I am a 72 year old Veteran that served in the Marine Corps and moved to Newnan 5 years ago.
I have been a member of the American Legion for the past 32 years, among other Veterans Service Organizations. I have held offices in most of them including Commander, Commandant and served on the State and National level. When I moved to Newnan, I wanted to stay active so I searched out Post 57 to transfer my membership.
This was a mistake by me, because even though my membership transfer was completed, the members I meet on that visit acted as if that was a chore. I sat in the social quarters and was treated as a man with Leprosy.
I attempted to engage in conversation to introduce myself and was basically ignored except for the usual pleasantries that are required. When I left that day I was very disappointed in Post 57. I made a couple of more visits there only to find the same atmosphere.
On my last daytime visit I overheard that there would be trivia in the evening so I decided to bring my wife and hope the clientele in the evening would be different. Unfortunately It wasn't, if anything it was even more clannish. My wife and I saw many people talking and laughing with one another, just we were not included in their little "privileged clique."
My wife made overtures to transfer her membership to the Ladies Auxiliary, where she had served as President and worked many projects, but to no avail. I even offered to work the Bingo game and was told "we will call you if we need you."
We have not been back since and that was 4 years ago, however I do honor my fellow Veterans by keeping my membership current at Post 57.
The reason for my writing you is the article that was in the 19 September 2020 edition titled "Cowetans honor missing soldiers on POW/MIA Recognition Day" and I realized that I sure would liked to have been a part of that, if only I had been welcome.
My hope is that someone at Post 57 will read this and wake those up that want to keep their little $35 a year country club exclusive and keep out any veteran interlopers, from out of town that try to get involved. I always believed that small towns had a reputation as friendly and welcoming, Newnan has that, Post 57 does not at all.
If I can save the Post from ignoring any other members that try to join or transfer and walk away, never to return, I will have completed my mission. First they will have to really understand the Veterans Creed of Brotherhood.
I remain Semper Fi.