The Coon Rapids VFW and its men’s and ladies auxiliaries installed new officers May 2.
But Charles Hawkins Sr., the incoming commander, and Mary Hawkins, the incoming ladies auxiliary, president, will be no strangers to the job.
The husband and wife have each been commander and ladies auxiliary president, respectively, twice before.
However, the new men’s auxiliary president James Jensen has been elected to the position for the first time.
Charles Hawkins thanked the post “very much” for electing him commander.
“I think we are headed for a good year, but there are a lot of things that we have to do,” Hawkins said.
All the officers of the VFW, ladies auxiliary and men’s auxiliary installed Sunday will take office June 24 after the new state commander is installed at the state convention.
Marv Roepke, outgoing commander, said as he stepped down, he looked back on the past year with “pride and accomplishment.”
According to Roepke, one of the things he has emphasized during his tenure as commander is to bring new younger, veterans into the VFW.
“I see a new generation of veterans and we need that if this post is to survive and not decline in the next 50 years,” Roepke said.
Roepke pledged to give all the help he could to Hawkins, he said. “I won’t disappear,” Roepke said.
Besides Hawkins, post officers include Lina Montour, senior vice commander; Brian Personius, junior vice commander; Tom Bohlman, adjutant; Bob Faucett, gambling manager; Florian Gutzmer, chaplain; Ryan Hallberg, judge advocate; Roepke, three-year trustee; Ray Christianson, two-year trustee; Bill Lambert, one-year trustee; and Benjamin Butz, surgeon.
Ladies auxiliary officers area: Hawkins, president; Lola Halseth, senior vice president; Darlene Thell, junior vice president; Sue Geisler, secretary; Carol Dickhausen, treasurer; Diane Bohlman, chaplain; Sandy Berg, conductress; Donna Guenther, guard; Kath, three-year trustee; Tammy Meyers, two-year trustee; and Carmen Chiodo, one-year trustee.
Officers of the men’s auxiliary are: Jensen, president; Arik Fosse, senior vice president; Ken Gutzmer, junior vice president; Mike Gifford, treasurer; Todd Lindorff, secretary; Roger Kath, chaplain; Greg Lieran, three-year trustee; Dave Rumble, two-year trustee; and Paul Nelson, one-year trustee.
Peter Bodley is at [email protected]