Members and friends celebrate the holidays at Post 3063

Post 3063 hosted its annual holiday party during the December social on Dec. 15, 2016.


It was a jovial event for young and old. More than a hundred members, loved ones, and guests attended and dined on free Prime Rib cooked by Marco.


Ann Leake gave gifts to the children as Santa: she has played Santa for the past several years. Annette Russell played holiday music on her keyboard and the Top of the Hill barbershop quartet sang to the crowd. The Top of the Hill quartet hails from the Seattle Seachordsmen, a local barbershop chorus.


Party crowd
Guests fill their plates with Marco’s Prime Rib while the Top of the Hill barbershop quartet entertains the crowd. Approximately 110 people attended the event.

Harold Rodenberger organized the event. Margaret Philips set-up, decorated, and organized the gift giving.


Party entertainment
Ann Leake plays Santa, The Top of the Hill quartet sings, and Annette Russell plays holiday music on her keyboard.


Santa visit
Bob Kettle’s daughter meets Santa for the first time.


Local students send letters to Post 3063 Veterans

Third grade students from the St. Alphonsus Parish School in Ballard and 9th grade social studies students from Hamilton Middle School in Wallingford sent letters to Post 3063 for Veterans Day. Below are two letters from the stack. Enjoy!


Veterans Day Letter from St. Alphonsus Parish School (3rd Grade), Ballard:

3rd Grade Letter



Veterans Day Letter from Hamilton Middle School (9th Grade), Wallingford:

9th Grade Letter

Post Voice of Democracy Essay Winner: Jessica Chacko

The VFW sponsors the annual Voice of Democracy essay contest for high schoolers. Jessica Chacko, a ninth-grader, entered at the post and won first place, which includes a $100 prize. She also placed third place at the district level and will receive a $100 prize. Her essay is copied below. Congratulations, Jessica!


My Responsibility to America


Ask yourself, “What is your responsibility to America?” All citizens have responsibilities as members of a family, as students, and as a part of their community.


Most families have a set of regulations that are usually set by the parents in the family so that their children can be safe and each member of the family must follow.   Some of these rules might include what social activities the children may participate in, chores that they must complete, curfews, and bedtimes.  These rules aren’t always the same, however; they change as situations change; as the children grow older and are entrusted with more responsibility.  Everyone in the family needs to cooperate with these set rules in order for the family to be able to function smoothly and live together in peace and harmony.  To be a responsible family member, you simply need to know your boundaries, follow the rules and help each other when you can. An example of this would be doing an extra chore without being told to do so, or trying to get along with your siblings.  Other responsibilities of a family member are being truthful, sincere, and courteous towards the other members of your family and to others in general.  My family, for example, has many rules that I, as a member of this family, must follow.  When I was younger, I had many more set rules that I was required to follow, and as I grew older and school and sports took up more time, my parents entrusted me with more responsibilities and gave me more freedom I try to be a responsible family member, but I am not perfect, and my family recognizes this, but I attempt to be the best that I can be while also managing my academic and social life.


As well as having a responsibility to your family, we all have responsibilities as students.  All students are to be treated with dignity and respect, but students also have to follow rules.  These rules and regulations are set in place for the safety and health of students as well as staff members and make for a functional and supportive environment.   As students we need to come to school with our best foot forward and a commitment to accomplish the tasks we face ahead.  We must keep an open mind to other people’s ideas and accept that we are all unique.  We need to learn the art of compromise and recognize that the saying, “Sharing is caring,” is extremely important.  We also need to do our part in keeping the classroom environment orderly.  At my high school, there are many rules in place that we, as the student body are required to follow.  Some of these rules include the strict dress code that ensures that students are dressed professionally and modestly and the no-gum rule that applies to everyone, including faculty, so that it helps keep the facility clean.  There are consequences for not following the set rules, such as detention, suspension, and expulsion.  As a student, I am expected to come to school each and every day prepared with all of my supplies and an attitude for learning.  I try to keep an open mind at all times because I know that some of my peers have really good ideas, and I need to work together with them in order to create a positive learning environment for all of us.


As citizens of the United States of America, we all need to follow societal rules and laws because they are necessary for protecting the safety and well-being of other individuals, as well as defending our freedom.  Adults play their part in the society by paying taxes and voting.  As today’s youth, we can also help our community by volunteering to assist community events and organizations and by helping others in need.  On an even smaller scale, we can help to pick up garbage in a local park, visit a nursing home, or even just offer to walk our neighbor’s dog.   Being active members of society is one of the responsibilities of every able person and getting involved in our community makes us feel better about ourselves. As a ninth grade student who wants the best for her community, I try to do whatever I can in order to make my community a better place for everyone in it.  As a volunteer I have helped provide company for patients at the Veterans Affairs Hospital during the holidays, and I have also volunteered with my school and other non-profit organizations in my area.  As a United States Naval Sea Cadet, I have developed a strong love and respect for America’s veterans and our military. I love talking to the veterans at the VA Hospital and hearing their stories about how they have suffered and how they continue to struggle.  American veterans are the epitome of perfect citizenship, and I aspire to be like them in my perseverance and patriotism.


President John F. Kennedy once said, “My fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” So when asked what my responsibility to America is, my answer is simple. My responsibility to America is to work with others to improve the greatest country on Earth.

Post participates in Wreaths Across America ceremony

The Honor Guard fires volleys during the Wreaths Across America ceremony.
The Honor Guard fires volleys during the Wreaths Across America ceremony.

The Post 3063 Honor Guard, consisting of Joe Fitzgerald, Bill Hoeller and Harold Rodenberger, participated in the Wreaths Across America ceremony near the flagpole at Lakeview Cemetery in Seattle on Dec. 17, 2016. After the wreaths were placed honoring the five services, POW/MIA and Merchant Marines, the post Honor Guard fired three volleys honoring the veterans.

Bill Griffith was in charge of the ceremony at Lakeview, as he has been for the past four years.

Quartermaster’s December Update

By Harold Rodenberger


This month the days are short and the nights are long here in Seattle. It’s time to figurately gather around the fire and stay warm while telling stories, developing plans and sharpening tools for springtime hunting and fishing expeditions.


This month also marks the halfway point of our VFW year. Time to assess our progress, adjust goals and hone our tools for the remainder of the year.


We’ve had some firsts so far this year:

–  We held two flag retirement ceremonies and a community document shredding day.

–  Our Honor Guard attended two military funerals and posted colors at our post and at the WWII Allen Library WWI Centennial grand opening.

–  Our service officer, Gail Engler, initiated office hours once per month at the Ballard Senior Center for veterans who might need help.

–  Thanks to Chair Bill Griffith and his crew we held a nice WWII remembrance ceremony last month complete with Certificates of Appreciation and longevity pins for our WWII veterans.

–  Our editor, Alyson Teeter, earned a promotion in one of her other jobs. In November, her daughter pinned her with a silver Lt Col leaf. Congratulations, Aly!

–  Teams from our post visited patients at the VA Hospital on Fourth of July, Labor Day and both Veterans Day and Thanksgiving last month, bringing cheer and goodies to those veterans. We also made many visits to other retirement and nursing homes in the area to visit veterans and other community members. First time for so many visits.

–  Jessica Chacko won our Post 3063 Voice of Democracy contest.  We wish her well as she now competes at higher levels. Jessica and her father, Sanu, have been regular participants when we visit the VA Hospital.

–  We have our annual Christmas party scheduled Dec. 15. There will be a prime rib dinner, a visit from Santa with gifts for the children and seasonal music so be sure to mark your calendar. Not a first but worth attending.

Looking forward to the second half of our year:

–  We have signed up seven new members but have lost some of our older members so we need your help to reach 100% membership as soon as possible.

–  Our Color Guard is sharpening skills under the direction of Chair Bill Hoeller and will be participating in more events.

–  Our military-themed post library is growing quickly. If you’re interested in reading the old-fashioned way, from actual paper books, drop by and check it out. You might find something you can’t resist.

–  Early in the summer we will have another flag retirement ceremony so bring your old flags to the post for proper retirement.

–  Our post will hold a “Grand Reopening” ceremony this spring to celebrate the centennial of America’s entry into WWI.

–  We are planning another St Patty’s Day corned beef dinner/fundraiser for our relief fund. Save the date for a good dinner and a chance to contribute to a good cause.

–  If you have an idea for something our post could do in the community or to help veterans, please let us know. Good ideas are always welcome.


Finally, from me and my family to you and yours, we wish you the best of the Holidays and a prosperous, peaceful and productive New Year.