Maine Veterans Gather at American Legion State Convention
For some veterans, their service doesn’t stop when they return from overseas. Some continue to serve within their American Legion posts.Back in his twenties, Gilbert Ormsby of Harpswell spent 9 months serving in the infantry during the Korean War. He’s proud to say he earned a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star for his service overseas.But nowadays when you talk to him, you’ll notice that at 83 years old he’s also proud of the work he’s done since his time at war with the American Legion.”I’ve been active in the legion 45 years, I’ve been chairman of many of the committees,” said Ormsby.This weekend is the American Legion State Convention at the Bangor Civic Center. It’s an event Ormsby has been attending for decades.He said, “I just believe in the programs the legion has, the children/youth programs, the Girls State, Boys State, baseball, there’s so many activities that the legion has that keeps me involved.”During the convention, awards are presented to different legion posts and veterans hear from presenters. But they also take care of business.”The state convention is where everything gets decided, the members of this organization decide where the organization is going for the next year,” said Lloyd Woods, American Legion State Adjutant.One issue they want to focus on is helping those returning from our current wars.”We need to make sure that we continue our fight for veterans who are serving overseas right now or vets who are in the military, that they are taken care of when they come back,” said the Department of Maine State Commander Brenda Dearborn.They hope young veterans will see the legion as they do.Ormsby said, “I think as time goes on, they’re going to come around and see what the legion has.”And perhaps some day join the legion themselves.