Blue Star flags presented to families of active military personnel
ELSA KERSCHNER/TIMES NEWS Grandmother Brenda Haas and mother Pattie Rauch accepted the Blue Star Flag for Jesse Mackaravitz. Her father Wayne was unable to attend.
Allen O. Delke American Legion Post 16, Slatington, held a Blue Star Families program and honored members who had 50 years or more of continuous membership on April 22.
The meeting was opened by Commander Jim Gourniak Sr. The chaplain led an opening prayer asking that peace be sent to our country and all countries. George Burke, senior vice commander, removed the cover from the POW/MIA chair.
The Blue Star Families began a tradition many years ago, said Service Officer Charles Stopp. He heads the Blue Star committee. Each family receives a small red flag with a blue star on a white field.
"It is a significant ceremony for parents and other family members of people in active duty," Stopp said. The "children in active duty" is the only criteria for receiving the Blue Star flag.
Mark Queen, adjutant, showed group pictures of the families from past years.
Linda Humanick is the mother of Brandon and Ronnie who are both stationed in Camp Buehring, Kuwait.
Cortney Humanick is the wife of Ronnie and mother of their twin girls, Mia and Maddie.
Michael and Tina Brogan are the parents of Michael Brogan. He is also in Camp Buehring, Kuwait.
Janice and Brian Perry are mother and stepfather to Paul Keegan. Paul is in Camp Buehring, Kuwait.
Pattie Rauch is the mother of Jesse Mackaravitz, and, like the other recipients, is stationed in Kuwait. Her father is Wayne Rauch.
Recipients who were not present were: Cathie Sargent who is the mother of Corey. He is stationed in Afghanistan. His father is Tom Sargent.
George and Beverly Ritchey have a child in the military.
Fred Wehr received a certificate for 60 years of continuous membership in the American Legion. Recipients who did not attend were Frank Andrews with 50 years of membership and Lawrence George with 60 years.
The certificate is issued "in grateful appreciation for faithful and dedicated allegiance to the ideals of The American Legion. … Be it further known that such record of consistent loyalty to The American Legion merits the honor of being cited as an outstanding contributor to the programs of The American Legion."
The certificate is signed by the national commander, national adjutant and Post commander.
In a brief memorial service the chaplain said, "Let us remember the good deeds they have done … As we stand in silence, may we sincerely say 'May they rest in peace.'"