American Legion Post 271 Mauldin, South Carolina

History of American Legion Post 271, Mauldin, SC 29662

2020 - Present

Bob Scherer (Past Department Commander) met with Carroll Kelley and Clyde Rector in the spring and summer of 2020 to determine if there was enough veteran interest in the upstate to form another American Legion Post in the greater Greenville area.  

After several meetings, it was decided to hold an informational meeting at Hans and Frans restaurant on Highway 14 to gauge interest.  This meeting was held in the fall of 2020, with approximately 25 veterans and guests in attendance.  It was determined that there was sufficient interest in forming a new American Legion Post and it was decided that Mauldin would become the home of this new Post.

Upon applying for our temporary Charter, our new Post had approximately 15 members.  Membership dues at the time we were temporarily chartered was $50.00 per year. Three (3) committees were established before December of 2020, Executive Committee, Membership Committee, and Development Committee. Our early meetings were held at Mutts BBQ, Mauldin, and later at the Rotary Hall in Simpsonville.  Meetings were established to be held on the second Tuesday of each month, with the Executive Committee meeting the Saturday before the General Meeting.  Executive Committee meetings were held at the Berkshire Hathaway offices and at several local restaurants.  

Walt Richardson (Department Commander) on December 31, 2020, presented our temporary charter to Acting Commander Clyde Rector and Acting Adjutant Carroll Kelley. Our new Post was assigned to District 5.  Due to the rapid spread of the Corona virus, Officer elections were delayed, and our regular membership meetings were cancelled. By the end of December 2020, the Post had 25 members.  A Facebook page was established and a couple of blogs to keep members informed during the time Post meetings were cancelled.

2021

Our Executive Committee and General Membership meetings resumed in February 2021.  At this meeting Department Commander Walt Richardson, NEC Committeeman Bob Scherer, Department First Vice Commander Ron Price and District Commander Jack Smith were in attendance.  Masks and social distancing were in effect.

Elections were finally held at our February 2021 meeting.

Officers were sworn in by Past Department Commander, Bob Scherer.

April 2021 through December 2021, we have had speakers, presented quilts of Valor and voted to donate $100 to the foothills chapter #301 Korean War Veterans Association to help pay for the Korean War memorial in Washington, DC.  Fund raisers during this time included having a booth at the Home and Garden Show, a gun raffle, selling polo shirts and caps to members. Ongoing programs included Operation paperback where post members collected paperback books to be distributed to veterans in hospitals and service members serving overseas.

By July 2021, the Post had become members of the Mauldin Chamber of Commerce and were beginning to become a viable member of the Mauldin community. By July Covid had mainly disappeared and we could hold meetings without masks and social distancing. In August of 2021, our guest speaker was Terry Merritt, Mayor of Mauldin, an Air Force Veteran. Terry later transferred his membership from Simpsonville to Mauldin Post 271. 

Post 271 members participated in “National Night Out” held at the Mauldin Culture Center. On November 11, 2021, Post 271 participated in the Mauldin Veteran’s Day celebration. On December 4th, 2021, we participated in the Mauldin Christmas parade, furnishing a four-man color guard and participated with Mauldin High students in giving out over 70 gift bags to homeless and needy veterans.

The December Post meeting was an adult holiday celebration held at the Open Hearth in Greenville. Toys for Tots were donated by generous attendees. The talented Lisa Walden sang a selection of Christmas songs for our members. Fund raisers during the last quarter of 2021 included a Post Pledge Drive and participating in the gun show at the Greenville Convention Center.

2022

January 2022, the Post was conducting our Executive Committee and General Membership meetings at The Senior Center, located at 203 Corn Road, Greenville. By January our membership was approximately 50.

During this period, meals at membership meetings were either provided by wives of Post members or catered. Meals cost members $10.00.

In March 2022, the Post held its largest fund Raiser at Top Golf - Greenville.  The event had been planned over several months by Dennis Harke and Kenneth Hinkle and turned out to be very successful - netting the Post several thousand dollars to be used for Post programs. 

In March 2022 we said goodbye to one of our founding members, Jim Farrell.

On May 30th, 2022, ten (10) Post members participated in the Mauldin Memorial Day program conducted at the Mauldin Culture Center.  Stephen Goshorn was the Master of Ceremonies of the program. We participated in a gun show and our Post raffled of two Glock 9MM handguns.

In May 2022, several members of Post 271 Attended and participated in the 103rd annual American Legion Department of South Carolina Convention. At the Convention, Post 271 received three awards for membership and was also recognized for the highest percentage of growth, at 250%.  At the time the Department showed us at 41, however, we actually had 55 members.

Officers were sworn in during the June general membership meeting by Peter Butchard, American Legion Post 214, Taylors, SC.

June of 2022, Post 271 sponsored one boy attending Boys State, Anderson University. His name is Tom Lawrence and is a student at St Joseph Catholic School.  Tom and his father attended our July meeting and gave us a summary of what Boys State meant to him and how it would help him in the future.

Our Permanent Charter was presented at the July 2022 general membership meeting and all founding post members in attendance signed it.

During our September 2022 meeting Lewis Vaughn was honored for his service to the nation during the Korean War, for his service to his state, as a State Senator, and for his continuing service supporting veterans. Mayor Terry Merritt declared Lewis Vaughn Day in Mauldin. Later the Post set up a $1,500. Annual scholarship, in Lewis’ name, to be given each year to a deserving student in the Mauldin area.

During the November 2022 meeting, the Post donated money to Upstate Warrior Solutions in recognition of their dedication to supporting needy veterans. Post members participated in the Mauldin Veterans Day ceremony at the Mauldin Culture Center.

In December of 2022, Post members participated in placing wreaths on veterans’ graves in the Mauldin area, in the Wreaths Across America Program.  The Post also entered a float in the Mauldin Christmas parade.

In lieu of our regular membership meeting, post members celebrated the holiday season with the second annual Christmas Dinner.  Santa Claus was present to give gifts to children and grandchildren of post members.  Toys were brought by Post members for the Toys for Tots Marine program.  Sean Keagy delivered the Toys to the Marine Reserves. The drawing for the two Glock guns were also conducted and the winners were informed.

2023

April 2023, Members of Post 271 supported Veterans Last Patrol, held in Greer. Post members also worked the gun show during April. Our first car show was held on Saturday May 13th, at the Mauldin Culture Center. Ed Collins headed up this event. Approximately 70 cars entered the show. This was a fun event that netted the Post several thousand dollars.

Post Executive Committee meetings were moved from the Mauldin Culture Center to the new offices of Berkshire Hathaway, located behind the Haywood Mall. Thanks to Tim Keagy we were able to have a great place to meet and without cost to the Post. Tim and Sean also provided storage space for our Post items, again, at no cost to the Post.  The Post had been renting storage space prior to this.

The Post formed a Color Guard in April of 2022, originally under command of Carroll Kelley. Kevin Berry later rose to command the Color Guard.  Uniforms and equipment were provided by the Post. The color guard participated in numerous events in 2022, including funerals, retirement ceremonies and presentation of the colors at several events.

Post elections were conducted May 2023, with Officers elected.

Carroll and Helga Rogers Kelley were recognized for their instrumental roles in forming and getting this Post organized and running. 

Post 271 received two awards at the Department Spring Convention.

In June 2023, we sadly said goodbye to one of our Post Members, Joe Whitmire.  

During June, the Post paid for and sent eight rising senior young men to Boys State at Anderson University. Two of the young men attended a general membership meeting in the fall of 2023 and reported on what they learned and how it would help them in future endeavors. Also, the Post granted two Lewis Vaughn Scholarships for $1,500. each.

An Awards and recognition ceremony was held at our June general membership meeting. Ken Hinkle was honored as Legionnaire of the Year for his leadership and dedication to the principles of the American Legion and for his support to veterans over many years.

In October 2023, our Post held the second annual Top Golf fund raiser. The cost to participate at Top Golf had gone up considerably and affected the participation, so it was not as successful as the first event.

One of our eight (8) Boys State attendees informed us that he had been chosen to be a chancellor at the 2024 Boys State, John Fassoux, a student from Saint Joseph Catholic High School.

Post members again participated in the Mauldin Veterans Day Ceremony, held at the Mauldin Culture Center. In December, our Post members participated in placing Christmas wreaths on veterans’ graves in the Mauldin area, in the Wreaths Across America program.  After two rainy weekends, the Mauldin Christmas parade was cancelled. Post members had prepared a float for the parade.

In Fall 2023, we sadly said goodbye to another Post Member, Charles Harris.

The third annual Christmas dinner was held in lieu of our December membership meeting. The meeting was well attended, with Santa being present as well. The winner of our Henry Rifle raffle was announced.

December closes with the Post membership standing at 67 members, and preparations being well under way to establish an Auxiliary. Sandy Keagy is heading up the soon to be Auxiliary Unit 271 and has been extremely instrumental in organizing meals for the General Membership Meetings throughout the year.  We are also looking forward to the SAL getting their Squadron Charter this year.

We look forward to 2024 being a spectacular Year for American Legion Post 271.

Affiliated Organizations

A Women's Auxiliary of American Legion Unit  271 was formed on _______. The Legion has every reason to be proud of it's Auxiliary.  Auxiliary members are always anxious and willing to co-operate in every Legion activity.

A Sons of the Legion for American Legion Squadron  ____ was formed on _______. The Legion has every reason to be proud of it's Sons of Legion unit, which gained statewide recognition because of it's programs of service.

Patriotic Days

MEMORIAL DAY has always been an outstanding occasion in this community. In addition to memorial events throughout the Mauldin, SC community, the  goal of every Veteran to it's last man is to keep MEMORIAL DAY sacred to the memory of our war dead of all of the wars of the country; and all graves are decorated on this National Holiday.

ARMISTICE DAY, now called VETERANS' DAY, originally marked the end of fighting in World War I. It is an important holiday on the calendar of Legionnaires everywhere and in the hearts of all Veterans. It has been in Mauldin, SC.  Annually the Post participates in our Veterans' Day Parade. An important tradition was established when the Post led in the memorial exercises at 11 o'clock on the morning of November 11, marking the exact hour of the cessation of hostility on the war fronts.

Registration Of Graves

Since it's inception American Legion Post 271 has been a leader in this community in the area of graves registration; which has been incorporated by all the American Legion Posts in Greenville County. Grave Registration enables all interested parties to locate the site of the grave of each Veteran. 

Scholarships and Community Projects

American LegionPost sponsors the Lewis Vaughn Scholarships for $1,500. each for the further education of our children. We sponsor Palmetto Boys State. We also sponsor and financially assist many worthy community projects and programs initiated by the National American Legion.

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