American Legion

Post 196

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Veterans


Mission

The American Legion was chartered and incorporated by Congress in 1919 as a patriotic veterans organization devoted to mutual helpfulness. It is the nation’s largest wartime veterans service organization, committed to mentoring youth and sponsorship of wholesome programs in our communities, advocating patriotism and honor, promoting strong national security, and continued devotion to our fellow servicemembers and veterans. Hundreds of local American Legion programs and activities strengthen the nation one community at a time. American Legion Baseball is one of the nation’s most successful amateur athletic programs, educating young people about the importance of sportsmanship, citizenship and fitness. The Operation Comfort Warriors program supports recovering wounded warriors and their families, providing them with "comfort items" and the kind of support that makes a hospital feel a little bit more like home. The Legion also raises millions of dollars in donations at the local, state and national levels to help veterans and their families during times of need and to provide college scholarship opportunities. The American Legion is a nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization with great political influence perpetuated by its grass-roots involvement in the legislation process from local districts to Capitol Hill. Legionnaires’ sense of obligation to community, state and nation drives an honest advocacy for veterans in Washington. The Legion stands behind the issues most important to the nation's veterans community, backed by resolutions passed by volunteer leadership. The American Legion’s success depends entirely on active membership, participation and volunteerism. The organization belongs to the people it serves and the communities in which it thrives.

Post 196 Officers

Commander - Jim Feather
First Vice - Joe Fetti
Second Vice - Dave Slvika
Adjutant - Tod Carney
Sergeant of Arms - Tony Borrelli

Preamble to the Constitution

FOR GOD AND COUNTRY WE ASSOCIATE OURSELVES TOGETHER
FOR THE FOLLOWING PURPOSES:
To uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America;
To maintain law and order;
To foster and perpetuate a one hundred percent Americanism;
To preserve the memories and incidents of our associations in the Great Wars;
To inculcate a sense of individual obligation to the community, state and nation;
To combat the autocracy of both the classes and the masses;
To make right the master of might;
To promote peace and goodwill on earth;
To safeguard and transmit to posterity the principles of justice, freedom and democracy;
To consecrate and sanctify our comradeship by our devotion to mutual helpfulness.



Sons of the American Legion


The National Public and Media Communication Commission is excited to share with you the next video in the series. We proudly support our Veterans and their families. Join us and help improve the lives of our heroes. Sons Video

Founded in 1932, Sons of The American Legion exists to honor the service and sacrifice of Legionnaires.
S.A.L. members include males of all ages whose parents or grandparents served in the U.S. military and were eligible for American Legion membership. Members of The American Legion, American Legion Auxiliary and Sons of The American Legion comprise the Legion Family, which has a combined membership of nearly 4.2 million.

Although Sons has its own membership, the organization is not a separate entity. Rather, S.A.L. is a program of The American Legion. Many Legionnaires hold dual membership in S.A.L.

S.A.L Post 196 Officers

Commander:  Keith Koptis

First Vice Commander:  Kevin Koprowski

Finance Officer: Tyler Koptis

Adjutant: Dave Lennox
Also contact for membership information at sal196brecksville@gmail.com

Chaplain: Joe Hallal

Sergeant at Arms: James Eder

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The Sons organization is divided into detachments at the state level and squadrons at the local level. A squadron pairs with a local American Legion post; a squadron’s charter is contingent upon its parent post’s charter. However, squadrons can determine the extent of their services to the community, state and nation. They are permitted flexibility in planning programs and activities to meet their needs, but must remember S.A.L.’s mission: to strengthen the four pillars of The American Legion. Therefore, squadrons’ campaigns place an emphasis on preserving American traditions and values, improving the quality of life for our nation’s children, caring for veterans and their families, and teaching the fundamentals of good citizenship. Since 1988, S.A.L. has raised more than $6 million for The American Legion Child Welfare Foundation. S.A.L. members have volunteered over 500,000 hours at veterans hospitals and raised over $1,000,000 for VA hospitals and VA homes. The Sons also support the Citizens Flag Alliance, a coalition dedicated to protecting the U.S. flag from desecration through a constitutional amendment.

Sons Membership Eligibility Requirements

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 I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, the Persian Gulf War and the War on Terrorism, during the delimiting periods set forth in Article IV, Section 1, of the National Constitution of The American Legion, or who died subsequent to their honorable discharge from such service, shall be eligible for Membership in the Sons of The American Legion. There shall be no forms or class of membership except an active membership.

History

The Sons of The American Legion was created in 1932 as an organization within The American Legion The S.A.L. is made up of boys and men of all ages whose parents or grandparents served in the United States military and became eligible for membership in The American Legion. Together, members of The American Legion, The American Legion Auxiliary and the Sons of The American Legion make up what is known as The Legion Family. All three organizations place high importance on preserving our American traditions and values, improving the quality of life for our nation's children, caring for veterans and their families, and perhaps most importantly, teaching the fundamentals of good citizenship. Sons have always assisted Legionnaires with Legion Family programs. Our Family boasts a combined total membership of nearly 4.2 million members. This year, Sons attained an all time high national membership of over 365,000. The largest Detachment, Pennsylvania, has over 61,000 members. Trophies and awards are given to Detachments and Squadrons for the largest membership and the largest increase in membership. Just as each Legion post determines the extent of its service to the community, state and nation, each S.A.L. squadron is permitted flexibility in planning programs and activities to meet its own needs. The S.A.L. has study programs recommended for younger members. One such program, called "The Ten Ideals," teaches the elements of patriotism, health, knowledge, training, honor, faith, helpfulness, courtesy, reverence and comradeship. If a member completes the Ten Ideals program, he is eligible to continue with another program called the "Five-Point Program of Service." This program covers patriotism, citizenship, discipline, leadership and legionism. Sons focus on much more than just membership. At all levels, Sons support The American Legion in promoting a wide variety of programs. Sons assist their posts in other activities such as Veterans programs, Veterans Administration home and hospital volunteerism, Children Youth projects and fundraising. Since 1988, The Sons have raised more than $6.9 million for The American Legion Child Welfare Foundation. Members have volunteered over 1.3 million hours to date in Veterans Hospitals throughout the country and raised over $2,500,000 that has gone directly to VA hospitals and VA homes for a variety of items including TVs, radios, medical equipment and clothing for the patients. There are many men who are members of both The American Legion and the Sons of The American Legion. Often, these individuals started out as young members of the Sons. Then, when they were old enough to serve the military, they also became eligible to join The Legion. Such individuals are known within our organization as dual members. The Sons of The American Legion is one of many organizations that sponsors and supports the Citizens Flag Alliance, a coalition formed to secure flag protection legislation through an amendment to the U.S. Constitution. S.A.L. volunteers work to establish local networks by having petitions available and handing out informational material. They alert their communities to the importance of respect for the flag and they encourage flag education programs in schools and other local organizations.

American Legion Auxiliary


American Legion Auxiliary
Founded in 1919, The American Legion Auxiliary has nearly 1 million members from all walks of life. The Auxiliary administers hundreds of volunteer programs, gives tens of thousands of hours to its communities and to veterans, and raises millions of dollars to support its own programs, as well as other worthwhile charities familiar to Americans. It is all accomplished with volunteers.While originally organized to assist The American Legion, the Auxiliary has achieved its own unique identity while working side-by-side with the  veterans who belong to The American Legion. Like the Legion, the Auxiliary’s interests have broadened to encompass the entire community. The American Legion Auxiliary is the world’s largest women’s patriotic service organization. Through its nearly 10,500 units located in every state and some foreign countries, the Auxiliary embodies the spirit of America that has prevailed through war and peace. Along with The American Legion, it solidly stands behind America and her ideals.

Auxiliary Post 196 Officers



History

America’s largest veterans service organization, The American Legion, will turn 100 years old in 2019. The American Legion was founded after the end of World War I. During March 15-17, 1918 in Paris, France, the first caucus under the name American Expeditionary Force was held. Two months later, a caucus was held in St. Louis, Mo., where the name The American Legion was officially adopted. The Preamble and the Constitution of The American Legion was approved, and on Sept. 16, 1919, the United States Congress chartered The American Legion. After its formation in 1919, several existing women’s organizations wanted to become the official affiliate of the Legion. A committee decided to create a new organization made up of the women most closely associated with the men of the Legion. During The American Legion’s first convention Nov. 10, 1919, members and officials “birthed” the American Legion Auxiliary.

This Auxiliary would perform those portions of Legion activities that were more suitably performed by women. In less than one year, 1,342 local units in 45 states of the Women’s Auxiliary to the American Legion had been organized. At the Legion’s second convention in September 1920, the Legion sanctioned the Auxiliary. The Legion’s Committee on Women’s Auxiliary presented some recommendations to the Legion, one being that the women decide upon their name. And the women did just that at the Auxiliary’s first convention in 1921, omitting the word “women’s” – thus becoming the American Legion Auxiliary. From the beginning, both organizations’ main goals were to help veterans and their families. Today, there are over 2 million veterans in over 12,000 posts worldwide. The American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) has three-quarters of a million members in over 8,000 communities. The American Legion Auxiliary has come a long way from “doing the activities more suitable for women” – in 2018, the organization’s volunteer hours had an impact of over $1 billion through services to servicemembers, veterans and their families, and our communities. Also in 2018: over 4,000 scholarships were awarded; $18 million was raised and spent on the ALA Girls State program; over $82 million was raised/spent to benefit children; and 5.5 million poppies were distributed with nearly $4.4 million raised. Over 3 million veterans were assisted, 356,000 military families were served, and $189 million was spent on community service projects alone. The American Legion Auxiliary has advocated for veterans rights, including the GI Bill and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs benefits, and ending homelessness among veterans. The American Legion Auxiliary can still be seen baking pies and serving dinners to our many veterans as well as sending care packages to deployed troops and writing notes to wounded veterans in hospitals. Our membership makes a difference.

See the ALA in action: www.ALAforVeterans.org.

American Legion Riders


American Legion Riders chapters are well known for their charitable work, which has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for local children's hospitals, schools, veterans homes, severely wounded servicemembers and scholarships. Since 2006, Riders nationwide have participated in The American Legion Legacy Run to annually raise money for the Legacy Scholarship Fund, established to provide scholarships to children of U.S. military personnel killed since Sept. 11, 2001.  For the latest in Riders apparel and gear, including patches, go to Legion Rider Merchandise - Emblem Sales.

Riders Post 196 Officers


History

In Garden City, Mich., in 1993, Chuck "Tramp" Dare and Bill "Polka" Kaledas, commander of American Legion Post 396, shared an idea to start a motorcycle enthusiasts association within the organization. The two longtime riders wanted an environment where Legion family members could come together to share a common love for motorcycles. Dare and Kaledas wrote a letter to Michigan Department Adjutant Hubert Hess, sharing their idea. Hess replied that he liked the concept and wanted to pursue it. Later, he gave Kaledas and Dare instructions for managing the program at the post level. He also explained how they could be approved to use the American Legion emblem, and how to gain Membership's support and recognition. At a regular meeting, Post 396 members passed a resolution for a new program to be known as the "American Legion Riders." Joined by 19 other founding members from their post, Dare and Kaledas were flooded with requests for information about their organization. They agreed to establish a central source for the Riders to ensure that chapters formed not as motorcycle clubs or gangs, but as Legionnaires and Auxiliary and SAL members joining to ride as Legion family. Legion Riders today Currently, over 110,000 American Legion Riders meet in over 2,000 chapters in every domestic department and in at least three foreign countries. Riders in Iowa have formed an honor guard called The Five Star Freedom Riders, and Riders in Mulvane, Kan., founded the Patriot Guard to protect the sanctity of military funerals from protesters. Riders in all states have escorted military units returning home from combat tours overseas, conducted massive cross-country fundraising events for wounded warriors from all services, and have raised millions of dollars for countless local, state and national charities. Many Riders, supported by their departments, conduct annual statewide Legacy Runs in direct support of American Legion scholarship progras of Operation Comfort Warriors (OCW), supporting our wounded servicemembers across the nation. True to the Legion's grassroots tradition, each chapter manages its programs at the post level, where the best ideas are born. The Riders are part of many projects and events, including:

  • Rolling Thunder, the annual POW/MIA rally in Washington on Memorial Day weekend.
  • Annual regional rides such as Operation Wounded Warrior, sponsored by Riders in Nevada, Texas, New Mexico, Utah, Arizona, California and other Western states.
  • Local charity events in support of The American Legion and local communities.
  • Raising money for VA hospitals, women and children centers, children and youth centers, schools and other facilities.
  • Sponsoring or participating in motorcycle runs to benefit numerous charities.
  • Local memorial ceremonies and community parades.
  • The American Legion Legacy Run, an annual cross-country fundraising ride from National Headquarters in Indianapolis to the national convention city.
  • Riding to honor fallen military men and women, and to protect the sanctity of their funerals from those who would dishonor their memory.
  • Escorting military units to departure airfields and airports for combat tours overseas, and welcoming them home upon their return.
"American Legion Riders as a National Program"

FROM RESOLUTION 35 AS VOTED ON BY THE NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE AMERICAN LEGION ON OCTOBER 17-18, 2007 AND AMENDED BY RESOLUTION 32 BY THE NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE AMERICAN LEGION ON MAY 4-5, 2011 All American Legion Rider groups must be a program supported by a Post or Department of The American Legion and shall uphold the declared principles of The American Legion as well as conform to and abide by the regulations and decisions of the Department, Post or other duly constituted Department governing body. The following guidelines are recommended for The ALR program of The American Legion:

  1. All members of The American Legion Riders shall be current members of The American Legion, American Legion Auxiliary or Sons of The American Legion
  2. Each ALR member shall establish and maintain membership by owning, individually or through marriage, a motorcycle licensed and insured as required by state law 
  3. ALR programs may allow for continued membership for those members who have given up motorcycle ownership because of age, illness, injury, or other reasons outside the member's control
  4. All ALR members shall strive to maintain the image of The American Legion, at all times upholding The American Legion name and emblem, which symbolizes the integrity and principles of this great organization
  5. All The ALR groups shall avoid the perception of being a "motorcycle club" or biker club"
  6. The only recognized The American Legion Rider logo is that which is copyrighted and sold through The American Legion National Emblem sales
  7. All Members will obey the motorcycle laws of their state
  8. No use of rockers with the ALR patch because touching the patch violates trademark laws of the ALR patch
  9. Sponsoring organization (Post and Department) will review liability insurance coverage to ensure that adequate coverage is available to cover the organization to include coverage for any specific special riding events.
American Legion Rider groups shall abide by The American Legion Constitution and By-laws as well as the established Post and Department directives. The American Legion National Headquarters and the respective Departments shall maintain general oversight of ALR Program as regards to proper use of the name and emblem of The American Legion, ALR and The American Legion Legacy Run, and compliance with the National Constitution and By-Laws of The American Legion.

Resources


Veteran Resources

This is a list of American Legion Veteran resources.

Learn More

S.A.L Resources

This is a list of the Sons of the American Legion resources.

Learn More

Riders Resources

This is a list of American Legion Riders Resources

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Auxiliary Resources

This is a list of American Legion Auxiliary Resources

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