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New American Legion county commander to be welcomed by his home post

June 1, 2008
Times Observer
FORESTVILLE — J. Carter Knapp American Legion Post 953 in Forestville is holding a reception on Saturday, June 7 from 7-9 p.m. at the Forestville American Legion Post 953, 6 Cedar, St., Forestville to introduce Philip Baker the new American Legion Commander of Chautauqua County. Come and help Commander Baker honor those who have made a contribution to his rise to this very important post. All friends in the community are cordially invited. Hor d’oeuvres and refreshments will be served. Baker is a 20-year military retiree, having served four years active duty with the Army Security Agency. He served 16 years with the New York State Army National Guard as a Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Warfare NCO. Upon his retirement in 1992 he was awarded the State Long & Faithful Award and discharged as a Staff Sergeant E-6. Baker is a 39-year member of the American Legion and a 2006 graduate of Legion College. He was selected in 2002 and 2004 as County Legionnaire of the Year. His home Post, J. Carter Knapp Post 953, also won the right to permanently house the County Membership Trophy in 2004, by winning it three consecutive years, which by no coincidence is the three years he was Post commander. He is also responsible for the first “Active Duty” board in the County, which has pictured a total of 71 of our village service men and women. Baker has worked hard through Legion programs to support the community; now is the time we can show our support for him. Forestville used to be the main hub of the American Legion in the early years of the American Legion. It was the first post in Chautauqua County to own its own building, while all others rented space. It had the distinction of having six members from the post that have served as County Commander: Leroy Merrill in 1930, Henry Dye in 1932, Robert Galloway in 1935, Fred Waterman in 1937, Dwight Reigel in 1941 and Earl Town, who was the last post member to become County Commander back in 1956, which was 46 years ago. Baker has again raised his sights and promises to make you proud and will strive to work with local, village, town, county, and state officials, and all news media, to serve our veterans and our community. All inquiries may be directed to Wayne Ashley, 1st Vice Cmdr., 6 Cedar St., Box 492, Forestville, NY 14062.


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