By Melissa Robinson
American Legion Post 55 in
McDonough will be holding a dedication ceremony on Saturday,
November 9, 2013 at 1 p.m. at its Legion Hall, for the installation
of a U.S. Army M102 (105MM) Howitzer. The cannon is on loan from the
Rick Berry, Post 55
Commander, stands beside the Howitzer which is on loan to
American Legion Post 55.
Photo by Mickie Jackson
Post 55 Commander Rick
Berry said the monument is a representative piece of what
veterans went through.
“It’s representative of all
five branches of our military, as it has been used in wars since
Vietnam and is still used today,” he said.
Members of American Legion
Post 55 secured the donation after a nearly five-year process that
began when former Post Commander, Judge James Chafin, submitted the
“In 2008, we made application
and were told we were on the list. In October of 2012, we were
notified that we would be receiving the Howitzer,” he said. “It was
a long wait but well worth it. It’s just great that we have this
monument to display.”
According to Chafin, the
Howitzer serves as a glimpse into out nation’s military history and
marks a time period of great importance. He said the M102 Howitzer
was first used extensively in the Vietnam War because it could be
“It’s significant because a
monument like this is symbolic of the defense of our country and
military service and that so many gave,” said Chafin.
He said the process to
display it on the Legion Hall grounds included making several
modifications to demilitarize the weapon, including welding certain
moving parts together and filling the barrel with concrete.
The American Legion is a
national Veteran’s organization with a long history of supporting
American ideals and the men and women who have served in the
country’s Armed Forces.
American Legion Post 55 was
chartered shortly after World War II by the returning veterans of
Henry County. Over the years, Post 55 has made numerous
contributions to Mc-Donough and the county, including the Eternal
Flame on the McDonough Square and the Henry County High School
gymnasium, which was constructed by 300 veterans in the 1950s.
The dedication is open to the
public and the American Legion Post 55 welcomes and encourages
veterans of all conflicts as well as the general public attend the
dedication of the historic military weapon.
“We hope to get a lot of
veterans to come out to the ceremony and for the public to attend
and support them for their service to this country,” said Chafin.
Several groups are expected
to participate in the dedication ceremony, including several Boy
Scout Troops, the Stockbridge High School NJROTC, who will be
presenting the colors, and members of Strong Rock Christian School,
who will sing the National Anthem.
For more information on the American Legion
Post 55, see them on Facebook or visit the American Legion website
at www.legion.org. Post 55 meets
the second Tuesday of every month at 6:45 p.m. The American Legion
Post 55 is located at 67 Veterans Way, McDonough, GA.