Author Archive: Editor

VFW/Legion Christmas Party 2022

Our annual holiday get together was held on Saturday, December 17, at the Edmonds American Legion Hall. Around 50 members and guests were in attendance, a bit lighter turn-out than our normal pre-COVID affairs, but a large enough group to make it a lively party. 

The Posts provided some of the food and members brought a variety of side dishes and desserts, as well as supplementing the turkey and ham provided by the posts. The food was delicious (at least in your editor’s mind) and there was certainly plenty of it.

Commanders Kurfess and Walderman opened the proceeding and then presented Mike Reagan with the two post’s annual contribution to his Fallen Heroes Project. Mike has now done in excess of 8,000 portraits of fallen comrades and continues every day. 

Our usual raffle was held with a variety of prizes, including copies of Mike Reagan’s work and some particularly nice beverages. Background music was provided by a live performer with keyboard and accordion. 

The annual toy drive was topped off at the party and those toys, added to those collected earlier at Teri’s Toy Box in downtown Edmonds, were delivered the the Edmonds Food Bank toy drive for what appeared to be a record result. Well done Comrades! 

In Memoriam 

Never Forget… 

Al Boyett

Al Boyett

Al Boyett We lost another of our brothers when Al Boyett, who had served as our Post Surgeon for a number of years, passed away recently. Al had been suffering from a long bout with cancer. 

Boyett was born June 30, 1937 in Williamsburg Alabama and moved to Seattle in 1948. Married Jo Nazworthy December 6, 1963 to Jo Nazworthy he became father to Tahnya Boyett 1966. The family moved to Bothell 1973, where they have lived since. 

Al was drafted into the Army and served in Korea. After the war, he joined BBoys Auto Parts from 1956 until he purchased the auto parts store which he owned from 1974 to 1981. He then worked for an auto parts warehouse, Mar- Lac Distributing until he retired after 2011. 

B-Boys was a founding member of the Washington Automotive Industry Association, in a effort to bring support to the automotive industry and to provide health insurance to employees. 

Al graduated in 1955 from Lincoln HS and later technical school for space and missile electronics. He became a pilot in 1970 and belonged to Bellevue Air club. Al was a Member of Northlake Lutheran Church since 1974 and a past member of the Bellevue Air club, Elks, and a Good Sam’s member serving the Tired & Retired chapter of Good Sam’s. 

Veterans Day at Edmonds Woodway High School 

On November 8, Edmonds Woodway H.S. held a Veterans Day observance, featuring veteran speakers and appropriate music from the school’s band, chorus and orchestra.

Veterans Day at Edmonds Woodway High School

Among the featured speakers was Post 8870’s own Charlie Gaul. Other attendees from our post included Commander Carl Kurfess and Past Commander Mike Denton. 

Gaul is pictured speaking in the photo at left. 

Lynnwood Gold Star Memorial Dedicated 

A monument dedicated to the families of fallen U.S. military members was unveiled Wednesday November 2 in Lynnwood’s newly redeveloped Veterans Memorial Park.

Hundreds gathered in the park – located at 44th Avenue West and 194th Street Southwest – to witness the unveiling of the Gold Star Families Memorial Monument. During the ceremony, Lynnwood Mayor Christine Frizzell thanked the Gold Star Mothers in attendance and assured them they were not alone in their grief. 

To fund the project, the Washington State American Gold Star Mothers partnered with the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation, which is dedicated to honoring and paying tribute to families who have sacrificed a loved one in service of their country.

Lynnwood Gold Star Memorial Dedicated

Williams was a Congressional Medal of Honor recipient from WWII who had plans to see a monument dedicated to Gold Star Families in all 50 states. Though Williams died in June of this year, his work will continue through his foundation, said speaker and U.S. Marine Corps veteran Michael Reagan. 

Lynnwood’s monument is unique compared to others. In addition to honoring those who were POW/MIA, it is the first monument to recognize Indigenous veterans and those who died by suicide, said keynote speaker retired Lieutenant General Mark Wise.

Lynnwood Gold Star Memorial Dedicated

Surrounding the monument are 22 stone seats in honor of service members who died by suicide after serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Under the monument, sand from Iwo Jima, Japan; water from Belleau Wood, France and three military challenge coins were buried in its foundation. 

The monument is the 200th to be installed in the country and the third to come to Washington state. During the ceremony, Deputy Director of Washington State Department of Affairs David Puente, Jr. read a letter from Gov. Jay Inslee, who praised the Gold Star Mothers for their tireless work to bring the monument to Lynnwood.

Photos and article excepts courtesy of

VFW District 1 Youth/Teacher Awards 

On Jan 7 we held the District 1 2022-2023 Youth Essay and Teacher of the Year Awards. We would like to congratulate all of this year’s winners at the District level and wish them luck at the Department level in the coming weeks! 

VFW District 1 Youth/Teacher Awards

Voice of Democracy – Steven Locke
Patriots Pen – Brendan Stinson
Youth Essays – Eloise Liao 

We would also like to recognize this year’s Teachers of the year!
High school – Heather Hunsberger submitted by Arlington post 1561
Middle School – Michelle Bannon submitted by Sultan post 2554
Elementary school – Kevin Mandoske submitted by Monroe post 7511 

VFW National Membership Drive 

Our National headquarters recently announce the 30 Departments who have achieved 92% or more in membership by January 1, which includes the Department of Washington! Edmonds VFW Post 8870 is part of this achievement and we urge all of our members to reach out to local eligible veterans and bring them into the fold. We can only do the work on behalf of our nations war fighters if we keep our membership strong.

VFW National Membership Drive

From the Commander’s Desk 

From the Commander’s Desk

A belated Happy Veterans Day to you all and I hope that everyone had a great one. I’d also like to wish all Marines a Happy Birthday and hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving! Our General Fund is running low. Donations will be accepted by our Quartermaster. Thanks to all those that volunteered to hand out Buddy Poppies during our Veterans Day drive, & contributing to its success. Thanks, as well to Sr. Vice Commander Duane Bowman for organizing it. Our annual Toy drive at Teri’s Toybox in downtown Edmonds runs from Nov. 15-Dec. 15. Drop by and purchase a toy or two for our collection box. 

Report your volunteer activities by phone, email, or text to our surgeon ( Please submit before our meetings, to cut down on our meeting time and report by the end of each month so we can report to Department in a timely manner. 

There will be no Post meeting in December. Instead, VFW Post 8870 & American Legion Post 66 will be having our annual Christmas Potluck party on Saturday, December 17. (See this article of this newsletter for details.) There will be an auction with great items to bid upon, so bring money! Also please bring canned food and an unwrapped toy. Earlier that morning, there will be a Wreaths across America event at Evergreen Washelli Cemetery from 0900-1100. 

Have a Merry Christmas! 

November Post Meeting 

Heather Peterson,volunteer coordinator for Continuum Hospice
Peterson provides member Phil Sacks with contact information 

Heather Peterson, volunteer coordinator for Continuum Hospice. spoke to our November Post meeting about their program. She is looking for Veteran volunteers to meet with Veteran Hospice members so they can talk Veteran to Veteran. No set schedule, volunteer as much or as little as you like. 

When you have a chronic illness, you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed as your disease progresses. Continuum Palliative Resources provides home-based palliative care, you will be assigned a Nurse Practitioner to provide home visits to enhance your daily lifestyle through education, medication management and necessary medical tools to support your management of your advanced disease. 

Highlights of Business Meeting

  • One new member, Eric Baum was accepted & one transfer, Jim Armstrong from Post 1040. (We will introduce these member in detail when they have attended their first meetting) 
  • Minutes from the October Meeting were read & approved with no changes. 
  • Quartermaster’s report was reviewed. The following expenditures were approved by the membership. $29.68 for pre-meeting meals, $39.17 for soft drinks. 
  • Community Service Reporting. According to Don Wischmann (District 1 Quartermaster) the reporting is going well. He suggested that we work on combining repeating activities into one report. (As an example, if you you spent 3 hours per day for 3 days during the month you should submit one (1) report for the month showing the total hours.) 
  • Relief Fund was reviewed and is in good shape to meet budgeted commitments. 
  • Service Officer Report. Alden has received several requests for assistance & has been busy directing folks to the help that they need. 
  • We received 3 essays (youth/patriots pen) that will be reviewed and forwarded on to District. 
  • Don Wischmann the District 1 quartermaster did an audit of our post financials found everything in order 
  • The Post Charter was draped for Dick Simmons & Norm Goldstein. 

Post Christmas Party 

Saturday, Dec. 17, 1-5pm 

Post Christmas Party

The annual Christmas pot-luck event will be held at the American Legion Hall in Edmonds at 117 6th Ave S. in downtown Edmonds. The American Legion and VFW Posts will supply turkey, ham, Stuffing, soft drinks, and coffee/tea. Families attending are asked to bring a dish that will be shared with others. We need side dishes, salads, rolls/bread, and desserts. There will be an auction/fundraiser, and a recognition ceremony. Please sign up on the Sign – up genius on line via this link: 

Post Christmas Party

Never Forget… 

It has been a difficult year in which we have experienced the loss of a number of our comrades. This is the latest group departing our ranks. May they all rest in peace and never be forgotten.

Norm Goldstein

Norm Goldstein was one of our few remaining WWII veterans, serving in the Navy as a Torpedoman, mostly in shore stations, servicing torpedos for Aircraft. Following his WWII service, Norm graduated from the UW with a teaching certificate in 1950. He taught at Ballard High School, Mountlake Terrace High School and as Dean of Students, Athletic Director, and Varsity Basketball coach at Edmonds Community College. He would have celebrated his 100th birthday on January 6, 2023. 

Gil Loomis

Gil Loomis was a VFW Life Member at large before joining our post. Corporal Loomis served in the Army Infantry from 1947 until 1952. He was in Korea for Occupation duty beginning in 1948. When war broke out in 1950, Gil was with I Company, 31st Infantry, 7th Infantry Division. He was shot in the hand and forearm, suffered frostbite and was eventually evacuated from the battlefield. Awards include Purple Heart w/ 1st Oak Leaf Cluster, Korean Service Medal w/ 3 bronze service stars and the Good Conduct Medal. He also led the Lynnwood Chapter of Disabled American Veterans. 

John Shelton

John Shelton enlisted in the Marine Corps and was sent to Vietnam in 1959 where he served as a sniper. He was severely wounded in Vietnam and has been confined to wheelchair ever since. He went to UCLA and four years later emerged with a baccalaureate degree in psychology going on to earn a masters degree and ultimately a PhD in behavioral psychology. Dr. Shelton had a long and successful practice ministering to thousands of patients. John and his wife had just recently moved to Spokane, Caroline’s home town, after many years in Edmonds. As our long time Post Guard, we will miss John’s presence at the front desk signing us into meetings, collecting meal money and selling raffle tickets. 

Dick Simmons

Dick Simmons served as an officer in the Navy on supply ships, including the AE class, which resupplied the carrier task forces with bombs and other munitions. Later in the Vietnam years, he served on an LST, (Landing ship tank) delivering such munitions. After the Navy, he followed a career in journalism, working as a reporter and editor for the Seattle P.I. Dick was our Post adjutant for several years and was a frequent member of our color guard at parades and other events. Recently, he was living in a memory care facility in edmonds prior to his recent passing.