American Legion Helderberg Post celebrates and remembers

Enterprise file photo — Sean Mulkerrin

Betty Spadaro, who turned 100 last Sept. 8, was the teacher in the one-room schoolhouse on the Bozenkill, since moved to the Altamont fairgrounds.

To the Editor:

Altamont should be extremely proud of what has been accomplished on the Altamont-Voorheesville Road within the village — a beautifully restored meeting room in the American Legion Post.

A dinner and reception took place honoring Commander James Gaige; the Legion, the auxiliary, the Sons of the Legions, and the American Legion Riders, and friends were invited.

Much planning had been put into this event by the commander, auxiliary President, Karen Spawn, Sons of American Legion Commander Allan Gaige, and the Riders’ President Steve Oliver.

The Legion sponsors the local Boy Scout troop, and the Scouts also were very helpful in making the evening a success.

Ruth Pollard led the pledge of allegiance to our flag, and it was followed by Richard Brumley giving the invocation.

Patty Rutz represented the prisoners of war and soldiers missing in action (POW/MIA) and gave a reading on the topic.

The emcee of the evening, James Gaige, wasted no time in creating an enjoyable atmosphere for all including Cindy and Jack Pollard who have organized the well-known exhibit of our past wars in their restaurant, The Home Front Café located on Main Street.

The auxiliary members were responsible for the delicious buffet.

The highlight of the evening was the entertainment one should never forget, “Until It’s Over-Over There,” a recreation of a World War II Armed Forces Radio Broadcast by Rev. Gary Maem, 2nd Lieutenant, Deputy Chaplain 10th Area Command New York Guard. He sang the beautiful music of the 1930s and ‘40s of Glenn Miller and Artie Shaw in his lovely tenor voice.

In between, he mentioned historical events of that era and companies promoting products, such as, Coca-Cola at 5 cents a bottle!

As I sat admiring the redecorated room, I thought of those in the past, of those who had been instrumental in the construction of the building and all of the committed work reported each month in aiding veterans.

Some of those who gave many hours to the organization in the 1940s I can recall were: Harry Fellows, Walter and Hattie Gaige, Earl and Lena Clickman, Frank and Virginia Sand, Carl and Dorothy Sand, Edna Cowan, Virginia Quay, Blanche Schaible, Marian Ackermand and Verna Uhl.

What a pleasure it was to talk with some of my former students I had not seen since they had left my classroom and now they are grandparents! They are now members — Linda Tiffany, Michele DeLucia, the Kappers, Ruth and Jimmy Pollard, and of course “Jimmy Gaige” who has done so much for the post, village, and our country.

If you have not seen the results of the renovations of Heldererg Post 977, stop in and observe how well it has been done.

I will never forget the event.

Betty Allen Spadaro

Lake George

Editor’s note: Betty Allen Spadaro, a long time Altamont resident, and teacher at the one-room schoolhouse on the Bozenkill, since moved to the Altamont fairgrounds. She turned 100 last Sept. 8.

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