CHESTY PULLER VFW POST 1503 LEGACY |
Nov 21st, 1970 - Present
VFW Post 1503 had many "homes" before they arrived at their beautiful Post home on Minnieville Road in 1989. We started off by holding our meetings at different member's homes and also at Birchdale Fire Station. We obtained our initial Charter, November 21, 1970 with 50 members. One of those members was Marine General Lewis B "Chesty" Puller himself. Once we were formally organized we moved the meetings to the Birchdale Recreation center. We were there for about a year when Post 1503 obtained its first real home, a small trailer on Hereford Road, donated to us by a woman (name not known). After leaving the trailer, the Post moved to "Center Plaza", in the shop where "Pedal Pusher" Florist is still located. Our next location was a small place in the back of the plaza behind Padrino's, called "the Hole in the Wall". We stayed there until April15, 1989 when we moved into our brand new location and our current Post Home on Minnieville Road.
VFW Post 1503 started off with their name being, "Dale City VFW Post 1503". In the summer of 1972, Mr. David Lynch, Commander of Post 1503 communicated with Mrs. Puller to see if we could use her husband's name - General Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller to rename our post. On September 28, 1972 Mrs. Puller stated that the Puller family would be honored to have the Post renamed after her husband. "Chesty" was a charter member of Post 1503. In October 1972 the Post officially requested that the Veterans of Foreign Wars grant permission to change the name to General Lewis B. "Chesty" Puller. However, national Headquarters informed Post 1503 that a post in Iwakuni, Japan was already operating under the General's name. Post 1503 requested that if the post in Iwakuni ever went defunct and closed its doors, we would like to have the name. One July 24, 1975, National Headquarters informed the Post that name was now available and they could change their name to General Lewis B. Chesty Puller. A new Charter was issued on July 24, 1975; Leonard J. Riffle was the Post Commander during that time.
As our membership grew, our organization also grew. On May 16, 1980 the Auxiliary to the VFW post 1503 was chartered with 24 members. On March 13, 1985 the Military order of the Cooties was chartered with 28 members. The Junior Girls were instituted on July 9, 1987 with 12 members, the Boy Scouts followed shortly after. In December of 1988, the Auxiliary of the Military Order of the Cooties was chartered with 15 members. In May of 1990 the Military Order of the Purple Heart received their charter. A few years later, in June of 1994, a few members of the VFW who were Motorcycle riders formed the "Combat Veterans of America Motorcycle Club" into a non-profit Veterans organization.
VFW Post 1503 has always been a post that has given not only to the Veterans but also to the community. As our Post has maintained a continuous membership growth since 1971, so have our donations to the community. While we are required to donate a percentage of our profit to the community, Post 1503 has always given back a larger percentage than required. Some of our donations are to: Food baskets at Christmas, Family Fun Day, Project Mend-A- House, Boy Scouts, Voice Of Democracy and Patriots Pen Scholarships, McGuires Veterans Hospital, Homeless Shelters, Youth Activities, Dale City Civic Association, Marine Corps Toys For Tots Program, ACTS, and many more. We have had 38 Commanders of Post 1503 since its inception. Since its beginning the membership has grown each year. Post 1503 now has a membership of over 2,600 members, making it one of the top two largest VFW Posts in the World. We continue to grow each year.
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