In honor of its 100th anniversary, members of Lynbrook American Legion Post 335 were honored at Monday’s village board meeting by Mayor Alan Beach and the board of trustees.
“The heroism that is demonstrated time and time again from the veterans from the American Revolution to the local war on terrorism is sometimes unnoticed to us who enjoy our freedoms of our day-to-day life,” Beach said. “Our debt to these heroes can never be repaid, so our gratitude and respect must never be forgotten.”
Beach and the board honored legion members with citations to congratulate them on the post reaching its centennial, and thanked them for their service and for keeping the country safe.
Post Commander Hank Speicher addressed the audience surrounded by fellow Legionnaires, Adjunct Bill Marinaccio, Judge Advocate Bill Gaylor, who is also a county legislator, Chaplain Lenny Goldstein, Sgt. in Arms Mike Guglielmo and Historian Steve Grogan.
While standing at the lectern surrounded by his peers, Speicher spoke about the history of the legion and the way it remains active in the community 100 years after its inception.
The American Legion was established in 1919 at the end of World War I after members of the U.S. military met in Paris and formed it, Speicher said.
“One of the first things they decided is that all members would be equal,” he said. “The rank of office would not be paid attention to, and the only officers would be the officers of the legion.”
A hundred years later, there are 12,000 American Legion posts in the U.S. with more than two million members, making it the largest veterans organization in the country. Its reach has spanned beyond boarders as well, as the organization is represented in more than 18 countries, including England, Ireland, Germany, Mexico and Japan.
The Lynbrook post is one of 16 in Nassau County celebrating its centennial. Its members remain a fixture in the community, working with Little League teams and Boys and Girls Scouts. It also works with the Northport and St. Albans veterans hospitals, as well as the Stony Brook and St. Albans veterans homes.
Speicher said members of the post appreciated the board’s recognition. “Let us thank you in the village for recognizing our legion’s post on its 100th anniversary,” he said.