Is The American Legion Fading Away? Veterans Day Makes Us Ponder

6:32 PM, Nov 9, 2012   |    comments
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High Point, NC -- High Point, N.C. - More than one-thousand of our neighbors and friends are stationed overseas right now. They're active duty military serving in places like Afghanistan, Egypt, Kosovo, Germany, Eastern Europe, South America and Africa.

Fourteen-hundred others will deploy within the next year and a half. When they return home, we'll call them veterans.

These men and women will have formed life-long friendships that they'll keep with the help of technology like cell phones and computers.

High Point's American Legion Post 87 says it was the first in the state to launch its own website. However, the building looks much like it did half a century ago. Members in their twenties are few and far between. High Point American Legion members freely admit the place looks old. But, it's about to get some major upgrades that could help keep it alive.

"There's camaraderie among us. We've all been through something," veteran Dennis Cervik said.

Camaraderie used to be all the Legion needed. Younger Vets want more.

"We've got WIFI here. And, it's free," Commander Kaney Joyner said.

Within the next few months, the Legion will re-paint, rip out the flooring, redo the bar and re-energize the place.

"Once everything is done, it's going to be a hoppin' place," Cervik said.

Will it be enough to keep the doors open for decades to come? Commander Joyner thinks the upgrades will attract new members, but that camaraderie will keep them coming back.

"As you age in life, you find out you need that support more so than what you would ever think," Joyner said. "The only requirement is to have an honorable discharge and have red, white and blue blood."

Despite the lack of young members, the Legion's numbers have grown. Just five years ago, there were about 185 members. Now, there are more than 300.

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