A very warm thank you to everyone who joined us for our annual holiday party Dec. 16. It was a wonderful gathering with friends and veterans — past and present. Special thanks goes to Brig. Gen. James Blackburn Jr. and his wife for joining us, and our heartfelt gratitude goes to eight of our World War II veterans, who honored us with their presence. May you be blessed with more years to live. To their families and caregivers, we thank you, too. Once again, we just cannot thank everyone enough for joining us in our celebration.
It was a very solemn, well-organized ceremony, and I would like to congratulate and sincerely thank our adjutant, Brenda Shelton, for putting together a ceremony befitting the theme, “A Year to Remember.”
Thanks also goes to Leonard Berry for the wood-frame carvings he personally made for the WWII veterans. Bee’s Creation carved the names onto each frame, and we want to thank Ms. Beate Wickham, the CEO and owner, for always being there for the DAV. Thank you to the food and decoration committee headed by DAV Auxilliary Commander Melinda Schneider. Thank you to the management of the Cherokee Rose Country Club for allowing us to use their facility — and to Faye Morris for negotiating on DAV’s behalf. Faye and Melinda also were responsible for the sound system that was used, so thank you, ladies!
Another special thanks to Coastal Courier staff writer Randy Murray for covering the event. His story was published in the Sunday, Dec. 28 newspaper. Randy’s unwavering support to DAV is very much appreciated!
The year 2014 will be remembered for a multitude of reasons. DAV Chapter 46 continues to expand and support the ever-growing mission of taking care of those who have made sacrifices for our nation — the disabled veterans. It is such an honor to be your chapter commander. I am blessed to be part of such a great organization. Each and every day, the members of our chapter continue to surprise me with all the great work they do.
To all the veterans of our armed forces, we salute you. And to the WWII veterans in particular, we hope you realize and understand the reverence with which we honor your efforts on behalf of our country. We hope our attempt to capture some of your wartime experiences does justice to the sacrifices of you and your fellow veterans, so many of whom — all too many — are no longer with us.
Wishing you and your family a happy New Year!
— Walter Helmick Jr.
DAV Chapter 46 commander