The year was 1935 -- Nylon was discovered, Babe Ruth retired from baseball, Nazi Germany adopted a new national flag with the swastika, Parker Brothers released the board game Monopoly -- and the Veterans of Foreign Wars Darrell O. Beiter Post 3303 in Newcomerstown was chartered. Consequently, this year marks the 75th anniversary of the charter of the Newcomerstown VFW Post on May 25, 1935.
Because of this, a special celebration dinner is planned May 25 at the Olde Main Street Museum and Social Center in Newcomerstown. A program from the State Commander of the VFW William "Bill" Seagraves will be given, as well as representatives from the Tuscarawa County Veterans' Administration office and Tuscarawas County commissioners will be present.
Newcomerstown's own Vane Scott will serve as the master of ceremonies.
Scott remembers when commander Gene Poland, who was named the Newcomerstown Veteran of the Year this year, saved the post when there was a lack of membership back in 1988.
"He saved the post," Scott said about Poland, who also served as the past commander of the Newcomerstown VFW Post but also the past commander of the Three Rivers VFW Post.
Ironically, this year, the Newcomerstown Post received an award for having 100 percent membership which means the Post met the quota set by the VFW. Currently, there are 70 members of the Newcomerstown VFW Post.
The longest serving member of the Newcomerstown VFW Post is Dave Casteel, who joined Dec. 13, 1982. A few of the other more tenure VFW members include James Kopp, 1985; Earl Chaney Jr., 1987; and Carl and Gene Poland and Scott, 1988.
The current slate of officers for the Newcomerstown VFW Post includes, Marvin Garretson, commander; Casteel, vice commander; Harry Kenny, second vice commander; Denny Ross, service officer; Scott, adjutant; Casteel, one-year trustee; Kenny, second-year trustee; John Joyner, third-year trustee; Dennis Belle, chaplain; and Paul Morrison, master of arms.
To be a member of the VFW, a serviceman or woman must have served honorably in the Armed Forces of the United States and actively served in a combat area that was designated so by the U.S. Congress, Scott said.
The VFW of the United States, including its auxiliaries, includes 2.2 million members in approximately 8,100 Posts worldwide. Its mission is to "honor the dead by helping the living" through veterans' service, community service, national security and a strong national defense.
Some of the local projects that the Newcomerstown Post takes part in includes assisting with veterans' benefits, camaraderie, charity work, working with schools on projects related to Americanism, selling poppies for veterans' benefits (this year's sale will be May 28 and 29 at Baker's IGA), etc.
"Some of us participate in parades, color guard and a lot of us participate in honor guard for military funerals," Scott said.
The Newcomerstown Post, which is named after Beiter who was the first Newcomerstown serviceman killed during World War I, meets the third Thursday of the month in the community room of the Temperance Tavern Museum.