Lincoln VFW post to celebrate 75 years

By: Brandon Darnell, News Messenger Reporter
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Seventy-five years after a group of World War I veterans formed Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 3010, members today still carry out the mission of helping veterans in their time of need. Founded in 1934, Lincoln’s VFW Post 3010 will celebrate its 75th anniversary Saturday in an event every Lincoln resident is invited to, said Vic Ioppolo, the post’s commander. “It means everything in the world to me,” Ioppolo said. “I’m proud to be commander at this time. We will have VFW and political speakers and a little snack.” Ioppolo served on Navy patrol craft during World War II, and is one of three remaining post members who are World War II veterans. The ceremony will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday at the VFW Hall at 541 F St. with a flag salute, said Kent Parsell, the post’s adjutant and a Vietnam Veteran who served in the Army. As a grants officer, Parsell said he works with veterans to get them help when they need it, driving them to appointments, calling employment offices and helping them gain access to money they are entitled to through various veterans’ organizations. “We help out where we can,” Parsell said. “It’s not like we’re going to pay your rent forever or anything but we might pay it for a month or two while you get back on your feet.” The stereotype that the VFW Hall is a place for vets to share stories and toss back a few drinks is completely false, according to Bud Duncan, the post’s senior vice commander and a Marine Corps veteran from the Vietnam War. “We don’t have a bar. This post’s sole purpose is to get involved in the community,” Duncan said. Another post member, Dick Meyer, enlisted in the Army as a private and worked up the ranks to full colonel. “This post is really active in the community,” said Meyer, who served in World War II, Korea and Vietnam. VFW members, Ioppolo said, must have served in a combat zone. Post 3010 currently has 98 members serving in World War II up to the current conflict in Afghanistan. Although separated by age as well as being in the different military branches, members said they still share a bond with one another that transcends those differences. “These guys are my comrades,” said Charlie Clark, who served in the Army during Korea and Vietnam. Clark said the members don’t typically refer to each other by rank but as brothers and comrades. Even when their comrades are gone, they are not forgotten, Parsell said. Families can request firing squads to do rifle salutes at funeral services and flags are placed in local cemeteries on Veterans Day every year.