Dear American Legion Family Members and Friends,
This year will be especially significant when it comes to honoring and remembering our comrades who halted tyranny in its tracks. Countless commemorations will document the end of World War II, which of course occurred 75 years ago this year.
While many of the heroes of that war have passed on, there are still some who walk with us, visit our American Legion halls and share their amazing stories.
The American Legion will honor these warriors with special stories, videos and other content throughout the year, most notably in the September issue of American Legion Magazine. This special issue is supported by Resolution 6, approved by the National Executive Committee during the 2019 Fall Meetings in Indianapolis.
From those who endured the attack on Pearl Harbor to those who braved the cold at the Battle of the Bulge to those who exacted revenge on Japan, we will pay tribute to their sacrifice and others who secured victory for America and its allies.
It’s critically important for us to gather these stories now before it’s too late. I was reminded of this just the other day when I learned of the passing of Bruce Benson, a World War II veteran and proud Legionnaire.
Mr. Benson, a member of American Legion Post 322 in Webb City, Mo., served his nation and for the past several years continued to serve his community with a nightly ritual.
After Jane, his wife of 68 years, passed away in December 2014, Mr. Benson played taps each night for years at sunset outside his home in Webb City.
“People ask us why we do this,” Benson said in 2017. “It’s to commemorate our fallen heroes, other people who are still serving and because of what my wife wrote in her memoirs. My thoughts, as we finish playing taps, go to her presence here and completing what she wrote as one of her last thoughts she put on paper.”
Please join us in this salute to the Greatest Generation. If you have World War II veterans at your post, consider presenting them with a special recognition. Help them tell their stories to students at your local schools, Boys Scouts or other youth organizations. And share their stories with our audience at the Legiontown website.