Thank you to Belpre Ohio American Legion Post 495

It is with both admiration and sadness that I write this letter. Our community has been blessed for over 80 years with an outstanding group of Veterans and their families. This group of individuals has changed over the years but their mission has always been the same — shared helpfulness.

The Belpre Ohio American Legion Post 495 has been a helping force in the community. Post members have presided as Honor Guards at community events, educated our children about honor and sacrifice as they shared their military service, sponsored the local Boy Scout Troop, engaged in a variety of nationally sponsored Legion events to promote citizenry and patriotism, provided scholarships to local students, and participated in a variety of community and social activities.

“The American Legion’s success depends entirely on active membership, participation and volunteerism. The organization belongs to the people it serves and the communities in which it thrives.” (

Tonight, I witnessed the disbanding of Post 495. The heartache expressed in officers’ words shared their sorrow at the decision to end the chapter. This organization and its members are dedicated to the mission of the American Legion. However, the loss of active membership and participation can no longer support the group’s goals. The dissolution of this chapter and the resulting loss to our community will be significant.

I wish all of the members of Belpre American Legion Post 495 all the best. I thank you for both your military service and your continued commitment to our community through participation in the Legion. Know that your helpfulness was meaningful and appreciated. You are truly admired. I am sorry for the loss of your Post.

Mary “Shelly” Hess, Retired

Little Hocking Elementary School