To preserve the proud legacy of the Purple Heart Medal.
Patriot, Associate & Auxiliary Members,
What a great start to the new/old leadership team meaning you re-elected most of your current officers to lead the Chapter in the coming year. Welcome to Fred Daniels as our Chaplain. Fred is very involved with veterans groups and I feel he will do an excellent job as our Chaplain. As I complete my 7th year as your commander, I am unsure whether I was re-elected because I’m doing such a great job or because no one else was able to step forward at this time. Certainly hoping it was the former not the latter!
We had terrific attendance once again at our annual Armed Forces day picnic and special thanks to our Auxiliary and Patriot members who helped with setup and cleanup and provided us with wonderful side items and desserts! Our scholarship awardee Krystina DeSomma was pleased to be part of our program and is a very deserving recipient of our College of Central Florida scholarship. She is the second in her family to receive our scholarship and she told me she has a twin brother and sister that will be applying next year. Wouldn’t that be something if they were our top recipients next year?
We next did the rededication of the Fallen Heroes Memorial in Bicentennial Park, Crystal River and had our wienie wagon setup. Although it was pouring rain when we arrived we managed to set up our tent and grill and went to work. The response was great and the attendees enjoyed hot dogs, sausages, cold drinks and chips. We did not charge for the food, but accepted donations, which more than made up for the expense. Well worth our efforts and I think well received by all attendees!
The following morning your commander emceed the Homosassa Memorial Day program and once again we beat the rain and had excellent attendance. Special thanks to all the Patriots, spouses, auxiliary, family and friends who attended all these events
The Dept. convention was again held in Jacksonville at the Marriott where once again they were so accommodating and helpful. The staff was fantastic, the food was excellent from the included breakfast buffet to the Friday night reception and Saturday night banquet. We had MOPH National Cdr. Van Ess in attendance along with MOPH National Sr. Vice Doug Middleton and Doug Greenlaw, both of whom are running for MOPH National Commander. Also, Region V Cdr. Paco, who’s running for MOPH National Jr. Vice Cdr.
We were also honored to have Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam and his wife join us for the Saturday evening banquet where he was presented with a plaque for all his efforts regarding Operation Outdoor Freedom. This is a program that provides hunting, fishing and other outdoor adventures for disabled and combat wounded veterans. We also had three Heartstrings for Heroes guitar presentations by Wade Saborin and a number of quilt presentations to deserving veterans, which was a very meaningful and heartfelt honor for the recipients.
Your 2018-18 Dept. leaders are: Commander, Jack Brunton from the Punta Gorda Chapter; Sr. Vice Cdr., Eddie Harrison from the Jacksonville Chapter; Jr. Vice, Charlie Dykes from the West Palm Beach Chapter; Sgt. at Arms f Bushnell National Cemetery Coordinator, Rick Allen; and myself as the Chief Financial Officer and Chief of Staff.
Chapter 776 was the premier ticket selling Chapter again for the 11th time in both the cash raffle and the 50/50 raffle selling 2 ½ times more than any other Chapter. We also had 2 winners in the cash raffle with Carol Allen winning 1 st prize $1000 and our Denver detachment winning 2nd prize of $500. Congrats to the winners and thank you so much for the Chapter support in sales. Convention registrants voted to have both drawing again next year.
Chapter 776 was once again in force with many convention attendees to celebrate the Chapter 776’s clean sweep of Department honors with Chapter 776 being Chapter of the Year, Bud Allen Patriot of the Year, Fred Daniels Associate Member of the Year and Josh Langston-White Volunteer of the Year. Thanks to all who felt I deserved this Chapter and Department recognition and to all our Chapter and Auxiliary members who make Chapter 776 the best in the state.
The shed installation on the CCBA’s Lecanto property is complete. The bureaucratic process with the county is a long story for another time. Most of the Chapter’s property is now stored in one place at a central location. Take a peek next meeting and, if you want to see inside, grab the Sgt. at Arms or myself and we’ll “get ‘er done”!
Come join us and get in on the action as we are “Working for the benefit of All.”
Aaron A. Weaver Chapter 776 Military Order of the Purple Heart, P.O. Box 1345, Lecanto, FL 34460-1345
Tel: 352-637-3265 or 352-382-3847 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org