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Dunkirk Memorial Auxiliary meets for first time since March

For the first time since March and following state COVID-19 guidelines and social distancing, Dawn Ransom, president, called the meeting of Dunkirk Memorial Unit 62 Auxiliary to order recently.

Lucinda Simpson, chaplain, read the opening prayer. Those in attendance recited the Pledge of Allegiance and Preamble to the Auxiliary Constitution. A motion was made to dispense with reading of the March 10, 2020, minutes. Treasurer Kyle Ahlstrom reported on the financials which was approved and filed for audit.

Ransom said due to the pandemic, the American Legion Department of New York is planning a mini mid-winter conference in January in Albany. Due to the closure of several hotels, White Plains will not host the 2021 Department of NY Convention in July however, pending approval, the convention will be held in Albany. The 2022 department convention in Binghamton will remain there and the 2023 convention will be in White Plains. Linda Tome, Auxiliary Department president, reported that the auxiliary will implement a mini mid-winter conference at the Marriott in Albany in January, as well as the department convention in July. Live streams of the conventions will take place if restrictions are not lifted.

Ransom distributed committee report forms to respective committee chairs that were present and reminded them to submit them to the appropriate county chairperson. A certificate and banner from the Department of NY was sent to the Unit for reaching its 100% membership goal for 2020. The 2021 membership goal is 142. Membership cards for 2021 have arrived and dues were collected from those in attendance.

Due to the pandemic, the Executive Committee met virtually and approved the following: an additional representative was chosen to attend Empire Girls State; a donation to the Cassadaga SAL Walkathon; and donations to Post 62 to assist with repairs and maintenance.

Several committee reports were given:

Pat Kibbe reported on Americanism with several members flying flags, reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, and placing flags at the cemetery during Memorial Day.

Chaplain Lucinda Simpson sent all occasion cards to several members and noted that auxiliary member Virginia Schnur passed away.

Ransom collected data for members who volunteered at homes, a member knitted ear savers for masks and donated to doctors offices, hospitals, clinics, and schools; another volunteered for Meals on Wheels and dinners were donated on Memorial Day to the first responders in the local area as well as the county home.

Kibbe reported that the Auxiliary Constitution and Bylaws were reviewed and accepted;

A member made calls to local and state legislators and encouraged everyone to vote on Nov. 3.

Audrey Miga reported that due to the pandemic, a virtual 2020 Empire Girls State session was held. Also reported that Junior Auxiliary members placed flags at the cemetery for Memorial Day and helped with coupons for the troops.

Historian Del Jusko is collecting auxiliary articles and updating the President’s book.

Janet Jagoda, National Security chair, is collecting, cutting and sorting coupons for the troops overseas. Coupons were delivered to county National Security chair and it was reported that more than $72,000 worth of coupons was sent during the year to Support our Troops (Troopons).

Due to the pandemic, Poppy days were different this year. Donation cans were placed at One Stop, Main St. Liquor and Matt’s News.

Audrey Miga, public relations chair, is maintaining auxiliary articles, meeting notices and pictures.

Kyle Ahlstrom reported on VA&R with members volunteering many hours at the post during the pandemic, including cooking, baking, maintaining the pavilion and assisting at the Memorial Day chicken barbeque.

Audrey Miga, secretary, read a solicitation letter from the American Legion National Commanders Campaign Committee announcing James Troiola as a candidate from the Department of NY, and a donation was approved.

The Eighth District American Legion meeting will be held at Post 62 on Sunday, Oct. 4. The Unit 62 Auxiliary will prepare and serve a luncheon following state guidelines.

The next Unit meeting is tentatively scheduled for Nov.10 at 7 p.m. Dues for 2021 are now being accepted and new members are welcome. The auxiliary continues to support and promote programs which serve veterans and their families.

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