Department of Florida

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Category Archives: National

Mission Blue Post Assistance Grant Program

The American Legion National Headquarters has launched the “MISSION BLUE POST ASSISTANCE PROGRAM GRANT PROGRAM” which is an opportunity for Posts to receive a $1,000 grant from National HQ.

Grant monies to be used towards:

  • Mortgage or Rent
  • Utilities
  • Insurance Premiums

What the Grant is NOT to be used for:

  • Payroll
  • Funding Post Projects or Programs
  • Taxes/Fines/Fees
  • Lost Revenue
  • Repairs to Post
  • Funding Post

Qualifying criteria:

  • 2020 CPR Submitted
  • IRS 990 is current
  • Ohio Secretary of State Business Filing is up to date
  • Financial Need
  • Insurance Declaration Page showing Department and National listed as an additional insured/rider to policy
    • The American Legion (dba) American Legion National Headquarters
    • The American Legion Department of Ohio, Inc.
  • Department Adjutant Review and Signature

The Department will review the information from the appropriate agency listed above. We will also verify CPR and Post Certification of Officer forms at Department HQ. The Post is expected to ensure all the information is current and on file or, provide a copy when submitting the application to Department HQ.

Download Application

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Betty J. Hunt-Beckwith

It is with deep regret that we report the passing of Past Northern Area Commander, Betty J. Hunt-Beckwith, of Lewiston, New York at the age of 96 on Wednesday, September 23, 2020. Betty is survived by her children, Alfred M. (Paula) Hunt, Jr., Robert L. Hunt, Philip E. (Rose) Hunt, Sandra Granieri; her sister, Colleen (Dennis) Dey; seven grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren. Funeral Services were held on Wednesday, September 30th in Lewiston, New York.

Betty was a U.S. Army WWII Veteran and a member of American Legion LaSalle Post 1142, Niagara Falls, NY with 48 continuous years of membership. Betty joined The American Legion in 1972 at Portage Post 1465, Niagara Falls, NY, where she became the first woman to serve as Niagara Co. Commander in 1981. She moved to Florida in 1984 and became a member of Holly Hill Post 120 and then Ormond Beach Post 267. Betty served as 17th District Commander (1988-1989) and Northern Area Commander (1994-1995). Betty returned to Niagara Falls in 1999 and became the first woman Commander of the LaSalle Post 1142 in 2001.

Please keep her family and friends in your thoughts and prayers in their time of grief.

If you would like to send your condolences, you may do so through her son, Alfred M. Hunt, Jr., at 736 Powell Ln., Lewiston, NY 14092-1132.

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The American Legion to White House: ‘Lower the flag’

(INDIANAPOLIS, January 10, 2021) — The head of the nation’s largest veterans organization called on President Trump to order the lowering of U.S. flags at the White House and all federal buildings in honor of a Capitol police officer who was killed in Wednesday’s attack on the U.S. Capitol.

“Brian Sicknick was an Iraq war veteran and an American hero,” American Legion National Commander James W. “Bill” Oxford said. “I was pleased to learn that the U.S. Capitol lowered the flag above it on Friday. The governor of New Jersey also ordered the lowering of flags in Mr. Sicknick’s home state. Mr. President, do the right thing and lower the flags that are under your authority to half-staff in honor of this hero who gave his life defending the house of the people.”

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The American Legion mourns passing of baseball great Tommy Lasorda

(INDIANAPOLIS, January 7, 2021) — The nation’s largest veterans organization paid tribute today to Tommy Lasorda, the legendary Hall of Fame manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Army veteran and Legionnaire who died Jan. 7 at 93.

“Tommy Lasorda didn’t just bleed Dodger blue – he bled red, white and blue,” American Legion National Commander James W. “Bill” Oxford said. “As a faithful ally in our efforts to protect the U.S. flag from desecration, Tommy always summed it up the best: ‘Speech is when you talk.’ He will be remembered as one of the greatest personalities in baseball, as well as a patriot. We are grateful to have had him among the Legion’s ranks.”
During his 20 years as manager of the Dodgers, Lasorda won two World Championships, four National League pennants and eight division titles. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1997.

In 1998, Lasorda testified in support of a proposed constitutional amendment that would return to Congress the right to prohibit desecration of the U.S. flag.

A member of American Legion Post 227 in Tustin, Calif., Lasorda served in the Army from 1945 to 1947, putting his baseball career on hold. He received The American Legion Past Department Commander’s Club James V. Day “Good Guy” award in 1999.

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The American Legion condemns violence in U.S. Capitol

(INDIANAPOLIS, January 6, 2021) — The head of the nation’s largest veterans organization unequivocally condemned today’s attacks on the U.S. Capitol and called for law and order to be quickly restored in Washington.

“The Capitol is the people’s house. An attack on the Capitol is an attack on all of us,” American Legion National Commander James W. “Bill” Oxford said. “Just as The American Legion has condemned prior attacks and riots in other cities, we condemn it here. Regardless of whether the violence is inflicted by right-leaning groups, left-leaning groups or unaffiliated civilians, it is never acceptable. This is not how we do things in America. We believe in civil discourse to resolve our differences. The entire American Legion Family proudly stands with the law enforcement officers and National Guard members who are risking their lives to restore safety.”

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Legionnaire Benefits

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‘Congress should override veto,’ American Legion says

(WASHINGTON—December 23, 2020) – The head of the nation’s largest veterans’ organization called for Congress to override the president’s veto of the National Defense Authorization Act.

“The American Legion is disappointed that the president vetoed this important legislation, which would benefit our current servicemembers and veterans of previous generations,” James W. “Bill” Oxford, national commander of The American Legion said. “The NDAA passed with overwhelming support because Democrats and Republicans agree that it is good for America. The virtues of the NDAA have not changed since the president’s veto. We ask Congress to use the powers granted to it by the U.S. Constitution and override the president’s veto. Our troops deserve a pay raise and our Vietnam veterans continue to suffer the ill-effects of Agent Orange. The NDAA addresses these issues and much more.”

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The American Legion: Wilkie Must Be Held Accountable

Secretary Robert Wilkie

(INDIANAPOLIS, December 12, 2020)  — In February, American Legion National Commander James W. “Bill” Oxford called on Congress to investigate allegations that senior leadership at the Department of Veterans Affairs attempted to retaliate against a veteran for reporting a sexual assault at the VA Medical Center in Washington, D.C. On Thursday, the VA’s Inspector General reported that VA leadership did not follow up or ensure the medical center had been implementing VA’s anti-harassment and anti-sexual assault efforts. Oxford issued the following statement concerning the findings of the IG:

“The American Legion has long supported legislation that brings accountability to the Department of Veterans Affairs. We have also called for the equal and respectful treatment of women veterans. It is unfair to expect accountability from the nearly 400,000 VA employees and not demand the same from its top executive. It is clear that Secretary Robert Wilkie failed to meet the standard that the veteran who came forward with the complaint deserved. VA’s own website includes a pledge to Stand Up to Stop Harassment Now! The document states that VA is ‘committed to a harassment-free health care environment for everyone and will not tolerate harassment of any kind.’  Clearly, that did not occur in this case. During one of my visits to a VA hospital, I was asked to sign the same pledge and gladly did so. By the promises set forth by his own department, The American Legion believes Secretary Wilkie should resign. Wilkie’s top lieutenants Pam Powers, James Hutton and Curt Cashour should also step down because of their roles in this violation of trust.”

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The American Legion calls for Senate to pass, White House to sign NDAA

(WASHINGTON—December 9, 2020) – The head of the nation’s largest veteran’s organization called for the White House and Senate to reach an agreement on the proposed National Defense Authorization Act, which contains many provisions that The American Legion strongly supports. The House of Representatives passed the NDAA last night with a veto-proof majority.

“There are many items in the proposed legislation which would improve the quality of life not just for our military members, but for our Vietnam veterans as well,” James W. “Bill” Oxford, national commander of The American Legion said. “Moreover, we hope that President Trump agrees that an issue as important as liability for social media companies is important enough to debate on its own merits and should not be part of the NDAA.”

Oxford singled out the Fair Care for Vietnam Veterans Act as “a life-changing provision that is included in the NDAA which will benefit more than 34,000 Vietnam veterans and their families.” The amendment, secured by Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., would add bladder cancer, hypothyroidism and Parkinsonism to the list of service-connected presumptions associated with Agent Orange exposure.

“Additionally, the defense bill increases troop strength and includes a 3 percent pay raise which our military members certainly deserve,” Oxford added. “The American Legion has always advocated for a strong national defense and quality care for our country’s veterans. We believe that the NDAA goes a long way toward strengthening America.”

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Florida Department Adjutant Announces Retirement – Now Accepting Resumes

Michael McDaniel, Dept Adjutant

With a heavy heart, I announce my formal resignation as your Department Adjutant for the Department of Florida American Legion effective July 2, 2021. After 14 years in this role, I feel it is the right time to move aside and allow younger veterans to steer us toward the future.

I am proud of the work we have done together to refocus our energies on our veterans by creating Project Vet Relief, the American Legion License plate, and now the medical program for our families.
Thanks to the passion of our incredible team of dedicated and talented Department Staff, Legion Family Members, our committed DEC, and the hundreds of volunteers in local American Legion Posts, we are taking giant leaps together to grow a powerful Florida Legion that is rededicated to service at the individual, community, and state level.

will always love Florida Legion and all of you who have touched my heart. I look forward to working side by side with you as a volunteer to accomplish this first great mission of our second one hundred years of service.

Commander Rick Johnson is appointing a Search Committee for screening and recommending to the Department Executive a candidate for the position of Department Adjutant. Individuals interested in submitting a resume, please see the attached job posting for qualification requirements and details on how to submit.

Download Memo | Download Job Announcement

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