“For God and Country,” the sign at American Legion Post 595 in Perris announces to veterans and residents who pass by the historic post on South D Street in Perris.
Now, its 333 American Legionnaires and Post officers are showing concern for the thousands of veterans, their families, sons and daughters who are missing out on the many benefits and camaraderie the post offers its community.
While its membership from all over southwest Riverside County has remained stable for many years, only 40 to 50 men and women from the post’s American Legion Auxiliary are active and enjoy family barbecues, breakfasts and steak dinners, friendly dining room and bar and even a group of veteran motorcycle riders called the AL Riders. If its help a veteran needs, the Perris American Legion Post 595 is there, Post Commander and Riverside County’s District 3 Vice Commander Michael Weir said. Veterans in need or those seeking a place to share life with fellow vets have always been welcome at American Legion Post 559, but unlike the Veterans of Foreign Wars Posts, the post is open to all veterans, present or past veterans families, their wives and children as long as they are American citizens who have at one time had a family member or members in the American military services.
“We have a lot of opportunity for you in the American Legion, any vet, vet parent, children of veterans past or present,” Jeffery Moore from Lake Elsinore, a member of the American Legion Riders and Post 595, said. “We also have 125 members of the American Legion Auxiliary here to help.”
The post works with homeless veterans and continues its efforts to provide help for all veterans who served the nation, assisting them with the American Legion Veterans Affairs and Rehabilitation and Department of Veterans Affairs Voluntary Service. They seek to impact area communities like Perris, Murrieta, Menifee, Wildomar and Temecula in a positive way, by helping and assisting veterans and supporting various American Legion programs.
The post’s mission is to show pride for those who served the nation to us free and to ensure that veterans, POWs and MIAs from all wars will never be forgotten.
The Perris American Legion contributes to the youth through its Boys and Girls State candidates, auxiliary visits to Loma Linda Veterans Hospital and other Veteran Administration facilities, finds housing for homeless veterans at MARB vets home and provides a place for community events. They support Toys for Tots and other local and regional events.
They also offer low-cost meals to the public, serving breakfast 8-11a.m. every Sunday; lunch 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday; dinner every Friday and a steak dinner every first and third Friday of the month for $12.
The post will soon offer bingo open to the public and other special events, including the Post 595 Valentine’s Day Dance, 6-11 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 17, for $30 a couple or $20 a person. Dinner and live music begin 6 p.m.
Moore said the post buildings on its one-acre site at 600 D Street are in need of repairs because of their age. The historic buildings were moved from their site at the former World War I Camp Haan Army Air Force Base in 1945, which is now the March Air Reserve Base in Moreno Valley, to its present location. Other buildings were purchased, donated and attached to the original building, but all are need of repair, Moore said.
“We need donations to keep us afloat,” Moore said.
The post is also looking to build at Veterans Memorial for vets from all wars on the site but needs $29,000 to construct it.
To find out more about American Legion Post 595 and the American Legion Auxiliary and their services, call (951) 657-6275. Residents can also contact the post about the American Legion Post 595 motorcycle organization and upcoming rides.