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Badger &“Wisconsin”


MAY 31, 2018 Vol. 95, No. 5

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.




The American Legion Department of Wisconsin


2018 Department Convention This year’s Convention is one that you don’t want to miss! Join members of The Legion Family at the 2018 Department Convention and Celebrate a Century of The American Legion.

Oshkosh Convention Center 2 N. Main Street, Oshkosh, WI 54901


• THURSDAY, JULY 12TH: Committee Meetings and Department Executive Committee Meeting • FRIDAY, JULY 13TH: District Caucuses; Convention session with engaging speakers and awards; Convention Committees reviewing and voting on proposed resolutions; Meet the Officer Candidates in Hospitality Suites • SATURDAY, JULY 14TH: Vote for your 2018-2019 Legion Officers; Convention session with more speakers and awards; Community Picnic and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at Post 70 (All Legion Family invited); Church services; Past Commanders Club Party • SUNDAY, JULY 15TH: Memorial Service at 8 am; Convention Session/Officer Installment; Post Department Executive Committee Meeting. Full Schedules are available online at Haven’t registered yet? Fill out and return the registration form in this Badger Legionnaire. See you in Oshkosh as we Celebrate a Century!

TIMOTHY LA SAGE- Born in Milwaukee, La Sage joined the Marine Corps during his senior year at Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School. From 1996-2003 he moved up in rank and was in California-Japan- East Timor and Philippians during a hostage situation of a news reporter. In 2003 Fox 2/5 found themselves deploying to Iraq as the lead element for one of the 3 spearheads assaulting Baghdad. Sergeant La Sage was assigned to a Division react platoon attached to 2nd Tank Battalion who was leading the movement through Iraq. He was the 2nd vehicle during the invasion toward Baghdad. They found themselves in extreme close battle with the enemy for 8 hours, he was shot and wounded by an RPG days earlier but remained in the fight for the duration. He has 2 Purple Hearts and 3 Navy Commendation Medals. Mr. La Sage will be one of the Friday speakers at The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin’s 100th Convention in July.

This is your registration form only, NOT your delegate form. Delegate forms are mailed to the Post 30 days prior to Convention (June 13, 2018) per the Dept. Constitution and Bylaws. It is advised however, to register and book your rooms prior to this date. Remember all Legionnaires are encouraged to attend the Department Convention, not just Delegates and Alternates. You can also register online at First Name__________________ Last Name _____________________________ Street Address _____________________________________________________ City ___________________________State_____________Zip _______________ Email _____________________________________________________________ Home Phone (__________ ) __________________________________________ Cell Phone (__________ ) ____________________________________________ Member ID # __________________ District ______________________________ AL Post # ________

Auxiliary Unit # ______


SAL Squadron # _________




Registration Fee




Reg. Fee after July 9, 2018




Total Enclosed


Make check payable to The American Legion, Dept. of Wisconsin or enter credit card information below.

The Rammer Sisters will Sing the National Anthem at Department Convention. Pictured from left to right: Jordyn, Lauryn and Taylor Rammer. The Rammers are Junior members from Daugherty-Hamilton Unit 234, Omro, and granddaughters of Dave Steinert, Post 234 Adjutant

Greetings Legion Family Members; As we prepare for the 100th Annual Amber Nikolai Depar tment Adjutant C o nve n t i o n , there are a few thoughts I’d like to share with you: As your Department Adjutant, I

DERRICK VAN ORDEN: Retired Navy SEAL, author, and film actor Derrick Van Orden will be speaking at Convention on Saturday. After a 26-year career as a U.S. Navy SEAL, Derrick retired at the rank of Senior Chief. He’s also the author of “Book of Man: A Navy Seal's Guide to the Lost Art of Manhood” and has acted in several films, including the 2012 American war film Act of Valor.

consider it an honor and a privilege to work alongside each of you as we serve Veterans, their families and communities. Please know that The American Legion Headquarters team work tirelessly day in and day out to support the mission of the American Legion. This is no different as we prepare to Celebrate the Century during our 100th De-

partment Convention. "Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much." --Helen Keller During the convention, please note that the Headquarters onsite office will be in the Oshkosh Corp room in the convention center. Please also note that when you see an (h) next to the room name on the schedules, it means



Credit Card

Card Type__________________Card # __________________________________ Expiration Date ______________ Security Code _____________ Return to: The American Legion, Dept. of Wisconsin Attn: Chris Schmidt • P.O. Box 388 • Portage, WI 53901 For available housing, please call 920-303-9200. A description of the different housing options are available at

the meeting will be held in one of the Best Western Hotel’s breakout rooms. We hope you will enjoy the 100th Department Convention. We have some great speakers lined up for this year’s stage, including but not inclusive to: Timothy La Sage a highly decorated Marine Corp Veteran; Patrick Kilgore, Jr. State Director

(Wisconsin) U.S. Department of Labor Veterans’ Employment & Training Service; and Derrick Van Orden who spent over 20 years in the United States Navy SEAL Teams serving multiple tours in Afghanistan, Iraq and other hotspots around the globe. Looking forward to seeing you in Oshkosh as we Celebrate the Century!




“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

Legion Family, Spring conferences are behind us and I want to remind all Vietnam Veterans Laurel Clewell Department Commander to get tested for the Vietnam parasite. Remember that you have to request the blood test. As I reflect on the American Legion County Youth Govern-

“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 Laumann, 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

MAY 31, 2018

ment Day, I am reminded that this day was designed to teach students about the importance of our government. The American Legion, much like County Youth Government Day, has the Legion College to teach the Legion Family about the government in our Legion. The ultimate goal of County Youth Government Day and Legion College is to pass on this education and create a

cleaner and more effective government. In July, at the State Convention, delegates will have the right and the honor to elect your Legion Leadership. As in my speech to our County Youth, I expressed the need to ask questions and getting to know the candidates before you vote. Delegates, please make a well informed vote. Good luck to all the candidates.

Thank you to all family members that worked to get Wisconsin to 100% membership. DON’T STOP NOW. We need to grow so we can carry the Legacy forward. Wisconsin Legion needs to reach out to the veterans in our state and increase our ranks. We need to Know to Grow. May God Bless You and The American Legion.

SONS OF THE AMERICAN LEGION Greetings American Legion Families, What it means to be a SON: Each line of Chris Sherman the Sons of The Detachment American LeCommander gion Preamble defines what it means to be a SON. Memorial Day is an opportunity for us to live up to those words. “To preserve the memories of our former members and the association of our members and forefathers in the Great Wars.” Memorial Day is when we remember the fallen, I and many other squadron members are honored to be able to march with The American Legion veterans, to place flags on the graves and remember those who gave all for our freedom. Give your sons the opportunity to be a SON. When given the opportunity, the SONS can have a huge impact. Last year alone, Wisconsin Sons of The American Legion members had over a million dollars’ worth of impact. How do we know this? Our Squadron Consolidated Report Forms. Each Squadron is required to submit a Consolidated Report form, no matter how active they are. The forms were mailed to each squad-

ron and are available on www. and www.WISAL. org. Show us your Squadron’s impact - reports are due by June 6, 2018. With the help of our American Legion Family we continue to grow. One area where that is very evident is our Josh Dog and G.I. Josh Dog program. Josh is a plush dog with a mission to help hospitalized children and G.I. Josh helps the children of deploying military members. A big thank you to the Squadrons and the Legion Family for helping us with

our Josh and G.I. Josh program. Money is still needed to support the program as deployments take place all across Wisconsin. Visit to find out how you can help. Are you looking to learn more, to be better Sons? Take advantage of training opportunities like the Wisconsin Legion College Details are at, and, for The American Legion Basic Training, at You will be glad you did. There are lots of exciting things coming up. The American Legion

will be celebrating 100 years and Wisconsin Sons will mark our 50th Annual Convention in Oshkosh July 13-15, 2018. Make sure your Squadron is represented, send your delegate registration forms in now. Stay informed - subscribe to our email notifications at It is truly an honor to serve as your Detachment Commander, I cannot thank you and the American Legion Family enough for all the help I have received for my commander project. I truly feel blessed.

WDVA SECRETARY For the last couple of months, Veterans Field Representatives Steve Janke and Tiffany Koehler Dan Zimmerman and I have been WDVA Secretary visiting Veterans Service Organizations’ district meetings. From Green Bay to Chippewa Falls, to Kenosha to Lublin, we have enjoyed warm welcomes and engaging conversation as we all work together to grow our Veterans community. Thank you for your hospitality and also for your great questions. At my visits, I’ve been discussing our very successful legislative session, particularly AB 811/SB 679 (signed into law as Act 318). It’s a $6.8 million talent attraction joint effort between the WDVA, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and the Depart-

ments of Workforce Development and Tourism. The goal of Act 318 is to bring millennials, Wisconsin university alumni, and, most importantly for us, transitioning military personnel and their families to Wisconsin to fill critical job openings statewide. With overall unemployment and Veteran unemployment at all-time lows (2.9% and 1.2%, respectively), opportunities for Veterans are abound across Wisconsin. Hundreds of Wisconsin employers have ear-marked several thousand jobs specifically for Veterans and listed them on Act 318 has charged WDVA with leading the service member and family recruitment effort with the focus on getting separating service members and their spouses job commitments in Wisconsin well

in advance of separation so that they use their final military-funded household goods shipment entitlement to move to Wisconsin. It won’t be easy, and I’ve heard the comment way too many times: “This talent attraction initiative has nothing to do with me and my post. All those jobs aren’t anywhere near us.” But I see it quite differently. First, Legionnaires statewide can draw separating service members and their families to their towns by having their local businesses register their available jobs on However, one thing is fairly certain, if your local employers and their jobs are not registered, it is highly unlikely that any service members will happen to stumble across those jobs available in your area. Also, when a service member decides to relocate to a particular

place, we intend to provide them with information on active Veterans Service Organizations in the area. These are prospective members in your organization. So, do nothing and talent attraction might not help you. However, be proactive with your local businesses and jobs, and your chances of talent attraction impacting you positively increase exponentially. Therefore, I highly recommend you engage your local businesses. Explain the merits of hiring Veterans and why we want those that continue to serve after their service living in your respective community. Talk to those local businesses and encourage them to register open positions on to help make communities across the state stronger for Veterans and their families.

MAY 31, 2018



Mary’s Project – Cabin for Families of the Fallen at Camp American Legion

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

First, the Chapin Family would like to thank all of our friends from the American Legion, American Legion Auxiliary and the 40/8 for their support and prayers. Mary and I traveled the state and nation for more than 45 years. She was a strong supporter of Camp American Legion, The Salvation Army, and The USO, along with many other groups that help people in need. Mary, an avid reader, read the article “A Special Cabin at Camp American Legion” in the March 22, 2018 edition of the Badger Legionnaire and immediately liked the program and

wanted to help. As we discussed how we could do this, Mary, who was diagnosed with end stage lung disease in 2015, suggested asking friends not to send flowers on her passing, but to make a donation to the Cabin for the Families of the Fallen at Camp American Legion. Mary’s project has already raised $2500.00 to be presented to the American Legion Foundation for Camp in May. We urge others to consider similar projects.



The 63rd annual American Legion 8th District King Day Pilgrimage will be held on Sunday, June 17th at the Wisconsin Veterans Home in King, Wisconsin. The American Legion, American Legion Auxiliary, American Legion Riders, and Sons of the American Legion members from across the state, as well as their guests, will visit King and participate in a picnic with members of the Veterans Home. The general public is also

invited and encouraged to attend. If you have any questions regarding the annual American Legion, 8th District Pilgrimage on Sunday, June 17th, please call: Ron Fregien (715) 459-8571. If you wish to help sponsor the broiled chicken dinner for King Members, please send a check made out to: American Legion Auxiliary Unit 161; Attention: Nancy Neuroth; N2710 Lind Lane; Waupaca, WI 54981



Annual Pilgrimage

Thank you, Past State Commander, Jim Chapin

The American Legion & The American Legion Auxiliary The Sons of the American Legion The American Legion Riders

OUR VISION Giving Wisconsin Veterans the pathway to quality of life

Sunday | June 17, 2018 This event is sponsored by the 8th District American Legion

OUR VALUES Honor and Stewardship

10am - 1pm

Music in the park by the KNX band


Charcoal broiled chicken dinner will be served to King members in the park. (In case of inclement weather, food will be served in the dining rooms.) King members must wear their colored name tags. Nonmembers may purchase a meal for $8 adults, $4 children 12 and under.


Parade around the grounds starting at Olson Hall and ending past Ainsworth Hall.


Formal program.

Refreshments and food will be available at the concession stand in the park.

The Ant Hill Mob donates $10,500 to Camp American Legion Adjutant Amber Nikolai and Camp Chairman Mike Burt recently accepted a $10,500 donation for Camp American Legion from The Ant Hill Mob MC LTD. Pictured with Nikolai and Burt, from left to right, are Jim Bonde (Former President), Fuzzy Bellin (Former President & Committee Chairman), Perry Bunnell (Vice President & Committee Chairman), Rob Voss (Former President, Board Member & Committee Chairman), and Scotty Pankratz (President AHM). The Ant Hill Mob MC LTD is a group of men and women motorcycle enthusiasts. Our roots date back about 50 years when a small group of young men were labeled as The Ant Hill Mob which was from a HannaBarbera comic. Needless to say the name stuck. In the early 80's we organized and gained LTD status. Around this time we started doing charity events such as Bike Shows and Charity Rides. Through community support we have raised well over $1 million dollars for local charities in our area. Ten years ago we started another event called the Multi County Fun Run. As this

is a statewide event we thought it was fitting to choose a state charity to be the recipient for the event. With so many eligible organizations, we discuss and choose a charity that touches our heart. Camp American Legion was that charity for our 2017 event. Through the years our organization has grown to around 100

members and we take pride in our successes in helping charity organizations. One of our club objectives is to better the image of the motorcycle community. We will continue to do our part for years to come in an effort make our world a better place. History submitted by Scott Pankratz, President, Ant Hill Mob MC LTD

Coffee cake will be served to members in all the buildings in celebration of this special event. Sponsored by American Legion Auxiliary.

To provide a wonderful chicken dinner to veterans please make checks payable to ALA Unit 161 and send donations to: Nancy Neuroth N2710 Lind Lane | Waupaca, WI 54981. In the event of rain, the program will be held in the Marden Multi-Purpose Room. Smoking at WVH-King is limited to outdoor designated smoking areas only. SMOKING IS NOT ALLOWED IN THE PARK. N2665 County Road QQ | King, WI 54946 |

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Meet and Greet with National Commander Denise Rohan

The First District will host a meet and greet with National Commander Denise Rohan on Sunday, August 5th, 2018, at Post 544 (989 Legion Drive, Twin Lakes, WI) from 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm. Everyone is invited to meet the National Commander!


The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin Headquarters staff pictured with a plaque recently presented by the 10th District “in appreciation of all their hard work and support.” (Paul Beseler). From left to right: Carol Swanson, Angie Chappell, Chris Schmidt, Dwight Johnson, Amber Nikolai, Dawn Brauner and Sheri Hicks. It is our pleasure serving the veterans who make up The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin.



• Sixty-five (65) participants from nine (9) clubs registered for The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin’s 2018 Junior Shooting Sports Postal Match. Of these 65, 63 returned used targets. SENIOR DIVISION SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS • 1st place, $1000 scholarship and trophy will be awarded to Dalton Dobbs from the Pine River Sports Association/RC 4H Club, Richland Center, total score: 268.6. • 2nd place, $750 scholarship and trophy will be awarded to Sylvia Peterson from the Viola Sportsman’s Club Jr. Rifle Team, Viola, total score: 250.2. • 3rd place, $250 scholarship and trophy will be awarded to Fin Weber, Walworth County 4H, Elkhorn, total score: 249.5. THE AMERICAN LEGION DEPARTMENT OF WISCONSIN


MAY 31, 2018

JUNIOR DIVISION TROPHY WINNER(S) DUE TO A TIE • Alayna Culver, Viola Sportsman’s Club Jr Rifle Team, Viola, total score: 214.3. • Ian Samuelson, Gary E Smith Shooting Sports Program, Mount Horeb, total score: 214.3. BEGINNER DIVISION TROPHY WINNER • Eli Muckler, Pine River Sports Association/RC 4H Club, Richland Center, total score: 232.3. TEAM TROPHY WINNER: • Viola Sportsman’s Club Jr Rifle Team, with a combined score of their top four shooters totaling 881.11 will receive a trophy for top honors. • Langlade County 4H, Team 1 had a 2nd place team score of 845.16. • Washington County 4H came in 3rd with 810.4 points. • Plymouth Legion Air Rifle Club took 4th place with 807.9 points.

Your Department Service Office Continues to Serve Veterans

The Department Service Office is led by The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin Department Service Officer James Fialkowski. As you can see below, they have recovered over $21,000,000 in monthly benefits over the last year. Note the impact this has on the economy!

Thirty-three (33) scholarships to be awarded: Eleven (11) $250 to sophomores Eleven (11) $300 to juniors Eleven (11) $750 to seniors A total of 2,776 students registered for the exam, which was open from April 2, 2018 through April 13, 2018. Of these 2,776, 148 scored either a zero (0) or did not register a score at all, bringing the total reviewable exams to 2,628*. Breakdown by District: First: 136 Second: 359 Third: 257 Fourth: 201 Fifth: (Fourth and Fifth Districts are combined) Sixth: 211 Seventh: 615 Eighth: 338 Ninth: 83 Tenth: 286 Eleventh: 64 Twelfth: 226 199 Schools were represented 10 students indicated they are homeschooled *2,881 students participated in 2017, 3,933 in 2016

First District:

Senior Lukas Hunter, Oconomowoc High School Junior Nicole Adams, Catholic Memorial High School Sophomore Evan Erickson, Brookfield East High School

Second District:

Senior Jacob Anderson, Kettle Moraine Lutheran HS Junior Nicholas Dreier, Port Washington High School Sophomore Abram Hopp, Sheboygan North High School

Third District:

Senior Parker Witt, Sun Prairie High School Junior Claire Darmstadter, Sun Prairie High School Sophomore Dylan Haas, DeForest High School

Fourth District:

Senior Caitlin Wood, Nicolet High School Junior Natalie Norton, Greendale High School Sophomore Victoria Fernandez, Pius XI High School

Sixth District:

Senior Hunter Rusch, Oshkosh West High School Junior Benjamin Marmor, Chilton High School Sophomore Madison Grasee, Valders High School

Seventh District: Senior Courtney Fanta, Hillsboro High School Junior Lauren Lansing, La Crosse Central High School Sophomore Aaron Honish, Tomah High School Eighth District:

Senior Alexandra Anderson, Stevens Point Area Senior HS Junior Matthew Schwitzer, Shawano High School Sophomore Michaela Schnell, Shawano High School

Ninth District:

Senior Rachel Rabas, Denmark High School Junior Zamzam Nur, Green Bay East High School Sophomore Andrew Stoeberl, Bay Port High School

Tenth District:

Senior Joel Spitzer, Cochrane-Fountain City High School Junior Holly Groell, Osseo-Fairchild High School Sophomore Anneka Rogers, Menomonie High School

Eleventh District: Senior Alec Veal, Medford High School Junior Hailey Dykstra, Chequamegon High School Sophomore Grace Wegner, Butternut High School Twelfth District:

Senior Kristen Jarman, Northwestern High School Junior Nikki Blair, Winter High School Sophomore Ryleigh Hill, Northwestern High School

Sheboygan County Youth Government Day

LUMP SUM RETRO AND RECOVERY FROM MAY 1ST, 2017 – APRIL 30TH, 2018 Average Monthly Benefits ($) Recovered. Burial 11,254.82 Compensation 15,356,911.37 Pensions 2,288,141.95 DIC 1,254,373.53 Education 2,028,233.74 Voc Rehab 117,003.06 Automobile 1,965.59 Total 21,057,884.06 Annual Federal Dollars $252,694,608.72 Annual Federal Dollar Circulated Value to WI $1,768,862,261.04

County Youth Government Day was held in Sheboygan County on Wednesday, April 18, 2018 at the Sheboygan County Court House and other county buildings nearby. Approximately 60 students from Sheboygan Christian High School, Plymouth High School and Random Lake High School were in attendance along with their teachers. The program was managed by Sheboygan County Council YGD Chairperson Mike Liebelt. Students were briefed on County Government initially and then broken down into 3 groups. Each group rotated through the County Safety Building, County Administrative Building and County Court House. (Submitted by Greg Eirich, Second District Commander)

MAY 31, 2018


Armed Forces Day 2018 at MAHM

Written and Submitted by Jerry Lauby Approximately 500 people from the Fond du Lac area attended Armed Forces Day 2018 at the Malone Area Heritage Museum (MAHM) on Saturday, May 19th to honor and pay respect to the 9 area (Holyland) Korean War Veterans who were killed in action, and the 64 veterans in attendance, including those no longer with us who served in Korea or served elsewhere during the Korean war era. In addition to honoring those who have served, a memorial was unveiled to remember veterans serving as far back as the Civil War. The guest speaker for the event was Amber Nikolai, Adjutant for the Department of Wisconsin American Legion. She spoke of the importance that we honor our Veterans at events like this as they have earned it and deserve it. Nikolai also noted that it was heartwarming to see such a huge crowd in attendance; stating the Color Guard and Firing Squad were precise in all movements. Jim Jolly also accompanied Adjutant Nikolai. Jolly is a US Marine Veteran who resides at the Wisconsin Veterans Facility at King. Jolly served with the Marines in the “Battle of Chosin Reservoir.” Historians consider the battle of the Chosin Reservoir to be the single most savage battle of modern warfare. For the chosen few who lived through it, it was an experience they will never forget. Jim Jolly, along with his fellow Marines, participated in that two week struggle for survival, in the freezing North Korean landscape, and faced overwhelming odds. On 14 November 1950, a cold front from Siberia descended over the Chosin Reservoir. Temperatures fell to minus 40 degrees and the Marines were surrounded by an enemy who outnumbered them almost 8 to 1. Chinese soldiers were com-

ing in front of you, in back of you, right in the middle of you, according to one Marine. There were so many Chinese that some positions were overrun under the eerie luminescence of drifting flares, moonlight, and clouds of whipping snow. The fighting turned to the most primitive and savage hand-to-hand combat. The battle was fought over some of the roughest terrain during some of the hardest winter conditions of the Korean War. The cold weather was accompanied by frozen ground, creating considerable danger to frostbite casualties, icy roads, and weapons malfunctions. Medical supplies froze, morphine syrettes had to be defrosted in a medic’s mouth before they could be injected; frozen blood plasma was useless on the battlefield. Lubrication in the guns gelled and rendered them useless in battle. Likewise, the springs on the firing pins would not strike hard enough to fire the round, or would jam. THE STAR OF KOTO-RI Many stories surround the epic 14 day battle, but one stood out clearly to Jim Jolly and his fellow Marines from the 1st, 5th, and 7th Regiments of the First Marine Division. So inspirational was the event that the surviving members, who would later form the Chosin Few, would incorporate it as their logo. It's the story of a lone, tiny star in a cloud filled sky. That lonely star would provide hope and inspiration, just when the Marines would need it most. When the Marines joined the 1st Regiment in Koto-ri on 6 December 1950, they were three quarters of the way to completing an epic journey. One major obstacle lay in front of the Marines in the form of a destroyed section of bridge at Changjin Power plant, which needed to be replaced. Then, Mother Nature decided she wasn't going to cooperate. A thick, blinding snow began to fall at dusk. The Air Force was going to air drop

eight 2000-pound bridge sections that could be easily built and put into place, but the skies would need to clear up if the planes were going to see the drop zones at a makeshift airstrip at Koto-ri so the bridge sections could be loaded on to trucks and taken south to the power plant. On December 7th and 8th it snowed and the temperatures hovered around minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit with the windchill factor around minus 60 degrees. When dusk fell on December 8, the storm had not abated. The situation did not look good for the Marines. They needed the bridge sections. They needed close air support. They needed clear skies in order to get them. As the evening wore on, the snow kept falling. Marines still looked to the skies in hopes of seeing a break in the clouds. Just when it looked like all hope for the storm to subside was about to disappear, a faint, little white dot could be seen through the falling snowflakes around 2145. The small star provided a big beacon of hope for the Marines at Koto-ri. The next morning aircraft brought in the bridge sections along with needed close air support. To some, it meant that God loved the Marine Corps, and he wouldn't let a little thing like bad weather defeat them after fighting so valiantly against insurmountable odds. To others it meant nothing more than luck. The timing was just a coincidence. To the men of the “Chosin Few”, that tiny, little star shined so brightly when they needed it most, that it would become the organization's logo in 1983. Within the star, the letters CF can be clearly seen. It was drawn by Anna C. Urband, in memory of a carrier pilot and dear friend who was lost while on a mission at the Chosin Reservoir. To Jim Jolly and the Marines on the Chosin Reservoir, we salute you and thank you for your service to our country.


David Wischer Candidate for Department Vice Commander David Wischer requests your support as he announces his candidacy for the High Office of Department Vice Commander, to be elected and announced at the Annual Department Convention in Oshkosh Wisconsin, July 12th – 15th, 2018. Wischer is a Vietnam Era Army Veteran, serving from 19741977. He is a 37 year Honorary Life Member of the H.A. Todd Jr. Wisconsin Motor Post #537 in Milwaukee where he was a 100% Commander for two years and also a 100% Membership Chairman for eight years, and is currently serving as Post Parliamentarian. Wischer has also served as the Fourth District Sergeant at Arms; and organized and chaired many fundraising and Troop & Family Support initiatives within the Fourth District and Milwaukee County. He was recognized by Nationals for his efforts in revitalizing Fifth District’s Post #479. He was the Parade Marshall for the 2010 National Convention that was held in Milwaukee; he proudly served as Department Sergeant at Arms for three years and was a Member of the Department Membership Committee for 7 years, serving one year as Vice Chairman. Wischer has served 2 years on the Department Fundraising Committee, and is currently Chairman and Consultant to the Department

Finance Committee. He is currently a member of the National VA&R Committee; is a graduate of The American Legion ALEI Course, and has completed the Basic and Intermediate Courses of the Wisconsin American Legion College. Wishcer is a recipient of the “Badger Big 10” Award for Membership recruiting; is an active volunteer at Badger Boys State and is the Head Sergeant at Arms for the Department Regional and State Oratorical Contests. He is also a Member of the Past Department Sergeant at Arms Club, the Past Commanders Club, the Department Golf Committee and a Member of Voiture #1519 of the 40/8. David’s wife, Trish, of 41 years, sons Steve and James and grandsons Ethan and Jack are Members of The American Legion Family, and support him in his efforts. He also has the support of his Post, the Fourth District and the Milwaukee County Council. When not volunteering his time to The Legion and Legion Family, Wischer is employed as the General Manager at Schmidt/Kil-bac Supply Company in Milwaukee, where he has worked for 33 years. “D”edicated “A”ctive “V”olunteer “I”nvolved in the “D”epartment: This is what describes “DAVID” Wischer ~ Thank you for your support and hope to see everyone at the Convention in Oshkosh.

Todd Fanta Candidate for Department Chaplain

Pictured at Armed Forces Day MAHM are Tim Koenigs, Legionnaire with Post 454 and Armed Forces Day Event Committee Chairman; Jim Jolly, US Marine Veteran and member of the Chosin Few; Amber Nikolai, Department Adjutant; and Jerry Lauby, 6th District Commander.

Todd Fanta announces his candidacy for the office of Assistant Department Chaplain. Todd is a member of the O.L. ArnoldD.K. Slaton Post 100 in Sparta. He first joined The American Legion in 1981 as a member of John Wayne Post 79 in Heilbronn, Germany. He attended the International Convention at Der Sauerland Stein while stationed there. He served in the US Army from 1967-1992 as a Chaplain. Since his time in the Army he has served as a Pastor, Psychiatric Nursing As-

sistant and 6 years as a Combat Life Instructor. Todd has over 30 years of professional management experience, over 25 years as a Career Military Officer and excellent oral and written communications. Todd is a 6th generation farmer on the same land started by his ancestors. He is a member of the DAV, VFW, Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels and the Masonic Lodge. He is looking forward to taking an active role in The American Legion, Department of Wisconsin.


6 Stevens Point Stanley Mijal II Richard Manthe II Ivan Phillis II 9 Wisconsin Rapids Ray Lecy II 10 Wausau Fred Mehre K George Wagner K 11 Green Bay Robert Melendy II Clyde Baker II William Krutz PG 13 Richland Center James Miller V John Albrecht II Herbert Moore K Mainard Holtz II 14 Iola Chester Pederson K 33 Neenah Clayton Thoss PG 35 Evansville Melvin Arnold V 40 Bangor Eldred Schaller II Ralph Lounsbrough V Edmund Knudtson V 41 Kaukauna Leo Eimmerman II Bruce Maki V Roy Wentzel II 42 Platteville Richard Dagnon K Bernard Thompson K 44 Wabeno Ronald Blawat K 48 Beloit Kenneth Harper II 53 Eau Claire Edward Frasl II Kenneth Stanford II 54 Marshfield Mike Wunrow II Donald Anderson K 59 Stoughton Wayne Aaberg V Richard hanson II 63 Clintonville Alvin Suehring K 64 Ladysmith Loren Klar V 67 Lake Mills Ralph Shoemaker II 73 Neillsville Joseph Kreitlow K 74 Oconto Wesley Borchert II 77 Chippewa Falls Calvin Kraemer K 83 Sheboygan Andrew Giesen K Robert Loebbaka V 93 Tomahawk Dale Strebig K 95 Delavan Charles Bish II 97 Dodgeville John Martell II 98 Cumberland William Manowski K


04/17/18 03/29/18 05/06/18 05/01/18 04/14/18 04/19/18 04/12/18 04/21/18 05/05/18 04/10/18 04/30/18 05/01/18 11/28/17 04/22/18 04/17/18 05/14/18 02/20/18 04/15/18 04/24/18 04/22/18 02/05/18 05/02/18 01/18/18 03/14/18 03/08/18 04/17/18 04/27/18 06/28/17 04/14/18 05/01/18 04/03/18 02/09/18 05/10/18 03/19/18 04/20/18 05/11/18 5/9/18 04/16/18 04/28/18 05/06/18 05/10/18 04/07/18 04/18/18 05/14/18

V Gordon Greener II Henry Betzel V Donald DeGidio K 100 Sparta Robert Leveruch II 106 Seymour Benjamin Jahn K Dennis Cheslock V John Landwehr K 117 Shawano Lowell Oberle K 118 Thorp Andrew Shuk II 121 River Falls Allan Moon K 125 Chilton William Hertel K Robert Schuh II 128 Stockbridge Herbert Groeschel II 134 Boscobel Richard Collins V 137 Turtle Lake Stephen Vorwald V 143 St Croix Falls James Olson V John Thompson II 146 Beaver Dam William Bohl K John Oman K Brian Roedl K 148 Bloomington Walter Hampton K 149 Sheboygan Falls Robert Wield K 154 Mondovi Allen Lehman V John Lunderville II 159 Cadott Rudolph Heinle II 162 Alma Center Darold Strandberg K 167 Sauk City Charles Wipperfurth K 171 Union Grove Gerald Streit V Howard Preston V 179 Chetek Darold Harris K 180 Milwaukee Thomas Rozga II/K 188 East Troy Robert Harryman K 189 Watertown Earl Maas II 200 Black River Falls Robert Hunter 204 Ellsworth Ralph Schommer K James Molitor K 214 Darlington Howard Nigh V 220 Soldiers Grove Jerry Dull V 224 Alma Dave Abraham V 233 Waterloo Lawrence Ward V 236 Algoma Keith Haasch K 253 Spring Green William Gates K 258 Little Chute Gary Rollo V 262 Luxemburg James Deterville V 263 New London Harland Guyette K 267 New Auburn Dale Herrick II 268 Bruce Charles Morris K 302 Oconto Falls Wayne Damp K 325 Goodman Carl Nollenberg K

04/26/18 04/28/18 01/07/18 03/30/18 04/15/18 05/09/18 05/12/18 11/02/17 04/30/18 04/30/18 04/17/18 05/01/18 04/29/18 06/10/17 04/16/18

Willard Jerue 333 Sun Prairie Murry House Richard Dary 336 Onalaska Daniel Haines 337 Pulaski Ed Curran Harry Slezewski 338 Cedar Grove Lester Schultz Lamont Kaland 355 Grafton Donald Franzen Harold Walsh 370 Wild Rose Rodney Radloff 375 Mukwonago Louis Kritz Edwin Siebert 393 Edgar Edwin Kurtzweil 401 Cambria Raymond Niehoff

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406 Milwaukee Carlton Burgess II 412 Belgium James Sprader V Howard Arndt K 413 Crivitz Richard Julian II 423 Neshkoro Donald Moldenhauer V 435 Superior William Johnson V 449 Brookfield David Soller V Paul Kustermann V Patrick Gordon V Henry Kurz K 462 Adell Wesley Mulder II 469 Marathon Alvin Jansen K 470 Saukville Charles Watry V Wilmer Helm II Dave Steszak V

SEPTEMBER MAY 31, 25, 2018 2014 04/30/18 04/12/18 04/03/18 04/11/18 05/13/18 04/12/18 04/10/18 08/15/17 04/25/18 05/11/18 04/12/18 04/24/18 01/22/18 02/05/18 12/11/17

479 Milwaukee Hollis Berry Oliver Massey 483 Allenton John German 492 Rothschild Roy Syring 501 Madison Peter Macaluso 511 Ridgeland Eldon Luer 519 Stetsonville Jerry Doyle Reuel Thompson 521 Fox Lake Wayne Pillsbury 524 White Lake Edward Wurzer Earl Clay 526 Hazel Green John Uthe 534 McFarland John Garner


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04/28/18 05/16/18





One and done enrollment! No

02/22/18 04/03/18 05/02/18

re-enrollment needed!

04/18/18 04/30/18 04/15/18 05/10/18 04/24/18 04/12/18




04/16/18 05/10/18

For Online Activation Visit:

04/18/18 03/30/18 02/26/18 04/17/18

Endorsed by Your American Legion Department




04/10/18 04/06/18 04/12/18 04/29/18 04/24/15 04/07/18 05/10/18 04/28/18 04/02/18

On Armed Forces Day, May 19, 2018, Legion Riders from Districts 1, 2 and 4/5 were honored to lead the Support the Troops Ride from New Berlin, WI to the Harley Davidson Museum in Milwaukee. This year we had a special guest as we were joined in leading the ride by Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. (Submitted by Don Stone, Historian American Legion Riders District 1, Wisconsin)

5/8/18 05/03/18 05/11/18 04/22/18 04/27/18 04/11/18 09/24/17

Come enjoy a scenic ride led by Freedom Feet's own Gary Rudy. The American Legion's Legacy Scholarship Fund provides college scholarship money to children of post 9/11 veterans who died on active duty, or have a combined VA disability rating of 50% of greater.

MAY 31, 2018



Post 300 Cdr Arl Rudie

Post 42 Cdr Paul Budden • Membership Chairman Terry Woolf



Post 524 Cdr Dale Oatman

On Saturday, April 7, 2018 the Edwards-Foye American Legion Post 534, McFarland, recognized the service of 19 local veterans as part of the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War. The honorees were: Front row, seated, L-R: Norman Sannes; Larry Moe; Dale Sankey; Katherine Durant; Dale Everett; Gregory Egner; Charles Egner; David Cockings; Back row, standing, L-R: Gary Moe; Charles Swenson; Mark Hoefling; Gary Smith; David Johnson, Robert Hargraves; Tom Puskarich, Jr.; Steven Falkenstein; Marvin Benkowski; Robert Schoville; Douglas Hass

Post 193 Cdr John Bemis

Post 322 Cdr Greg Regalia

Post 48 Cdr Russel Sallet

Post 257 Cdr Jo Salava

Post 41 Cdr Robert Kelly

Post 244 Cdr Frank Buress

Post 35 Cdr David Burrow

Post 457 Cdr Charles Friedlein


Wallis-Hinker-Brux Post 238 Greenwood, WI held their annual Legion Birthday Dinner on March 18, 2018. Two long-time members were recognized. Pictured are, from left, Dennis (Pete) Bogdonovich (50 yrs) and Donald Lindner (60 yrs). 2017 Badger Boys State representatives, sponsored by Post 238, were invited to share their experience. All three were grateful for having the opportunity to attend Badger Boy State and agreed it was a life-changing experience - one they will reference as they move into college and on to their chosen careers. Pictured left to right are Post Commander Dave Boe, Adam Mueller, Cole Lindner, and Coby Schuck.




The Plymouth Ladewig-Zinkgraf American Legion Post 243 hosted their 66th annual Past Commanders Dinner. The Post not only recognizes past commanders, but members with continuous membership, Post member achievements, Post projects and accomplishments. Pictured L-R Auxiliary member Kathy Halloran; Dennis Halloran, Kathy’s husband and a recipient of the Post’s Legionnaire of the Year award; State Commander Laurel Clewell; Post Commander Kelly Wilfer; Legionnaire Angela Halloran-Kalsbeek; SAL Member Mike Kalsbeek and Legionnaire Norman Halloran (50 year continuous member).


Bob Borszich, Commander of Hawley Dieckhoff American Legion Post 33, recently presented Legionnaire Clifford Zeinert his 70-year membership award.

Past Department Commander Lloyd Wagener was presented with a special meritorious award for his 66 years of service to the American Legion. This award was given to him at the 2nd District Spring Conference hosted by the West Bend American Legion Post 36 on April 28. He is shown here with 2nd District Commander Greg Eirich. Photo by Tom Orval

Commander Fred Jourdeans of Post 432, Hammond presents Dan Helmueller with his 50 year Certificate.

May 2018 pages 1 7  

Serving Veterans, their families and their communities.

May 2018 pages 1 7  

Serving Veterans, their families and their communities.