Veterans in the greater Longmont and surrounding areas are invited next week for a special service session at John Harold Buckley American Legion Post 32 located at 315 S. Bowen Street in Longmont, Colorado.

National and state teams from The American Legion will be in town, along with members of local American Legion posts to kick off this community and veteran service campaign.

All local area wartime veterans, to include members currently serving on active duty, are invited to the post to learn more about The American Legion and veteran benefits. Membership and veteran information will be available from 10 am to 5 pm on Saturday, April 2nd and 1 pm to 5 pm on Sunday, April 3rd.

A Veterans Service Officer will also be available for all area veterans with claims or other veteran-related questions both days.

In keeping with the over 95-year tradition of The American Legion, the rejuvenated American Legion posts in this area will focus on community service and assistance to veterans. The scope and nature of the posts’ community service will be determined by its members and inputs from local civic and community officials.

“Service! That’s what The American Legion is all about,” said Tom Florez, Commander of The American Legion for the Department of Colorado. “We exist to help each and every veteran, their families and the communities they live in.”

“The greater Longmont area and surrounding areas are an ideal place to strengthen partnerships between the veterans and their community” Florez added. “The people here care about their community and practice good citizenship every day. Now, wartime veterans have a special place in which they can make a difference.”

Since its inception in 1919, The American Legion has been a key advocate for veterans’ benefits, children & youth, patriotic American values, a strong national defense and quality-of-life issues for those serving in today’s armed forces.

The organization, which spearheaded the original GI Bill, has been advocating reform of the veteran’s health care system under its GI Bill of Health. Creation of the federal forerunner of the Department of Veterans Affairs, as well as the agency’s ascent to cabinet-level status, is due in part to The American Legion’s advocacy. The American Legion was also instrumental in the establishment of the Veterans Home Loan, veterans hiring preference and just compensation to veterans suffering from illnesses related to their military service, including those whose ailments stem from exposure to Agent Orange and mysterious Persian Gulf origins.

Equally aggressive are The American Legion’s efforts to instill values in young people through numerous programs, including American Legion Boys State, American Legion Boys Nation, Junior Shooting Sports, the National High School Oratorical Contest, American Legion Baseball, Teenage Suicide Prevention and Child Health. The American Legion has supported Scouting since 1919. Many American Legion posts also support Junior ROTC high school units and fund-raising for children and youth.

Contact: Tom Florez, 303-366-5201 or lavetra@centurytel.net