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Membership Nptes, May/June 2021 -   -  

Building Self-Sufficiency

On Good Friday, April 2, Clinton County, Illinois, Chapter 269 members Joe Timmermann, Herb Heinen, Jim Lampe, Slim Trame, Leroy Toennies, Stanley Kampwerth, Chapter 269 President Mo Zurliene, Dave Maue, and Ed Schrage (in the back row of the photo) were joined by Bob Zahn, Mike Detmer, Vernon Mohesky, and Elmer Bilyeu (in the photo’s front row), as well as by Alfred Ratermann. Their purpose: to build a wheelchair ramp at the Centralia, Ill., home of disabled veteran Donald Porter (in the orange sweatshirt in the photo). An Air Force veteran, Porter arrived in Danang in 1961—one of the early ones in Vietnam.

Chapter members were at it again two weeks later. On April 15 they built a ramp for disabled veteran Virgil Niemann at his home in Breese, Ill. This time, Maue, Mohesky, Timmermann, Zurliene, Ratermann, and Stanley Kampwerth, joined by Julius Kampwerth, Edward Niemann, Richard Fangmeyer, Robert Petermeyer, Robert Dumstorff, and Jerome Rakers, installed the ramp.

This was Chapter 269’s tenth ramp. The chapter’s ramp-building skills are getting well known in Clinton County and the surrounding five counties. So well known, in fact, that a veteran’s wife recently asked if the chapter could replace a roof, but the chapter had to decline that project.

The chapter holds many fundraisers throughout the year. The money is used to help local Vietnam veterans and other veterans, and also to help local charities meet the needs of the community. The ramps are entirely funded by the chapter.

Clinton County Chapter 269 lives by VVA’s founding principle, “Never again will one generation of veterans abandon another.”

For more on the chapter’s ramps, see the Membership Notes feature in the March/April 2017 issue.




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