What do we do to serve our community as a veteran? How can we make a difference? The answer is simple, serve others where needed. You may be the only veteran someone comes in contact with as they search for help for help. They may be searching for assistance or information on Memorial Day, Veterans Day, Flag Day, funeral honors, a school class event, a school project to recognize or honor veterans. Are you ready to help?
C. V. Cummings Chapel Hill Post 9100 is ready. Our veterans are out and about making a difference. We are in the schools to talk to students, be honored, or to honor a teacher. We don’t have a post home, but we are very busy serving others in Orange County and neighboring areas. We know how to say, “Yes, we can.”
Here is just one example of post involvement by one member, Edward Gill. It is the result of “Yes, we can.” It is the story of Dachau Ashes. Read Story
In partnership with Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 9100, the Robert and Pearl Seymour Center, Chapel Hill, invites all veterans to come out and a guest speaker’s story, share yours, and learn of the various services and resources available to you as a veteran. This month’s event is on Monday, January 27, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Although there will be set speakers, it would be expected that others join in and share as well. One of the most important things about this program is that information and updates for Veterans are shared in the last 15 to 20 minutes of the session For example, did you know that veterans can get their computers worked on for free?
This is the beginning of a new program focusing on area veterans and veterans services. There will be new speakers for each meeting.
If you would like to be a speaker for future meetings, contact Cydnee Sims, Robert and Pearl Seymour Center Operations Manager, at (919) 245-4250. Refreshments provided.
Facilitators for the inaugural event are: Lee Heavlin, Past North Carolina VFW District 6 Commander and Peter O’Grady, member American Legion Post 6, Chapel Hill.
Directions: 2551 Homestead Road, Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27516
We gather each year for our post’s annual Christmas Dinner and party. We enjoy our fellowship and the chance to share stories of family and post activities. We have much to be thankful for. We are also mindful of the needs of others.
Each year we bring to our gathering gifts for local children who are not as fortunate as we are. We chose The Arc of Orange County as the recipient of our gifts of toys for girls and boys. The ARC supports children with special needs and mental disabilities. The gifts were delivered today and they were well received.
A special thank you to all who brought gifts. You will be making some child’s Christmas morning brighter.
It is hard to put pen to paper when you are writing about family or a long-time friend. Robert Patton was both. We lost him on April 11th, 2013, after a long illness.
Robert touched a lot of people. People in our town, people in his veterans organizations, and people who are survivors of the holocaust. He spent the last few years ensuring that those who served were not forgotten. He championed a Veterans Memorial at Chapel Hill–a project now in progress.
His presence is especially felt by the families of holocaust survivors. Here in our Chapel Hill-Durham area there are children of survivors. Some have expressed gratitude to Robert. They would not be here, had the 65th Infantry not freed Mauthausen on May 5, 1945.
Robert served as an enlisted man in the United States Army in the 65th Infantry Division, Third U.S. Army. This was General George Patton’s army, although they were not related.
As World War II was ending, Robert Patton found himself at Mauthausen, Austria, on May 5, 1945. This was the site of a German Concentration Camp. The 65th Infantry liberated that camp. Robert returned to Austria for a 65th Infantry Reunion visit and they journeyed to Mauthausen. He saw then that a large area was a covered field, yet this was the site of a mass burial of camp members. He brought this to the attention of the local government and that led to a years-long effort to place a memorial at the mass burial grave site.
Robert returned again for the dedication of the Mauthausen Memorial and then once again to place his World War II uniform in an Austrian museum. Learn more
Here is what local person recently wrote about his passing and Mauthausen:
“I am devastated to hear about Robert. I admired him so much! And I will forever be grateful for his service. My grandfather was in Mauthausen and so was my cousin’s great-grandfather. Bob may have saved the life of my cousin’s great-grandfather.I doubt that I would be here if it were not for our brave men and women during WWII.” – Deborah H. Long, CDEI, DREI, Ed.D
Robert Patton was awarded the Legion of Honor by the French government in recognition of his service during World War II in France. Learn more
Robert Patton passed away on April 11, 2013. He was a long time supporter of local veterans’ efforts to establish a veterans memorial in Chapel Hill. He realized that there was no memorial of any type built by the Town of Chapel Hill and supported a town memorial.
His graveside service and inurnment is scheduled for April 20th, 2013, at 10:30 a.m. at Chapel Hill Memorial Cemetery.
A memorial service will be held at his church, University Presbyterian Church, on April 27th, 2013. at 11 a.m. Details
Robert Patton was selected as a Chapel Hill Treasure and several times as the recipient of the WCHL Radio Village Pride Award for being a Chapel Hill Hometown Hero. Learn more
When I talk to active post members, they share with me the reasons why they work hard on community programs. Our post has no post home, but we are well known in our town. We are well known because we are out and about doing things for others. We help veterans, children, teachers, businesses, hospitals, the VA, and veterans families. That’s a wow!
We don’t get paid and every dime that we collect distributing poppies or holding a raffle goes to our Veterans Relief Fund. That is the way we are supposed to operate. This past year our list of significant accomplishments includes:
Rededicating a flag at University Mall
Distributing thousands of Buddy Poppies at many events and downtown Chapel Hill.
Putting a new roof on a Korean War Veteran’s Home.
Dedicating the North Carolina Memorial Hospital Flag Plaza
Sponsored Memorial Day honors at Chapel Hill Memorial Cemetery
Working with local businesses to support needy veterans
Supporting Volunteer Services at the Durham VA Medical Center
Co-Sponsoring a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Veterans Day Turkey Trot to benefit homeless veterans
Providing financial support to Chapel Hill American Legion Post 6
Sponsoring a Voice of Democracy Program
Sponsoring a Patriot’s Pen Program – Local winner went on to win district honors
Sponsoring a National Citizenship Education Teacher of the Year program – Local winner went on to win state honors
Provided Unmet Needs support to a local returning current conflict member
and much more
Yes, we are making a difference in our community. We are showing that local Veterans of Foreign Wars members care, are active, and ready to serve.
More importantly, we are making an impact in our community, especially in local schools. Here is what Ms. Fay Jones, Principal of Grady A. Brown Elementary School, Hillsborough says:
“Wow, I can’t believe how much time, attention and love you and the Veterans Post have poured into our school this year. It just seemed like every time we turned around you all were giving to us. You all were so supportive of Ms. Byerly and really lifted her up. It was fabulous that this happened while she was in the prime of her teaching and not the end. She said that Tuesday was the best day or her life and that the Veterans Award was the highlight of her career. It was the greatest thing that has ever been achieved in her years of teaching. Your recognition of her just spurs her own towards being even better at what she does. You all just put such “wind in her sails” that will carry her for the remainder of her years to come. Thank you. Stay in touch.” Read local news story
We look forward to more opportunities to step up and help others. We thank all in our post for making our programs work.