BUCKHANNON – Buckhannon’s American Legion Post 7 members are hoping to form a local Sons of the American Legion group.
Post 7 will have an organizational meeting Saturday, Oct. 5, at 10:30 a.m. at the American Legion Post 7 building at 16 S. Kanawha St. in Buckhannon.
Mike Wallace, member of Post 7 and the coordinator of the Sons of the American Legion, said the group is meant to help the members of the American Legion and honor veterans.
According to the American Legion’s website, “all male descendants, adopted sons and stepsons of members of The American Legion, and such male descendants of veterans who died in service during World War I or since December 7, 1941, during the delimiting periods set forth in Article IV, Section 1, of the National Constitution of The American Legion” are eligible to join the group.
“The day of his birth he can join the Sons of the American Legion,” Wallace said of potential members. “Essentially, it was originally founded to honor the service of fathers, grandparents and great-grandparents, and it has continued in that mission over the years.”
Wallace said until recently, membership into the American Legion and the Sons of the American Legion was limited to people who served in World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Grenada and Desert Storm.
“We sent a request to Congress to change the date eligibility, and Congress finally did approve it, and the Senate signed it and President Trump signed it,” Wallace said. “Anyone who served in the military and received an honorable discharge can join the American Legion if they served any time from December 7, 1941 to this morning and that includes their sons, grandsons, the S.A.L. and the auxiliary, of course.”
He said when he and his wife lived in Georgia, their Sons of the American Legion organization helped the Legion with various projects that benefitted veterans within their area.
“In Georgia, where my wife and I came from, the Sons of the American Legion built ramps for veterans who couldn’t get out of their house,” Wallace said. “Each S.A.L. project reflects the area that they are in, so they might not do the same projects everywhere, and what projects this one will do will be discussed when we find out what unique needs there are in this area.”
To form a new Sons of the American Legion, they need a minimum of 10 members to sign up to join.
“It’s a great organization, and they’ve never had one here in Buckhannon,” Wallace said. “They tried a few years back to get it going, but with the date extension for membership we are hoping this time will be different.”
Members of the Sons of the American Legion will receive a card, like an American Legion member, so it proves their membership.
“If they’re on vacation or somewhere else working they can go to any American Legion, which many of them have restaurants and utilize these places,” Wallace said.
He said it’s common for members of the S.A.L. to also become members of the American Legion and have a dual membership. If people interested in joining the S.A.L.s are unable to attend to the organizational meeting Wallace said they are welcome to drop by or email him at PMLCC1617@gmail.com.
For more information about Sons of the American Legion, generally, click here.