Published : Sunday, December 9, 2018 | 5:37 AM
The American Legion, the 2-million-member U.S. military veterans organization founded at the close of World War I, plans to mark its 100th year with a week-long celebration in Pasadena culminating with its first Rose Parade float in three decades.
Historic American Legion Pasadena, Post 13, founded in 1919 just months after the organization was formed, is hosting the activities, including a black tie gala with National Commander Brett Reistad, four Medal of Honor recipients who will ride in the Parade, other American Legion Family leaders, youth champions and others in attendance.
The Legion’s float will occupy a prominent position in the 130th annual Tournament of Roses Parade — third, directly behind the U.S. Marine Corps band.
Reistad, Sons of The American Legion National Commander Greg “Doc” Gibbs and Auxiliary National President Kathy Dungan will be among those riding the float.
Four Medal of Honor recipients — Hershel “Woody” Williams, Ron Rosser, Walter “Joe” Marm and Britt Slabinski — will also be riding the float.
In the days leading up to the parade, a delegation of American Legion Family members and youth program participants will decorate it. On Dec. 30, the float will be judged along with others in the parade.
The American Legion was established in 1919 after World War I and has been instrumental in obtaining support for veterans including the “GI Bill” near the close of WWII, and continued improvements of benefits for today’s veterans.
The black tie centennial party event begins at 7 p.m. on December 30 at the Legion post, 131 N. Marengo Ave. in Pasadena. For ticket prices and more information, call (626) 792-2158 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.