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VFW POST 6796 Continues to Bring Support for Veterans of North Texas

By S. Mathur

The first veterans organizations in the US were founded in 1899, and in 1913-14, three of the largest merged to form the Veterans of Foreign Wars or VFW. The VFW POST 6796 in Dallas, TX was founded in 1946, right after World War II ended. Donald Thieme, Senior Vice Commander, says that the goal from the beginning was to "organize benefits and rights for veterans involved in overseas conflicts. Today we continue to help our Veterans with counseling, VA benefits, and together we form a strong voting block in Congress to get bills passed that will further and continue the needs of our current military and veterans."

VFW membership is limited to any active or honourably discharged officer or enlisted soldier who is a citizen of the United States and who has served in its military service "in any foreign war, insurrection or expedition, which service shall be recognized by the authorization or the issuance of a campaign medal" by the military or naval service. The national headquarters is in Kansas City, MO and there are more than 10,000 local units or "posts".

The VFW legislative service and the central office of the national rehabilitation service are located in Washington, D.C. The national rehabilitation service helps disabled veterans of all wars, both VFW members and nonmembers, with concerns regarding government compensation and pension claims, hospitalization, civil-service employment preference etc.

VFW POST 6796 meets twice a month, says Thieme, and "we discuss community service projects, fund raising, building maintenance, etc. All funds raised go towards helping our Veterans and the surrounding community. We have a scholarship program called the Voice of Democracy that helps thousands of students each year across the Nation attend the college of their choice. For middle school students we have the Patriot's Pen. We have buddy poppy drives that help our disable veterans, we donate to local charities with food, money, toys, etc."

Membership for their auxiliary is open to relatives of persons who were or are eligible for membership in the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States. VFW posts also provide a strong sense of community with weekly and year-round events to bring people together. Valentine's Day celebrations, Super Bowl parties, chili cook-offs, karaoke and bingo are all part of the regular calendar, as are more solemn occasions like Veterans Day and Memorial Day.

VFW hall rentals are available for weddings, birthdays, and other special events. The hall can accommodate up to 375 people and has a private bar, a large stage area and kitchen facilities. A good reason to consider a VFW hall rental is that the rentals help to fund VFW programs. Thieme adds that "Our hall rental prices are extremely reasonable and we have a friendly staff of volunteers to help with all your needs, decorating, catering, or special requests."

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