many things to reflect on this year and many challenges for the coming year. I recently attended a funeral for a young woman who was deaf and she had many challenges. This made me realize that the challenges we face are only as bad as we make them. We need to stay focused on the mission of the American Legion. The American Legion has always been my positive outlet so we need stay positive and carry on

the legacy. I am about to share my personal challenge this year and I believe I need to tell you so I actually admit the challenge to myself. I have been diagnosed with endometrial cancer and will have surgery on December 29th which will answer many questions. But until then,

I plan on a positive attitude and pray that God is with my doctor and blesses me with a speedy recovery. I will continue to pray that you have a wonderful Christmas and that God blesses you in 2018. Wishing you the Seasonʼs best Joy, Hope, Peace, and Happiness.

SAL DETACHMENT COMMANDER Season’s Greetings to our American Legion Family! Serving as your Detachment Commander is Chris Sherman SAL Detachment an honor and Commander I appreciate all the work the Sons do supporting the Four Pillars of The American Legion. Our preamble states “To inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, state and nation.” Keeping this in mind, and with the holidays just recently past, remember your local food pantries, VA hospitals, Fisher House, even local police and fire departments, can all use our help. We also count on your support for the Child Welfare Foundation, National Emergency Fund and

Endowment Fund. Wisconsin Sons, with their volunteer hours and monetary donations, impact each pillar: Americanism, Children & Youth, Veterans Affairs and National Security - an impact worth over one million dollars annually. How do we know this? We compile the numbers from the Squadron Consolidated Report Form that you submit to your Post and Detachment. * Completing this form is an obligation, required of each Squadron. Knowing the holidays can be difficult, especially when a child is hospitalized or when a parent is being deployed, the Sons have put their hearts into providing Josh and G.I. Josh Dogs Kits. The kit is a dog house which includes; Josh, a plush dog and a book “I’ll Be Ok”.

These bring comfort to both the child and the parents. Recently, at one of the deployments the commanding officer told me how much our involvement has helped and is appreciated. You can find photos on our web site www.wisal. org, and on social media sites, as well as in this issue of The Badger Legionnaire. We encourage you to support Josh & G.I. Josh through fundraising and donations. Where can you and your Squadron send your donations to? Please follow the instructions on our donation form: wp-content/uploads/FormsPubs/ DonationsForm.pdf. We have Midwinter coming up January 19-20, 2018. The Sons of The American Legion will have a workshop January 20 from 1-3, followed by our DEC meeting. We

would like to see representation from all squadrons at this workshop. I would like to welcome our new Adjutant Amber Nikolai. I look forward to working with her over the next year. We will also be sending out our detachment mailing to all squadrons. If you do not receive this, please contact us. We are currently trying to update squadron contact information. Lastly, please remember to send in your memberships. Memberships were due by January 1, 2018. I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Chris Sherman Detachment Commander 1-262-352-6902

WDVA SECRETARY WDVA’s 2017 has been filled with many successes. Stakeholders across the state have Dan Zimmerman been key partWDVA Secretary ners in these successes and WDVA will continue to expand working relationships and develop new ones in the new year. In 2010, then-Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, Admiral Mike Mullen, discussed a phenomenon he called the “Sea of Goodwill.” The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) expanded on the “Sea” thusly: “There are 21 million veterans in America, including more than 2.7 million who have deployed since 9/11. Serving this vast community is a “sea of goodwill” that includes millions of individuals and philanthropic organizations, including more than 40,000 that are registered with the Internal Revenue

Service (IRS) as tax-exempt and explicitly focused on the veterans and military community.” Veterans Service Organizations (VSOs), community service organizations, non-profits, philanthropics, and volunteers with no organizational affiliation all are key components of the “Sea” of non-profits serving Wisconsin’s Veteran community. But, as CNAS also point out, “Because of its organic, often uncoordinated nature, the nonprofit community serving veterans has taken on a fragmented character, with many leaders arguing for greater coherence and coordination among these nonprofits.” Oh, how true that observation is. We have such selfless generosity in our state but only limited coordination and collaboration efficiently focusing that generosity. I often describe our efforts here in Wisconsin as an army of volunteers beautifully playing orchestra instruments but nowhere

do we have an orchestra conductor organizing the playing into a riveting symphony. That will change in 2018. Focusing WDVA’s operations going forward are 4-C’s – key attributes of a robust statewide enterprise to assist Wisconsin’s Veterans and focus the generosity in the Sea of Goodwill. First is “contact” – who are the Veterans needing assistance, where are they, and what do they need. We currently only have contact with 25-30% of Wisconsin’s almost 400,000 Veterans. We will leverage our many state and federal partnerships to make and maintain contact with our Veterans. “Comradeship” comes next. Veterans helping Veterans. Veterans prefer assistance come from those that better understand their unique experiences – brothers and sisters supporting comrades in arms together in an environment where they can share trust, confidence, and understanding. Our VSOs are

our backbone in this area. Third is “community.” Veterans are best supported close to home. VSOs are integral parts of their local communities, but VSOs can only provide so much support with the limited resources at hand. Communities – churches, schools, community service organizations, businesses, philanthropics, and individual volunteers – provide wrap-around support and cover gaps that federal, state, and local Veterans services cannot provide. Last is “collaboration.” Everyone operating in the “Sea of Goodwill” must work together to best utilize and target our limited resources at all levels to ensure that Veterans receive the best support in the most efficient and effective ways possible. Orchestrating the entire operation is WDVA in concert with its two statewide advisory bodies – the Council on Veterans Programs (COVP) and the Board of Veterans Affairs (BOVA).

JANUARY 4, 2018



American Legion Family and Soldier’s Wish Supports Air National Guard Deployment

Approximately 70 members of the Milwaukee based 128th Aerial Refueling Wing of the Wisconsin Air National Guard deployed this holiday season to locations in the Middle East, Europe, Africa and Asia for two to six months, depending on their missions. The Airmen will be supporting a variety of missions including security, communications, logistics, operations and aircraft maintenance. Governor Scott Walker and Major General Donald P. Dunbar attended a send-off ceremony for family and friends of the airmen on Saturday, December 2nd at Mitchell International Airport. Also attending were representatives of Soldier’s Wish, a non-prof-

it organization endorsed by the National American Legion, and members of the Wisconsin American Legion Family including American Legion Auxiliary Department President Bonnie Jakubczyk and Sons of The American Legion Detachment Commander Chris Sher-

to determine what will best suit you and your needs before calling in your reservation.

Please do this today! If you have any questions, contact Angie Chappell, Administrative Manager, at 608-745-1090 or

venues, such as Facebook and our upcoming website. I do however, want to take this opportunity to send a special thank you to the Wisconsin Department of American Legion Auxiliary. They have been a fantastic partner to Camp for many years. They have shown trust and belief in our mission. This year they have decided to underwrite the Main lodge 2nd floor quarters and bathrooms renovation project. In addition, they have purchased a custom built wheelchair accessible UTV. This UTV makes it safer and much easier to transport our campers out to the nature trails

Back Row, L-R: Maynard Perszyk, Michael French, Jumoka Johnson and Josh Engelman; Front row: James Fialkowski, Barbara Pelarski, and Mitchell Woytych

Advertising Material

OUR VALUES: Honor and Stewardship


My name is Dawn and I am the Programs Coordinator responsible for the following Americanism programs: the Americanism and Government Scholarship Test, Baseball, Boy Scouts and Eagle Scouts, County Youth Government Days, Junior Shooting Sports, the Oratorical Scholarship Contest, and the Schneider-Emanuel Scholarships. I have also been one of the

Department contacts and support for the Badger Boys State Program. I have recently been given another Legion responsibility, that of CoEditor of The Badger Legionnaire. I will be your contact person for any Legionnaire submissions from here on out. I started working for The Legion in March of 2014, having previously worked for the Portage School District. I have a dual degree in Natural Resources and Communications with an empha-

Meet Your Legion Staff: Service Office

and beyond. Thank you to our State Auxiliary leadership and thank you to all of our supporters. Without the American Legion Family we would not be able to accomplish our mission. From all of us here at Camp American Legion, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

OUR VISION: Giving Wisconsin Veterans the pathway to quality of life


rooms and other housing options will be at a premium come July.

Because there will be numerous housing and hotel options available, please visit

OUR MISSION: Helping To Heal - those who served, continue to serve, and their families, through Wisconsin’s Northwood’s Experience


There are a lot of events going on in Oshkosh—at the same time as our Convention—so hotel

The American Legion Convention is a priority to the Oshkosh Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) and because of this, they have generously offered to act as the Housing Bureau for certain hotels in the city of Oshkosh, along with offering free shuttles from all housing locations to the Convention site. The CVB can be reached by calling 920-303-9200.

CAMP (continued from page 1)

it confusing. We are working with Facebook to merge the two pages (that is quite a process). Look us up on Facebook and follow our progress this winter. Additionally, a team has been put together to develop a new user-friendly Camp American Legion Website. We expect to have this on-line before the start of the 2018 Camp season. I bring this up for a very specific reason. Gratitude! We have been blessed to be on the receiving end of amazing support. This tells us that others believe what we believe and that is: we serve the greatest, most deserving customers: our veterans, our military and their families. How we share that gratitude is important. To properly thank you all for your support we use a multi-media approach and while we may not specifically always thank individuals or organizations in this publication, we certainly will do so in other

man. Additionally, 16 Legionnaires from Franklin Post No. 192 and Oak Creek Post No. 434, Auxiliary members and Sons distributed Josh Dogs and $20 Walmart Gift Cards provided by Soldier’s Wish to the children of those service members deploying overseas.

Even though Convention is not until July (the 11th—15th to be exact), it is important that you register for your housing as soon as possible and here’s why:

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Healing with Horse Power Steeds restore trust that war took away

By Dave Hoopman, Director of News and Communication, WECA Originally published in the November, 2017 issue of the Wisconsin Energy Cooperative News, reprinted with permission.

Even now there are people who remember when some of the world’s most formidable militaries routinely used horses to transport equipment and uncommonly, to carry troops in battle. And while it’s true that when the cavalry rides in today, it’s mounted on armored vehicles or aircraft aluminum, an organization served by Eau Claire Energy Cooperative is proving a horse can still be a soldier’s best friend. Situated in the Town of Brunswick just southwest of Eau Claire and co-owned by Toni Mattson and her husband and sister, the Trinity Equestrian Center, a 2016 recipient of the American Red Cross Hero for Veterans Award, offers boarding, youth mentoring, therapeutic riding, equine-assisted therapy, veteran wellness programs and corporate and team development workshops. Equine therapy for troubled military veterans has been part of Trinity’s operations for 10 of its 15 years’ existence, and Trinity’s promotional materials say one of Toni Mattson’s “greatest passions” is to help other equine centers develop their own programs, as we quickly verified: When Wisconsin Energy Cooperative News caught up with her to talk about this story, we found her in New Mexico helping establish another equine therapy program for returning vets. If you had all the money in the world… The path to establishing the remarkable specialty of using horses to heal minds in Eau Claire County followed a map pretty much drawn in Toni Mattson’s childhood. She and her sister, Toni told us, used to ask each other, “If you had all the money in the world, what would you do? We’d always say we’d own a horse ranch together and do all these cool things with horses.” The ranch became reality in 2002. The veterans’ programming came later, but therapeutic aspects of human interaction with horses have been part of the picture at Trinity from the start. By nature, horses have “a deep desire to connect with humans,” Toni says. However, “a horse won’t

be around someone who has high anxiety or anger or negative energy. They feel safe when things are in balance and harmony. If vets deny they have anger issues, they can’t hide it when they’re with a horse.” This makes the animals “incredible treatment partners.” Our conversation with Toni and other research in preparing this story confirmed that what’s become widely known as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is just one condition that can be ameliorated with equine therapy. Helping people make friends with horses has yielded visible benefits confronting problems ranging from developmental disabilities and mental illnesses all the way down to courtordered treatment to straighten out disorderly lifestyles. Two years ago, a local Eau Claire television news story described Trinity’s collaboration with an area hospital to help young people affected by autism. The TV reporter quoted a doctor involved with the program saying interaction with horses proved to be such a powerful motivator that “we can really kind of use that to get some different skills or activities out of [the autistic children] that we can’t normally get.” And there is no shortage of evidence that horse-based therapy can be credited to saving lives. Sometimes it’s personal. Trinity Equestrian Center is affiliated with EAGALA (Equine-Assisted Growth and Learning Association), a Utah-based group of specialists and therapists with more than 4000 practitioners in some 50 countries. One veteran who is still participating in the program, a former Army Ranger and sniper, came to Trinity after his third suicide attempt. Toni characterized his attitude as, “I retired at the very pinnacle and I am nothing. I am hollow, I am empty, I have no reason to live.” The absence of hope reflected in those words, she said, explains why suicide occurs frequently among US veterans. “Vets come back having experienced horrendous things, seen and done things that violate their very definition of humanity, and they have shame and fear,” Toni said. “That is poisonous. We bring that out so they know they can be forgiven.” Since Trinity connected the ranger with a horse, he has not attempted suicide and continues the difficult

task of restoring hope and trust. In that, Toni says, “We’re asking them to do the hardest work of their life, and saying if you trust us we will do this together.” It costs the veterans nothing “except the courage to ask for help,” Toni told us, saying Trinity has provided nearly 3000 free therapy sessions. “We seek grants; we fundraise; we never charge our vets anything. The miracles that happen – it’s breathtaking. It’s the best work I’ve ever done and it’s by far the hardest work I’ve ever done.” It’s work she may well have been destined to do for reasons more compelling than a childhood game with her sister. Many members of Toni’s family have served, and once, long ago, she awoke late at night and walked into the room where her father, a veteran beset by horrific World War II memories, was watching television. She approached from behind, startling him, and “he threw me onto the floor and put me in a chokehold,” she said. “I was looking into his eyes from six inches away and could see my father wasn’t in there.” Within moments he snapped out of it, repenting, Toni recalled, but he sent her back to bed shouting that she mustn’t surprise him in that way. We asked whether she was comfortable with us abridging her privacy and that of her late father by identifying him in such a personally painful story. The response: “People who deal with these problems need to understand this is common.” But how do they know… horses are large, powerful animals that have bonded with humans over thousands of years, but the concept of a horse having the power to heal tormented minds is a few steps beyond what can be accepted without question. So we asked. How does a therapist know the treatment is working? How does the horse know what’s happening? “In the wild and in their interactions with humans, horses have had to become perfectionists at reading body language in a manner that tells them whether a situation is safe or a risk,” Toni said, “and that is exactly the same thing our veter(continued on page 7)

JANUARY 4, 2018

JOSH DOGS AND THE HEMBROOK STORY Hello. My name is Josh and I am a very special dog. You see, I am a part of a very special Sons of The American Legion Program called The Josh Dogs. Originally created as an extension of therapy dog programs who have teams of dogs and trainers visiting hospitals and providing comfort to those in the hospital, be it prior to surgery or those recovering, the Josh and Friends program evolved into the hospital Josh Dogs and the GI Josh Dogs. I am a GI Josh Dog. Originally promoted by the SAL of Arizona, the GI Josh dogs are stuffed dogs wearing a camouflage bandana and given to children of deployed service members to serve as a comfort mechanism. The GI Josh Project chronicles the journey that dogs Josh and Smudge make with a young girl named Cassie, whose father is sent abroad to the Middle East. Josh and Smudge help Cassie, and her family, cope with the absence of her father while he is overseas until his return from his deployment. Cori Hembrook’s children have also received Josh Dogs – here is her story: “My name is Cori Hembrook, formerly a Captain with the United States Marine Corps. My husband is Technical Sergeant Joseph

Hembrook with the Air National Guard. He deployed in late July for a six month tour overseas. Before we got married I deployed twice to Iraq. Once for the Marine Corps, the other as a civilian contractor with a counter terrorism unit. For me, deployments were the reason I signed up for the military and my husband feels the same way. There isn’t anything worse than being in the military and only training rather than not putting that training into action. Our two kids, Lucy (4) and Bob (3) received their Josh Dogs shortly after Joe deployed. When they ask about their dad, I still tell them “dada is only gone because he wants to keep us and many other people safe.” I also tell them “Josh the dog can be here whenever you might want to send a hug to dad… I’m sure he can feel them from here.” My son Bob sleeps with Josh the dog most nights (even steals his sister’s sometime.) I’m so incredibly proud of my husband for his service both OCONUS and CONUS. I know it’s difficult for him to be away from his family but he knows we understand. I’m also certain this is a journey he will be proud of. Until he comes home, Josh will serve as our guard dog. Thank you so much for your continued support.” Respectfully, Cori Hembrook

HOW MUCH DO YOU KNOW ABOUT THE CONSTITUTION??? Please join us at the 81st American Legion, Department of Wisconsinʼs Oratorical Scholarship Contest on Saturday, February 10, 2018 at the Todd Wehr Building on the Ripon College Campus. Some of the finest high school speakers from across the state might be able to teach you a thing or two. Regional Competition will begin at 9:00

am and the top three competitors will advance to the State Competition at 2:00 pm. in the afternoon. Students will give two speeches, the first being an 8-10 minute presentation regarding the Constitution and our individual rights and responsibilities to the same and a second 3–5 minute oration on one of four assigned topics.

JANUARY 4, 2018


Veterans and Families invited to Snowflake Ski Jump Tournament

Photos and information submitted by Tom Sharatt Ski jumpers will be flying highagain at the 95th Annual Snowflake Ski Jumping Tournament February 2nd and 3rd, in Westby, Wisconsin. There will be over twenty jumpers from across the US and foreign jumpers from Finland and other European Countries. All jumps will be on a “118 meter hill,” which is the same sized jump used in Olympic competition. The competition will begin with opening ceremonies at 7 PM, Friday. Additional activities include the ski jump competition, warming fires, tailgating and a dance featuring live music by “High Mileage.” Saturday’s activities include ski jumping, the “standing long jump” competition, helicopter rides, horse drawn sleigh rides, a Quarter Dig for the children, food stands, various vendors, and an

evening dance featuring music by “Blue Collar Forty.” Admission buttons are $20 per person purchased at the gate or $15 if purchased earlier at various local outlets in the Coulee Region or on-line. The button is good for both Friday and Saturday. (Food, helicopter and sleigh rides may require an additional donation or fee; vendors will be selling various items as well.) V E TER A N S , M I L I TA RY MEMBERS and their families will be admitted for FREE! Veterans’ buttons are available only at the gate. The Snowflake Ski Club, working in conjunction with Logistics Health and several other sponsors, are proud to admit all veterans and their spouses at no charge upon display of a DD 214, a VA card or membership card to the American Legion or VFW. If you are serving on active duty, are an active member of the National Guard or Reserves, are in ROTC, or are a military retiree, you and your spouse and children will be admitted free. Just present an ID card at the gate. Parking is free. Portable fire pits are allowed (bring your own wood) however, fires on the ground are no longer allowed as the parking area is used as a golf course during the summer. Please pick up and take with you the remains of your bonfire. Dress warmly as this is an out-

door winter event! Come for the weekend or just for the day. The tournament is a great winter festival for the entire family. Check out the ski club’s web site for pictures, a map, admission fees, to purchase buttons, and additional information: Westby is a small town of 2,200 in western Wisconsin, rich in Norwegian tradition. It has a Scandinavian gift shop, an awardwinning creamery with a variety of cheeses and cheese curds, several antique stores and bed and breakfasts, as well as motels and restaurants nearby. Westby is located in a large Amish area, and many Amish farmers sell items as furniture, quilts, honey and maple syrup on their farms or in local shops.

award of a service-connected disability rating from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs satisfies the state requirement. In addition to signing Act 122 Walker also signed the 2017 ACT 21, establishing a Veteran Farmer Assistance and Outreach Program and creating a Veteran Farmer logotype; and 2017 Act 123, relating to the tuition grant program for National Guard Mem-

bers administered by the Department of Military Affairs.

at King, and it was made possible by the District 8 American Legion Riders. President Ray McSherry and the Riders raised over $55,000.00 which, in addition to online donations, allowed the ceremony to occur. In addition to the wreath, a card reading “Today I placed a wreath on the grave of an American hero…” was

Camp American Legion Committee Chairman Michael Burt and Department Vice Commander Todd Braun were recently in attendance at Lambeau Field to accept a donation from the Green Bay Packer Foundation. Accepting the donation from Green Bay Packer President and CEO Mark Murphy is Todd Braun. The donation will directly affect Camp American Legion. #PackersGiveBack

Special Donation for Camp

Camp Chairman Mike Burt recently presented a $2100 donation to Lilly Grundy for the purpose of refurbished cabinets and appliances.

If you want to mail the information, please send it to Dawn Brauner, Programs Coordinator/Badger Legionnaire Co-Editor, PO Box 388, Portage, WI 53901 OR email it, also to Dawn, at badger@ (Please note that we may be limited on newspaper space, however, not to worry – if your piece is not in the printed issue of The Badger Legionnaire, please look for it in the digital version located at

We’re looking forward to hearing from you soon!

Badger Legionnaire Submission Deadline Dates: January 29, 2018 February 29, 2018 April 2, 2018 June 11, 2018 July 16, 2018 August 27, 2018 October 8, 2018 November 19, 2018

WWII veterans get $1,000 discount


Photo and information submitted by Evelyn McSherry, American Legion Riders District 8 Secretary Six thousand two hundred (6200) wreaths were placed on veteran’s headstones at The Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery at King in Waupaca, Wisconsin. On December 16th, nearly 200 volunteers met at the cemetery for the 2017 Wreaths Across America Program. The King ceremony coincided with the laying of wreaths at Arlington National Cemetery. This is the 6th Wreaths Across America initiative to take place

Donation from Packer Foundation

The 2018 Badger Legionnaire Submission Deadline Dates are here! If you, your Post or your Squadron have something that you think is newsworthy and want to share it with the Legion Family across the state, please submit it for publication!

Walker Signs Several Bills favorable to Veterans Into Law

Governor Scott Walker recently signed 2017 Act 122 into law. This bill eliminates the minimum service-connected disability rating applicable for the Department of Administration's certification of disabled veteranowned businesses for state procurement and contracting purposes. Under current law, that disability rating must be a minimum of 20 percent, as awarded by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Under the bill, a person who is in receipt of any


also left at the headstone. A thank you goes out to all of The American Legion Family for their support and donations which have allowed this program to grow over the last six years.

12-day tour visiting the

Beaches of Normandy & Ireland Visit Paris, then three nights in St. Lo visiting all the Normandy WWII sights, then fly into Ireland for one week. Tour also includes Daniel OʼDonnell concert in Killarney. WWII vets receive $1000 discount. Tour Price $3795. Call today.

Vi Ranney-Yankton, SD 605-665-3596 30 years in the tour business. E-mail:



The Last


4 Athens Harold Balz K 6 Stevens Point Albert Bikowski II Lauri Heikenen II 8 Waukesha John Appenzeller V 10 Wausau Lyle Aschbrook K Donald Prehn II Edward Langseth K 11 Green Bay Larry Raether V Paul Otto K 19 Hartford Floyd Gable V Theodore Komp K Budd Reth II 20 Waterford Thomas Davey K 36 West Bend Roman Sauer K Thomas Ream V 37 Elk Mound Charles Dodge II 38 Appleton Donald Hammond V 39 Marinette Robert Begotka II Don Hawkins K Joel Setterstein K Earl Valley II Robert Harbick V 40 Bangor S A Kirkeeng K 44 Wabeno Jerry Coenen V 48 Beloit Wayne Bottger K Phillip Robison V Fredericka Tharp K 51 West Salem Donald Gensch K Robert Mulder V Roger Anderson II 52 La Crosse Michael Coady PG Carl Draheim II Robert Ealey V James Freisinger II Kenneth Gribi II Allen Gutzel John Harter James Holberg K Donald Hutzenbuehler Kenneth Konzen K Curt Marx Dale Mikshowsky V Preston Olson II Michael Osowski John Paggi II Arnold Pinski II William Reisner K Russ Stenslien K Emil Verse II Roberta Ward K Robert Weissenberger II 53 Eau Claire Ralph Guettinger II Charles Notham V Aubrey Olson K

12/17/17 10/19/17 05/10/13 03/12/17 11/08/17 08/28/17 05/02/17 11/05/17 09/30/17 01/21/17 03/09/17 07/10/17 12/11/17 10/26/17 08/08/17 02/11/17 11/23/17 08/04/17 09/12/17 10/02/17 10/18/17 10/27/17 12/12/17 11/04/17 11/10/17 11/08/17 12/02/17 11/06/17 11/15/17 11/27/17 09/28/17 03/22/17 01/24/17 07/28/16 04/04/17 03/24/17 07/11/17 08/02/17 04/24/17 08/22/17 03/21/17 07/09/17 07/23/17 09/17/17 04/04/17 09/15/17 05/30/17 10/03/16 05/28/17 02/07/17 01/14/17 11/11/17 11/18/17 12/01/17

James Bowman K 56 Fountain City Francis Zepp K Charles Kirchner V 68 Prairie du Chien Virgil Butteris II 73 Neillsville Louis Albrecht V 74 Oconto James Schroeder V 80 New Richmond Philip LaVenture K 82 Port Washington Fredrick Beck II 89 Minocqua Dennis Dahlstrom V Dale Eichelberger K James Mulhern K Jack Peterson Warren Luy II 95 Delavan John Buckles K 96 Webster Donald Breingan K 98 Cumberland Harold Johnson II Kenneth McLellan K Harold Johnson II Kenneth McLellan K 116 Coon Valley John Townsend K 120 West Allis Joseph Slowik II 121 River Falls Ed Jenkins II Donald Antiel II Donald Bray K 128 Stockbridge Daniel Hammen V 130 Sharon William Schuld K Albert Dickerson II 133 Camp Douglas Marlan Ness K Arthur Barth V 137 Turtle Lake Harold Anderson II 143 St Croix Falls Dean Sievers K 144 Albany David Dowden K 153 Pittsville Robert Brandt V John Wilke K 155 Westby Glenn Sniff K Calvin Anderson K 158 Maiden Rock Neil Sutherland K 160 Brooklyn/Oregon David Beyer PG 161 King Philip Boone II George Drivas II Norbert Glodowski K 164 Jefferson Dean Stephen K 173 Whitewater Frank Hall II/K 185 Grantsburg Otmer Anderson II 188 East Troy Lester Weiler V 189 Watertown Glenn Rieder II Earl Weihert II 191 Whitehall David Warner V Wallace Johnson K Warren Herried II 204 Ellsworth Donald Lundvall V Kenneth Dolby PG Glenn Welty V

12/12/17 11/14/17 11/06/17 01/05/17 12/09/17 11/29/17 11/18/17 11/26/17 11/02/17 09/27/17 10/14/17 12/04/17 12/13/17 11/15/17 09/09/17 08/29/17 11/16/17 08/29/17 11/16/17 12/08/17 10/29/17 11/10/17 11/20/17 11/23/17 11/16/17 11/03/17 11/26/17 11/17/17 11/20/17 11/18/17 12/4/17 02/07/17 10/17/17 11/20/17 11/16/17 11/01/17 12/9/178 12/11/17 02/14/17 11/23/17 12/05/17 10/3.0/17 11/19/17 11/07/17 11/06/17 11/05/17 12/14/17 11/15/17 11/24/17 11/25/17 10/29/17 10/06/17 11/01/17

205 Janesville Dick Lobrano II 210 Waupun Robert Schramm K Albert Kummer K 211 Florence Richard Olsen K James Olson K 216 Lodi Jack Gordon K 220 Soldiers Grove Herbert Helgerson II 225 Shell Lake Albert Rock II Elmer Anderson K 243 Plymouth Warren Price II 250 Adams James Stormoen II Ivan Perronne II 258 Little Chute Richard Borree K 260 Deerfield Marvin Coy K Vincent Cropp II 263 New London David Roberts II 274 Rib Lake Alvin Schmudlach II George Buksa K 278 Balsam Lake Richard Randall II 280 Coleman David Kostreva II 284 Holmen Raymond Purnell V 286 Oostburg Donald Brethouwer V 288 Cedarburg Willie Wright V Donald Zautcke K 295 Bloomer Loren Ellis II 296 Brookfield Thomas Glueckstein V 301 Woodville Sidney Randall II 302 Oconto Falls Donald Loberger II 306 Green Lake Paul Luehring K 308 Gays Mills Wilbur Rupp II Harlan Sanderson V 309 Kendall Harvey Weiland K 317 Wautoma Harry Peck II 331 Shorewood Ervin Ness K 333 Sun Prairie Charles Varco V 339 Almond Duane Butolph V Dick Brooks K Charles Seaman V 348 DeForest Robert Bruegger K 349 Sullivan Edward Rowland II 351 Montello Walter Bubolz II Donald Hall V 357 Bay City Donald Johnson II 358 Unity Gene Gregory K Clarence Aumann II 360 Waunakee Richard Breitenfeldt V Marvin Statz V Richard Borkenhagen V 365 Plum City Lyle Gilles II

12/07/17 11/09/17 12/14/17 08/28/17 04/12/16 12/11/17 11/17/17 12/04/17 11/25/17 12/06/17 11/26/17 12/02/17 04/17/17 11/19/17 11/17/17 11/17/17 09/06/17 11/22/17 10/19/17 11/30/17 11/07/17 11/04/17 11/06/17 11/17/17

SEPTEMBER JANUARY25, 4, 2018 2014

368 Hixton Dale Bergerson 372 Forestville Alvin Chaudoir Robert Wessel 384 Kewaskum Michael Smith 393 Edgar Floyd Heidmann 406 Milwaukee William Geiger 412 Belgium Boyd Allen 415 Milwaukee Lawrence Murray Heinz Puff 431 Three Lakes Lloyd Harris Ronald Dade 436 Wrightstown Louis Zierler 437 Mazomanie James Pailing Vernon Awes 438 Norwalk Delmar Donskey 440 Clinton Marvin Hahn Tom Beilke 444 Milwaukee Ralph Kosewski Thomas Kaczkowski 449 Brookfield Edward Uhal Buck Bertram Angelo D’Alessio 452 Spirit Phillip Scheller Harold Klessig




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457 Mequon James Bartlett Richard Davis 460 Belleville Robert Mussehl 469 Marathon Philip Ritger 471 Hatley Phillip Cherek 481 Madison Wallace Schutz 483 Allenton Russell Johnson 491 Cazenovia James Coy Edward Scheeler 499 Gordon Chester Butterfield 501 Madison Graham Armson Dewey Edwards 516 Mason Guy Kneeland 517 Dorchester Terrance Kussrow 518 Green Bay Donald Kimps William Verdonik Raymond Johnson 521 Fox Lake Gerald Tolsma Rhynold Sommers 523 Abrams Bernard Pranica 534 McFarland Dennis Dancker 544 Twin Lakes Gene Olson 2930 Portage Ed Bulebosh


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June 23-24 2018 Watertown, WI ✪ Military Aircraft, Military Vehicles & Military Vendors ✪ Military Re-enactments Each Day ✪ Living history Encampments ✪ Period music and entertainment ✪ USO Type Show with 19 pc Band – Ladies Must Swing (Sat. Only) ✪ Palmyra Community Band – Military and 40’s Music (Sun. Only)

Corrections to the Badger Legionnaire November, 2017 issue In Memoriam, Fred Berns. Fred Berns was The Badger Boys State Executive Director for 5 years, not 2 as was originally published. Welcoming the New Adjutant. Amber’s exemplary service was recognized with the Global War on Terrorism

Expeditionary Medal in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, not the Armed Forces Combat Expeditionary Medal as was originally published. Attendance to Anniversary Celebration. The Hartford Post was incorrectly identified as Post 9. It is Post 19.

JANUARY 4, 2018






In order to better communicate with you, through The Badger Legionnaire, we’d like to introduce a new email address: badger@ Please use this new address to submit any story ideas, articles and digital photos for upcoming issues of The Badger Legionnaire. We’re looking forward to hearing from you and publishing articles that you want to read! Post 306 Mark Kramer

Post 139 Mike Burt

Post 555 Greg Eirich

Post 539 Virginia Russell

Post 495 David Latimer

Post 113 Jerry Hook and Membership Chair Mike Turner

Four Chaplains Memorial Service Planned

Post 437 David Clason

HEALING WITH HORSE POWER (continued from page 4) ans do, were trained to do and still do; judge is it safe or isn’t it?” If a veteran suffering from PTSD tries to conceal the problem, the horse will keep its distance, avoiding the person, she explained. A therapist makes it clear that the horse won’t trust the person until they stop denying and let go of negative feelings. When therapy is working, veteran and animal “become very much in sync, nose to nose and shoulder to shoulder. I have them close their eyes and put their hands on the horses’ back and take deep breaths. When this is working, soon you see they’re breathing at the same pace,” Toni said. She described how an early client in the veterans therapy program had returned to college after his military service but was so disturbed by bad memories, he was constantly on edge, alert to anything out of place. “Even the scratching sounds of pencils on paper” so unnerved him, he had to write his exams in a separate room. One day the veteran was in a therapy session outdoors and, being near a major highway intersection, there was traffic noise. “We had him breathing deeply with his hands on the horse when a semitrailer approached the intersection and its tires made a loud noise on the rumble strips,” Toni said. “I

thought this was going to upset everything but he didn’t move a muscle.” Asked later, the veteran said he’d never heard the truck at all. In time his hypersensitivity was overcome. He finished school, graduated with honors, and now works as a financial planner. Waiting won’t help. In an email on Christmas Day 2014, a veteran thanked the Mattsons and their staff, writing, “I’m back to being the man I once was. This is the first Christmas in over a decade the thought of killing myself isn’t controlling my day,” he said. Delay – something that may come naturally to people in need of help – is dangerous, Toni Mattson advises, “because nobody knows how close they are to falling into the abyss.” “We have no waiting lists,” she says. “There’s no messing around. Clients do an evaluation and they’re receiving services the week after they call.” Asked about eligibility criteria she replied, “The only thing I would say is if anybody who is reading this article knows someone who is really struggling, have them search us out because we can help them. I know we can help them. We’ve done it over and over and over again.” More information about Trinity Equestrian Center’s Equine Therapy Program is available at, by calling 715-835-4530, or email toni@ Photos courtesy of Toni Mattson.

Waupun VFW Post 6709 will be hosting a service to honor and remember the sacrifice of the Four Chaplains who perished when the USS Dorchester was sank on February 3, 1943. All veterans’ organizations and their auxiliaries are invited to present their Colors and their Post flags. The service will be held at Central Wisconsin Christian School in Waupun at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, February 2, 2018.

This service remembers the four chaplains of World War II, who, each praying in his own fashion, gave up their life jackets and their lives, to help save others as their ship, the USS Dorchester, sank on February 3, 1943. The ship sank after being torpedoed by a German submarine, claiming 605 lives. Everyone is invited. A lunch will follow the service.

Contact George Baumann, 920-960-9156 or

VA DISABILITY APPEALS Tom Hagen, Attorney at Law Lt. Col., U.S. Army (Retired), JAG “A Veteran Helping Veterans” Bradley Berkland Hagen & Herbst, LLC Woodbury, MN

(507) 593-4098

January 2018 pages 1 7  
January 2018 pages 1 7  

Serving Veterans, their families and their communities.