Guests report on upcoming Legion events

RAYNE - Guests were in attendance for the February meeting of Arceneaux Post 77, American Legion, who provided information and updates of a number of upcoming Legion events.
Welcomed to the meeting were 7th District Commander Paul McGee and DEC Joe Monroe.
Monroe spoke of the upcoming 2017 Legion Oratorical Contest scheduled Sunday, Feb. 19, at Post 225 in Church Point. Competition begins at 1 p.m.
The DEC also invited legionnaires and the general public to attend the annual “Four Chaplains Sunday” program on Tuesday, Feb. 14, during the regular meeting of Post 225 in Church Point. The event has been held since 1943 and is also sometimes referred to as the “Immortal Chaplains” or the “Dorchester Chaplains”, in honor of the four United States Army chaplains who gave their lives to save other civilian and military personnel as the troop ship SS Dorchester sank on February 3, 1943, during World War II. They helped other soldiers board lifeboats and gave up their own life jackets when the supply ran out. The chaplains joined arms, said prayers, and sang hymns as they went down with the ship.
McGee gave an update of the potential realignment of districts throughout the area. He invited Post 77 to attend the last meeting on the subject to be held in March to include their input of the possible changes.
The 7th District Commander also spoke of the ongoing membership push presently in the homestretch for all posts. Renewals and new memberships are a must to keep the posts afloat.
On that note, Commander David Simon reported that membership in Post 77 now stands at about 168.
Simon went on to report a good attendance of the recent Legion-sponsored “Saturday Night Dances” and urged legionnaires and the general public to attend the fund-raising program. These dances are open to the general public. Admission is $10 per person and the music is provided from 8 or 8:30 p.m. (depending upon the band) until midnight.
A brief discussion was again held concerning the placement of a stop for the planned bus transit system connecting Crowley with Lafayette with stops in Rayne, Duson and Scott. Lee John commented he tried to make contact of the status for use of the Legion Home parking lot, but noted no response has been received. John will attempted to make contact once again before the program begins. The buses will generally follow U.S. 90 from Crowley to Lafayette and back, providing rides for a small fee. The system is tentatively planned to begin operation some time in March.
Noted during the Memorial Report, the passing of veteran Joseph “Blackie” Broussard Jr. was announced.
Under sick call, legionnaires Andrus Fontenot, Lloyd Jeffers and Gil Cormier were acknowledged.
It was announced by Commander Simon the annual Boys State program will be held June 25 until July 1 at Northwestern State University once again. Two young gentlemen have already shown interest in attending the program.
Robert Comeaux gave the report of repairs and updates completed at the Legion Home, including the repainting of many areas. Comeaux also stated repairs have been completed for the flagpole, allowing a new U.S. flag donated by the Woodmen to be raised.
Simon gave a brief report of the War Veterans Home in Jennings, noting the recent donation of hat racks for each room.
Instead of the Spring Fling, a poker run will be held as the spring fundraiser at the War Veterans Home. Prizes will be awarded, music will be provided by bands, auctions will be held, and door prizes will be presented.
Simon also reported of the Anciliary donation of towels for the construction of wheelchair bags and bibs for the War Veterans Home. He noted as of date, the group has donated over $141,000 towards the War Veterans Home since 2009.
Chairman Robert Comeaux reminded the membership that plans and contacts need to be made for the annual spring fundraiser, usually a BBQ dinner or jambalaya lunch. An update, along with ticket information will be given at the March meeting.
With no additional business, the meeting was adjourned and a delicious meal was served by the Legion cooks.

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