Issaquah VFW post plans Memorial Day service

May 24, 2011

The Issaquah Veteran of Foreign Wars Post 3436 hosts a Memorial Day service at Hillside Cemetery, just below the Veterans Section, at 10 a.m. May 30.

The Issaquah High School Junior Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps unit will provide the color guard and honor guard for a 21-gun salute.

The VFW-sponsored Boy Scout Troop No. 709 and Cub Scout Pack No. 639 will help set up at 9 a.m. May 28 and take down decorations from the cemetery after the ceremony. There will be someone at the cemetery between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday to hand out forms for people to specify the symbols — such as crosses and flags — they want on veterans’ graves.

In case of inclement weather, the ceremony will be held at the Issaquah Valley Senior Center, 75 N.E. Creek Way.

Off the Press

May 24, 2011

Here’s to those who help us remember

Sometimes we all need a little reminder. Thank goodness we have people like Dave Waggoner in the Issaquah community.

Bob Taylor Press sports editor

Waggoner, a quartermaster in the Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars post, once left a small U.S. flag at the office so I would always remember Memorial Day. The flag still flies above my desk.

Each year, Waggoner, members of the VFW post and local Boy Scouts plant flags and/or crosses on the graves of former veterans at Hillside Cemetery for Memorial Day and Veterans Day. Waggoner makes sure these former vets are remembered.

Waggoner expressed a concern in an April Issaquah Press story that people are forgetting U.S. veterans. With Memorial Day coming up, none of us should forget veterans, especially those in our family.

I do a roll call every Memorial Day, setting aside some time to remember the veterans in my family.

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Honor veterans in Memorial Day section

April 12, 2011

Dave Waggoner said he is worried that people are forgetting about U.S. veterans.

He recalled a phrase — selective disengagement — that journalist Bob Woodward had used.

“He said people across the United States selectively disengage from war, whether it be Afghanistan or Iraq or Korea or Vietnam or World War II,” said Waggoner, quartermaster with the Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars post.

When society selectively disengages from wars, it loses focus on the people who fight them and their experiences.

“The cost of war is people, and the people of Issaquah paid that price for their service,” Waggoner said.

The Issaquah Press is working to reverse that trend. For the second consecutive year, in its Memorial Day issue, The Press will publish profiles of Issaquah men and women who served in the U.S. armed forces.

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Issaquah students serve as legislative pages

March 8, 2011

Iman Baghai, an Issaquah High School 10th-grader, and Issaquah Middle School eighth-grader Justine Connelly recently served as a legislative pages in January, seen here on the floor of the state House of Representatives with Rep. Marcie Maxwell, D-Renton.

Students ages 14-17 are eligible to serve as a legislative page in the state House or Senate, where for one week, they deliver messages for lawmakers and learn first hand about the democratic process

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Milestone anniversary fosters new hope for veterans

February 8, 2011

Gathered for their regular meeting on Jan. 18, members of the Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post No. 3436, drank coffee, traded stories and conducted business as usual.

Yet despite the routine atmosphere, this was no ordinary day.

Exactly 75 years earlier, the original founders of the Albert Larson Post signed the VFW charter, establishing one of Issaquah’s most historic organizations, which has been serving the city ever since.

“They formed 75 years ago, but are still going strong,” said Richard Whipple, the adjutant and quartermaster of the Department of Washington. “The recognition lets them know they’ve done a fantastic job.”

At the meeting, Whipple presented the post with a 75th anniversary certificate, known as the Diamond Jubilee Award. It’s an honor only a select group of posts have achieved, yet the local VFW members said they’re simply doing their duty to help the community.

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Ceremony recognizes local veterans’ service

November 16, 2010

Never forget.

The theme was reiterated throughout the annual Veterans Day ceremony at City Hall Nov. 11, hosted by the Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3436.

Dave Waggoner, the master of ceremonies, began by asking the 20 or so veterans present, scattered about the filled-to-capacity Eagle Room, to stand and be recognized for their service to their country, from World War II to present day.

Tribute was given to two Issaquah residents who paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country. Marilyn Batura fought back tears sharing her brother George Larsen’s tale. His life as a goat herder in Issaquah on the family farm was cut short, when shortly after unselfishly joining the Army at the onset of World War II, he was one of thousands killed in the battle to retake Okinawa.

His name appears on the monument with 18 other names at Issaquah’s Veterans Memorial Field. Along with Emmett “Skip” McDonald, who was memorialized at the ceremony by classmate Linda Hjelm.

“You can walk past that memorial and see those 19 names, yet not know any of their stories,” she said.

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Issaquah residents gather to celebrate Veterans Day

November 11, 2010

Members of the Issaquah High School Junior Naval ROTC Honor Guard fire a volley during the 21-gun salute Thursday during a Veterans Day observance at Issaquah City Hall. By Greg Farrar

UPDATED — 4:15 p.m. Nov. 11, 2010

Never forget.

The theme was reiterated throughout the annual Veterans Day ceremony at City Hall on Thursday, hosted by the Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 3436.

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Veterans Day Observance / Nov. 11, 2010

November 11, 2010

Issaquah ceremony honors veterans’ service

November 9, 2010

Dave Waggoner is a stickler for military tradition and no other symbol better pays homage to those serving in uniform than the American flag.

“I’ve always wanted people who’ve paid the ultimate sacrifice for our country to never be forgotten, for their actions to be respected,” said Waggoner, himself a veteran of the Vietnam War.

That’s why he spearheaded the effort to ensure that the city of Issaquah always had new flags flying on its 11 flagpoles. In the continually growing tradition, the Issaquah Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post No. 3436, hosts its fourth annual Veterans Day Service on Nov. 11.

Waggoner will present new flags purchased by the VFW to City Councilwoman Eileen Barber. Barber’s family has long ties to military service, from her father in World War II to her nephew, who is just back from serving his second tour in Iraq. She said she looks forward to the ceremony each year.

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Press Editorial

November 9, 2010

Veterans Day history is worth understanding

Thursday, Nov. 11 is Veterans Day. At precisely 11 a.m., a wreath will be laid at the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington National Cemetery to honor and thank those who have served in the armed services of the United States.

The time, 11 a.m., is symbolic. It was at this time on Nov. 11, 1918 (the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month), that a cease-fire agreement was signed, bringing an official end to World War I, “the war to end all wars.” Read more

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