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American Legion Auxiliary helps with vets’ everyday and social needs

MADISON – Members of Madison American Legion, Auxiliary Unit 229 have coordinated recent activities to assist local veterans.

“The Auxiliary’s mission includes service to veterans and active duty service members, as well as the promotion of patriotic events in our community and patriotism amongst our youth. Providing the opportunity for families in our community to serve our veterans is integral to the mission of Madison’s Auxiliary Unit 229,” Madison Auxiliary President Jean Downs said.

American Legion Auxiliary hosted “Valentine’s Blankets for Vets” on Feb. 10 at Hogan Family YMCA. “We had a great turnout from the community, including members of Beta Sigma Phi Sorority; Girl Scouts of Madison; American Legion, Post 229 members; and many families,” Downs said. The group made about 50 blankets for residents at Floyd E. ‘Tut’ Fann State Veterans Home.

To celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, “An Irish Evening” on March 17 honored veteran and members of the military community. “With social distancing measures just starting to ramp up in the City of Madison, the plans for the Irish Evening changed to accommodate the restrictions on large crowds,” Downs said.

Auxiliary members offered the Irish Fare and craft beer as to-go orders. “We held our event at Bowler Hat Brewery to support the launch of a fellow veteran’s and Post 229 members’ new business … by getting growlers of beer and meals to go,” Downs said. Neon Lilly provided food. “We were grateful for those that came by and supported the opening of both small businesses.”

In another activity, members of American Legion, Auxiliary Unit 229 and relatives participated in spring cleaning of Madison Memorial Veteran’s Park in downtown Madison on March 14. “Although the City of Madison provides general grounds maintenance, such as cutting the grass, the Auxiliary Unit has assumed the on-going task of maintaining the landscaping and flowerbed and keeping the monument and markers clean,” Downs said. “It is a great privilege to provide an important service that continues to honor the service and sacrifice of our veterans.”

“American Legion Auxiliary members plan to conduct more cleanup days in the future,” Downs said.

“The main monument in the park honors all those members of our community that lost their lives in the service of their country. The smaller flower garden in the park also has special markers recognizing our two Medal of Honor recipients, Staff Sergeant Paul Bolden and 1st Lieutenant Cecil Bolton.

For more information about the Madison Auxiliary Unit, email ALAux229@yahoo.com.

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