VW Post 3156, Waldport
The Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW) is a nonprofit veterans service organization comprised of eligible veterans and military service members from the active, guard and reserve forces. Since 2009, VFW Post 3156, Waldport has provided a Named Scholarship each year to an OCCC Nursing student. Commander William Grimm, Adjutant (Secretary) Ron Anderson and Quartermaster Ron Urban explained why.
We trace our roots back to 1899 when veterans of the Spanish-American War (1898) and the Philippine Insurrection (1899-1902) founded local organizations to secure rights and benefits for their service. Many arrived home wounded or sick. There was no medical care or veterans’ pension for them, and they were left to care for themselves.
In their misery, some of these veterans banded together and formed organizations that would eventually become known as the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States. After chapters were formed in Ohio, Colorado and Pennsylvania, the movement quickly gained momentum. Today, membership stands at more than 1.5 million members of the VFW and its Auxiliary.
Our Mission is, “To foster camaraderie among United States veterans of overseas conflicts. To serve our veterans, the military and our communities. To advocate on behalf of all veterans.”
Our Core Values include:
- Always put the interests of our members first
- Ensure the care of veterans and their families
- Serve our communities and
- Respect the diversity of veteran opinions
The VFW Post 3156 recognizes that education and health care are primary core values. What better way to serve our community then to ensure the education and care of citizens?
Our giving to OCCC began when one of our WWII members had a granddaughter in the OCCC Nursing program. She needed a little financial help, as did many of her classmates. We are all aging. At some point, we will all need health care. Providing scholarships to nursing students seem to fit well with our Core Values and Mission and is a good way to support our vets.
Membership in our small Post of 40 veterans represent all branches of the US Military: Air Force; Army; Coast Guard; Marine Corps; and Navy who fought heroically in the Middle East, Vietnam, Korea and WWII. Ron U. served in the Army; Ron A. in the USAF and Bill in the Marine Corps.
Post 3156 has been in existence continuously since 1934. Members come from across the United States with a few, like Ron U., who claims to be a pure Oregonian although his wife would argue that point. Bill was born in western Pennsylvania, on the Ohio border. He joined the Fire Department while in high school which serviced him well in the Marine Corps. Later he became a paramedic. Ron A., a native Californian, was trained as an avionics technician specializing in F-4 Phantom jets. Like Bill, Ron A became a firefighter/first responder after his discharge.
All officers in the Post have college degrees. Back then, college did not cost as much. Between the GI bill and working part or full time, veterans did not have large student loans to pay upon graduation.
Bill and Ron remember one young lady who, in a thank you note said, “If it hadn’t been for the scholarship, I would have had to quit school.” She stuck with it and is now a nurse at Samaritan Pacific Communities Hospital.
Our message to students is to stick with it. It will be financially beneficial in the end. We know it is hard and difficult but hard work pays and we are here to help you. We will continue giving and serving as long as we can.
It is a privilege to be able to serve and a privilege to help students.
Commander Bill, Adjutant Ron and Quartermaster Ron and the members of VFW Post 3156, Waldport, thank YOU for your service.