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Caring's common thread through Legion Auxiliary activities

Phyllis Beastrom is the new president of Ellsworth’s American Legion Auxiliary. Beastrom said Wednesday she plans to invite speakers to the organization’s monthly meetings and would like to arrange some outings for members, along with adding new projects. (Herald photo by Bill Kirk)

For a well-established organization, Ellsworth’s American Legion Auxiliary keeps evolving.

Although the group’s origin dates back over 90 years, its members tried a brand new project just last month, for example. Incoming President Phyllis Beastrom said the garage sale they held during Ellsworth Polka Fest weekend was a first and perhaps an annual event in the future.

Not highly successful financially, the sale had the upstairs of the Legion hall packed with donated items nevertheless, Beastrom said to indicate the large interest.

“We had a fun time getting acquainted with everyone,” she said, referring to the participants. And some funds were generated to help veterans, she added.

Beastrom herself is a microcosm of the old-and-new blend characterizing the local auxiliary. In the president’s job just around a month, she’s belonged for 23 years and was the treasurer for 10, she said. The deal she agreed to when approached about becoming president was someone else would have to take over the auxiliary treasurer’s responsibilities (she’s also the Pierce County Treasurer).

The new president said she has ideas for energizing the ranks, which presently number 99, and include 18 who’ve been involved for between 50-and-59 years, plus six above 60 years (Marie Demuth holds top longevity at 67 years). Among the notions is organizing a trip to a new veterans home in Chippewa Falls, perhaps additionally making lap robes, bibs and bags to attach to their walkers for the vets there. Admittedly, these are past endeavors for which supply might have overcome demand, but could now be welcome again.

For more please read the August 28 print version of the Herald. 

Bill Kirk

Bill Kirk was editor of the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth, from 1988 to February, 2015 and is now on staff as a reporter. He holds a bachelors degree in journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. He previously worked in the media distribution department at the University of Minnesota's Minneapolis campus and is past editor of The Tri-County News in Osseo, Wisconsin.

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