VFW post celebrates 75th anniversary
The 75th anniversary of Ecker-Fulkerson-Slifer Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6958 of Marion occurs this month.
The post will celebrate 75 years on Sunday with a hamburger and chips meal from 4 to 6 p.m.
Member Dan Holub says formal installation of the organization was April 12, 1946, in the Marion City Building. Veterans who served in an area of combat during a number of campaigns were eligible for membership.
Eighty-eight veterans were sworn in at the original meeting. All were World War II veterans. “Five of them were the Martens brother of Lehigh,” Holub said.
John Randolph Wheeler was elected commander of the post. The list of other officers included Paul Brose, as senior vice commander; Alvin Martens, junior vice commander; Ray Vinduska, adjutant; and Kenneth Nelson, quartermaster.
The group voted to name the post in honor of three Marion men who lost their lives in World War II. Marine Corporal James Clinton Ecker died Nov. 20, 1943, in the landing on Tarawa; Staff Sergeant William F. Fulkerson, gunner-mechanic on a B-24, was declared missing in action over Germany on Nov. 26, 1944; and Army Private Howard K. Slifer died Nov. 9, 1943, in a hospital on Figi Islands as a result of wounds received.
The post originally met in the city building but bought property for a free-standing building in 1948. In the 1970s, a new home was erected at the same location.
Member Warren Kreutziger provides help with many of the everyday activities at the post.
According to Holub, membership at present stands at about 50 members. Even with a shrinking membership, the post continues to provide a number of beneficial and philanthropic activities.