Yingling-Ridgely Post of VFW celebrating its 50th anniversary

June 14, 1996|By Kathleen B. Hennelly | Kathleen B. Hennelly,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

The Yingling-Ridgely Post of the Veterans of Foreign Wars -- the largest in Maryland and the first formed in Howard County -- will celebrate its 50th anniversary tomorrow night at its newly renovated post in Ellicott City.

The gala will be marked by Democratic Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski, Howard County Executive Charles I. Ecker and VFW State Commander Charles McConville.

The celebration will honor past and present members and leaders in VFW and Ladies Auxiliary Post 7472 and celebrate 50 years of service for the 540-member post. The gathering also is a 88TC prelude to the state VFW meeting June 26-29.

Post members are planning a dedication ceremony June 22 in memory of Keith Fisher, one of the charter members, who died this year. There are 15 remaining charter members, 11 of whom will attend the ceremonies.

The VFW is a national organization formed after World War I, but Post 7472 was formed after World War II.

Longtime members of the post can remember when their meetings were held in barns and members' homes. Now, their post is on a rolling 32-acre expanse that includes a fully stocked pond, a large picnic area and a baseball field.

The VFW members built the lodge-type building in 1962. They also take care of the lawns and the fields and invite local boys' and girls' softball and baseball leagues to play on the field.

Joseph Buckley, the adjunct for the VFW post, said the organization tries to work within the community. "There is a thrust among the younger members here to get more community involved," he said. "Any worthy cause that someone needs help with, we try to help."

The group sponsors Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops, picks up trash along the highways, visits nursing homes and Veterans Administration hospitals, donates hospital equipment and distributes information about patriotism, drug awareness and home security.

Pub Date: 6/14/96

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