New Member

New Members Inducted into the Post

New Members Inducted into the Post Chris Edwards

Chris Edwards

Upon his graduation from Shoreline High School in 1992, Chris enlisted in the Army.  After completing basic training, he enrolled in a 58 week training program at Lowry AFB to learn how to use electronic testing equipment.  He served in Kuwait in 1994 during Operation Vigilant Warrior after which he was assigned to Ft. Lewis.  In 1997, Chris joined the Army Reserves, and he trained as a landing craft operator.  Chris transferred to the National Guard three years later, becoming a reconnaissance scout in the 81st Brigade.  In 2004, Chris was deployed to Iraq and served as a squad leader in a scout/sniper platoon.  Upon his return to the States, Chris served as a scout sniper instructor in Yakima.  During his second deployment to Iraq in 2008, Chris was as a scout platoon Sergeant, serving primarily in the area around Al Asad.  Currently, Chris is the 1st Sergeant in the 81st Brigade, Special Troops Battalion.  He and his wife live in Shoreline.


New Members Inducted into the Post Jim Blossey

Jim Blossey

Jim grew up in Spokane and graduated from high school in 1952. Shortly after his graduation, Jim enlisted in the Navy and attended boot camp at the San Diego Naval Training Facility. A short time later, he was assigned to the USS Walton, a destroyer escort. His ship participated in operations off the coast of North Korea. After serving on active duty for two years, Jim served in a Naval Reserve unit while he attended Washington State University. He graduated from WSU with a degree in communications, and for the next 18 years, Jim worked as a disc jockey. His radio career began in Boise, Idaho, and after working in Idaho for five years, he assumed a similar role in two Seattle radio stations. Eventually, Jim started an advertising company in Seattle. His agency is now located in Edmonds, and more than half of the work that he does is pro bono for several charitable organizations. He and his wife, Linda, reside in Edmonds. They have one son and one grandchild.


New Members Inducted into the Post Lee Champagne

Lee Champagne

Lee was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana and enlisted in the Navy after graduating from high school. After serving two years on the destroyer USS Rich, he was accepted into the NROTC program at Oregon State. After being commissioned in 1971, Lee served for the next 27 years in a variety of assignments. His shipboard assignments included that of Communication Officer and Navigator, Operations Officer, Executive Officer, and as Captain of the guided missile destroyer, USS Callaghan. Lee graduated from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA and served in different staff positions in Hawaii and Saudi Arabia. His last shore assignment was as the Commander of the U.S. Naval Base in Sasebo, Japan. After retiring from the Navy in 1987, Lee worked as a civilian employee for the Department of Defense for five years. In 2003, Lee was named Federal Coordinating Officer for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), a position which he still holds. Lee and his wife, Jonelle, reside in Edmonds. Their daughter, Andrea, is a Major in the U.S. Marine Corps, and she is a JAG officer at Camp Pendleton.


New Members Inducted into the Post Gerry Burton

Gerry Burton

Gerald was born and raised in Pueblo, Colorado. When he was in junior high school, his family moved to Friday Harbor, Washington. After graduating from high school in 1965, Gerald attended college for a year and a half prior to enlisting in the Army. He completed basic training at Ft. Lewis and Advanced Individual Training (AIT) at Ft. Lee, Virginia. He was a Distinguished Graduate from AIT, which earned him an assignment to Vietnam. He worked as a supply clerk at Chu Lai during his one year tour. He returned to Ft. Lewis from which he was discharged in December 1971.

New Member Profiles — Pete Farmer

Pete grew up in Winchester, Virginia and attended Virginia Military Institute.  Upon his graduation from VMI, he was commissioned a 2nd Lt. in the U. S. Army and received advanced training in field artillery.  He volunteered and served two tours of duty in Vietnam.  During his first tour in 1969, Pete was stationed in 2nd Corps.  When he returned to Southeast Asia, Pete saw action at several fire bases throughout South Vietnam.  After serving in the Army for eight years, Pete was discharged from Fort Lewis in 1976.  Two years later, he returned to the Pacific Northwest, living in Seattle.  He is a retired banking executive, and he and his wife, Patty, now reside in Edmonds.  They have two sons, one who lives in Oregon, and their youngest son is a student at his father’s alma mater, VMI.

New Member Profiles — William Halsey

William is a twenty year veteran of the Navy, who retired in 2001 at the rank of Commander.  He is a native of Chicago, and was a Naval Aviator.  William attended the Ohio State University, receiving a B.S degree in Aeronautical Engineering.  While attending the Naval War College, William earned a Master’s Degree in National Security and International Affairs.   During his career, William flew anti-submarine warfare missions and also served as an instructor pilot and test pilot.  His overseas assignments included tours in Japan, Okinawa, Thailand, Diego Garcia, and the Philippines.  Among his decorations, William was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal with 1OLC, Meritorious Service Medal with 1 OLC, Navy Achievement Medal with 3 OLC, and four Sea Service Deployment Ribbons.  William is an Avionics Design Engineer at Boeing.  He and his wife, Linda, are residents of Edmonds.

New Member Profile – Kevin Millikan

New Member Profile - Kevin Millikan

We will try to put the profiles of one or two new members in the newsletter each month.  This month is Kevin Millikan who doesn’t seem to me to be a new member due to his involvement in Post activities.

When Kevin was six, his family moved from their home in Carthage, Missouri to a new home in Lawrence, Kansas.  As a junior in high school, Kevin enlisted in the U. S. Navy in its delayed entry program.   Upon his high school graduation in 1980, Kevin was assigned to San Diego for basic recruit training.  He received advanced training as an Aviation Machinist Mate and was assigned to VA-128, West Coast Training Squadron, at Whidbey Island NAS.  At Whidbey Island, he worked exclusively with A-6 Intruders.  From 1982 through 1984, Kevin was assigned to VAQ-132 where he was deployed on a Mediterranean cruise aboard the USS Eisenhower in which the carrier was engaged in support operations in Libya and the Middle East.  He worked as a jet engine mechanic and flight deck troubleshooter.  He was honorably discharged in 1985, and after working briefly in California, Kevin relocated in Alaska where he lived and worked for the next thirteen years.  In 1998, Kevin and his wife, Jean, moved to Edmonds.  Kevin has earned an Associate Degree from Edmonds Community College and is currently enrolled in an undergraduate program in Information Technology and Administrative Management through Central Washington University.  He and his wife have three children.

Post Welcomes Two New Members

Two new members were inducted into the VFW at the last meeting. William Benn served in the Marine Corps in Vietnam and Bert Claudio served in the Navy. I would like everyone to reach out to these members at the next meeting and introduce yourselves to them personally. We have had a number of new members over the last couple of months and it is up to the older members to make the new members feel welcomed to our Post. We have a very friendly group of individuals in our Post so let‘s use some of that charm whenever you see a new member.