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National American Legion commander visits Hillsboro

Staff writer

Clarence Hill, the American Legion National Commander, visited American Legion Post 366 in Hillsboro on Monday and was greeted by a crowd of legion supporters.

Hill, of Jacksonville, Fla., has been touring posts around the country and Hillsboro, partially because it contained the largest post in Marion County, was chosen to be one of his stops.

Hill addressed veterans from across Marion County. Hill’s main message was to Vietnam veterans, the American Legion’s largest demographic, to reach out to soldiers coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan. He said that there is a transition happening similar to the way that World War II veterans reached out to soldiers returning from Vietnam.

“It’s Vietnam vets that are running the organization now,” Hill said.

Hill posed that the best way to reach new veterans was to use facebook, twitter, and other social networks to connect with them. He pointed out an instance where blogs helped raise $50,000 to provide soldiers in Afghanistan with amenities that they wouldn’t normally have.

“I’ve been pushing the American Legion into the Internet more,” Hill said. “I’m on twitter and facebook.”

Hill also tried to quell concerns about Veterans Affairs hospitals and their connection to the new health care plans circulating around Washington. He said that VA and Tri-Care should remain separate from all health care plans.

Last modified Oct. 22, 2009

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